Tag Archives: Chasewater

Chasewater Railway Museum Bits and Pieces 52

Chasewater Railway Museum

Bits and Pieces 52

Thirty Years Plus Ten

Travelling Post Office

Much as I enjoyed reading about Chasewater Railway in thirty years time, it never stood a realistic chance of happening.

After the cessation of coal traffic in the 1960s the line over the causeway was abandoned and the causeway itself fell into disrepair.  The track was lifted and passenger traffic suspended for a number of years. The main part of the 30-years-on idea had also gone missing in the intervening years – the line from the proposed Norton Junction to Norton Crossing.  The track which ran below the dam for the Swag pool was lifted and presumably sold for scrap.   The idea of a railway with a main line and a short branch disappeared.

It was not until 1985 that regular steamings began again, but in the intervening three steam-less years, membership had dropped by some 50 per cent. The Society deemed it necessary to prune its stock as it was realised that without an injection of cash, the whole affair might fold. The L&NWR Travelling Post Office went to Tyseley, a small “Planet” diesel went to Brian Roberts’ Tollerton Farm Railway, while individual members purchased two steam locos and one diesel loco in order that they could remain safely at Chasewater.

IN 1993 a successful scheme to restore the causeway was started.  About 120,000 tons of fill material were imported to the site.  This work was completed in 1994 and Lakeside Station was reopened in December. From 1985 till the reopening of Lakeside trains only ran push-pull from the old station to the Willow Vale Bridge.

Since 1995 a great deal of work has been done, firstly to extend the line to Chasewater Heaths and Chasetown.  Next came the new Brownhills West station and yard, to replace the old station and compound, now buried beneath the M6 Toll.  The engine shed was refurbished and another station opened at Chasewater Heaths – finally, so far, the Heritage Centre was built to hold the heritage stock and Museum.

The 30-years-on idea was not to be, it would have been fun in my opinion, and at that time, as stated in Post No.50, the rolling stock was owned by the railway – no steaming fees to be paid.  Of the stock mentioned in Post 51, the E1 left, never having steamed at Chasewater.  The Hudswell Clarke also has never steamed here – but it is still with us, although not owned by the railway. The Peckett went too, although we now have another one.  The Royal Saloon and Travelling Post office have also gone.

The Royal Saloon

Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces Nos. 49 & 50 Late 1969

Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces No 49

From the Mercian of September 1969

Secretary’s Report – A.A.Chatfield Acting Hon. Secretary

Vandalism at Hednesford

It is my sorry duty to inform all members that as a result of a break-in by some unknown gang of juvenile delinquents the interior of the Royal Saloon – our most priceless vehicle – looks as if it has been under the axe of some demolition contractors.  Irreplaceable panelling has been deliberately smashed in, interior door panels including glass mirrors stove in completely and a wanton trail of damage to the tune of at least £150 done to the interior. (A great deal of money some 40 years ago!).

The police have been to the depot but without some positive information they are unable to do very much at this stage.  The depot at Hednesford is vulnerable seven days a week and until the stock is moved to Chasewater en bloc where it will be afforded more protection then we are going to suffer even more vandalism which will not only delay the restoration process, but increase our expenditure and, what is more important, lose us our most valued working members to whom these sorts of acts are extremely disheartening.

Then followed an appeal for £800 to move the bogie vehicles at least from Hednesford to Chasewater.

The acting Hon. Treasurer, Laurence Hodgkinson, repeated the appeal and stated that, if the work at Chasewater continued at its present rate, the compound would be ready for the stock from Hednesford by the Autumn.

Amongst the new members joining the Society – B.J.Bull Esq.

Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces No 50

The next three posts are sort of connected.

The first sets out the thinking behind the Railway Preservation Society,

The second takes a look into a possible future for the railway.

The third tries to give the reason why  the second didn’t happen!

 

From the Editorial of the November/December 1969 Mercian

Food for Thought

It has often been said that the first ten years of marriage are the most difficult and if this is any yardstick then our first ten years have been one continuous struggle.  Members may ask the question ‘Why?’ when they can see all around us other schemes, which are as little as two years old, flourishing with membership in the thousands.  Here we are in our eleventh year and what have we got to show for it?  May I try to explain a very subtle difference between our Society and other schemes which flourish around us and leave us completely in the shade?

We are a preservation Society first and foremost, we are not interested in ‘playing trains’ on some unwanted British Railways branch which can be snapped up for anything from £200 to £400,000 in order to be re-opened as a tourist attraction with weekend traffic to satisfy the ‘locals’.  Our first aim is to preserve, what we do with the items after that depends a great deal upon what they are.  Our range is therefore very extensive, running from a button to a carriage or locomotive, and to this end our record at the moment is pretty formidable.

We do not rely, as do many of our competitors, on other people loaning us locos or rolling stock with which to operate, we have paid for all our relics the hard way – THEY ARE OURS.

You might then ask ‘but if we are a preservation group only, why are we hoping to run trains at Chasewater?’  This can be answered quite simply.  We are restoring, within the confines laid down by the Local Authority, a stretch of track which formed part of the old Midland Railway branch line from Brownhills, and by restoring I mean every sleeper, chair, nut, bolt and rail completely from scratch, in other words, preserving something which is part of the local railway history.

Obviously it would be a complete waste of time if after doing this we let the track become derelict again, and so primarily for the benefit of our members and also for the enjoyment of the visiting public, we hope that we shall be able to put some of our assets to workup and down the short stretch of line which has been relaid.

We have started from scratch, from the ballast upwards, that is where our difference lies from the other preservation groups around us who are enjoying more success.

It seems that every enthusiast will interest himself in a scheme if he can be an engine driver, but when it comes down to relaying track, restoring locos and carriages or doing the other thousand and one back-breaking menial jobs that have to be done he just does not want to know.

Who is going to be the loser in the long run?  I do not think it will be our Society because we have so much in preservation experience from the bottom to the top to offer and yet still have a long way to go.

‘We have never had it as good’ if I may alter a well known saying. (For those who remember Harold MacMillan – Prime Minister 1957/1963).

Other schemes may fade away when the novelty wears off or when setbacks arise but we have had more than our fair share of setbacks over the past ten years and we have learned to take them on the chin and what is more, to come back fighting again as full of spirit as ever.

Pockets may be very deep when it comes to paying out hard cash and this may be very good for the enthusiast’s conscience, but when you ask yourself honestly – ‘am I really preserving?’ – is the answer always YES. I often wonder.  After ten years as a Society may we all hope that the next decade will see the realisation of the efforts which have been put into the Society by a list too long to mention.

Chasewater Railway Museum Jan 1969 Bits & Pieces 46

From the ‘Mercian’ of January 1969

From the Secretary’s Report  – Trevor G. Cousens

On 21 September 1968, the Society held its 9th Annual General Meeting at the Pear Tree Inn, Brownhills.  The attendance was very poor considering the attraction of a steam trip down the line afterwards.

After the meeting, sandwiches were supplied by Pete Parker, proprietor of the Pear Tree, and then members crossed the road where in brilliant evening sunshine stood the Andrew Barclay 0-4-0ST, (Colin McAndrew) immaculate in green and red, with polished brass and copper-work.

Members were invited on to the train comprising the Midland (or Coal Board) brake van, the Midland brake coach and the Great Western brake.  The train departed with Mr. Civil driving and Mr. Luker firing, the team, who with Mike Lewis had so painstakingly restored the locomotive.  She was opened up to pull the train up the 1 in 50 bank to the causeway causing the steam pressure to drop rather drastically to 40 lbs per square inch, but this is probably the longest run the loco has ever made without running over the same tracks twice, and its small boiler and firebox being designed more for a 3’ 6” gauge loco, this is not surprising.

Over the causeway, we ran on to the shore again until we were held up by some rather enthusiastic ditching by Bob Wormington, which caused the loco cylinders to come into contact with the spoil.  We ran on until we reached the end of the line, where a stop was made to raise steam for the return journey.  The loco was once again admired by the members, its rather peculiar mechanical pump a feature of interest on the running plate.

The return journey was made almost without incident, a point switched the wrong way round caused a minor sensation, but we returned safely to the Compound, where some rather complicated shunting was carried out before putting the engine to bed.  In fact, it was 9.00pm and dark when Laurence Hodgkinson finally put the diesel in with the rest of the stock which had been parked in the loop out of the way.

So ended the third RPS steaming at Chasewater, giving some encouragement to those who had worked so painstakingly to make this event possible.  But, it made one think about the amount of work still to be done, principally on track, but also on locos and stock before these steamings become a regular feature.

In the Treasurer’s Report by Frank Harvey, it was noted that, among others, Mr. R. Duffill  joined the Society!

Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces 45 More Aug 1968 Mercian

Chasewater Railway Museum

Photo: Robin Stewart-Smith.

More from the August 1968 ‘Mercian’

Turner’s Asbestos Cement Co. Ltd ‘Asbestos’

Hawthorn Leslie 2780 of 1909

By Gerald Wildish

Many of you will by now have seen our splendid new locomotive.  Two years ago exactly to the day that she left Trafford Park, I first found ‘Asbestos’ – 15th June 1966.  She was not working on that particular occasion and had been specially hauled out of the shed for me and put in a photographic position.  She appeared in excellent condition.  On the occasion of my visit I learnt that she was likely to finish working that September, and I duly put in a bid for the RPS.  I was informed that the Society’s interest had been noted.

A little over a year later a letter arrived from Turner’s asking me if I would care to bid for the engine – I made an offer of £50, and shortly afterwards received a telephone call informing me that a scrap merchant had offered £100 – we could have her if we could reach that figure.  By this time we were in October and I was already engaged in trying to raise funds for the Neilson.  My reply said that if they could hold the locomotive until after our Christmas raffle, we would do our best, but I did not hold out a great deal of hope.  Considering all things, the raffle was a success, but we did not raise the sums necessary to allow us to move in two directions and I informed the Company that we would have to let her go.

My surprise could not have been greater, when Mr. Francis, the manager of the buying department, rang me to say that we could have ‘Asbestos’ free of charge.  Without doubt this was one of the happiest days of my life.  I made arrangements to go to Trafford Park to arrange the handover and had an excellent morning.  The handover was arranged for a date three weeks later when the presentation plaque could be fixed to the locomotive.

I could not have been dealing with nicer people throughout the negotiations, right from the time of my first visit to the works.  Our thanks must go to Mr. A.H.Wailes, the Works Director, Mr. T.Noble, the Purchasing Director, Mr. T.N.Chadwick, the Works Manager, who also arranged for the locomotive to be ‘done up’ for us during the week before the handover, to Mr. W.D.Francis, the Purchasing Manager, who dealt with most of the negotiations and Mr. S.McCormick.

Little is known of the history of ‘Asbestos’.  She was built by Hawthorn Leslie in 1909, for the Washington Chemical Co. in County Durham, where she became No.2, along with two other Hawthorn Leslies and a Fox Walker engine.  A further Hawthorn Leslie was added in 1918, and presumably replaced the Fox Walker.  In 1920, the Company became part of the Turner and Newall group.

In 1933, two of the locomotives were transferred to the Turner’s Asbestos Cement Company works at Trafford Park, becoming ‘Turnall’ and ‘Asbestos’.  Turnall was scrapped in 1965, leaving ‘Asbestos’ with two diesel locomotives (Planets).  ‘Asbestos’ was placed in store as the reserve engine in 1966 and presented to the RPS on 25th May of this year(1968);  she was transferred to Chasewater on 15th June, and started work in revenue service eight days later.

Photo: Oct 1985 – Tony J.Griffin

Photo – Russ Hillier

Chasewater Railway Museum 1968 Vol.1 No.3 Bits & Pieces 42.3

Chasewater Railway Museum 1968 Vol.1 No.3 Bits & Pieces 42.3

Plus Stocklist – 1968

This is one of a number of articles included in this magazine – there will be another couple to follow later. I don’t know what happened to this loco, but in spite of it being purchased and delivered to Chasewater, it hasn’t steamed since!

Hudswell Clarke 0-6-0ST No.431 – By Frank Harvey

Working at Desborough – V F Hall

 

The previous issue of the Mercian featured several photographs of this, our latest locomotive, and it was felt that a short article about it would not be out of place.

It was built by Hudswell Clarke & Co., Leeds in 1895, works number 431 and spent most of its life in the hands of the Sheepbridge Coal & Iron Company in whose fleet she became No.15.  It was allocated the name ‘Sheepbridge No.25’, but this was never carried and with the removal of its official number and works plates ran its last years without any identification at all.

It has on two occasions been rebuilt, first in 1928 and secondly in 1944, by the Sheepbridge Company themselves.

The engine was first suggested as a suitable candidate for preservation some two years ago when it was one of several locomotives at work at Desborough Warren Quarry near Kettering.  One by one its companions were withdrawn leaving No.15 as the only workable source of motive power.  After closure of the quarry it assisted with the lifting of the track, until the early part of 1967 when it too was withdrawn and stored in the engine shed at Desborough in company with an Avonside 0-6-0T.

The RPS then stepped in and after pleasing, successful negotiations with Stewarts and Lloyds Ltd., the locomotive was purchased.  The firm kindly allowed us to steam the engine before purchase – and members will have read about this eventful weekend in the last issue of the magazine. (CRM Bits & Pieces No.41).

It proved to be in good working order and required little in the way of attention save for the fitting of two new injectors which have now been purchased, and the repairing of a cracked blower pipe.  Evidence of this can be seen clearly in the photographs!

Desborough, 1968

The locomotive was delivered to Chasewater in November and restoration is now well under way.  When completed it will be resplendent in apple green, lined black, edged white and a high standard is being achieved.Chasewater August 1969

Purchase and transport charges tended to deplete the Society’s funds somewhat, but all agree that it was money well spent and in common with all other RPS stock, no money is outstanding, a fact of which we are justifiably proud.

Although restoration is unlikely to be completed before 1969, we look forward to seeing No.15, the oldest working Hudswell Clarke, in steam at Chasewater later this year.In the Heritage Centre, 2010

Stocklist – 1968

With so many new additions, it was decided to publish a stocklist in the 1968 Mercian, Vol.1 No.3

I hope you can read it ok, it’s interesting to see what’s still here after 40-odd years, and what’s gone.

Chasewater Railway Museum 1968 Vol.1 No.2 Bits & Pieces 41

More on the history of Chasewater Railway, now coming to the end of the 1960s

Taken from Mercian Early 1968 Vol.1 No.2

Hon. Secretary’s Report

This is the first time I have had the pleasure of writing a report for the ‘Mercian’.

As some of you are aware Mr. D.A.Ives resigned at the AGM from the post of Secretary, after eight years of Secretaryship of the Society, in which he has put in a tremendous amount of work.  I was elected Secretary for the coming year at the AGM, and Dave has very kindly stayed on as Joint Secretary, until I am fully conversant with the job.

There have been several interesting developments recently, which I might briefly mention, as they are all very new.  Firstly the Brownhills-Aldridge UDC have kindly filled in and levelled the plot of our proposed Museum at Chasewater.  Secondly our line at Chasewater is now an isolated railway – we have been cut off from BR by the removal of a level-crossing.  (Presumably the one at the entrance to Anglesey Sidings) Thirdly on Saturday 2nd December, 1967, a long-awaited member of our loco stud arrived – by road – a Hudswell Clarke 0-6-0ST, used until December, 1966, in the Ironstone Quarries at Desborough.  This locomotive was steamed by Mr. Civil and Mr. Luker (our expert loco-fitters) before purchase, and ran for some little while before they declared it a good purchase.  Fourthly we are now in possession of a weed-killing wagon from Holly Bank Colliery, which will be a useful vehicle.  Lastly we have the MR covered wagon ex bass Breweries, now at Chasewater.

Things have been happening in the last week or two, but as we still have to transport two coaches from Yorkshire, an engine from Warrington , and are assisting Mr. Wildish with the purchase of another engine for the Society, we cannot afford to be complacent.  We still desperately need labour and money!  Any help at all, in either of these directions, will be more than welcome, especially in the selling of Tote tickets amongst your friends, or coming along on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon fro a bit of track digging , or painting.

T.G.Cousens  Hon. Secretary

 

From the Chairman’s Notes

The Society had a new Chairman as well as a new Secretary, with Mr.C.E.Ives taking over from Albert Holden, who was thanked for his work for the Society, especially as the organiser of the weekly Tote, which has brought in hundreds of pounds to the Society.

In addition to the usual appeal for members to help with track work, there was also an appeal for help with the smaller relics in the museum, Mr. Nigel Hadlow was the Hon. Curator.

Also grateful thanks to our engineering staff both at Chasewater and Hixon, who are both restoring and maintaining motive power, I understand that before long, steam will be up at Chasewater.  Long may it blow off!!!

In conclusion a special thank you to one of our junior members Doug Hood, who spent most of his summer holiday painting and restoring stock at Hednesford.

Progress at Chasewater

As regular members will know a considerable amount of progress is taking place at Chasewater.  The present project is the complete clearing of all track.  This is a formidable operation but already a good portion of the Norton passing loop is complete and if progress is maintained the causeway over Chasewater should be reached by winter.  A weed killing wagon has been purchased and this will be put to use as each section is cleared.  The removal of the undergrowth has revealed the track to be in a remarkable state of preservation.

During the summer months the level of Chasewater dropped several feet ( the 2010 version really showed how it should be done!!) and the opportunity was taken to do some work on the bridge at the end of the causeway.

The works trains are now hauled by the ex Worthington diesel No.21 with diesel No.1 acting as spare engine.  The third diesel No.20 is at present being overhauled and will no doubt be in use in the near future.

At the beginning of October contractors working on behalf of Aldridge-Brownhills Urban District Council commenced the preparation of the ground on the site of the proposed museum and this stage is due to be completed by December bringing us one step nearer to our goal.

Although the winter is ahead work will proceed as usual.  General maintenance will continue to be done on Saturdays and track clearing on Sundays.  All members, old and new, are welcome.  The job is a hard one but as everyone who has helped agrees the sight of nice, clean permanent way is one of the most rewarding experiences we have yet had at Chasewater.

F.J.Harvey

 

Report on the Neilson Locomotive Fund

The fund was helped in no small measure by the running of a raffle, which made a profit of £92. 16s. 9d. (£92.84p) The figures seem very small by 2010 standards!

The income was £32.50 donations, £ 92.84 raffle and a loan of £80.00. The first payment on the loco of £75.00 had been made.  Payment for the locomotive has been guaranteed by the end of March – that is the other £75.  This leaves us £57.36 to move the Neilson which may well have to be moved to Chasewater in April, and another £100 will be required by then.

There followed an appeal for more funds – public appeals in the Railway Observer and the Railway Word had not brought in a penny despite good billings in both magazines.

Thanks to everyone for help with the raffle.  It is hoped that before the summer is very old we shall have Baird and Scottish Steel’s No. 11 in steam at Chasewater.

From an article by Gerald Wildish

 

A Weekend at Desborough by Laurence Hopkins.

Saturday 21st October, 1967. In spite of typical RPS weather, as members set out for Desborough we were in high spirits, and were looking forward to seeing the Hudswell Clarke in steam.  On arrival the members found a difficult task before them in that nearly three lengths of track had been lifted, between the points on the shed road.  While Mr. Civil and Mr. Luker got steam up, a start was made in lifting three lengths of track from an adjoining line.  This being done, and the engine having sufficient steam up, we proceeded to move the rail 60ft lengths up to the points.  This task was carried out in filthy weather, and half the distance was completed by nightfall.

Sunday 22nd October,1967. Transport was by Mike Lewis’s van, and having made ourselves comfortable, we proceeded on the way via the Chester Road, as Trevor had run out of petrol at New Oscott.  We then did a grand tour of Coventry City.  On arrival at Desborough, the remaining lengths of track were laid.  The track being completed, the engine was run out over the section laid.  After lunch the engine was put through its paces and found to be mechanically sound.  To sum up – we must thank Mr. Civil and Mr. Luker for the fine work they put in, getting the engine ready for its steaming test.

Chasewater Railway Museum Jan-Feb 1967 Bits & Pieces 39

Chasewater Railway Yard 1966 Photo: Laurence Hodgkinson

From the ‘Mercian’ Jan-Feb 1967 Vol.6 No.1

 

The production of the magazine was under review, the cover was not really satisfactory around this time.  Bearing in mind that the magazine was typed and duplicated – no computer technology freely available in the 1960s – it’s a wonder that so many editions were published.  The next step they were trying for was an illustrated cover, and they were successful from the next edition.

From the Editorial

From time to time I receive news from our secretary of the activities of some of our younger members.  In this case it is Steve Gunn who has been regularly telling us of interesting rolling stock together with the condition it is in and also where it is located.  Some of these vehicles could well be incorporated in our collection and we sincerely thank Steve for his extremely useful contribution to our store of information.

Hon Secretary

More rolling stock

Monday 23rd January saw the delivery of the 16t Brake van and the NCB 10t Brake van to Chasewater.  The GWR brake is in particularly good condition and is complete with stove and lockers, an ideal cabin and shelter for the workers at Chasewater.

The Midland Railway passenger brake c1880 was delivered to Chasewater on Saturday January 28th.  It was unloaded during the morning, six members helped out with this tricky job.  Will all members please note that painting, etc., has to be carried out on these vehicles as soon as possible.  Report to the platelayers’ cabin either Saturday or Sunday afternoons.

Progress Report

Good progress is being made on the Andrew Barclay loco (now known as Colin McAndrew).  Alan Civil and his band of helpers have now repainted and relagged the boiler, and refitted the tank.

Any member interested in seeing steam at Chasewater this summer should report to the Hixon site any Sunday morning or afternoon.

The Hon. Treasurer’s Report was short and to the point – we need more money and members!

 

The date for the next Open Day was announced – Easter Weekend Saturday March 26th and Sunday March 27th at Hednesford from 2.00pm onwards.

Chasewater Railway Museum Nov-Dec 1966 Bits & Pieces 38

From the ‘Mercian’ Nov-Dec 1966 Vol.5 No.6

This photo is quite a bit ahead of time, I think.  Not from this Mercian, but it shows the conditions being worked in.

From the Editorial

The AGM has come and gone together with the light summer nights which have speeded up the work at Chasewater.  Naturally more effort has to be concentrated where most needed during the few precious hours of daylight now left.

You will read elsewhere of the progress made to date both at Chasewater and Hednesford, so that when 1967 dawns we shall be taking our next big step forward, that of running a steam train at Chasewater.

There was a report about the ARPS meeting at Portmadoc, including a request for help with funds for theJ36 and ’C’ Class 0-6-0 when required so that the purchases might be concluded.

Under the heading of affiliations the following were accepted into the Association – M & G N R P S, and the Hull Preservation Syndicate as an observer only.  The following were deferred until the meeting in London on January 21st 1967 – Severn Valley, LCGB, GWR Trust, Westerham Railway Museum, Southern Railway Club and the Loco Preservation (Sussex) Co. Ltd.

There was a short report about the ‘Forum’ magazine, which was still struggling with finances.

 

Hon. Secretary

Progress Report

Work has continued at Chasewater, the main task being the reinforcing of the embankment with fly ash, this material has been tipped into the cavities caused by the embankment fire (slow combustion), and effectively snuffed it out.

An ex Midland Railway flat wagon has now joined the fleet at Chasewater for use on maintenance work.  This vehicle together with the NSR wagon has been finished in battleship grey and appropriately lettered.  The MR wagon was kindly donated by Messrs. Thomas Boultons Ltd., of Froghall, Staffs.., of

Delivery has also been taken of the Peckett 0-4-0ST ‘Lance’ donated by Messrs. Whitecross Ltd., Warrington.  This has also delivered to Chasewater where it has been given a quick coat of green oxide paint to repel the rust which was starting to get a hold on the superstructure.

Andrew Barclay 0-4-0ST. Colin McAndrew – Considerable work has been done on this locomotive by Allan Civil and his team of ex Bagnall fitters.

We are extremely grateful to this team for all the hard work they have put in to get it ready for the hydraulic test which it successfully passed.  The loco was steamed successfully on November 13th, albeit stationary.  We look forward to seeing her at Chasewater in the not too distant future.

Restoration Work – A small amount of work has been done at Hednesford on the E1 and coaching stock.  A start has been made on refelting the coach roofs, but has now been held up due to the weather and lack of manpower.  The small relics grow apace and receive the usual loving care from Nigel Hadlow.

Mention must be made of the wonderful job of restoration done to our Wolverhampton trolley bus No.616 by John Hughes and Robin Oliver.  These two members must be congratulated on their steadfast painstaking work in putting the interior back to its original layout.

Other than a couple of mentions for the Tote and the Annual Dinner that’s pretty much the lot for this edition.

Chasewater Railway Museum Nov-Dec 1966 Bits & Pieces 38

Chasewater Railway Museum Nov-Dec 1966 Bits & Pieces 38

From the ‘Mercian’ Nov-Dec 1966 Vol.5 No.6

From the Editorial

 

The AGM has come and gone together with the light summer nights which have speeded up the work at Chasewater.  Naturally more effort has to be concentrated where most needed during the few precious hours of daylight now left.

You will read elsewhere of the progress made to date both at Chasewater and Hednesford, so that when 1967 dawns we shall be taking our next big step forward, that of running a steam train at Chasewater.

There was a report about the ARPS meeting at Portmadoc, including a request for help with funds for theJ36 and ’C’ Class 0-6-0 when required so that the purchases might be concluded.

Under the heading of affiliations the following were accepted into the Association – M & G N R P S, and the Hull Preservation Syndicate as an observer only.  The following were deferred until the meeting in London on January 21st 1967 – Severn Valley, LCGB, GWR Trust, Westerham Railway Museum, Southern Railway Club and the Loco Preservation (Sussex) Co. Ltd.

There was a short report about the ‘Forum’ magazine, which was still struggling with finances.

 

Hon. Secretary

Progress Report

Work has continued at Chasewater, the main task being the reinforcing of the embankment with fly ash, this material has been tipped into the cavities caused by the embankment fire (slow combustion), and effectively snuffed it out.

An ex Midland Railway flat wagon has now joined the fleet at Chasewater for use on maintenance work.  This vehicle together with the NSR wagon has been finished in battleship grey and appropriately lettered.  The MR wagon was kindly donated by Messrs. Thomas Boultons Ltd., of Froghall, Staffs.., of

Delivery has also been taken of the Peckett 0-4-0ST ‘Lance’ donated by Messrs. Whitecross Ltd., Warrington.  This has also delivered to Chasewater where it has been given a quick coat of green oxide paint to repel the rust which was starting to get a hold on the superstructure.

Andrew Barclay 0-4-0ST. Colin McAndrew – Considerable work has been done on this locomotive by Allan Civil and his team of ex Bagnall fitters.

We are extremely grateful to this team for all the hard work they have put in to get it ready for the hydraulic test which it successfully passed.  The loco was steamed successfully on November 13th, albeit stationary.  We look forward to seeing her at Chasewater in the not too distant future.

Restoration Work – A small amount of work has been done at Hednesford on the E1 and coaching stock.  A start has been made on refelting the coach roofs, but has now been held up due to the weather and lack of manpower.  The small relics grow apace and receive the usual loving care from Nigel Hadlow.

Mention must be made of the wonderful job of restoration done to our Wolverhampton trolley bus No.616 by John Hughes and Robin Oliver.  These two members must be congratulated on their steadfast painstaking work in putting the interior back to its original layout.

Other than a couple of mentions for the Tote and the Annual Dinner that’s pretty much the lot for this edition.

Chasewater Railway Museum – 1966 May-June Vol.5 No.3 Bits & Pieces 35

Chasewater Railway Museum

1966 May-June Vol.5 No.3 Bits & Pieces 35

From the ‘Mercian’ May – June 1966 Vo.5 No.3

From the Editorial

 

The past few weeks have seen a number of developments both at Hednesford and at Chasewater.  Much effort by Melvyn Balance, Brian Hames, Frank Craddock and Ken Martin has transformed a large number of our collection of iron and brass into gleaming exhibits for open days, and I thank the lads for this useful contribution. 

Further items to arrive have been some LNWR destination clocks and finger boards from Walsall Station, some roof vents and other parts for the GER Brake from our good friend Mr. Plyer and his colleagues of the GE Society, and a load of wooden rail keys for Chasewater from the Severn Valley Society for which we sent our grateful thanks.  Other work at Hednesford has involved a general tidying up of the site for Open Day at Easter which attracted a fair number of visitors, among them two or three new members.  Particular thanks to our attractive salesgirls, Penny, Pat, Pauline, Dorothy and Jean for their help in raising just over £20 for the funds.

The work on tracklaying at Chasewater has progressed slowly but surely and has now reached the point where it becomes double track up to the museum building.  Work has been speeded up considerably no doubt because of the acquisition of our first loco – albeit a diesel – which is working up at Chasewater and is proving a boon in moving the NSR wagon and heavily laden platelayers’ trucks.

The loco has cost £50 – all subscribed for by about a dozen members – to save the general funds, and it is being recorded here for all to see that we are deeply grateful for this fine gesture.  This is only the start; we have more offers to consider.  The next one is a small saddle-tank in full working order at about £75.  How about a few advance donations??  Offers to me in the first instance, please.  More details will be given when these are to hand.  Continuing the money matters section, we have three steam locos to move from Warrington to Chasewater at an approximate cost of £250.  The Treasurer has already received a few donations as a result of the appeal made in the January edition.  However this is far from enough and we MUST move the locos within two months or we shall have to forfeit them completely.  Please, PLEASE help us to raise the ‘lolly’ before the end of May.  Contact either the Treasurer or myself as soon as possible, donations (or interest-free loans) desperately wanted.

The weekly Tote has now been launched and is going very well thanks to the faithful few who are selling tickets each week.  To date over £20 has been raised for the funds; this could be trebled if we can sell more tickets.  I do appeal to all members within range of the Depot to call and collect books of tickets for sale among their workmates and other contacts, please contact Albert Holden at your earliest convenience for tickets and full details of the Tote.

A.A.Chatfield – Hon. Editor

The Tote was run successfully for a number of years, bringing in much needed funds for the Society.

Hon. Treasurer’s Report

Planet Diesel Loco.  Members will be interested to hear that we have now acquired a Planet four wheel diesel locomotive. It was built by F. C. Hibberd around 1930, the exact date and history of the loco is, as yet, unknown.  It is powered by a Paxman 50 hp 3 cyl. Engine, and is capable of pulling several wagons.Laurence Hodgkinson

The loco has been delivered to Chasewater where it is in regular use on P. Way trains.  Members are now at work on repainting and repairing the body where necessary.  This has to be done on weekday evenings as the loco is on duty every weekend.  Any members willing to assist should contact me so that definite working times can be arranged.

It is important to complete restoration work as soon as possible as the loco is on show to the general public to a greater extent than any other item of rolling stock at the present time.

We would like to express our thanks to members Roger Hateley of Lichfield who has done all the negotiating for this valuable item of equipment.