Wednesday, 20 May 2009

ALR 2009 May Boy's Weekend Away

The 'Gang' posing at Bishops Lideard on the West Somerset before the trip back to Minehead behind GWR 2-8-0 No 3850
Photo: Andrew Padfield

Five of the ALR Gang, enjoyed this year's superb weekend away in Devon and Somerset. On Thursday we visited the Lynton & Barnstaple Railway to admire their progress at Woody Bay station., enjoying a trip up the line behind ex WD loco 'Exe' in rather 'damp' weather, and were then given the 'Grand Tour' of the facilities by their enthusiastic staff. An exciting project which has a long way to go, but they are determined they will get there eventually!

'Exe' being replenished at Woody Bay ready for another trip along the L & B.
Photo: Brian M

Then from our base at Williton on the West Somerset Railway we popped across to the Royal Naval Air Station at Yeovilton where we spent all of Friday in the amazing Museum there. Fascinating displays with which we were all very impressed, with the ''Aircraft Carrier Experience ' being the highlight. Excellent!

Saturday was our day on the West Somerset, starting on the first train out of Minehead behind GWR 2-8-0 No 3850 with our Day Rover tickets. A quick look round Bishops Lydeard station before jumping back on the train to Washford, the home of the Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway Trust, where we had another quick look round before hopping on board the Class 117 DMU back to Bishops Lydeard. A look in the museum & model railway before joining the train for the trip back to Minehead, again behind No. 3850. We were very impressed with this total railway and the friendliness and knowledge of its staff & volunteers, helped us to really enjoy our day on this excellent railway!

GWR No 3850 ready to depart Bishops Lydeard

Photo: Brian M

S&DJR No 88 meets the DMU at Stogumber
Photo: Brian M

Sunday saw us making our way home, with a welcome break for our driver at the Great Cockrow Railway. Our Gang has been here before but two of us had not, and this super 71/4" gauge railway exceeded our expectations! We were shown round by Kim and were more than impressed with the set up . The signal box at Everglades is something to behold, it's not like the real thing , it IS the real thing, blimey, can we have one like that please? If you haven't been here, make sure you do as their operation is slick, it's very friendly, the signalling is very impressive, mirroring prototype practise, and the mainline theme is carried off perfectly by the lovely scale locos that whisk the trains round on the nearly 20 minute trip around the circuit.!
As always we came away with plenty of ideas! Thanks Chaps !!!!!

Loco preparation area- Great Cockrow Railway
Photo: Brian M

Passing through Everglades -Great Cockrow Railway
Photo: Brian M