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Bluebell Anniversary Gala

Discussion in 'Galas and Events' started by Learner, Mar 18, 2014.

  1. Learner

    Learner New Member

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    Although there has been much discussion of Friday's Diesel Gala, I can find very little comment about Saturday and Sunday's Anniversary Gala at the Bluebell. According to the website there will be three trains in operation (on Saturday at least) with all double headed - 847 with 1638, 592 with 263 and 'L150' with 5643, though I have seen mention on here of a P in place of 847. The website has also been claiming that a timetable will be available shortly for quite some time but nothing has appeared and there is little additional information beyond Baxter giving brake van rides at Horsted Keynes. Does anyone (Tom for example!) have any extra information or help on what the timetable will look like?
     
  2. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Sorry Learner, only just spotted this.

    The plan is:

    Saturday:
    A service - 1638 + 847 + Southern set, makes four round trips (i.e. normal peak summer service) (9.45 / 12.15 / 2.45 / 5.15 ex-SP and 10.40 / 13.15 / 15.45 / 18.15 ex-EG)
    B service - L150 + 5643 + Mark 1s / Bulleids, makes three round trips (11.00 / 13.30 / 16.00 ex-SP and 12.00 / 14.30 / 17.00 ex-EG)
    C service - 263 + 592 + Mets / 4 wheelers, makes three round trips at 10.15 / 12.50 / 15.20 ex-SP 11.18 / 13.53 / 16.23 ex-EG
    Baxter on brake van rides (leaves SP light engine 10.35 and returns from HK at 4.34)
    847 does the evening Golden Arrow (two round trips).

    The 5.15 trip is 1638 only (847 will be on shed to prep for the evening Golden Arrow)

    Sunday
    Sunday is similar, but the A service only does three round trips. 263 takes the early morning "C" service on its own for just one round trip, then there is a lunchtime GA at the normal timings with 263 and 592. So Sunday is basically a normal Sunday but with the extra train at 10.15 and brake van rides; Saturday is a considerably enhanced service.

    http://www.bluebell-railway.com/event/happy-birthday-east-grinstead/

    Apparently the brake van rides will leave HK platform 2 and travel south towards the advanced starter, then return back through platforms 4/5 to the up advanced starter (beyond Leamland bridge), then return to platform 2. So kind of a tour of the station.

    Tom
     
  3. Drysdale

    Drysdale Guest



    Thanks James

    I am convinced that the reason Bluebell galas never seem to be that well attended is that you need to be James Bond to discover what is actually planned.

    Why could this information not have been put on their website in this clear, concise form. I was not planning to go as their was so little information and even a call to the Bluebell on Wednesday did not bring forth any information (in fact the Lady I spoke to seemed more confused about the event than I was) however armed with these details I shall attend and buy an event guide!!!!

    See how easy it really is , Bluebell.
     
  4. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    I'm not sure our galas aren't well attended - it's true, we don't do the "mega galas" like the WSR, but our infrastructure is smaller (train capacity / station capacity) so if we had WSR numbers all in one day, we'd struggle anyway! Last Bluebell gala I went to as a visitor (the Southern at War event last year) it was standing room only on some trains, so we really can't cope with more people than that!

    That said, I'm not really sure what the story is from the commercial team on this one. Whatever is true behind the scenes, it does rather feel like a late decision to hold this event: the first inkling I (and I suspect many others) had was only a few weeks ago when all of a sudden just about the entire loco fleet appeared on the loco roster for this weekend! There also seems to have been a bit of confusion over publishing train times on the website; in particular, I think there may have been confusion between today's diesel gala (which is a gala as most people would know: enhanced price, event guide for sale etc) and this event, which feels a bit like a "thank you" to the town (regular price even though there is an enhanced service; no event guide, off-train events held in collaboration with the town, discounted price for local residents etc). So the commercial website went from "timetable will be published here" to "times will be in the event guide" to "here are the times" over the course of about 48hours...

    Anyway, bygones are bygones: hopefully it will be a success. 3 trains in service, seven engines in steam, only 4 Mark 1s in amongst 19 publicly-available carriages, an interesting route for the brake-van tours - what's not to like? ;-)

    Oh - and by the way, it's Tom ...

    Tom
     
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  5. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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  6. Drysdale

    Drysdale Guest

  7. Drysdale

    Drysdale Guest

    P class running today instead of H class, which is reported as having a leaking mudhole door.
     
  8. A1X

    A1X Member

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  9. Dan Hill

    Dan Hill Member

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    Good day out today. Trains were busy but not packed to bursting. The 11:00 was late leaving after both GWR locos took water and then brought the train into the platform (not sure if that was the reason for the delay) but time was made up easily in the end. 178 was out again but 263 had moved from the washout pit to the yard when I left. The GA looked busy as well.

    Baxter seemed to take a different route to what Tom desribed and in A1X's pictures. She ran south from Platform 2 then back through Platform 3 across the points at the north end of Platform 2 and up to Leamland Bridge before entering Platform 2.
     
  10. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Just back from a good day: we had a couple of round trips behind the S15 / U Boat, "testing cushions".
    Have to say the brake van trips, with the new route in and out of the station, were a hit with our children and seemed to interest some of the adult passengers, at least on the trip we took, with an up close view of the signalling at each end of the station. as Dan says, they seemed to take a slightly different route today via platform 3 and then crossing to the loop, rather than platform 4/5 and the main, but the end result was the same.
    A couple of photos of the Maunsell engines here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamessquared/sets/72157642808688395/ Strangely enough, having a one year old and four year old in tow isn't conducive to more in depth photography!
    Tom
     
  11. Drysdale

    Drysdale Guest

    Good Gala all around. Two enjoyable days which I might have missed if it was not for Tom's assistance!
     
  12. David-Haggar

    David-Haggar New Member

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    A video clip from me of the double-headed olive green train combination from Saturday.

     
  13. 45076

    45076 Member

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    Very good day apart from the last train.
    After 5521+5643 ran round at East Grinstead and backed onto the stock, the loco brake on 5521 could not be released.
    After trying without success to rectify the problem for over an hour it was time to call for the taxis.
    Just as well it was Sunday rather than Saturday otherwise it would have had serious consequences to other services. Luckily there were only about 20 passengers on the train.
     
  14. alts1985

    alts1985 Member

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