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Bluebell Railway General Discussion

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

  1. mdewell

    mdewell Well-Known Member Friend

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    So that's how they get around using a diesel on a railway that used to be 100% steam. Lineside fires for that authentic smoky experience. ;):D
     
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  2. A1X

    A1X Well-Known Member

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    "When I said we needed more smoked salmon for the next Pullman train, I meant get some from a shop not smoke it yourself..."
     
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  3. RichardSalmon

    RichardSalmon New Member

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    Mk.1 accessible coach 4941 is currently in the paintshop, but will be in service for half term. Sir Archie will spend much of February in the Paint Shop. 80151 I think is being painted elsewhere, by contractors, paid for by the advertisers.
    Likewise, I've not heard of a proposed date for formal relaunch of Sir Archie.
     
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  4. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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  5. LC2

    LC2 Member

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    Steve and his team have done a fantastic job with Gordon Pettitt !
     
  6. D1002

    D1002 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Maybe of interest.
    A compilation of my videos from various visits to the Bluebell Railway:

     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2024
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  7. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Resident of Nat Pres

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  8. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    I saw Twitter light up with news of this - deservedly so. This is a phenomenal achievement by the minions, and a wonderful recognition of Gordon Pettit's 90th birthday that this unit has been able to be exhibited like this. I look forward to hearing that their work has been completed, and that it can take power and be driven on the main line. A railtour from Strawberry Hill to East Grinstead would seem very appropriate!

    Looking up my notes, I see that the last time I travelled in unit 3417 was in February 2000, when I probably cursed my luck in getting a VEP and not a CIG!

    Welcome back!
     
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  9. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    An event in connection with Gordon Pettitt’s 90th birthday I believe.

    Tom
     
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  10. Bikermike

    Bikermike Well-Known Member

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    Can I just say I am dissappointed that no-one seems to have made the "Gordon's alive!" joke yet.

    Wonderful achievement - hope they can get it back on the juice...
     
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  11. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Nice video of it here:
     
  12. 5944

    5944 Resident of Nat Pres

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  13. The Gricing Owl

    The Gricing Owl Member

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    Sad news indeed.

    Another driver from the halcyon days of the last years of SR steam (as well as all he subsequently did) has left us.

    I had the privilege of timing Clive's 98 mph sprint behind 34102 Lapford on 21 April 1967.

    R.I.P Clive.
     
  14. Dan Hill

    Dan Hill Part of the furniture

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    RIP Clive, was a very familiar face when I watched Railway related shows (like Southern Steam on ITV Meridian) and videos as a kid, as well as seeing him occasionally on my visits to the line.
     
  15. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Very sad. Clive had probably forgotten more about enginemanship than most people ever knew in the first place.

    I can count my own footplate career to going on one of his Footplate Days and Ways courses, rekindling an interest in railways that had drifted into the background through University and early career days - a few months after attending for a day driving Stepney running up and down through Horsted Keynes, I'd signed up as a volunteer. I know many other people can make a similar claim.

    My overriding impression was of how everything he did was with neatness, precision and a sense of unhurried calm. I think the last footplate turn we had together was when GWR No. 813 visited, a loco unfamiliar to both of us. We travelled "on the cushions" to Horsted Keynes to take over from a morning crew. Straight away we were faced with a northbound departure with a cold engine (it had spent the previous hour or so tucked away in the down yard), a bunker that seemed to be mostly dust and unfamiliar about how fast the injectors would work or how far from the true water level you'd see working regulator open up the hill. I remember a few words of advice to me about firing and the way he caressed the loco, initially shy of steam, over the summit at West Hoathly. We lost time as he found the balance between keeping going and maintaining at least some sort of pressure, but in doing so, we lost far less than had we stopped for a blow up, and by Kingscote we had a hot fire and things went well from then on! The sign of a good engineman is not how you do when things are in your favour, but when they are against you, and that was a perfect reading of the situation to maintain the service is the most efficient way.

    My thoughts go to Ruth, Liz, Rebecca and the rest of his family.

    RIP Clive.

    Tom
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2024
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  16. Paul42

    Paul42 Part of the furniture

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    Screenshot_20240204-172015.png
     
  17. gricerdon

    gricerdon Well-Known Member

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    No I didn’t see 31739 with 34083 but I got a good series of colour shots of it arriving at Dunton Green with the stock of the afternoon trains on the last day of Westerham. I had seen the stock earlier at New Cross behind a class 33
     
  18. gricerdon

    gricerdon Well-Known Member

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    Indeed yes he was a great engineman and I had quite a few runs on trains he was driving back in the real days of steam.,One more of the Nine Elms crew gone
     
  19. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    A few restoration updates, at opposite ends of their respective journeys.

    Firstly, after many years of fundraising, Maunsell Restaurant Car No. 7864 entered the carriage works yesterday. I think it is at the viewing gallery end of "D" road (where Car 54 was for many years) so should be easily viewable. This is the only surviving Southern Railway dining vehicle, and will become the main project for the SR Coach Group. Photo and report in the coming issue of The Bluebell Times.

    Next, "Sir Archibald Sinclair" has gone into the paint shop at Horsted Keynes for final completion of painting.

    Finally, Car No. 54 (the wheelchair-accessible Pullman) has made a number of trips up the line as part of its running in. There's a recent photo of it in all its glory on the linked web page.

    Tom
     
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  20. RichardSalmon

    RichardSalmon New Member

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    Taking the VEP to Waterloo was actually timed for the 15th anniversary of it being handed over to the Bluebell at East Grinstead (17 January 2009), the previous occasion that Gordon Pettitt had seen the unit named after him outside of a shed. He's actually "only" 88, and I'm not certain when his birthday actually is. But yes, the day was largely about Gordon. There's more about it here: https://www.setg.org.uk/the-worst-kept-secret-on-the-southern-region/ including an explanation as to why it took place on 27 January rather than the 17th.

    To enable it to run railtours will require a lot more work (and money). There's more information and fundraising at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/Returning-3417-to-the-Mainline
    and more about where we are with getting it back onto the mainline here: https://www.setg.org.uk/project-phoenix/
     
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