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27th November 2017

The Wickham set has now returned to Llangollen following its very successful visit to the East Lancashire Railway and this has enabled us to make the next of our moves, with Class 108 vehicles 51907 and 54490 departing on the same transporters and being taken to the Midland Railway - Butterley where they will be used over the winter.

Class 108

Work continues on the major exam of the Class 104 power twin with the only item of note being discovered so far being a badly worn sliding dog in one of the final drives which will have to be changed at some point. One axle was fitted with new brake blocks and a number of oils and filters were changed.

Class 104

Inside Cravens Class 105 56456 the roof is being painted out......

Class 105

While work to secure one of the vestibule partitions and also to fit the timber that will hold the interior panelling was completed. We also completed the fitting of the seat supports.

Class 105

One of the jobs for this winter is the refurbishment of the centre saloon of Class 104 50528, the retrimmed seats for this being already in hand. This week a set of spare seat frames were loaded into a van and have been taken across for shotblasting and powder coating. Also moved around has been the sales stock which has been taken back to Llangollen now that the season is over.

Class 104

And finally although the main running season is over we have been providing the Midland Railway with a unit for their ever-expanding school visits, with the 141 doing the honours, complete with appropriate destination blind.

Class 141

13th November 2017

The highlight of this week has once again been the appearance of the Wickham unit at the East Lancashire Railway. The 109 was used for both days of the weekend on the second service train, appearing with an appropriate floral tribute for Remembrance Day.

Class 109

It has been busy at Llangollen with effort being put into two projects. The first has been the continuing restoration of Cravens Driving Trailer 56456. Timber supports are being fitted which will eventually hold the interior panelling and with this completed this has allowed the vestibule walls to be refitted. Also fitted have been come of the seat support brackets while another job completed has been the painting of the ceiling supports in first class.

Class 105

The routine exam of the Class 104 set is progressing with what seems like an endless number of things to check and top up.

Class 104

Progress has also been made on the bodywork of the Class 127 power car, as can be seen in the below photo.

Class 127

And finally there was a shunt around on Saturday to release an engine frame from one of our stores vans, this is being lent to colleagues from the Midland Railway Butterley so assist in the repair of the engines from their own class 127 set.

The Wickahm just about to head off into the sunset from Bury Bolton Street, en route back to base at Llangollen

Class 109

6th November 2017

The big news of the week has been the appearance of our Wickham unit at the East Lancashire Railway in connection with their Scenic Railcar Weekend and the annual meeting of the Railcar Association. Three days of successful running was carried out with the unit running in multiple with others of different types including the Cravens, making its first runs for over 20 years.

Class 109

The unit was very well received during the visit and carried huge numbers of people, with many runs being full to standing.

Class 109

Work has carried on at Butterley where more progress has been made with the new floor in the guard's van area of Gloucester power car 51118. The first layer of wood is now complete and just awaits screwing down. The toilet door handle and lock mechanism has been refitted to Class 141 vehicle 55533 after being missing for many years.

Class 100

Finally there was a small party for one of our drivers, Allen Chatwood, who celebrated his birthday this week by being out on loan to the East Lancs Railway. He was presented with a badge and a cake at Bury Station on Saturday morning.

Class Allen