Severn Valley update

It is planned that later this month, 55019 ‘ROYAL HIGHLAND FUSILIER’ will carry a wreath in memory of Martin Harris, former VLO for the loco, who sadly passed away last month. He was heavily involved in the loco, which was his favourite Deltic, for many years streching back to the days on the NYMR.

The wreath will be carried on an additional running day which will take place on Saturday 30th August when the loco is now rostered to work two round trips on the usual diesel turn, ie 09.55 Kidderminster-Bridgnorth, 11.55 Bridgnorth-Kidderminster, 13.30 Kidderminster-Bridgnorth, 15.40 Bridgnorth-Kidderminster..

Working Parties at Barrow Hill

With all the recent news regarding workings at the Severn Valley and East Lancashire Railways, we must not forget the work being done on ‘TULYAR’ at Barrow Hill. Members are reminded that, in addition to the regular Saturday working parties, there are working parties on Wednesdays roughly twice a month. The next Wednesday parties are on 20th August, 3rd/17th September and 1st/15th October. Any members interested in helping out, please contact Mike Hallam-Rudd – there is plenty to do, no matter what abilities you have.

In addition, there will be a cleaning party at the Severn Valley Railway on Saturday 23rd August in advance of 55019 operating two days later. Willing helpers (with plenty of rags!) should again contact Mike Hallam-Rudd.

D9009 to join 55019 for SVR Gala

The Severn Valley Railway’s Diesel Gala, which takes place on Thursday 2nd October-Saturday 4th October, will feature D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’ as well as 55019 ‘ROYAL HIGHLAND FUSILIER’ which has been visiting the line for the season. D9009 will move from the East Lancashire Railway after the gala there on 27th/28th September, and will return to the ELR with 55019 in tow in time for the East Coast weekend on 11th/12th October.

55019 to operate at ELR on November 8th

Following its summer visit to the Severn Valley Railway, 55019 ‘ROYAL HIGHLAND FUSILIER’ will return north via the East Lancashire Railway, where it will operate for one day only on Saturday 8th November. This is the day after D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’ haules the evening ‘Diesel Diner’ (see story further down) so will provide a good weekend of ‘Deltic’ action.

The full list of running days at the ELR for the remainder of the visit reads:

Saturday/Sunday 6th/7th September (D9009 on diesel diagram), Saturday/Sunday 27th/28th September (D9009 running at Diesel Gala),  Saturday/Sunday October 11th/12th (D9009 running at ECML event), Friday 7th November (D9009 on Diesel Diner), Saturday 8th November (55019 running on Diesel Theme Day), Monday 10th November (D9009 on Diesel Footplate Experience).

Volunteer’s View – 09/08/14

Another report from Graham Clarke this week, with some progress on the society’s spare power units:

It’s been a productive day at Barrow Hill. More work has been done on fuel tanks by Mike and Tom. They are not far from completed. There are still some retaining studs missing, the engine connections to sort out and a balance pipe that’s just too short. In the power unit store, Unit 439 has been turned a little for the first time in many years. Unit 419 has been primed with oil, but is not wanting to turn yet. More oil will be pumped in next week. Hopefully it will free off once the oil soaks through. I’ve been marking up wiring diagrams with the cables that have been replaced to work out what needs testing. I’ll be starting in earnest next week. There are now some engine room light fittings too. Thanks to the midweek volunteers, Darrell, Beth and Pete.


D9009 to work ‘Diesel Diner’ at ELR on November 7th

We are pleased to announce that D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’ will be the motive power for the East Lancashire Railway’s ‘Diesel Diner’ which runs on Friday 7th November. The evening trip on board the ELR’s dining set will be accompanied by a three course meal with tea or coffee and after dinner mints. Don’t miss this rare opportunity to dine in style behind a ‘Deltic’! For more information, and for details of how to book, please see the ELR’s Dining Programme booklet which can be downloaded by clicking here.

Volunteer’s View – 02/08/14

One of our occasional reports from Barrow Hill, this time from Graham Clarke on August 2nd which shows that it isn’t all physical work on the locos:

There was only me at Barrow Hill today. Ray came for a couple of hours in the afternoon. I did some important paperwork, sold a model and marked a spare wiring diagram with all the points that are disconnected on 55015. This was done as part of re-wiring and finding the cause of poor insulation readings. I’m grateful to Charlie for keeping excellent records and passing them on when he left. I’m also going to annotate the cables that have been replaced. This will help with testing. So, steadily no.15 is moving towards the finish and the control system will start coming to life over the coming weeks.

D9009 passes Engineering Acceptance Exam

On Thursday 31 July, D9009 successfully passed it’s annual Engineering Acceptance Exam yesterday to allow the loco to run on Network Rail Controlled Infrastructure for the next 12 months. The loco was also run up on both engines all was found to be well.

The DPS would be pleased to hear from any tour promoters or other parties interested in hiring D9009 for use on the main line, please see for more information and contact details.


D9009 undergoing its exam at the ELR. (Alex Williams)


Obituary – Martin Harris

It is with deep sadness that we have to advise that DPS volunteer and former board member Martin Harris passed away on Tuesday 29th July. Many members will remember Martin as the Volunteer Liaison Officer for 55019, a role which he undertook for many years until 1996. Prior to that, he was a regular volunteer at the North Yorkshire Moors Railway in the 1980s. Ian Dobson, who served on the committee with Martin for a number of years, writes:

“I first came across Martin in the very early days on the Moors. He was one of the ‘Grosmont Service Crew’ originals and travelled many miles up to Grosmont month after month in his Reliant three wheeler from Burton Latimer – around 195 miles each way. He didn’t quite come the furthest but he was certainly the only one of us with a car that didn’t have a wheel at each corner! He was always a pleasure to work with and would turn his hand to pretty much anything that needed doing. Long days and nights repainting 9 and 19 in the rare times we got them under cover – a luxury that today’s volunteers probably take for granted. He was also probably one of the most dedicated DPS volunteers of the early years as he joined with a few of us at Butterley when Tulyar was first bought to work on her before Mike Hallam-Rudd managed to set up his own East Midlands Service Crew. When 19 moved to Loughborough Martin followed (in a four wheeler by then I think) and he then followed 19 back up north to the East Lancs eventually. His dedication to 19 was absolute. I recall one January that he had been amazed that he had been the only DPS volunteer to turn up and celebrate 19s birthday between Christmas and new year. The fact that he hadn’t mentioned that he was going may have contributed to that, but he had still trekked up to Grosmont in his trusty reliant and raised a solitary glass in the cab!<

I also recall around Christmas in the early days at Butterley when Mike, Ray, Martin and I had been doing something with a fork lift around Swanwick and managed to land one wheel in a rather deep hole from which it could not be extracted. After much head scratching we eventually fired up 55015 and via a pulley system extracted the fork lift with a rope off Tulyar's coupling hook! I remember vividly our possibly alcohol-fuelled parody of 'the twelve days of Christmas' in the DPS caravan that night ending with "..and a fork lift stuck in a big hole".

Martin always a stalwart of the sales stands with me too, Pickering, Grosmont, Swanwick, Coalville, Bridgnorth and Basingstoke spring to mind. We even set up the 'Support Coach Appeal' together at one point with a prospectus that included a possible future use as " accompany our locos on the main line". We never did buy the coach, even if we did manage the main line bit. The proceeds did buy a CCT for the DPS at Rothley though so at least we achieved something! Our other claim to fame was enthusing a man and wife about diesel preservation whilst behind a DPS sales stand so much that they went out and bought 50031 from BR - not that we knew what we, or they, had done until much later!

In latter years we went our separate ways and he kept himself amused with the Northampton and Lamport Railway, being involved with a DMU set. No mad three wheel dashes to Yorkshire any more, local to home and feet up by the fire every night!  Martin still used to pay occasional visits to Barrow Hill and attend the AGM, and when I last spoke to him - around 12 months ago - he was operating a cottage industry from home refurbishing DMU heaters, not Napiers, but not easy things to look after either! Whenever our paths did cross we would always talk of happy early days on the Moors and elsewhere and I know that those of us who were privileged enough to have been involved in those early days on the Moors have many happy memories of those times - and Martin's wonderfully dry sense of humour and smile will never be far away from those. He joins Marj Hamilton in the great Tavern in the sky - I'm sure they're sharing a pint of Strongarm and laughing together already."

Top left: With 55019 on the Grosmont Headshunt. Top right: With 55009 at Grosmont. Bottom left: With a borrowed nameplate at Coalville. Bottom right: By the timber yard at York stabling point.

ELR roster update

Further to the news story published yesterday, we are pleased to advise that D9009 ‘ALYCIDON’ will be operating the Diesel Diagram at the ELR on Saturday 6th September and Sunday 7th September. Please note however that the loco will not be operating on Saturday 13th September as was previously envisaged.

In addition to the above dates, D9009 is expected to be one of the many locos in use at the ELR gala on September 27/28, further details of which should be available in the next few weeks.