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Southwold Railway

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by Bar Side, May 7, 2012.

  1. Johann Marsbar

    Johann Marsbar Well-Known Member

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    I could see the other FB link that was posted, though the last bit of info on it was from 28/3 - and it was in a strange full screen format that I dont normally see when looking at Public FB pages. Nothing on there about the arrival of Blyth, so the photos on "home territory" obviously weren't on their page then.....

    Whilst not being an FB member, I usually have a quick scan a number of sites each week to see what is going on (or not...) depending on the organization. The aforementioned Halesworth & Southwold one is good, as is the NHR "Cutting Edge" page. Some like NHR & EMRT don't actually seem to want to tell anybody what is going on there other than reposting things from other groups.....
     
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  2. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    If you are using a non mobile device such as a PC or laptop, make sure that the link you are following isn't the mobile link (the mobile link will start with m.facebook.com). If you follow a mobile link on a non mobile device, it can look rather strange!

    The link posted by @Mark Thompson at post 288 is a mobile link - this is the link for standard devices: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=643399543560830
     
  3. Steve B

    Steve B Well-Known Member

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  4. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Steve B.....that is the only one that has worked for me - and Blyth looks magnificent!
     
  5. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Same here. And I'll echo your sentiments, Phil. Bloody marvellous!
     
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  6. Hicks19862

    Hicks19862 Member

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    When the project was announced I thought Blyth would only ever be a buffer beam, then would be quietly forgotten due to lack of funds.

    Glad I was so very wrong!
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2022
  7. mdewell

    mdewell Well-Known Member Friend

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    All true and a good reason to use FB, but anyone looking for older and/or more detailed info will struggle to find it on FB. So it's not a replacement for a good website.
     
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  8. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    We'd like to add our congratulations to SRT too (many of our own volunteers and officers have cash in the "Blyth" B0396A32-3561-4032-9F6E-BAE1391E3FB0-509-000001EF81C9D555.JPG Project).
    Our own Sharpie "Halesworth" is very much a long-term project, but we have the name and number plates, one precious piece of the original loco - and we own the Company Sharp, Stewart and Co.! (And no, we know it's not the original one).
    Meanwhile, on the trackbed, the first panels of three-foot-gauge track have gone down at Blythburgh Station, with the western end of the platform cleared and levelled too. In case forum readers are wondering, there's a soakaway under the track - hence the unusual base material: the ballast will replicate the gravel originally used, because we are making strenuous efforts to make it authentic. Wagon 18 (SR open coal wagon replica for the station) is close to completion. We now have permission to join the main line to the already-laid sidings, so that the station will start to resemble its old self.
    Visitors on Tuesdays (10 till 4) are always welcome.
    We could do with one or two two-lever ground frames B58E6226-35B6-4DF2-9AFB-8139069DB070-410-00000003C684DB26.JPG B58E6226-35B6-4DF2-9AFB-8139069DB070-410-00000003C684DB26.JPG E0722226-1357-48D1-9E9C-96FC00042211-410-000000040E4351FD.JPG to operate the yard - so if anyone knows of anything out there, preferably at a not-too-silly price.....
    Halesworth to Southwold Narrow Gauge Railway Society
     

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  9. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Superb progress. The comparatively light trackwork recreates the look of original line extremely well.

    Question: Will the rail section be suitable for Scaldwell? I ask as the Peckett 0-6-0st looks rather the bruiser in comparison with the native Sharpies.
     
  10. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    Thanks - it seems to be taking off, albeit in a small and tentative way - probably best so, as we still have pretty strong opposition here. The rails are 40lb, so considerably heavier than original SR 30lb, but still look the part - fine for anything that's likely to use them - Sharpie, Peckett, our own RFS (7.5 tonne axle load), etc. In fact ORR say 35lb rails would be fine, but it's best to be conservative... The original Sharpies are listed at 12 imperial tons, but new "Blyth" is quite a bit heavier - not at all a bad thing, as the frames on the original were very light indeed. Or it could be that SR were pulling the wool over the eyes of the Board of Trade again - as with the continuous brakes (lack of them) saga. Axle weight on the Peckett and Blyth won't be enormously different - say around 1.5 tonnes per axle difference...... And yes, reading between the lines of your post, we'd love it if "Blyth", and yes also "Scaldwell" when restored, could visit at some stage, although "Blyth" is most needed to promote Steamworks and the idea of SR revival to a highly-skeptical Southwold public, for the moment, and the Peckett is in a large number of pieces......
    While I am on - our next Open Day at Blythburgh Station is Tuesday June 21st, Suffolk Day - 10.30 till 4, free entry, free tea and coffee, free films in the Village Hall (adjacent) - all are very welcome indeed.
     
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  11. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    It must be so rewarding to see the station slowly coming back into existence - having track down makes a huge difference.
     
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  12. Johann Marsbar

    Johann Marsbar Well-Known Member

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    As it was a decent day today, I drove up to Blythburgh to see the current progress there, before heading off on a walk along as much of the trackbed of the line that I could do to Southwold and back!

    Starting from the furthest west point of where you can walk the trackbed at Bythburgh, this is the view towards the church and Southwold.....
    SR1.JPG

    One of the houses you pass on the trackbed on this section has this attached to the fence at the end of their garden...

    SR2.JPG

    Restoration work at the site of Blythburgh Station....

    SR3.JPG

    Initially, from Blythburgh, the embankment from the line runs close to the river.....

    SR4.JPG

    ...and I did spot this, which appears to be the remains of a sleeper left from the original line - the only one I saw still in situ. Certainly didn't conform in appearance to the large number of tree roots that cross the walkway....

    SR5.JPG

    Further towards Walberswick it runs through wooded areas with some decent sized cuttings.....

    SR7.JPG

    SR8.JPG

    ..and closer to Walberswick there is a short length of embankment.....

    SR12.JPG

    You then reach a short stretch of line in the vicinity of Eastwood Lodge Farm which is partially fenced off or otherwise inaccesible before you can pick up the course of the line over Walberswick Common, including some bridge abutments....

    SR9.JPG

    ..and another cutting.....

    SR10.JPG

    after which you join the former embankment leading to the bridge over the Blyth and Southwold.

    All in all a nice walk and well worth doing, particularly on such a nice day. I had walked a few sections of this part many years ago, but not the section through the wooded area. Rather surprisingly, there seemed to be hardly anyone else about today as I only met about half a dozen people on the whole 9 mile round trip from Blythburgh as far as the area where the Steamworks site is located!
     
  13. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Lovely piccies. Many thanks. I'd no idea the SR had earthworks on even the scale of that modest cutting. Nothing like a running-in board to announce intentions to the world!
     
  14. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for those pictures and description Johann, a lovely day for a walk!
     
  15. Kanonkopdrinker

    Kanonkopdrinker New Member

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    I see from the S.R.T. website today, that ‘Blyth’ has been delivered to Southwold (Steamworks)
     
  16. David Humphreys

    David Humphreys New Member

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    delivered, steamed and officially named
     

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  17. Johann Marsbar

    Johann Marsbar Well-Known Member

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    This was posted on RMweb this morning but is likely to be of interest to those on here who don't frequent that Forum......

    IMG_4957.thumb.jpg.089d2ae1c1833093799b9e7a60a3f1d6.jpg
     
  18. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    Thanks very much JM for passing that one on. Everyone is very welcome - and it's all free! (Not that donations and sponsorships are not welcome, of course - they are...)
    Because of a very long and hot workday yesterday, there's more to see now - replica SR Open Wagon No 18 is onsite, and being painted tomorrow. There's still quite a lot of cosmetic work to do, but it's viewable, and fits into the Goods Shed very nicely. We have also collected the stone pyramidal bases from the smaller Blythburgh Goods Shed (donated to us by the Parish) - they are on display alongside the shed, and we hope that their existence may help us with permissions to rebuild the shed onto them.
    The trackbed is prepared (sub-base - ballasting will be BB June 14 2022 1.JPG 012E434C-70C1-4034-B182-BA5103B60282-93217-0000123A52330315.JPG Workshop June 11 2022 1.JPG BB June 14 2022 3.JPG Workshop June 7 2022 8.jpg 5BFC1C5C-B6BB-4B37-84D8-B017CD120452-93217-0000123A16AE0FBE.JPG later) for the next three track panels: the rails are onsite, as are the genuine pressure-treated creosote sleepers (collected last week from Melton Mowbray), so tracklaying can continue, as all that section is now sponsored by our "Sponsor a Sleeper" promotion. That brings us to the platform road point, which will lead to the two sidings in and alongside the shed: re-gauging from 2-foot is complete and it's ready to go. Its placing has been moved 80 yards or so west, as it used to be under the A12, and the bridge is long gone. Heritage fencing in the SR's peculiar style continues to be replaced, weaving through the trees that have grown up since scrapping in 1940/41.
    Planning has started for the rebuild of the signal cabin in its original place on the platform - this will now house point levers.

    In other news, our Greenbat battery electric loco has gone to Norfolk to have proper traction batteries fitted (it's been running on car batteries) - we hope to be able to bring that to Blythburgh Station for our next event (with a Model Show) on September 11th.
    James
     
  19. Johann Marsbar

    Johann Marsbar Well-Known Member

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    A few photos from todays fairly well attended open day at Blythburgh Station....

    rDSCF6456.JPG

    rDSCF6446.JPG

    rDSCF6447.JPG

    After having a look around the site and the exhibition in the Village Hall, we started walking along the trackbed to see how much was still accessible between Blythburgh and Wenhaston - the motive being a lunchtime visit to the excellent "Star" Public House in that village!

    The first section of trackbed west of the station - about 0.6 of a mile - is a well defined path, and this was mentioned in my earlier posting from back in April this year. You then reach a totally impassible section of about 0.4 miles in length which is clearly defined by a tree/bush line but blocked off for access at the east end of it. A diversion has to be made via a parallel minor road and then heading off in a NW direction via a public footpath which brings you to this area...

    rDSCF6449.JPG

    The trackbed is in the right-hand area of trees, from where it emerges and curves towards where I was standing to take this photo. You can just make out the alignment, and the excavation in the foreground is made on the slightly raised trackbed at this point.
    Blythburgh Church can be seen on the left hand side of the picture.

    Behind me, a fairly new dirt farm track - not shown on my OS Map - takes over the trackbed and takes you to near an area of farm buildings. The Public Footpath - on a metalled track - parallels the line, this view being taken looking north from that area along the trackbed...

    rDSCF6450.JPG

    The grey tops of a couple of fairly substantial wooden gateposts can just be made out on the right of the trackbed where farm crossings were located when the line was open.

    About 0.25 miles north of this point the metalled roadway (and footpath) veer off towards Wenhaston village, but a well trodden path on the trackbed itself (again not shown on the OS Map) can be accessed at that location which runs for about another 0.3 miles through an avenue of trees that once lined the railway....

    rDSCF6454.JPG

    At the end of the tree lined section, the trackbed from that point up to where the Wenhaston Station used to be located then becomes inaccesible, so after an initial study, we gave up and headed off to the Star ! They do very good food and usually have Green Jack (Lowestoft) and Earl Soham beers on there, just in case you happen to be in the area....
    Of the 2.25 miles of trackbed (approx) between Wenhaston & Blythburgh stations, about 1.5 miles are still accessible to be walked on or immediately adjacent to (ie the other side of a fence), so not bad for a line that shut in 1929!
     
  20. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the write up and photographs Johann - A nice day for it!
     
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