A Weekend Touring Ropley

The 19th and 20th September 2015 the Watercress Line are holding their open weekend.  As well as running an intensive service of four trains (consisting of two steam hauled passenger, one steam hauled demonstration freight and one heritage diesel DEMU) the railway have opened up most of the works in Ropley.  My task for the day…

Excellent Work Guys!

Today, the Watercress Line’s Bulleid brake coach 4211 reached a significant milestone by being sent to Alresford for vehicle acceptance.  All being well it should enter service within the next few weeks.  The restoration of this beautiful wooden bodied carriage was all the more incredible when you consider that much of it was newly built…

Full Steam Ahead for Canadian Pacific and the MHR

Today the Heritage Lottery Fund announced that the Mid Hants Railways “Canadian Pacific – engineering a future from the past” bid has been successful in its application for funding. The project to overhaul the railway’s flagship steam engine Merchant Navy class No. 35005 ‘Canadian Pacific’ and restore two wooden framed Bulleid carriages will provide employment…

Another MHR steam gala blogger!

925 “Cheltenham” rests at Alresford awaiting her next duties. As you are no doubt now aware by now, a little while ago now (been rather busy since!) three locoyard bloggers assembled together for the MHR Spring (!?) Steam Gala. As a first time visitor to the railway it was great to be shown round by…

Elderly Yet Still A Speed Demon!

Unlike Stanier’s competing express passenger locomotive class; the LMS Coronation class, the streamlining of Sir Nigel Gresley’s LNER A4 class was more than skin deep.  Therefore when wartime and the following nationalisation of the country’s railways brought with them a more austere and pragmatic management approach, the streamlining of the A4’s remained, being intrinsic to…

NRM’s Star of 2015

If LNER Pacific 4468 Mallard was the star of 2013-2014, Bulleid Battle of Britain class 34051 Sir Winston Churchill will be for 2015.  2015 marks the 50th anniversary of the state funeral of Sir Winston Churchill.  34051 had the honour of hauling the great statesman’s final journey.  The locomotive has been lovingly cosmetically restored at…

77 Years Young

Today is the 77th birthday of the fastest steam engine run in preservation, LNER A4 pacific 4464 Bittern.  Last year, the birthday girl was given special dispensation to run 3 railtours at 90mph to celebrate the 75th anniversary of 4468 Mallard’s 126mph speed record, as captured by the UK Heritage Hub video below.