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Heritage Railway Issue 272

Heritage Railway is the definitive news source for the UK heritage railway scene. With its extensive network of contacts, Heritage Railway brings you amazing exclusives every month - along with features, stunning imagery, gala reports and much more.

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United Kingdom
Mortons Media Group, Ltd
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12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
the bigger storm not moving off the horizon

WE cannot praise enough the all-but-superhuman efforts of our heritage railways who have written a new chapter in the 70-year-old history of the sector, by getting trains moving again in the face of the Covid-19 virus. None of us knew at the start of the year that we would be plunged into a paralysing global crisis with no textbook to guide us, or the powers that be, through with certainty. While several heritage lines have decided to dispense with their Christmas services which accumulate vital income, many have found the means to safely battle on through the current restrictions, as we all hope and pray for that successful vaccine to arrive. “We must all continue to support our heritage lines and museums wherever we can...” The National Heritage Lottery Fund’s emergency fund has…

4 min.
weardale gets £2.1 million boost from county council

DURHAM County Council has voted to invest £2.1 million in the Weardale Railway in a fresh bid to boost local tourism in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic and create new jobs and improved transport links. On September 16, the council’s cabinet voted to support plans to transform the 18-mile heritage line into a major visitor attraction, as part of the local authority’s commitment to regenerating the economy. By providing vital match-funding, the local authority will enable Weardale Railway Limited, a newly-established subsidiary of The Auckland Project, to carry out essential infrastructure works needed to reopen and expand the line. As reported in issue 266, the controlling 75% interest in the Weardale Railway was bought out of administration by The Auckland Project, a regeneration charity which aims to make Bishop Auckland a major…

3 min.
welsh government asked to fund bala lake railway’s ‘job creating’ town centre extension

A FRESH drive is underway to have the Bala Lake Railway’s £2.5 million extension funded by the Welsh Government – which considers it to be“a strategically important project”. Designs for the half-mile extension into Bala town centre are set to form the basis of a planning application to be submitted to the Snowdonia National Park Authority in December. While the heritage line was, like others, forced to close during the Covid-19 lockdown, Caulmert, the engineering firm tasked with designing the extension, undertook an environmental impact assessment on the protected site and produced detailed designs to be submitted as part of the planning application. Caulmert civil engineer David High said: “While the railway extension may be short in length, it is incredibly complex due to its surroundings. The site is protected and the new…

1 min.
freight traffic returns to the north cornwall railway!

SEPTEMBER 4 saw‘real’freight traffic carried on the Launceston Steam Railway (LSR). The 2ft gauge line’s owners Nigel and Kay Bowman answered an SOS from local clothing company Nomads when a driver making a delivery in a towed 20ft sea container could not get past an unexpected road closure in the town’s Riverside. Warehouse manager Lesley Rock came up with the idea of bringing in the shipment by rail instead. The lorry driver was accordingly asked to take the container into the Newport car park. There, the goods were unloaded from the trailer on to a pair of flatbed wagons behind the railway’s Motor-Rail Simplex diesel No. 5646 of 1933. The tracks into one of the railway’s storage sheds at Launceston station runs next to Nomads’ warehouse, where after several trips the consignment of goods…

5 min.
mystery ‘loco’ tested on great central for mission: impossible 7 blockbuster

AN unknown Class 7 4-6-2 which appeared on the Great Central Railway (GCR) in August, and left enthusiasts across Europe baffled, has been revealed as a‘star’of the forthcoming big-budget movie Mission: Impossible 7, featuring US actor Tom Cruise. After pictures of the black-liveried locomotive, taken from the public overbridge by Loughborough shed, appeared on social media, wild speculation mounted as to whether it was a Britannia or Stanier Pacific ‘converted’ to a ‘dirtied up’ French outline, an overseas engine imported for the occasion, or a very expensive and extremely convincing film prop built maybe using some original mechanical parts. It appeared that while the locomotive, No. 462.09. M0, has working motion parts, it is not steamable, and instead is driven by a diesel motor in its tender, which is also capable of…

1 min.
darlington seeks 200 railway ‘firsts’ from across the world

DARLINGTON’S mayor is aiming to contact 200 cities around the world which have also laid claims to railway‘firsts’. In a bid to instigate international interest in the 2025 bicentenary of the Stockton & Darlington Railway (SDR), the world’s first public steam-operated line, Coun Chris McEwan wants to bring the cities together to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the pivotal meeting of two men who became both known as the Father of the Railways. He hopes to stage a virtual conference in April to celebrate the meeting between Darlington woollen manufacturer Edward Pease, the SDR’s main promoter, and locomotive inventor George Stephenson. The meeting at Pease’s home in Northgate also involved Killingworth Colliery manager Nicholas Wood, also a key figure in the early days of steam traction. Among the cities to be approached are…