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Work in Progress: Thursday 23rd January


Roadworks TriangleUpgrades and enhancements!

This week once again sees Nigel Thompson delivering the news.

"At last a dry January day (no drinking here anyway!) for the Thursday gang. Lots happening around the site, with trackwork, loco and carriage work, shop refitting, and further completions to the recent winter maintenance work."

1. The foot crossing by the renewed turnout is now back in place and ready for public use as Keith Lamprey and Chris Shields finish the ash paths on either side.

2. Don Newnham greased up all moving parts on the down starter signal.

3. This is a part of one of the bogies for Van 23 currently being worked on by the engineering department.

4. Dave Evans found himself a carpentry job. Here he paints new wooden sections with primer. These will eventually form a display board to replace one that has rotted out at Killington Lane.

5. Bagnall 4-4-0T locomotive, CHARLES WYTOCK was being worked on today. This close-up of the frames near the cylinders has been needle-gunned and then treated with red oxide primer.

6. In today's winter sunshine, PILTON was stabled on the down platform along with the carriages.

7. A rare view of Paint Shop Boys outside! Phil, Geoff and Jim alongside their completed winter project - the final finishing and varnishing of our latest heritage carriage No.5.

Inside the station building, Company Director Anne Belsey continued the refit of the Booking Office in preparation for the February half-term reopening week.

Earlier this week, visiting volunteers Mike and Alan Pearce from the Thames Valley Area Group completed a major sort out of the second-hand book display, rearranging the books into their respective categories such as SR, GWR, Locomotives, Modelling, as well as other topics.

8. The trackwork project begun today is an upgrade of the transhipment siding. The gang commence by undoing the fishplates and de-spiking/unscrewing the 40lb rail used here.

9. & 10. At the turnout end, special joggle fishplates were used between the 40lb rail and the 50lb rail.

11. At Lunchtime, the gang poses after removing all the 40lb rail.

12. In the afternoon as the mist and drizzle appeared, the gang had also removed all the sleepers. The new 50lb rails and sleepers are laid out along the bank on the left.

Next week the formation will be dug out and re-graded to provide a better alignment for rolling stock shunt moves. The previous mis-match of rail joints and heights at this turnout has caused problems in the past with rolling stock delivery, hence the need for this planned track upgrade.

Text and photos by Nigel Thompson

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