The light at the end of that particular tunnel has hopefully just about arrived and I was able to get along to Toddington on Saturday for the first time this year.
Before we get round to that though, my spies have been sending in photos of some of the activities within the steam loco dept lately:
|Richard steam cleaning the pits...|
|...Fitting new piston rings on 2807...|
|...Creating foundations for the new wood store|
All of our home fleet have now passed their boiler insurance steam tests for the year...
|Foremarke Hall being prepared for her steam test|
|Foremarke Hall tries out the "Cotswold Express" headboard for size.|
|35006 has had her lamps painted and a red lens fitted to the lamp without one.|
Dinmore Manor too has had new piston rings fitted:
|Mark(L) & Gilbert fit one of 7820's pistons (photo courtesy of Keith Smith)|
|Foremarke Hall heads for her stock ready for the first train of the season.|
|Dinmore Manor, no valves fitted|
|Where one of the valves should be...|
|...and where it was.|
|Richard "encourages" the valve to move, Eleanor holds a sacrificial piece of wood|
|Eventually, the valve spindle dropped into its well in the frame|
|Richard applies some steam oil...|
|... and eventually the valve is fully reinserted.|
2807's valves were still being reassembled on Saturday.
|New valve rings on the work bench|
|2807, awaiting its valves.|
|Mark reassembling 2807's valves with the new rings.|
|35006 coming in to steam|
My afternoon was spent on the footplate of Foremarke Hall,
|The line side clearance team were doing excellent work at Bishops Cleeve|
|The new "Cotswold Express" headboard looks rather good.|
|Mike in the driving seat.|
|Passing 35006 at Winchcombe|
We didn't spend long at Broadway, but it was pleasing to see that the steps for the footbridge are coming along nicely.
|Footbridge steps coming together on platform 2|
|Jeremy building up the fire at Broadway.|
|They might well have suffocated by then of course|