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Southwold Railway

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

  1. robpalmer

    robpalmer New Member

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    I had a look around the area of the Southwold Railway yesterday and took a few photos. These are posted on my Flickr site at https://flickr.com/photos/83225862@N02/sets/72177720314391506 for anyone interested.
     
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  2. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    Thanks Rob - your photos are much admired. Next time you are passing let us know, and we can show you around the site in detail (or of course come to our next Station Open Day on May 11th - it's free!). If you would like to have a look around our workshop/test track at Wenhaston - again, just let us know.
    James STOP PRESS - the Blythburgh Station team won a "Highly Commended" at the HRA on Saturday, we now have a solar panel charging system for our Greenbat 4WBE loco, the trackbed westwards from Blythburgh Station is cleared for over 100 yards, the ex-WHR point is being re-gauged, and the Cleminson MOY wagon is moving on to completion
     

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  3. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Part of the furniture

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    It is good to see the steady progress and fitting reward for your (and the whole teams) hard work.
     
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  4. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    Thanks very much.
    I'd like to tap the expertise on this forum.
    On Saturday May 11th at our Blythburgh Station Open Day we will be running our Greenbat loco with the replica wagon, loaded with replica turn-of-the-century freight. Over winter, a solar panel installation has gone in - and it's so efficient that the 48-volt battery loco can be - and is - completely charged by this means.
    Thus we'll be running (for the first time in public) a "solar-powered goods train" (if you see what I mean). (We have already demonstrated it to Southwold Railway Trust trustees, last Saturday)
    Question for all our readers - is this train a first? If so, to what extent? I imagine it'd be hard to state that it is not a first on the 3-foot gauge in England....but is it in fact a first on the UK NG? Or even on any gauge?
    Opinions, support, refutations, facts and surmises, please
    James
     

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  5. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Part of the furniture

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    There has been a SG electric railcar operation in Australia (Byron Bay?) which used solar recharging for the past three or four years I believe. Well done though, I think you can certainly claim a UK NG first!...and probably a UK first.
    How far does the running line go now?
     
  6. Bikermike

    Bikermike Well-Known Member

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    Have they shifted freight out there?
    (If only there was a handy product that can be easily moved by rail nearby... *waves at messrs Adnams*)
     
  7. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    We have a large Adnams barrel onsite (as a typical wagon load), which they donated several years ago - sadly - empty! Photo shows it arriving.
    Oddly (well, oddly to me) the Adnams family were against the restoration of the railway when the Southwold Railway Trust tried it in the noughties, but we hope things have changed since then JH
     

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  8. kscanes

    kscanes Resident of Nat Pres

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    The South Tynedale Railway in Cumbria were certainly intending that their battery electric locos would be solar powered. Whether or not it happened I don't know.

    https://www.railfuture.org.uk/article1474-Solar-sparks-effect
     
  9. StoneRoad

    StoneRoad Member

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    hmmm, I don't know about the situation at Alston.
    It is close enough for me to check over the weekend ...
     
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  10. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    Thanks - please do - that'd be useful. James
     
  11. The Green Howards

    The Green Howards Nat Pres stalwart

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    I well recall their opposition. I also recall some fairly vocal opposition from a wildlife group and I suspect that now the Notting Hill-on-Sea brigade will have much to say.
     
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  12. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    Yep - some of them do. For our six years of existence, much of our time is spent on PR for at least the idea of railway restoration (about which very little is known in this area). Sometimes it seems like Ruritania rather than a county a couple of hours from London. We THINK we may be - gradually - winning the battle, though - the really silly parts of the opposition ("you will destroy all the wildlife", or "thousands of train-spotters will trespass in our gardens", or "you will attract all those nasty tourists", or [and most often] "what's the point?") are becoming a bit outnumbered and defensive (we call them "Lardners", a reference I am sure Nat Pres readers will understand...).
    At Blythburgh the fact that it was/is/will be a station is now generally-accepted common knowledge, which it certainly wasn't a few years ago: the station was looking very spruce and tidy - we have a rule that there shall be NO rusty rolling stock lying about - or - well - rusty or unused or discarded items of any kind.... Too many small heritage railways (and some big ones) have too much tat lying around JIC it might at some stage become useful....
    We had a good event last Saturday, and, as promised, ran a solar-charged freight train (possibly a first, unless anyone knows different!).
    Two more station events this year - on Saturday July 13th, and (as part of the national Heritage Open Days, with our annual model railway show) on Sunday September 8th. Both will be free - ditto the teas, coffees and cakes
    James
     

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  13. Breva

    Breva Well-Known Member

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    Just steer a steady course. People change, they come and go, companies go bankrupt, houses with opposing neighbours get sold, you build up credibility.

    The GWSR had much opposition at Bishops Cleeve for the reinstatement of tracks (on our own property!) and at Broadway a man walked his dog through our busy building site, proclaiming that he had done so for 30 years and that we would not be stopping him now (from trespassing all this time). We found out later that he applied at the council to turn the trackbed through Broadway station into a public footpath. It didn't happen.
     
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  14. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Part of the furniture

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    Thanks for the update James. It is good to see that steady progress is being maintained and that you are keeping your neighbours as "on side" as possible.
     
  15. James Hewett

    James Hewett New Member

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    That sounds very familiar! Last year we had an irate man at the station saying that he had taken his 4X4 and canoe carrier along the trackbed footpath (which is anyway permissive only, and is definitely not a roadway) to the river for launching for the last 30 years, and we were not going to stop him. "I am a lawyer" he said, and "I will sue you" - not (perhaps) realising that he had just admitted to breaking the law for 30 years.... We are pretty sure he has been creating trouble for us with the authorities ever since.

    I guess that your account explains why there is no station at BC....... J
     
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  16. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    "I am a lawyer"
    The last refuge of a scoundrel.
     
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  17. Miff

    Miff Part of the furniture Friend

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    At work I had someone on the phone say to me “I am an Officer of the Court” - but all Solicitors have that status. :)
     
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