Good for its age

A busy weekend in the sun-kissed hinterlands of the Apedale Valley saw another birthday party take advantage of our remarkably affordable charter and group booking rates. Larry, a remarkably sprightly 80 year, seemed to have a whale of a time – and showed quite a deft touch on Stanhope’s regulator when given the chance. He claimed not have done it before; perhaps fortunately, we don’t have a polygraph in the stores. He promised to be back for his 90th – and I wouldn’t put money against a couple more after that. Also looking pretty good for its age is the War Department Class D bogie wagon. Now replete with all its lettering, it does look very much the part. Quite why all that much information is necessary on a simple wagon rather eludes me, but that’s military logic for you.
Not looking quite so good is the 1930 Hudswell Clarke diesel. That said, for an 83 year old, it put a real fine old fight with its cab – angle grinders, gas axes, bars, big hammers all had major outings. It may have been easier, in hindsight, to have left the cab where it was and lowered the loco. Still, this time next year – we’ll see who’s the best looking octogenarian on site – won’t we? Slightly closer in time is next weekend – 15 & 16 June – which is the Mining Gala organised by our colleagues at the Heritage Centre – see here. We’re hoping to be running a train service resembling the Circle Line at 5pm – so both the Joffre and Stanhope will be turned, and every passenger coach we own. We will also be allowing public access to the main Aurora North storage sheds. Should be fun. Contact us here.