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Fete de la Vapeur - Somme April 2016

Discussion in 'International Heritage Railways/Tramways' started by timmydunn, Jan 9, 2016.

  1. timmydunn

    timmydunn Member

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  2. howard

    howard New Member

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    A fantastic gala. In 2013 I travelled one way in a vintage carriage behind a metre gauge steam loco and returned in a standard gauge three car Paris metro on the same route.
     
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  3. js5646

    js5646 New Member

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    Yes, it is a great event if a trifle over crowded in my experience.

    Don't over look a visit in the main season though. I called in one Sunday last August to find 3 engines in steam working trains over the entire system. The run to Cayeaux in a lightly-loaded 3 coach train was a highlight of the year.
     
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  4. sleepermonster

    sleepermonster Member

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    I'm going. Our usual little group has booked a gite in the town and we will be there from Tuesday onwards. Most of us are planning to go Portsmouth - Le Havre. I definitely recommend getting in before it starts. See you in the Drakkar perhaps.

    Tim
     
  5. nanstallon

    nanstallon Well-Known Member

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    It is indeed a great event, and I have a 100% record for attendance this century but have to decide between going again (which I'd love) and Dresden which is the same weekend. Decisions, decisions!

    John
     
  6. 5944

    5944 Part of the furniture

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  7. timmydunn

    timmydunn Member

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    Tim - our group is staying in Saint Valerie in a gite from Thursday ready for the "off"... It's going to be a good one.
     
  8. sleepermonster

    sleepermonster Member

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    I've backdated my ferry trip to the previous Friday, Consolidationmike is trying to recruit me on a foray down to Crevecoeur le Grand on the far side of Amiens where MCVS are building a complete new metre gauge line on an old SG branch. I would guess by Thursday we'll be well dug in and holed up at either the Drakkar or Café des Arts. Keep your eyes open.

    Tim
     
  9. 5944

    5944 Part of the furniture

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    "Guide du Spotter" was on the mat when I got home from work this evening. Now comes the fun part of trying to translate the important bits! At least I've got a month to try it.
     
  10. ribblebarn

    ribblebarn New Member

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    How did did you order "Guide du Spotter" I was a bit unsure whether web page order form would accept booking from UK. Did you use this or some alternative?
     
  11. youngpete

    youngpete New Member

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    I ordered mine using the webpage order form and was directed to a page to pay by Credit Card. Was told it will be posted early April.

    Young Pete
     
  12. 5944

    5944 Part of the furniture

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    Did it on the website, no problems. Free postage too. I booked tickets as well, which are e-tickets for printing at home. I use Google Chrome so the page was automatically translated, which made things easier.
     
  13. worldsteam

    worldsteam New Member

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    You can order the travel tickets online as one transaction with the Guide (put your Guide in the basket, then add the ticket, then check-out). The ticket arrives as a PDF by e-mail. All impressively efficient.

    The graphs in the Guide are quite hard work if your eyes are not what they once were. Much colour coding and similar coding via dotted/dashed/complete lines and so on. There's an amazing amount of things going on. I'm surprised the track and St-Valery bridge especially can take a standard gauge Pacific.

    Prior to the Gala, the SNCF service to Noyelles (arrive 1630) from Calais (connects from St Pancras) should connect to the 1630 CFBS service to St-Valery I am told.

    David
     
  14. timmydunn

    timmydunn Member

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  15. worldsteam

    worldsteam New Member

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    Indeed. The intensity of service leaves little recovery margin, so all fingers crossed 15-17 April!

    My only slight moan is on Friday, where the a.m. run of 231K8 returns ecs and the only way back is by railcar. I would have liked to keep the CFBS track 100% steam. Then p.m. sees much fun either side of St-Valery, but it all clashes - do you go for the three train meet on the Cayeux line or the standard gauge Pacific hauling metre gauge stock?
     
  16. timmydunn

    timmydunn Member

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    "Fete Vapeur" is a bit of a misnomer but I'm glad about that. The railcars are half of the fun for me. The Fete is about having fun all over the place - my experience at the last two was that it was pointless trying to get to see everything - something interesting was bound to come along at some time - just hop on the next train and see what the next one is. Every change is a chance for a glass of wine and another BBQ... the trains are only half the event!
     
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  17. nanstallon

    nanstallon Well-Known Member

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    That's the attitude! I love the more laidback approach of France towards a hobby, that on this side of La Manche tends to take itself too seriously. And they know how to do railcars; I used to love trips on them over the branch lines such as the several surviving ones in Brittany.

    John
     
  18. Bean-counter

    Bean-counter Resident of Nat Pres

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    Must say I am very jealous of those able to attend! Entirely my own fault, as I felt "oh, that sounds good" when I saw the adverts saying 99 6001 would be there (apologies that I can't remember the check digit!) but a bit lost as to how to do such trips without an organised group - very sad, really!

    Had a great day on the line a couple of years back, and this line-up sounds fantastic!

    Steven
     
  19. Spamcan81

    Spamcan81 Nat Pres stalwart

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    Get yourself and your cafe across the Channel and just follow the satnav. Haven't been for a few years but have made a number of day trips to past festivals including one before the autoroute was completed. Piece of cake really.
     
  20. timmydunn

    timmydunn Member

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    It's possible to do it as a daytrip from London - just - but I think beancounter is a bit further north. There is still some accommodation in Abbeville and Amiens on the major booking sites - and a lot of camping is available around
     

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