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[Jun 7, 2024] Strictly Bulleid 2 7th-9th of June at Swanage Railway (Swanage Railway)

Discussion in 'Galas and Events' started by Down_the_pan, Feb 12, 2024.

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Strictly Bulleid 2 7th-9th of June at Swanage Railway
Swanage Railway
Confirmed Attendees: 3
Posted By: Down_the_pan
Start Date: Jun 7, 2024 07:00 AM
End Date: Jun 10, 2024 07:00 AM
Time Zone: Europe/London +01:00 BST
The following users have RSVP'd "Yes": 3
The following users have RSVP'd "No":
  1. The Gricing Owl

    The Gricing Owl Member

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    That puts you in the lead, and, unless there is a gricer with a very long lens on the International Space Station, makes you the winner!
     
    Gladiator 5076 and green five like this.
  2. James McLeish

    James McLeish New Member

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    A video of what is undoubtedly one of the highlight events of 2024, with the eight stars of Swanage's gathering of Bulleid Pacifics. Hats off to everyone who put together this event, and made it a weekend to remember!

     
  3. The Gricing Owl

    The Gricing Owl Member

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    Fabulous!
     
  4. J Shuttleworth

    J Shuttleworth Member

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    Ah, Toby and I keeping an eye on you!

    An ambitious and quite extraordinary gala, which was extremely well organised and a great success!

    Well done, Swanage!

    JS
     
  5. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Resident of Nat Pres

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    For anyone with the patience to read this long tome, my personal view of the weekend.
    The Prequel

    Locos had been arriving from the 21st of May when SKP appeared at Swanage having come out of the works the previous day. By June 4 that just left the two MN’s to arrive.

    BIL had a path from Carnforth to Southall on June 4 and Southall to Swanage on June 5.

    So on the afternoon of June 5 I headed out to photograph BIL arriving. En route to Creech I stopped at Norden to find 33111 in the station running round P & O, so a quick trip back to Castle Crossing to see the ensemble pass.

    Bring greedy I reckoned I could photograph BIL with its WCRC Mk1’s at both Creech and Corfe Common, and had decided that with the 10mph TSR on Grange Road Bridge I would favour a going away shot from the lay by on Grange Road. After some bramble cutting I decided as the loco would not be working due to the TSR the camcorder could stay in the boot. This was to become my first sub optimal decision of the weekend as BIL had a mammoth slip on the bridge and then stalled. So being at Creech Crossing would have been far more spectacular, although the noise of the slip on a metal bridge next to where I was standing was unbelievable and I regret no having the audio. All this meant BIL lost its path at Norden Gates. I was just about to give up near Afflington thinking I had missed it when some steam was seen in the distance Corfe. Strangely I was the only person at both Grange Road and Afflington.

    Preview Day

    I had planned to ride this day and Sunday, but had also planned to photograph the first 3 services before riding all afternoon.

    Dropping into to the shed area on the way out 33111 was moving around a rather dead looking 92 Squadron. I decided to try Dickers Crossing for the photographs, where the light is difficult early in the day, as well as being a risk to me, as since my post Covid pneumonia in 2022 I have felt too worried about my ability to complete the climb back up from the line. But this was a major event, so reward outweighed risk, plus I (incorrectly) thought there would be lots of others around if I needed help. Arriving at Dickers I found only “The Southerner” who told me 92 had indeed failed and the railway had announced 257 would cover 92’s turns and Manston 257’s. First train arrived hauled by Manston, not 257, but this was the best of the light and I love the in service look of Manston, so for me great. The next two trains photographed I commenced the climb back. I used to normally be able to do it without stopping, but now I “stalled” 4 times, so it took a while.
    DSC_0567r.jpg

    Back home for a quick sandwich and slightly late running meant I caught the Manston hauled 12:40 service for a round trip. Then a T3 trip to Norden where, despite the best efforts of the wheel flat on coach 4961, my fillings remained intact. I was doomed to make my acquaintance with said vehicle a few times on Sunday as well.

    257 took me back to Swanage, and just as I was due to leave behind it on the 16:00 service there was a rumour 92 Squadron would haul the final train of the day. En route it was confirmed on the railways Facebook. So I bailed out at Corfe photographed 34081 arriving and went back to Swanage via Norden behind it. I had noticed during various passes at HX that the local gull population had “welcomed” at least one off the coaches to Purbeck.

    I felt it was a very good day, but surprised by the lack of passengers, my fullest train being due to a regular coach tour party it seemed.

    Gala Day 1

    This was to be my main photography day. The wife works on a charity stall in the market on a Friday so for once the 05:45 alarm was caused by her, but suited me fine this day. After another quick check of the shed area another trip to Dickers this time to see the MN double header. With a 10:40 departure the gallery seemed split on which side of the line to be, I think I chose wrong, although Wells was better 40 minutes later.

    Yet another 4 “stalls” on the way back, but this time I had gotten cocky after the previous day and also taken the camcorder and tripod as well. Another poor choice as the extra weight, unlike the previous day, meant I also experienced some chest pain on the way back as well.
    DSC_0613r.jpg

    An afternoon after some lunch at home (our version of Diego very unimpressed by my morning’s absence) I went to various locations, then an attempt to see the first beer train after an early dinner. I planned Harmans Cross from Haycrafts Lane Bridge, as I turned in off the Valley Road I have never seen so many cars all down to the railway, a full car park and cars up the hill the other side of the bridge. I expected to see the bridge rammed with photographers, but no one, just some event at the hall adjacent to the station. Lots of noise so moved down onto the up platform, the WCRC set having been stabled in the sidings the previous day I assumed the same would apply. Then a whistle, and the sound of a train approaching from the Corfe direction. SKP arrives with the WCRC set in the up platform; loco disappears off to Swanage and the guard who was closing the toplights and locking each door with his T key confirms stock will remain there. So off to Afflington and as I walk back to the car it occurs to me that it must be the ORR’s idea of utopia, a train no one can actually get on! No risk of falling out of that one then. Beer train eventually arrives 41 late, my hope of evening sun long gone and although the car said it was 17C, it felt more like 7C.

    Still a great day though.
    DSC_0643r.jpg

    Gala Day 2

    I had decided that I should really try to let my Dad see some of the locos, as although is flat is opposite the water column it is on the ground floor, so no railway view, and he can now only move around either with a Zimmer frame or in a wheelchair. A cloudy morning was a bonus, as no problem with the sun. With a bit of effort I get his wheelchair up on the small grass strip between the fence and the footpath. We have about 90 minutes, but I have to keep moving him around as trains come in and out of the station. By the time I take him back to the flat I realise I have hurt my back and pulled some stomach muscles.

    What it has also shown me, as it is rare for me to just stand in one place at a gala, is what a very slick operation has been put in place at Swanage. For those who did not see it, as I watched it the process was

    Down train arrives, token taken by signalman in the box. Train arrives in main platform. One of the shunters takes the token from the signalman to the up train in the bay platform. The three minutes between arrival and next train departing seems ample (much to my surprise) and the up train departs. A loco then comes off shed, pulls the stock out of the main platform and propels it back into the bay for the next departure. The whole choreographed sequence is repeated 40 minutes later.

    IMG_4147r.jpg

    After some lunch with my back really hurting my plans for some long distance “steam in the landscape” were abandoned in favour of somewhere that I could sit in the car or walk a very short distance to. This of course was the afternoon of numerous medical incidents at Corfe, very few trains, and those that ran looking understandably rammed, and the first introduction of what I refer to as the “Avanti solution”. We all know the Avanti solution to disruption is to terminate everything at Preston, so just substitute Norden. It is a logical solution really.

    Apart from an after dark walk up to the shed I felt I had suffered enough that day.

    Gala Day 3 Named train day

    Sunrise was 04:58 and with a 05:00 Manston departure I considered getting up, but with probably lots of drain cock steam at Swanage and unsure what HX would be like I did not bother. It was also my day to ride all day, I would like to be awake on the trains and there was the line up at 19: 00 to consider. But yet another wrong decision regarding the 05:00, if you look at the video clip on the railways Facebook page.

    Early morning shed area visit before heading off to HX for the first train at 09:25. Expected most images at the shed to be rubbish due to the sun position, so take loads of images and hope for a couple of good ones. Prediction proved “spot on”

    IMG_4177r.jpg

    The timetable says the last night train is the 07:00, but my booking says it is valid from 10:00. So technically the 09:25 from HX is only valid for those with a two day rover, I choose to ignore this.

    SKP is late off shed due to a brake issue, but still arrives at HX OK for an on time departure. But Manston is heading for Corfe LE so we are late away. At Corfe the PA (WCRC set and it was working!) told us another brake issue and we were awaiting a fitter. Train then announced as terminating at Norden and heading back to Swanage. (Avanti rules again). One extension trip lost, but the loco had not even had a loaded test run so just grateful it was out to play and it meant timetable was still able to be maintained.

    During the afternoon lineside fires on the extension meant more “Avanti rules”. Only issue this caused me was I missed the opportunity to compare the two MN’s on subsequent services as they crossed at HX rather than Swanage. I also felt it best not to risk another extension trip with the fire risk as I needed to go home for a different camera before the line up at Corfe.
    IMG_4236r.jpg


    And so finally there was just the line up of SLL locos remaining.

    DSC_0683r.jpg



    So over the course of the day I got to ride behind all the locos, except of course 92 Squadron that retired hurt Saturday lunchtime.

    A great day all round, in my view an event fully worth the money, passenger numbers looked good for a Sunday, and a great way to follow Bulleid 1. What would Bullied 3 have to look like to top it? That of course assumes I would still be around by then if there was one.

    Many thanks to SLL for their 4 locos, the owners of 35006, 34092 & 34091 and to WCRC not only for 35018 but also a smart set of Mk1’s (with round wheels!). And finally thanks to all the staff and volunteers of the Swanage Railway for coping so well with what at time must have been a very difficult weekend..
     
  6. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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    In my opinion you can only run an event like this every five years. Look at boiler certificates, availability etc. To get over eight is a big ask.
     
  7. Sunnieboy

    Sunnieboy New Member

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    Visitor numbers quoted in the press as 4,700. Not bad

    Sent from my SM-P610 using Tapatalk
     
    Mick45305, Johnme101, twr12 and 4 others like this.
  8. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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    1000 less than 2017. Hope we covered costs.
     
  9. Rumpole

    Rumpole Part of the furniture

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    The key question there is how many of those extras in 2017 were travelling on passes or significant discounts, which weren't available this year.

    There are several other comparisons where 2024 blows 2017 out of the water.
     
    cymroglan, PeterJ, green five and 3 others like this.
  10. David likes trains

    David likes trains Member

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    Some photos from the last two days of the gala. I did manage a ride on the night trains on Saturday/a bit of Sunday in between taking these and catching up on sleep in the tent!

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  11. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Resident of Nat Pres

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    B & W image of Manston is stunning.
     
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  12. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Resident of Nat Pres

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    There is an image in the latest Swanning Around of all 8 (just) on page 3

    https://www.srstaff.co.uk/swanningaround/swanningjun1524.pdf
     
    DcB and green five like this.

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