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Posts Tagged ‘Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway’

This Month sees restored Bulleid pacific 35006 Peninsular & Oriental S. N. Co. return to regular steam on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway (GWSR) following the completion of her restoration and return to service last year.  So far this year she has already run during March for a series of Private Charter trains in conjunction with the Cheltenham Races Festival, but now allocated dates for her running on the GWRS during May have been released.

35006 in the sunshine at the Gloucester and Warwickshire Railway

The steaming dates commence this weekend 13th/14th May followed by the weekend of the 20th/21st and then Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 23rd to 25th may leading up to the GWRS’s Cotswold Festival of Steam  over the weekend of Saturday 27th, Sunday 28th and Monday 29th May.

A cabside view of 35006

Her first visit to another line has also been announced, as 35006 will be appearing at the Mid Hants Railway Summer gala being held over two weekends in July to celebrate 50 years since the end of Southern steam with a distinctly Bulleid flavour. Over the weekends of 1st / 2nd and 7th, 8th and 9th July she will join Battle of Britain classes 34053 ‘Sir Keith Park’ ,  34081 ’92 Squadron’ and 34052 ‘Lord Dowding’ in service with some of the lines resident fleet of BR standard locomotives.

Of course these dates are all subject to the usual caveats of the availability of the loco and other factors on the line itself, so it is best to check before you visit the line. For the very latest information on loco rostering check the GWSR website here

As a shareholder it is always good to see her doing what she does best, being in steam, hauling passenger trains and doing Bulleid proud!

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For those of us as either members and, like myself, shareholders of the 35006 Locomotive Society yesterday 16th May 2016, was a very special day. Following restoration from an ex Barry condition, at the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway, that has taken over 30 years Bulleid Merchant Navy Pacific 35006 Peninsular & Oriental S. N. Co. (the longest name of any locomotive in preservation) was officially renamed and hauled her first passenger train for over 50 years comprising of members and shareholders of the 35006 Locomotive Society along with a small number of invited honoured guests.

35006 in the sunshine at the Gloucester and Warwickshire Railway folowing her first passenger run on 16th May 2016 for Society Members and Shareholders

35006 in the sunshine at the Gloucester and Warwickshire Railway following her first passenger run on 16th May 2016 for Society Members and Shareholders

35006 was withdrawn in her prime in August 1964, before languishing in the infamous Dia Woodham Barry scrapyard for over 18 years. A small band of dedicated early pioneers of the 35006 Locomotive Society managed to scrape together the purchase price of just over £7000 which resulted in 35006 finally leaving for Toddington on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway in March 1983.

My Dad films 35006 moving into place prior to renaming ceremony

My Dad records 35006 moving into place prior to renaming ceremony

Over 30 years of dedication, hard work and fundraising by members of the growing  35006 Locomotive Society finally saw 35006 steam again, albeit on 2 cylinders, on 10th August 2015. Following completion of the final list of works required, further steaming and running in, the date was set for her renaming and first passenger run on Monday 16th May 2016.

The first 35006 Locomotive Society Chairman Bill Trite reflects on the very early days of obtaining 35006

The first 35006 Locomotive Society Chairman Bill Trite reflects on the very early days of obtaining 35006

The unveiling / renaming of Peninsular & Oriental S. N. Co. was carried out by Pete Waterman the President of the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway following short speeches by current Society Chairman, Jon McMillan, who introduced the first Society Chairman and pioneer Bill Trite (who subsequently went on to be Chairman of the Swanage Railway and Southern Locomotives Ltd.),

Ex Fireman David Brown fired 35006 on her final turn in 1964

Ex Fireman David Brown fired 35006 on her final turn in 1964

Bill described to the audience those early days of making the necessary small but important steps of raising the initial funds to both purchase and secure a base for and moving 35006 to Toddington and therefore reaching where the Society is at today.

Pete Waterman unveils the nameplate of Peninsular & Oriental S. N. Co.

Pete Waterman unveils the nameplate of Peninsular & Oriental S. N. Co.

The final speaker before Pete Waterman unveiled the nameplate was former Southern Region Fireman, David Brown who was based at Yeovil.
David described how, as a 18 year old, he fired 35006, in August 1964 on the night mail coming off the train at Salisbury before going onto shed, 35006 was unusual in that she spent her entire career at Salisbury 72B shed, to be told that she was now to be withdrawn and he had just fired her final turn in service. David was then invited to be on the footplate, along with Pete Waterman on the first run of the day.

35006 then completed two runs between Toddington and Cheltenham Racecourse with an impressive twelve coach rake (unfortunately not in Southern Region green but you cant have everything!), not often seen on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway as they usually only run seven coach trains, which she handled with ease.

35006 runs around the 12 coach train at Cheltenham Racecourse

35006 runs around the 12 coach train at Cheltenham Racecourse

A very nice complimentary lunch was served on board the first run, which was quite an achievement in itself by the catering team from the Flag and Whistle franchised café run by Lynne Tidddy and her enthusiastic team.

It was certainly a fantastic day, the sun shone, 35006  looked, performed and sounded great.
35006 also carried a small plaque on the middle bufferbeam lamp bracket to mark the Society having received, earlier this year, the Heritage Railway Association’s John Coiley Award for the restoration of 35006.

The 35006 Locomotive Society should be duly proud of their achievement in all aspects of the restoration, fundraising and also the organisation of the day itself.

35006 pulls away from Cheltenham Racecourse in the sunshine

35006 pulls away from Cheltenham Racecourse in the sunshine

I would like to take this opportunity thank the 35006 Locomotive Society on behalf of all its members and  shareholders for such a great day. A further note of thanks should be made for the wonderful complimentary full colour commemoration booklet charting the three decades of restoration.

If reading about this achievement has, and I hope so, made you feel like you would like to be a part of keeping 35006 in steam, then information on how to join the Society can be found here.

35006 will be making her first appearance hauling trains for the public at the Cotswold Festival of Steam on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway over the May 28th to 30th Bank Holiday weekend. 

 

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At  their annual Collectors Club event, this year held at the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway, last Saturday, Bachmann announced their intention to produce Class 117 and 121 Suburban DMUs, along with a Limited Edition E4 for the Collectors Club members.

An example of the Class 117 as preserved on the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railway

An example of the Class 117 as preserved on the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railway

More information about this release can be read on the Bachmann website here. Some of you will remember that The Kernow Model Centre announced their intention to produce this family of Western Region suburban DMUs at Warley last year.  In fact they had already laser scanned a Class 117 and had completed their initial research.  Following meetings with Bachmann after the Warley show at Warley it became clear Bachmann were also working on this model.  The Kernow Model Centre had previously said that they have no interest in “taking on” a major manufacturer and so immediately offered their research and laser scan data to Bachmann and they have been working with them on this project ever since.  Although primarily based on the Western Region the Class 117 units could be seen on Southern Region metals on Reading – Guildford services.
In addition to the main Bachmann releases there will also be a version of both classes exclusive to the Kernow Model Centre in the GW150 celebration Chocolate and Cream livery.
The Kernow model Centre have also advised that they have not forgotten about the Class 116 and Class 118 and further news about these will be announced  in due course (but with no current timescale for such an announcement).

E4 as Birch Grove

E4 as Birch Grove

One of the benefits of the being a member of the Bachmann Collectors club is the fact they produce limited edition model exclusively for club members. One of the models announced and available for purchase at the event on Saturday was a version of the ex London

Another view of E4 as Birch Grove

Another view of E4 as Birch Grove

Brighton and South Coast Railway (LBSCR) E4 class 0-6-2t in LBSC Umber livery as Birch

Grove a livery she was also regularly seen carrying in preservation on the Bluebell Railway. This will prove to be a popular model amongst club members I am sure.

I was fortunate to attend this event as a guest of Bachmann whom I thank for their hospitality provided to myself and my other media friends.

 

 

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