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Bluebell Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by Jamessquared, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    My last turn was so long ago the damn thing hadn't even been rebuilt with an H class boiler and Wainwright cab ...

    Tom
     
  2. mdewell

    mdewell Member

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    They probably weren't allowed to work on it during lockdown. ;)

    PS. A tapered boiler and some brass trinkets would have also helped the appearance. . . .
     
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  3. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Issue 4 of The Bluebell Times is available for download:
    • Raising funds for the railway’s recovery
    • An update on plans to celebrate 60 years of heritage running
    • How the online shop is bringing a little magic into youngsters’ lives
    • Storytime with the Bluebell Railway
    • Plans for a virtual gala of Bluebell Railway locomotives
    • A profile of a locomotive driver nicknamed ‘Yeti’
    • The story of special Bluebell Railway postage stamps
    • An in-depth look at one of our operational locomotives
    • A new Word Search and the answer to the previous puzzle
    • Guess the Year – plus the answers to the competition in the last issue
    • Special kids’ section with a World War II-inspired game
    • And much, much more.
    You can download the latest edition here: https://www.bluebell-railway.com/bluebell-times/

    Tom
     
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  4. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Very sorry to report that Chris White, a plc Director and Loco Driver, passed away last night after a short battle with cancer.

    Chris was the driving force behind the completion of the extension to East Grinstead. He was key in achieving much on the project, not least organising the removal of roughly 100,000 tons of waste from the cutting at the lowest possible cost, but also the challenge posed by Railtrack's plans to sell the reserved station site at East Grinstead to Sainsburys for a petrol station.

    Condolences go to his partner and his family.

    (On a personal note: as a driver, he was always very generous in allowing cleaners and firemen to gain experience of acting up to the next grade; a turn with him was always an enjoyable day. I'll remember in particular a day of running the brake van rides at Horsted Keynes during the Flying Scotsman gala. He was also always assiduous in offering praise to the infrastructure team for what they achieved, often in poor conditions and against a tight timescale, the last few years of track laying being. testament to that effort).

    Tom
     
  5. jnc

    jnc Well-Known Member

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    Terrible news; very sad to hear that.

    Noel
     
  6. Dunfanaghy Road

    Dunfanaghy Road Member

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    Sad news. I didn't know Chris, but a friend of mine did a lot of lawyering for the East Grinstead extension and was sorry to hear it.
    Pat
     
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  7. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    From the Bluebell Railway's Facebook feed tonight:

    We're halfway there

    Our CV Emergency Appeal has now received over £150,000 in donations!

    We are now 50% of the way towards our £300,000 target. These funds will help us secure the future of our Railway and fund the immediate costs of reopening.

    You can make a donation here: http://ow.ly/pCOJ50zLPmX
    Also, look out for Issue 5 of The Bluebell Times on Friday.

    Tom
     
  8. 30854

    30854 Part of the furniture

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    Briefly called in at HK this afternoon. No signs of life around the site, unsurprisingly, but evidence of (what I assume to be) drainage trenches going in and great to see new hedging plants in place around the (sleepered off) car parks. The hedge is going to look fantastic once it's fully matured.
     
  9. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    The biggest issue of The Bluebell Times so far is out now.

    Issue 5 is packed with news, quizzes, puzzles and games to keep you informed and entertained while the railway is closed.

    It’s designed to fill the gap for anyone missing their steam train rides or visits to the Bluebell Railway.

    The newsletter is for everyone – railway staff, volunteers in all departments, members, supporters, visitors, friends, train enthusiasts and general readers. It’s perfect for train-mad youngsters or anyone who wants a bit of light relief.

    In Issue 5:
    • A major milestone is reached in the emergency fundraising appeal
    • Details of how to nominate the railway for more money
    • A family connection to our new-build locomotive
    • Photos from the month of May in years gone by
    • An in-depth look at a locomotive which some call a “spaceship”
    • New puzzles as well as the regular favourites
    • Special kids’ section with a signalling challenge
    And much, much more.

    Download here: https://www.bluebell-railway.com/bluebell-times/
     
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  10. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Tom, thank you for your huge effort which has resulted in an online publication which is now a rival to Bluebell News, except that we get it far more regularly!
    This latest issue is very impressive.
    You know, this pandemic, for all the seismic effect it has had on our society, has resulted in many ways, in a huge spike in enterprising, positive and creative output from this country's society. Col. Tom Moore's exploits have become a symbol of this.
    But we've got our own Tom here.
    Thanks again, dear chap.
     
  11. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Thank you, that's very kind - though I'm certainly not at Col. Tom level of achievement! Bluebell Times is a collaborative effort, and there are many other people working hard on it, not least the contributors - any publication is only as good as the content you have. What it has allowed us to do - free from the pressures of being precisely topical - is to try to get at some areas of the railway away from the main engineering and operational things that tend to dominate. So a bit more human colour, more from areas like the museum, things like trying to talk to photographers about how they achieved a particular shot. (The one of a 7F from Jon Bowers in Issue 3 was a stunning shot, but also a really interesting read).

    BTW, if there is anyone with an interesting story to tell, or a photographer with a Bluebell shot that they are willing to share and write about, please let me know at bluebelltimes@jamessquared.com

    Thanks

    Tom
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020
  12. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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  13. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Issue 6 of the Bluebell Times is now available:

    In Issue 6:
    • The initial plans for a phased reopening of the railway
    • Closing in on the fundraising target for the Emergency Appeal
    • Details of a ‘Virtual Track Trek’ sponsored walk
    • The start of the 60-day countdown to the railway’s 60th birthday
    • New puzzles as well as the regular favourites
    • Special kids’ section with a new puzzle and evacuation story
    • And much, much more
    See: https://www.bluebell-railway.com/bluebell-times/

    (Incidentally, far be it from the editor to subtly influence proceedings towards his own likes, but I've just noticed that four of the first six heading photos used on BT 1 - 6 show SE&CR locos in Wainwright livery. Absolutely no idea how that came about ...)

    Tom
     
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  14. 30854

    30854 Part of the furniture

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    Tom's (@Jamessquared's) love of most things SECR led me to boogie through the Bluebell's carriage pages, wondering if there would ever be scope, somewhere down the line, to turn out a complete set to match that fantastic loco livery. The answer? ..... just perhaps, there might be. I wonder ......
     
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  15. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    If only I had such God-like influence over such things :(

    A Birdcage trio set is on the long term plan and is, for my money, probably the most historically important of all the C&W aspirations on that list, given the near universal use of such carriages on non-electrified lines in Southern England. We have one of the brake ends already restored, so need two other vehicles. My understanding (well beyond my pay grade for C&W knowledge) is that it would end up being a representation rather than an actual set, because of the vehicles available, there isn't a matching set of three.

    Tom
     
  16. torgormaig

    torgormaig Well-Known Member Friend

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    I have long thought that this and other attractive bogie coach projects would have been completed by now had Bluebell's C&W Dept not been divirted by an obsession with those dreadful bugboxes. Do we really have to be reminded how awful train travel was in the Victorian era - there is a nearby off shore island that could be left to do that quite adequately. Some folk vocalise their opinions about pre-nationalisation bogie coaches being passed over in favor of Mk1s. In the Bluebell case I feel that they are passed over in favour of restoring awful four wheelers. But hey - I'm not a C&W volunteer and it is their shout, not mine.

    Sorry, C&W guys. Just my opinion.

    Peter
     
  17. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Part of the furniture

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    So when is Crocodile Sheffield Park going to head to South America to find Lew & Thames?
     
  18. Steve B

    Steve B Member

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    Around 50 years ago (!) it was quite common place to see SECR 27 hauling two carriages in SECR colours: the authenticity was questionable - one of them (1050) was a SR rebuild of some 4 or 6 wheelers, the other was birdcage 1061. Both were very basically painted in SECR maroon, with no lining, but were lettered and numbered.
    Neither coach is currently servicable, but I believe that they are the ones Tom @Jamessquared is referring to to create a Trio set. 27 now seems set to have a brighter future.
    Here is a view from the 10th Anniversary celebrations in 1970. Sorry it's only black and white - I couldn't afford colour at the time.

    Steve B
    27SP1970.jpeg
     
  19. Kingscross

    Kingscross New Member

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    Tom,

    The Bluebell Times is an excellent piece of work, but given most people are viewing it on a computer screen I wonder if you'd consider a landscape, rather than portrait, format? It would make the articles easier to read and perhaps allow better framing of photographs?
     
  20. martin1656

    martin1656 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    I wonder, when (If ) We ever get back to normal, if the Bluebell was to ask all the other railways with operational SE&CR coaches what rake could be put together?
    And if this was extended to borrowing the Mid Hants 2 Bulleid coaches so a 6 coach rake could run behind Beachy Head, or other suitable locos, wouldn't that be a good way to celebrate the 60th anniversary , assuming Beachy head is available at that time, but even if it wasn't finished, there are plenty of engines that would look right, and the thought of an SE&CR loco with matching stock would be the icing on the cake, either the 01, H , or C class would do.
     
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