Subject: RAILDATE 19th March 2010
From: "Howard Sprenger" <>
Date: 19/03/2010, 18:00
To: "Yahoo Raildate" <>

RAILDATE: the weekly newsletter of the Hursley Park Model Railway Society:



North Devon line memories:
(Spotter: Richard Buckby)

Photographs of the Ilfracombe branch:

The Colliers Way Path, Somerset based on the S&D and the Bristol-Frome
("North Somerset") line:

Disused Railways of East Sussex:

Tay Bridge - mind the gap!
(Spotter: Nick Wheat)

The Diesel Traction Group:
(Spotter: Neil Kearns)

The Class 142 Society:

Facebook page for the Pacer Preservation Society - they want to preserve
one of each of the class 142,143 and 144:

Facebook page for the Class 144 Appreciation Society:

Information and maps of the world's city transit systems:

1960 film of Wrexham:
(Spotter: Neil Kearns)

A passion for the rails (in California):

The ultimate car owners club...?


The holdings of Search Engine, the  National Railway Museum?s library and archive
centre, have been  added to Copac.  The library and archive collections at the
National Railway Museum form one of the largest resources of railway and transport
history in the world.  The Library Collection is international in scope and covers
all time periods, and holdings include over 20,000 books and 800 journal titles, as
well as official publications, technical records, and many photographs and posters.
The Copac library catalogue gives free access to the merged online catalogues of many
major University, Specialist, and National Libraries in the UK and Ireland, including
the British Library.  It is a free service accessible at:

The National Physical Laboratory open-day
(Spotter: Richard Buckby)


Former HPMRS member Doug Maughan recently wrote to Network Rail regarding the bridge
modifications at Winchester:

"Three bridges in Winchester are being modified in order to allow the passage of the
larger continental containers.  There is no mention of the tunnelss on this same
line, just North of Winchester.  Does this mean that the tunnels were built to a
larger loading gauge and therefore do not require to be modified?"

He received the following reply:

"Thank you for your communication. Some of the tunnels are at the required gauge
which is required to allow these containers through. We will be working on various
tunnels and bridges over the next year to bring them up to the required height and
width. Wherever possible we try to lower the tracks, which can be more easily done in
tunnels, unless there is a drainage problem. We are just about to start works on
Popham tunnel which is situated near Micheldever station and is the line from
Southampton to Basingstoke. I hope you find this information of some assistance."


The Derby and Derbyshire Rail Forum (DDRF) today welcomed the creation of a National
Skills Academy for Rail Engineering. The new academy, announced by the Department for
Business Innovation & Skills on Wednesday, will receive nearly 3m of Government
investment through the Skills Funding Agency and has the support of organisations
including Network Rail, Transport for London, the Rail Freight Group, the Rail
Industry Association and the Association of Train Operating Companies.

The Derby and Derbyshire Rail Forum worked with key local rail businesses to support
the successful submission for a National Skills Academy for Rail Engineering and has
also expressed an interest in hosting the Academy in our region.  Michelle Craven a
partner at law firm Nelsons and Vice Chairman of DDRF, which represents rail
businesses across the East Midlands, said: "We are delighted to hear that the green
light has been given for a National Skills Academy for Rail Engineering. It is clear
that the development of our skills base is imperative so that we can deliver the
significant future investment in the railways promised by all political parties.
The creation of the National Skills Academy for Rail Engineering is the result of
many months of hard work by people from across the rail industry. Gil Howarth, the
Programme Director in particular should be congratulated for his key role which has
lead to today's announcement."

Colin S Walton, Chairman, Bombardier Transportation UK on hearing about the National
Skills Academy announcement said "Bombardier fully supports a national skills academy
and fully understands the importance of a skilled railway industry,. During such
challenging times as these, it is vitally important for companies to retain a highly
skilled and motivated workforce and to also ensure that the people and skills are in
place for the future. Bombardier understands the importance of developing its
employees and has on-site learning centres formed and run in conjunction with the
unions CSEU and UNITE. Bombardier is also investing in the future and has established
Modern Apprenticeship and graduate programme, in addition Bombardier is working in
partnership with JCB in support of its Skills Academy." Once the detailed business
plan has been completed it is expected that the National Skills Academy for Rail
Engineering will start operation in 2011.

The Derby and Derbyshire Rail Forum website can be found at

(via Rupert Brennan Brown )



Severn Valley Steam, 6th March 2010:
(Spotter: Ted Millward)

The early days of the Bulleid Pacifics:

'New' East London Line in pictures:

No shortage of steam in Poland (although the GWR had to lend them one!)
(Spotter: Glynn Waite)

Railways in Rush Hour

The Great Indian Railways Part 1
(Spotter: Ralph Rawlinson)


Ralph Rawlinson's Railway Roundup

NW Road Transport Museum
An excellent collection of vehicles in an expensively-restored former bus
garage right in the middle of St Helens within sight of the rail and bus

A scheme to revamp Swansea station, developed by Network Rail, Arriva
Trains Wales, and the Welsh Assembly is out for tender.
It will run alongside work already underway to refurbish the city's bus station.

Construction of the new station at Gourock (reported Raildate July 2009)
including new road access and walkway to the ferry terminal started on 3rd
March 2010.

The second stage of the Hilla-Basra railway project linking the
al-Hashemiya district to al-Diwaniya city was opened on 28th February
2010.  Work on the third stage between al-Diwaniya and al-Samawa is to
start soon.  Hilla, the capital city of Babel province, lies 62 miles
south of Baghdad.

Sudan has reopened the railway linking the north and south for the first
time since decades of civil war ripped Africa's largest country apart.
The 277-mile line, originally built in the 1960s, reconnects the town of
Babanusa in central Sudan to Wau town deep in the war-ravaged south.
Trains will begin running once the ticketing system is organised. The
feasibility of extending the railway from Wau through three other southern
towns, including Juba and then to northern Uganda, is also to be examined.

New M.D. of Nigerian Railways talks about the challenges he faces.

Tanzania-Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) which is jointly owned by
Tanzania and Zambia, has been teetering on a knife-edge with worn out
tracks and wobbling wagons.  The firm, which operates the 1,860-long (km?)
railway line from Zambia's central town of Kapiri-Mposhi to the port city
of Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania, has been providing a vital passenger and
cargo service for both countries.

The state of Kerala at the SW corner of India is planning to build a new
373-mile line from the northern tip of the state to the southern point
with the distance covered in six hours.

In Mumbai, you cannot travel on top of a train any more.  Western Railways
has decided that it will not run a train if even one person is found
sitting on the roof.

Mary Valley Heritage Railway, Queensland.

Travel facts and percentages.


And finally... British Pathe Corner...

The Devon Belle 1947:



Useful index to HS2 route plans:

New train line will be 'devastating' to Aylesbury:

Failed to Stop (at Didcot):

Man charged over Ipswich train derailment:

East Coastway proposals will not be implemented:

Visits to East London Line tunnel at Rotherhithe:

London Underground job cuts:

West Midlands Metro extension:

Cable theft on Tyne & Wear Metro:

Glasgow Subway service changes:

Honeybourne line back on track?

Waterford-Rosslare could close:

Cambridge guided bus-way delayed again:

Crash at aircraft rescue exercise:

40 years of Aurigny airline flying to Southampton:

74th anniversary of first Spitfire flight:

Closure of Oakley Quarry Blaenau Ffestiniog:

Llangollen Canal (With Arriva Trains Wales at Chirk):

Spotters: Richard Buckby, Neil Kearns, Richard Maund, Reg Nerps


20/03/10    BBC2  1900-2235
           "Titanic"  James Cameron's 1997 epic

21/03/10    BBC1  1100-1200
           "Country Tracks"  Coast-to-coast across Devon

21/03/10    BBC2  1705-1755
           "Richard Hammond's Engineering Connections"  Troll gas platform

22/03/10    BBC Radio 4  1545-1600
           "On the Map"  The Map Makers - Ordnance Survey maps

22/03/10    Five  1930-2000
           "How Do They Do It"  World's biggest passenger airliner

23/03/10    BBC Radio 4  1545-1600
           "On the Map"  Mapping the Metropolis - the London A-Z

23/03/10    BBC2  2100-2200
           "Richard Hammond's Invisible Worlds" Out of sight

24/03/10    BBC Radio 4  1545-1600
           "On the Map"  Motoring Maps

24/03/10    BBC Radio 4  1545-1600
           "On the Map"  Social Mapping

25/03/10    C4  2000-2100
           "Country House Rescue"  Heath House, Staffordshire

26/03/10    BBC Radio 4  1545-1600
           "On the Map"  The lie of the land

26/03/10    Five  1930-2000
           "Building the Ultimate"  Submarine

26/03/10    BBC2  2100-2200
           "Indian Hill Railways"  The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway


For up-to-date information on many of the tours mentioned in Raildate (and
others) often with timings, see the Steam Tours pages at: and also

All details are correct to the best of my knowledge.  No responsibility is
taken for inaccuracies or changes.

20/03/10    Transport Collectors' Market
           Chiswick Town Hall

20/03/10-   Kent & East Sussex Railway: Branch Line Weekend

20/03/10-   West Somerset Railway: GWR 175 The Standard Era (1)

20/03/10-   Ecclesbourne Valley Railway: Railcar Gala Weekend

20/03/10-   East Midlands Model Railway Exhibition
21/03/10    The Harvey Hadden Sports Complex, Bilborough Park, Wigman Rd,
           Bilborough, Nottingham, NG8 4PB
           0930-1730 (Sat), 1000-1700 (Sun)

21/03/10    Talyllyn RPS Model Railway Exhibition
           Ferneham Hall, Fareham
           HPMRS member Derek Gillkerson will be attending with

24/03/10    100 Years of Flying in South Hampshire
           Lecture: The Flight of the Vulture 1924 by Vanessa Ascough
           Lecture Theatre, Civic Centre, Southampton, SO14 7LP
           (Use Art Gallery/Library entrance by fountain)
           Starts: 1900

25/03/10-   West Somerset Railway: GWR 175 The Standard Era (2)

27/03/10    Mid-Hants Railway Real Ale Train (RAT)

27/03/10-   The London Festival of Railway Modelling
28/03/10    Alexandra Palace
           1000-1700 (Sat), 1000-1630 (Sun)

27/03/10-   Bodmin & Wenford Railway: Spring Diesel Gala

27/03/10-   Wimbledon Charity Model Railway Exhibition
28/03/10    Merton Abbey Primary School, High Path, Merton, South
           Wimbledon, SW19 2JY
           1030-1700 (Sat), 1030-1600 (Sun)

27/03/10-   Nailsea & District MRC Model Railway Exhibition
28/03/10    Prince Hall & Community Centre, Clevedon, Bristol, BS21 7SZ
           1030-1730 (Sat), 1000-1600 (Sun)

02/04/10-   Furness MRC Model Railway & Transport Exhibition
04/04/10    Forum 28, Barrow-in-Furness, LA14 1HU
           1000-1700 all three days

02/04/10-   Didcot Railway Centre: GWR 175 (first of four special events)

02/04/10-   Ecclesbourne Valley Railway: Easter Open Days

02/04/10-   Swanage Railway: Easter Specials

02/04/10-   Mid-Hants Railway: Day Out with Thomas

03/04/10-   York Model Railway Show
05/04/10    Knavesmire Stand, York Racecourse
           1000-1700 each day

04/04/10    Romsey Signal Box Open Day
           Admission free (donations welcome!)
           ex-Romsey Infants School, Plaza Parade, Winchester Rd, Romsey
           Car park in old school grounds

04/04/10-   Twyford Waterworks Guided Tour Days
05/04/10    1100-1600

04/04/10-   Leawood Pump Steaming Weekend, Cromford Canal

04/04/10-   Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway: Easter Eggspress Specials

Cheers, Howard.
editor (at) (spam-proofed)

Previous issues of Raildate are at:
This page includes a master catalogue of items that have appeared in
previous editions of Raildate.

(C) Howard Sprenger and Hursley Park Model Railway Society 2010.

The external edition of Raildate may be freely distributed without
permission as long as no changes whatsoever are made to the original
document distributed by the Editor.  You can subscribe to the external
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