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The Springfield Agricultural Railway
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2010 Updates and News

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Winter 2010:  

Winter is always the busiest time for the railway, with the horses coming into the stables overnight, so from the start of November onwards the skips are in use daily. It usually requires at least one trip with 2 or 3 skips every weekend for tipping. Assistance has been needed with moving hay and feed as well. Things have been progressing on the loco and rolling stock front over the last few months also.

 

Date: November 2010

Date: November 2010

Date: October 2010

When the skips have been waiting to be tipped for several days, then the heat of the slowly fermenting manure is quite impressive, especially on a chilly day.

When feed and hay is delivered, it is now left in the driveway for the railway to move. In the winter the farm track to the fields can become too muddy for the delivey lorry, so it's another little job for the locos.

The Alan Keef loco went for several test runs on the line while it was here, but in the end the final decision was that it was not right for the railway.

 

Date: January 2011

Date: January 2011

Date: January 2011

In January representatives from the Leemspoor Narrow Gauge Museum in the Netherlands arrived with a Spoorijzer loco, which was offloaded with the help of the W&R battery loco.

For the return trip back to the Netherlands the Alan Keef loco was loaded up, not without a couple of anxious moments as it was winched up the ramp. It was then secured for the journey back.

After another tree was partly brought down by high winds last year, it has been slowly dismembered by chainsaw and brought back on the railway.


 
Summer 2010:  

A busy summer with a number of major activities, with changes on the loco front, and a lot of work carried out to lay a branch into the workshop (garage).

 

Date: June 2010

Date: August 2010

Date: August 2010

In June the Alan Keef loco, No.9, was delivered and was offloaded using a hi-ab crane.

A point for the branch to the workshops was finally obtained as a kit of parts in August, and so the length of track was removed as the first step to bedding the point in.

By the end of September the point had been installed and the last few lengths of track laid to connect up the workshop.

 

Date: September 2010

Date: September 2010

Date: September 2010

The battery loco and a couple of flats were used to pull No.10 out of the workshop. A couple of lengths of connecting rail at a sharp gradient made for some interesting moments as it came down the slope.

So by the end of September No.10 was taken out for the first run to the end of the line.

No.12 and No.10 were reunited again after 3 years apart. The difference between these two working locos is clear to see.


 
Spring 2010  

Finally after dumping all the horse manure onto the muck heap for over 2 years, it was finally time to dig out the oldest part this spring. With a big effort made to finish No.10, to build a lean-to for the loco shed to incease the undercover space, plus take a spur from the garage to the loco shed to allow stock to move in and out, it has been a busy time.

 

Date: March 2010

Date: March 2010

Date: May 2010

The driveway in front of the garage was partly dug up to bed in rails to reach the garage. A sharp 90 degree bend was needed to turn into the edge of the garden.

By March the engine cover of No.10 was all finished and was resting on a skip frame waiting to be reunited with the rest of the loco.

Finally on the 30th May No.10 rolled down the bridge rail onto the newly laid track in the driveway. This was the first time outside the garage since Sept 2007.

 

Date: May 2010

Date: May 2010

Date: May 2010

Although the engine cover was not very heavy it was too much for just a couple of people to lift up by hand. Fortunately. an overhanging tree provided a point to secure a winch, and the engine cover was winched up high enough for the loco to to be gently shunted underneath.

The finished result, once the engine cover was all bolted down. There was a few minor jobs still to do, including the attachment of the back coupling block, but it finally looks like a decent loco again.

Another view on the same day.

 

Date: April 2010

Date: April 2010

Date: April 2010

In early April, three medium sized skips were obtained in good condition, originally from Germany, and this was just in time, as they were all pressed into use the next weekend.

With No.12 in charge, the three skips were shunted out to the muck heap to start the process of digging out the old manure, now to be excellent compost for the spring.

All that was left to do was to fill the skips. In total about 8 skips of manure was dug out over a period of 3 weekends.

 

Date: April 2010

Date: April 2010

Date: April 2010

All ready for the return run, with 3 skips loaded up. A bit of sand was required on the rails to get out of the tipping area because of the slight incline and the slippery manure on the tracks.

A few days later, there was a steady succession of wheelbarrows as the neighbours filled up with many loads, for hungary gardens coming out of hibernation after a very long winter.

The battery loco was in use this time to move the skips in and out of the siding to a convenient point for unloading.


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Steve Thomason 2013
Upgraded site relaunched 1st January 2004

Introduction | Construction | Operation | Locos | Updates | Contact
Industrial Narrow Gauge Railways