NEWS UPDATE 1st April 2013
Before starting can we apologise for the delay in keeping you up to date with all that is happening with Clan Line.
Once we have caught up with the updates we will be publishing the News Update once a month, more soon on that.
The last trip before Christmas around the Surrey Hills went well with everyone in good spirits. The trip ran basically to time with 35028 running well.
The first trip in 2013 was on Friday the 18th of January. For the loco to be ready the normal railtour preparation tasks were completed in the weekends leading up to the tour.
Alan French RO Report – OE Surrey Hills 18th January 2013
Despite the snow the train was assembled in Battersea Yard and once cleared made its way to Platform 2 Victoria. A few of the passengers did venture out into the light snow to take some photographs but all were on board for a right time departure at 12.28. Once over the Grosvenor Bridge we came to a stop where it was established via the GSM-R that there were point problems at Clapham Junc so we would wait until the road was clear. Once under way we enjoyed a good run through Longhedge and up the climb to Clapham Junc passing through Platform 6. We enjoyed good running and at Virginia Water became the first train to travel down through Addlestone heading for our customary pathing stop at Addlestone Junc. Once again with a green light we joined the Southwest main line and continued on through Woking and onto Guildford where a pathing stop was taken until the DMU to Redhill had departed. Once given the road we made our way to Shalford for the usual servicing stop.
It is at this point I would like to offer thanks to Tim James who had, because of the inclement weather, been waiting for us at Shalford since 09.30.
Servicing complete we then enjoyed a superb climb up the bank, with only one slip, passing Gomshall to time and then ran well until Redhill where ahead of time we were given the road and continued north to East Croydon where we made a pathing stop. Once under way more good running continued to Clapham Junc and we came to a stand for our scheduled pathing stop at Pouparts Junc. From here it became a little more interesting as having been given the road we made our way round to Stewarts Lane and came to a stop at the signal prior to the junction which showed a single yellow and a feather. Here further calls were made to the panel as it has been agreed that unless a green is given the train will stop at that location. I received a call in the support coach advising that the panel had asked us to move up to the signal on the bank to Grosvenor Bridge as the rear of our train would delay a freight movement. We came to a dead stand on the bank and learnt that there was a further points failure ahead and we could not move any further. Principally we lost 30minutes here and when we were finally given the road the trailing 67 was asked to assist up the bank. We finally arrived at Victoria 31 minutes late.
It would seem that the passengers had enjoyed their trip through the wintery wonderland and several stopped by as they left.
As is normal we put the stock to bed before making the turn and returning to the Lane. We did not carry out a blowdown as there was an up and coming boiler washout before our next trip out.
Throughout the 3 days the support crew worked together hard and well as a team, with much good humour.
My thanks to everyone who helped before the trip so reducing the amount of work to be done and also my thanks to the support crew who made my life easier and did a great job.
Weekend 26 & 27th January 2013
Over the weekend a boiler washout was carried out with loco being unboxed on the Saturday morning. During the afternoon the boiler had high pressure water forced in to through the washout plug holes. The sludge that builds up over a number of steamings is then flushed out through the mud holes until the water runs clean.
On Sunday morning the loco was boxed back up (re-fitting of the washout plugs, mud holes and smokebox spark arresters) and then late afternoon a warming fire was put in.
Monday the 28th a steam test was carried out to check for any leaking washout plugs. All was found to be satisfactory with an efficient boiler washout having been carried out.
Our next trip was an O.E Surrey Hills on the 9th of Feb. Hopefully the weather would be a little warmer for the support crew compared to the 18th of January trip!