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2 foot gauge in the U.K. Two friendly small railways in the Northwest


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Over the summer I took the opportunity to visit two preserved railways I've been meaning to get to for ages


First up was the Threlkeld Quarry mining museum in North Cumbria. Until recently it was still a working granite quarry but has morphed into a quirky little rail attraction. The line follows the steep curved line up the hill to the last working quarry face and is the stronghold of small but tough 0-4-0 saddle tanks.


Resident loco 'Sir Tom' is a Bagnall product of 1925



Another Bagnall product is 'Wendy' that left the factory in 1919




Bagnalls were a great believer in circular fireboxes. Easy to manufacture but not great steamers


Hudswell Clark 0-4-0ST No 19 built in 1914 was causing some headaches as its coupler heights differed from some of the rolling stock




In the top quarry 'Roger' was doing some demonstration shunting. A Kerr Stuart product of 1918 like the other locos it was immaculate and was probably never this shiny during its working life!




Now the other big thing, and I mean big, is an enormous collection of excavators.






I needed a lot more time to investigate these when  I havn't got the kids with me





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As the season got close to the end Brooklyn and I finally got to the West Lancashire Light railway at Hesketh Bank soutth of Preston. Originating in a former brickworks where some of the employees started rescuing track and rolling stock to start the embryonic railway




Brooklyn poses as 'Irish Mail' is a Hunslet 0-4-0ST product of 1903 is coupled up after running round the train


Sadly out of Boiler ticket was the superb 'Joffre' a genuine World war 1 trench loco reputed to have served behind the lines at the Battle of the Somme. Outshopped by Kerr Stuart in 1915 this 0-6-0T survived in industrial use before being repatriated back to the U.K






It is waiting to go into the shops when some of the locos currently under renovation get completed


Video at




more soon


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we got a private tour of the workshops. A treasure chest of narrow gauge motive power.


In the resoration bay was Orenstein and Koppel 'Montalbahn' nearing the end of a major restoration after its boiler was condemned




I mentioned Bagnall Circular fireboxes.  'Sybill' of 1906 has had a complete new firbox made with some superb rivetting to assemble it




My own personal favourite was Cheetal. A John Fowler 0-6-0WT exported in 1923 and repatriated back to Leeds from the Upper India sugar mills. It needs a lot of work and is at the back of the queue




There are a lot of diesel and petrol locos in the collection especially products of Motor Rail like this one





I'm taking the grandkids to Threlkeld for their Santa specials in December becuase they loved it last time





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So we did go to Threlkeld for the Santa Specials before Christmas. God it was cold. Icy winds and open sided carraiges don't really go together.


I shot a little bit of video on the Eos in July, just handheld and combined it with the December footage. At the end of the video is a selection of stills



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