Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Our New arrival !

Wednesday 18th April was an exciting day for the ALR ! For now we can tell you why the trailer was fitted with track sections recently. A 'syndicate' of three of our members have purchased a steam loco, advertised on the Society website (and helped by a 'tip off' from Rex, "did you know there's a loco for sale nearby?" thanks Rex!!!') So with the deal done, the 'syndicate' with yours truly invited as travelling Journo/reporter, with the trailer hitched on, headed slightly south of the City to collect the new addition !
On arrival, the loco was duly admired, as was John's workshop where a 5" gauge loco is slowly taking shape, and then 'Isabel', for that is her name, was loaded up with the help of a hydraulic lifting trolley, easy peasy ! (which, following another deal, is now the property of the Club!).
A celebratory coffee and biscuits were enjoyed before we headed back to the ALR. The loco, which is a 0-4-0 copper boilered, superheated Romulus, with a well tank and a tender water tank, will provide another very capable and valuable loco to 'beef' up the ALR's loco stud. A steam test is scheduled along with 'Lucille's on Wednesday (25th), and should be just about ready for action for this season's Open Days, all being well, with just one or two jobs to do.

Photos: Brian M


Thursday, 12 April 2012

A Good Week on the ALR !

The signal protecting Laurel Sidings in position.

Good progress being made on several fronts at the railway recently, the two new signals have been installed at Laurel Sidings, and will be 'commissioned' shortly! We had to move a point motor cover yesterday as the coaches were rubbing against it as they travelled past. (It's the one just off the platform as you head towards the foot crossing). So a longer 'tie bar' was installed and the box is now well clear of the track.

The new, longer tie bar in place enabling us to move the box away from the track.

We have 'mices' in the electrical boxes which are causing one or two problems as they seem to like the taste of our wires! Will need to have a cull ????

Brackers sorting out the 'mices' problems !

Several members have been undergoing driver and guard training with Hotspur and General, and....... 'Nelson' took its first trip around the circuit yesterday, still one or two jobs to finish, like the seat, (we quite like the temporary, pink stool which brings out our 'feminine side' ????), buffer beams and couplings to be fitted, the twin air horns to be commissioned (yes two!!!!), a rear handrail to be fitted, and controls to be labelled, so this 'Spuggy' offspring is nearly there. 'Tis quite a pleasure to drive and will be a very useful engine (The Fat Controller will be pleased!!!).

Nelson's Nameplate

Nelson & The Boys having a 'conflab' on the bridge.
All Photos: Brian M

We are also tweaking the paint on posts and fencing, with the Signal Box and the Ticket Office due for a coat later on once we have everything up and running OK.......the grass seed around the lake has taken well so should soon 'green' up the area and Richard continues with spraying and trimming things around the site !

Oh, and watch this space as next week we could have some exciting news !!!!!!!!


P.S. A 'conflab' in this context means a serious technical discussion!!! Ha ha !!!!!!

Sunday, 1 April 2012

We're off !!

So we had our first birthday Party on Saturday which went well. It was a freezing cold day and the sun was in a shy mood so you needed to be well wrapped up! All our Birthday Boys and Girls, and their folks had a great time being hauled round the circuit behind 'Hotspur', 'General', and 'Thunderbox', looking out for various 'animals' that had been put out for them to spot. It was great rumbling slowly across the new bridge for the first time with passengers, and I must say it looks really good. You catch a glimpse of it as you travel over the Lakeside flat crossing which is great!
Once the Birthday Party was over, some time was spent by Barry and James on getting to know a bit more about driving a steam loco! A lucky family staying in the Holiday Cottages also were 'treated' to a surprise ride round the circuit, which they were very happy about!
In the background, work was progressing on the installation of the two new signals over at Laurel Sidings with ground sockets going in, the bodywork for 'Nelson' is almost complete, and the controls and switches are now being fitted. So, nearly time to get the paint brushes out!