Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Tis Autumn

Sunny 'alfresco' lunchtime in October !!!!!!
Photo: John Pond

All at once it is Autumn and the days are shorter, it's getting cooler and our 'busy' days are done for this year, which has been a good one on many fronts, the weather, the Birthday Parties, the Open Days (not one cancelled this year!), the visiting locos (and their crews!), the friendly people we have met, and the fun we have had !.......and of course we have some things planned which we hope come to light in the not too distant future which will enhance the ALR and make it more enjoyable for everyone !

As part of the ongoing tasks scheduled 'we' have done a bit of tree felling! There has been a very old, knarled, Robinia (False Acacia) tree adjacent to the workshop with roots that are beginning to be a problem, to say nothing of the leaves and twigs it deposits on the roof which needs a regular clean to prevent the drains from getting blocked, so a 'tree surgeon' was called in and the tree is no more! Jane tells us that these have been there as long as she can remember (just a year or two then Jane!), and there is still one left, between the house and the Holiday Cottages.

Robinia felled - plenty of logs there Jane ?
Photo: David Jones

Maintenance work is taking place on the coaching stock, being made much easier now that we have the pit.

David & John get to grips with coach maintenance
Photo: John Pond

It seems that the Signalling Boys are coming up with plans for a new lever panel and diagram in the signal box which we are sure will be impressive!

...and there is a possibility of a 'new' loco at the ALR as one of our members had the opportunity to acquire a mobility scooter recently, which now resides in his workshop at home, but in bits. From the pile of bits, a chassis is evolving and we are told, plans are in place for a 'different' loco body (and colour scheme) to be constructed in due course. No more details can be extracted at this time, so it's wait and see!!!!!!

....and, we have this Saturday, what should be the last 2011 Birthday Party for one of our member's Grandsons, so a nice day will be welcome. Hotspur is undergoing its annual check and hydraulic test this Wednesday, so if all goes well it should be steamed up for the Party.

Plans are in hand for our annual Firework Night Party for members and friends on November 5th (when else?), and our Social Secretary tells us that he is currently organising our Christmas meal at a local Hostelry (yes, it's creeping up to that time of year again!). In between the two we have our Annual General Meeting on November 12th which will set the scene for next year, so plenty going on in one form or another!


Saturday, 8 October 2011

End of Season approaches

The Birthday Party train with Hotspur (and Alan !) in charge. Photo by Dawn

The summer season is at an end and so is this year’s season for ALR Birthday Parties. This year has been the most successful so far for Birthday Parties with one nearly every weekend since just after Easter.We have one more before we close part of the track for some winter maintenance and some (possible) bridge construction work.

Last weekend (17th Sept) saw another very successful ALR Birthday Party for a young lad, Sonny, who was five and we had 24 very excited children and their parents, aunts, uncles and Grand Mum, all enjoying the rides and a Picnic on the open field.

The afternoon was very sunny and warm until just before the end when we had a burst of rain, but because the sun kept shining we had the added pleasure of a double rainbow.The attached photo's are just three of dozens taken by Dawn, one of Sonny's aunts. She gave us permission to use them as long as we gave her a credit, so here goes.


Sonny and Nanny on the rainbow brollie train. Photo by Dawn

Kindly note that we will not be taking firm bookings for next year’s Birthday Parties until January, by which time we should know when we can have the full track open again. Keep looking at the Web Site and watch the progress. By the number of enquiries we have had so far it looks like being another good year, so if you would like a party, as soon as you have Christmas out of your system, give us a call.

Dave B

Sonny's Uncle Steve and Cousin Archie. Photo by Dawn

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Final 2011 Open Day

Hi, didn't we do well last Sunday! Our final Open Day for this year was just brilliant, warm (even hot!) sunshine, lots of happy visitors, a visiting loco, a visiting Guard, all in all a great afternoon, thank you all for coming!
'Hotspur', 'The General', and 'Thunderbox' bore the brunt of the services with John's visiting 'Toby' lookalike helping out once again. (thanks John & Jo, great to welcome you again). We were also pleased to be assisted by Tony from the Nottinhgham Club who was on 'holiday' in one of the Cottages on site, and who had 'brought' his Guard's gear with him, just in case!, so he helped out with the guarding turns which was excellent.
Sorry we have no photos to show you but your 'roving reporter' suffered a broken ankle whilst on holiday in Cornwall last week, so at the moment is doing no roving at all! But we'll do what we can to keep you up to date with the happenings at the ALR over the coming weeks/months, when we should have some exciting developments to tell you about !

Keep smiling