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WCRC Santa Specials 2019

Discussion in 'What's Going On' started by 60017, Mar 19, 2019.

  1. RalphW

    RalphW Part of the furniture Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    And some of us knew that the work on Alberta started when Galatea was completed. zip.gif
     
  2. GWR4707

    GWR4707 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Has anyone checked its not Leander??
     
  3. Steamage

    Steamage Member

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    In a dyslexic moment, I thought you wrote "Has anyone checked its not Leader??" !!
     
  4. 68923

    68923 New Member

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    Am loving the "banter", and also wanted to add my congrats and thanks for the superb photos/videos. Does anyone know how long "Alberta" will exist in this life? I would dearly love to see one of my childhood favourites again in the flesh (yes I know it's make believe) but cannot until the December 15th trip. If no prior knowledge I will cross fingers etc a) that she stays as is for a while, and b) will be at the head on the 15th.
     
  5. 46223

    46223 Part of the furniture Friend

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    I could be wrong but I would think she'll stay green for a while now, but as 'Alberta' who knows.
    It's easier to renumber and rename than it is to repaint.
     
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  6. 68923

    68923 New Member

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    Thanks very much. I would settle for any other Jubilee in green besides Bahamas, as that is how I remember them. (I do like the red and black, just not quite as much!).
     
  7. henrywinskill

    henrywinskill Well-Known Member

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    Why should 10A take any notice of "enthusiasts"?
     
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  8. staffordian

    staffordian Well-Known Member

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    Yep, I saw it being pulled out of the secret tunnel at Box the other day :rolleyes:
     
  9. Oswald T Wistle

    Oswald T Wistle Well-Known Member Friend

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    It had that “fresh out of the box” look.
     
  10. Oswald T Wistle

    Oswald T Wistle Well-Known Member Friend

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    The Santa Express 24 November 2019 – 45562 Alberta & 46115 Scots Guardsman hauling 12+POB & 47.746 on the rear

    Earlier in the week, someone who was sworn to secrecy, told me to expect a surprise with what was going to be on the front; I was allowed 3 guesses; with 300 or even 3,000 guesses I wouldn’t have got it. However, with hindsight, I could probably have done better than, Rudolph, Prancer or Dancer.

    We were already booked for a day of child minding as our grandson’s mum and dad both had to work. This was the first year that we considered Jack old enough (4¾) to take for his first taste of main line steam; so with a couple of kids (Jack and me) and a couple of minders (Mrs W and Oswald Jnr) we set off to Lancaster on a dull but dry day. It remained dull, dry and without a breath of wind throughout the day. Our drive was uneventful excepting a minor problem with the ticket machine entering the station car park; the QR code reader for pre-booked tickets wasn’t working.

    We were on the station in good time and, just a couple of minutes late, the ECS, hauled by 47.746 Chris Fudge, drew into platform 3 with “Alberta” and SG on the north end – 13 coaches, 2 locos and a 47, a long train. We took our seats in the 11th coach. We were away RT and by Morecambe S Jn we were up to 53.2, Hest Bank 63.6 and we shot past Carnforth N Jn at 72.6 and a few seconds early. We hit the foot of Yealand Bank at 77 and topped it at 70 with a min of 69.3. We reached our max just before Beela Viaduct and were still doing 76.4 at Milnthorpe (3¼E). Then we began to slow for our stop in Oxenholme loop (3¼E). We were booked to wait for 22 min to allow 3 trains to pass. During the wait Father Christmas arrived with presents for the children; Jack got a small torch that projected pictures of rockets and spacemen – it was well received. The third train passed and RT we were on our way.

    Through Oxenholme at 19.2 and accelerating as we climbed the bank; 49.3 as we crossed Docker Garth but speed falling back as we hit the 1/106r. We passed Lambrigg at 49.0 (1¼L) and topped Grayrigg at 47.9 (1½L). We made the most of the downhill and on the gentle climb past Lowgill we were travelling at 66.2 & 1L. More downhill, and Santa’s flying dust was working a treat with a max of 78 and 77.4 at MP31½ as we hit the foot of Shap. Tebay S Jn 76.5, across N Lune Viaduct 74.4, under the M6 at 73.0, across Birbeck Viaduct 69.6 and under the Greenholme road at 64.2. Finally the locos began to concede something to the climb; Scout Green 53.7, Shap Wells 46.7 and MP37¼ passed at 43.5. There was a minimum of 42.7 before speed recovered to 43.9 at MP37½ and 45.5 as I passed the summit board. MP31½ to MP37¼ had taken 5m 54s (av. speed 58.5 mph) – Thank you, Father Christmas. I know that the 47 was “taking its own weight” and on notch 1 with this gradient and speeds would also be “pushing” around 2-3 coaches – but fun nonetheless.

    Once over the top we gathered speed quickly; Thrimby Grange 72.6, more flying dust and faster at Clifton & Lowther (3½E), and we flew past Eden Valley Jn, slowed as we passed Penrith S Jn (73.1 & 5E) through the station at 69.4 – what a sight that must have been. We were back up to 75.3 at Southwaite (9E) before gradually slowing to pull off the main line at Upperby Bridge Jn then stopping on Upperby Curve (Through Sdg) for the locos to take water. We stopped 13E and with our booked wait of 38 min we would be here a while. Time to watch the Pendolinos pass, already stripped of their Virgin decals, how sad they looked. Away RT we drew up to London Rd Jn, a short wait and then on to Petteril Br Jn; after a few seconds the 47 drew us back into platform 4 at Carlisle. We had been booked into platform 3, but would have been too long; we fitted in pl 4 with room to spare.

    Time for a wander down the platform to confirm crew details; 45562 driver Mick Rawling, fireman Michael Middleton; 46115 driver Steve Chipperfield, fireman Martyn Soames. On the return journey the drivers changed locos. On the 47 was Mick Kelly who assured me that the diesel did not push at any point on the outward journey and there were no plans to do so on the return unless there was a problem. The pair of locos looked superb; 45662 sported Alberta name plates (David Smith is rumoured to own the originals – so maybe, “these were them”). I understand that Alberta’s tender comes from 44932 (the once green black 5). Jack and Oswald Jnr visited the Alberta’s footplate. We had only a short stop in Carlisle, but enough time for dancing with the elves (no I didn’t) or photos with Father and Mrs Christmas.

    We re-took our seats, still in the 11th coach but now on the east side of the train. Just under 1L we set off back towards Lancaster. The locos were soon into their stride; 5 miles out we passed Wreay at 56.1. We were now climbing at 1/184r and then onto the 1/228r; 7¼ miles from Carlisle comes Southwaite (63.0 & 2¾L). Speed fell away slightly as the gradient tightens first to 1/172r then 1/164r – 62 became 61 became 60 but we topped the 1/164r with a min of 59.4. Now for some level track and back up to 68.4 as we passed the south end of Plumpton loop (¼L) and up to 70.7 at the end of the level. Speed fell back to 67 as we crossed the B5305 on the near 2 miles of 1/186r, then comes the dip before Penrith and up to 72.3. We thundered through the station at 71.2 (1¾E), up to 72.1 at Penrith S Jn, and a max of 73 as we crossed Lowther Viaduct. We hammered past the north end of the Eden Valley loop at 69.0, and now on the 1/125r, past the south end at 65.9. Just under half a mile and Clifton & Lowther (65.3 & 3E); the climb is unrelenting but the locos were in full cry, speed fell below 60 (but not by much). We passed Thrimby Grange at 59.6, under the M6 at 59.4 and held 58.9 as we topped the 1/125r; 1¼ miles of 1/142r saw speed increase to 59.8 with 61 on the level past Shap station. Speed fell back to a min of 53.4 on the final 1/106/130r but had recovered to 56.3 as I passed the summit board.

    There was still some “flying dust” left; down the hill and up to 70.2 at Shap Wells, faster by Scout Green but then we began to brake. Only 40.8 as we crossed Birbeck Viaduct before we were held for almost a minute as we approached Tebay N Jn (some trackside work was in progress nearer to the Jn). With a scheduled stop in Grayrigg loop, and still almost 3E, we proceeded in the high 40s/low 50s to our stop. A 17 min booked wait for 2 trains to pass then off again 1E. Another 2½ miles and we crossed Docker Garth at 64.1 and up to 72.3 as we passed Meal Bank but then the brakes came on as we sighted double ambers. We were down to 22 before the signals cleared (about 1½ miles north of Oxenholme) and we accelerated through the station (51.2 & ¾L) up to a max of 77 at Deepthwaite and ½E at Milnthorpe (75.8). We continued in the low 70s until we were slowed approaching Carnforth N Jn waiting for the junction to clear. Over the junction at 27.5 (3½L) and up to a max of 60.8 at Hest Bank before slowing and then crossing over and finally stopping in platform 3 at Lancaster (7¾L).

    Back to the car and a stop, start crawl off the car park and through the city centre before joining the M6/M65 and back home for 17.25 (5E). Our daughter, Jack’s mum, arrived a few minutes later to take him home.

    Besides a present from Santa, the elves entertained the little uns throughout the day. There were crayons and an activity book, write a letter to Santa, make a Christmas card, a colouring competition, visit Santa’s Grotto and various other bits and pieces. We had some singing and the adults joined in. The kids got a packed lunch; sandwiches, crisps, satsuma, chocolate and a carton of orange juice all in a box with a picture of SG on the lid. The adults got a tub of hot pot (delicious), a mince pie and a cup of mulled wine; Mrs W managed 3 mulled wines – what a hero! The children also got a couple of picks from the sweet bucket and a large bar of “West Coast” chocolate. There was a magician and the elves were on the ball throughout the day. Jack asked if we could go on it again, “We’ll see.” I replied (Yes!!)

    We were 11 coaches back and with Christmas songs playing on the p.a. system, communal singing and children chattering I decided I was unlikely to hear much so the toplight remained closed. (It also helped keep the coach warm). I can only imagine the roar from the front – another day! Was late November a bit early for Santa? Not a bit, “Christmas Jumpers” were everywhere, one daft, old codger in our coach was even wearing a “Santa hat” – hang on, that was me!?

    This was a fantastic day out and all for £30 a head. Well done WCRC and thanks to all those who made the day so very enjoyable. The biggest thanks must go to David Smith for providing “Alberta”, I wish him a very Merry Christmas.

    Time to roll the credits,

    Grandpa was played by Oswald T Wistle, Grandma by Mrs W, the uncle by Oswald Jnr and the grandson by Jack. The drivers were played by, Mick Rawling, Steve Chipperfield and Mick Kelly; the firemen by Michael Middleton and Martyn Soames. The guard was Roly Parker. The Christmas Elves were played by various friends and members of the production company. Father Christmas was played by himself. The part of Alberta was portrayed by Galatea. (Alberta and Scots Guardsman appeared by kind permission of Mr David Smith). Directed by Bob (Train Manager), who also played the Fat Controller. This was a WCRC Production.
     
  11. ribble

    ribble Member

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    A superb sight despite the dire conditions at Greenholme

    David Price - Cop Lane on Flickr Greenholme.jpg
     
  12. Shep Woolley

    Shep Woolley Part of the furniture

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    Excellent report young Whistle, 10A definitely pulled the rabbit out of the hat by the sound of it onboard, be assured the sight and sound from the lineside was every bit as good
     
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  13. Davo

    Davo Member

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    A good photters day then on shap. Yes i know Alberta was 1 of 55A last jubes but withdrawn and scrapped and some of the parts salvaged off it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2019
  14. henrywinskill

    henrywinskill Well-Known Member

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    Yes Mark Knopfler was definitely out yesterday David :)
     
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  15. Will RL

    Will RL Member

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    The S&C??
     
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  16. ribble

    ribble Member

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    Thought I heard Sultans of Swing playing in the distance Henry !
     
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  17. 46223

    46223 Part of the furniture Friend

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    Groan......;)
     
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  18. free2grice

    free2grice Well-Known Member

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    What a difference a coat of paint can make. Many thought that Galatea was not the most elegant of engines, including myself, but now after a repaint I think she looks fantastic.

    Well done to the folk at West Coast. Any chance of Alberta returning to her old haunts around the Bristol Barrow Road area? I live in hope. <BJ>
     
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  19. Davo

    Davo Member

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    Thinking of the C.M.E. route by mistake
     
  20. Matt37401

    Matt37401 Part of the furniture

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    I don't think anyone in the know wanted to be the eejit that spoilt the party. What a bloody awesome sight though!
     

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