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Littlehampton Miniature Railway

Discussion in 'Miniature Railways' started by lameuse3243, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. lameuse3243

    lameuse3243 New Member

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    I see that Arun district council is tendering for a new concession to run the Railway at Littlehampton - does anyone know waht is going on there?

    A local paper report last year seems to indicate that relations between curent operator and Council have broken down irreperably: http://www.worthingherald.co.uk/gazette/Clash-with-council-drives-Littlehampton.5614322.jp

    Does anyone know if the Railway is running this summer, what a sad situatiion.
     
  2. Charobin

    Charobin Active Member

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    Yes it is running under the current operator until the end of September. Obviously given the disagreements between the current operator and the Council they are looking for a new operator to take it forward from next year. The tender documents supplied by the council to interested parties do not make impressive reading as they contain no figures for passenger numbers or potential income but contain a very long list of obligations the operator must adhere to - with only one or two obligations for the council in return!


    Charlie
     
  3. alts1985

    alts1985 Well-Known Member

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    I went on it last Friday as my family had a re-visit our childhood holiday day! Always something I looked forward to when I was a kid and when my Mum first went in the 1960s-1970s it was still run by steam engines. A cut out from the local paper about the disagrement was up at each station. The guy who runs it now has improved it know end over the years he has run it, re-installing turntables at each end and engine shed etc. Would be very sad if it closed. I have some pictures on my website from a few years ago if anyone is intrested and a couple of much older ones, I might add the ones I took last week to it when I get a chance.

    http://ashleysmith355.fotopic.net/c994147.html
     
  4. lameuse3243

    lameuse3243 New Member

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  5. lynokay

    lynokay Guest

    I walk my dog regularly in Mewsbrook Park Littlehampton, home to the Miniature Railway sheds.
    About two weeks ago a local builder demolished one of the four railway sheds and there has been a lot of activity in another of the sheds with bits and pieces being moved (I have to say that none of the items appear to be in regards to the actual railway).
    The track is still intact as are the three remaining sheds and turntable. The footbridge is also still there.
    I have not seen any of the rolling stock.
    I have been told by onlookers that the man who used to run the railway was under the impression that he owned it outright but there was a clause that it had to revert to council ownership if he decided to sell up. As a result, the man had walked away from the project in disgust.
    Understandable really, if this is the case.
     
  6. lameuse3243

    lameuse3243 New Member

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    Dear all
    There is a saying that should not beleive everything you read in the papers - I hope that that is not a statement that can be applied to Nat Pres!
    I do not wish to comment on the relationship between the previous concession holder and Arun District Council except to say that there is always two sides to a story - and I mean that as no disrespect to either party!
    I can confirm that remedial works are being undertaken, including demolition of the 'tunnel' (an ajunct to the main shed buliding) which was unsafe and did not have the necessary safety clearnaces.
    The work will continue until the end of March during which time platforms will be raised and altered for the new stock and about 200m of track completely relaid (life-expired rail) and other sections re-aligned and generally fettled.
    The plan is to re-comence operations in time for the Easter Holiday.

    I will keep you informed of progress.

    Regards

    Chris Phillimore
    MD TIR Ltd
     
  7. lameuse3243

    lameuse3243 New Member

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  8. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
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    Are you reintroducing steam haulage to the railway? I walked the line a few weeks ago when I was in the area, and I think it really needs a steam engine to attract attention.
     
  9. lameuse3243

    lameuse3243 New Member

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    Hi

    Yes, we would like to in due course, but there is a lot to do to bring it up to an acceptable standard initially. We believe that we can make it really successful and will be working hard this season to raise the profile.
    If you are in the area over Easter, please drop by and make yourself known.
    In the meantime, have a look at our new website. http://www.littlehamptonrailway.com
     
  10. Vilma

    Vilma New Member

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    Y'know, I remember this as a very young man in 1969. It was definately 1969 because the Apollo moon landings were on TV at the same time.

    The line, IIRC, was powered by blue 4-6-4 tender locos, two I think, and they didn't run round or turn, but pushed!

    Now, as I say, it was a lomg time ago but I wonder what happenned to the locos? Am I making this up?

    Anybody able to add anything?
     
  11. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    The two locos exst are in store at a private location in (I think) Lincolnshire - I had some discussions with him a few years ago with a view to getting one or both to visit the Fairbourne Railway, but nothing came of it - perhaps just as well when you consider the problems we had running "TJ THurston" , a pacific by the same builder. The problem was the scale wheel widths and the Fairbourne's (in places, then) generous interpretations of gauge. Nowadays I don't think it woud be a problem, but "TJ Thurston" was eventually sold to a group associated with the Mid Hants railway, who intend to regauge it to 10-1/4. Having seen the track at Littlehampton though, unless it was better in years gone by, I think the 4-64s must have been a bit more forgiving!
     
  12. lameuse3243

    lameuse3243 New Member

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    Interesting! My fisrt comment has to be that the track was definately better in the past - it could hardly be worse. You may be intersted to know that one of the more unexpected jobs we have had to do is to adjust all the turnouts - the flangeway / check r ail clearances were certainly 'unusual'! More unexpected is that most of the track, including the straight roads on the turnouts is 12.5" gauge! This has resulted in some rough running which has had to be adressed. Our new train copes well with the undualtions and dropped joints on the older sections of rail but the turnouts were not nice!
    We appear to have an 'original' turnout - the yard entrance is 12lb, while the others are both 14lb rail - My copy of Mr Simms' book says that the line was laid originally in 12lb. The turnouts all show signs of having originally been fabricated by Hudsons, with the distinctive pressed sleepers but have clearly been re-gauged from something wider - Romney even? I therefore conclude that the track was not new when laid in 1948! There is still a small quantity of 12lb rail in the running line mostly at the Norfolk Gardens end, which will be gone shortly!
    For more updates you may wish to look at www.littlehamptonrailway.co.uk
     
  13. George Sadler 35006

    George Sadler 35006 New Member

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    Hi everyone, I work at Littlehampton so am happy to answer any questions you may have....

    Cheers,
    George.
     
  14. decauville1126

    decauville1126 New Member

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