Life and Times – No.32

Loco no.32 is a Lister RM2X, number 52885 of 1962; this is one of the very late Listers, which were branded as Lister Blackstones, and had an improved bodywork. The bar for “improved” is quite low – most earlier locos had (at best) a roof on four corner posts. No.32 was delivered new to George […]

Life and Times – No.78 City of Gloucester

This is a fairly late-build loco to use a petrol engine – the use of the Dorman diesel was more common by this time. It suffered an identity crisis from the word go; the records tell us that it was actually built as loco no.5046, but then a swap took place between the identities of […]

Life and Times – No.7 “The Wade”

One of the unsung heroes of the MRT fleet – we present fleet no.7, Motor Rail 8663 of 1941 “The Wade”. The loco was ordered by the War Office and was ex-works from Bedford on 5 September 1941. It appears that it was stored by the War Office until the 1970s, when it was sold […]

Life and Times – No.50 The Deutz

Built by Deutz at their works near Cologne in Germany, No.50 was delivered new to the West Kent Main Drainage Board, Long Reach Sewage Works, Dartford, on 23 May 1931. This locomotive represents the very earliest applications of diesel engines to rail transport. It is fitted with a horizontal single cylinder diesel engine and is […]

Life and Times – No.71, Clayton 5843

Carrying on the Woodhead theme, we present fleet no.71 – Clayton 5843 of 1971. No. 71 was new to the National Grid Woodhead Tunnel, doubtless purchased in the wake of the Hudson debacle described last week. The main line railway tunnel at Woodhead, in the Pennines between Manchester and Sheffield, was one of the longest […]

Life and Times – the Hudson Mini Locos

Two for the price of one this week – the life and times of the Hudson MiniLocos.  A long-standing agreement between Hudson and the Hunslet Engine Company mean that any sales made by Hudson of small narrow gauge diesels would be fulfilled by one of the chain-drive Hudson-Hunslet locos. By the late 1960s, this design […]

Life & Times – No.61, Motor Rail 1320

With Lockdown3 now in full swing, there isn’t much to report from the Apedale site. So, to entertain both regular readers, we thought we would produce a few features looking at the life and times of some of our exhibits. The first one is fleet no.61, Motor Rail 1320 of 1918. This loco was built […]

Christmas – almost but not quite cancelled

Sadly, we had to cancel all of our Santa Special trains due to the pandemic. This left us with a rather large pile of presents – mainly wrapped chocolate selection boxes. We have chosen to donate these to others in the community less fortunate; we have split the donation between the Salvation Army and the […]

Santa 2020 – CANCELLED

We are really sorry to have to disappoint you so close to Christmas, but we have had to cancel all of the Santa Special trains for this year. This is as a result of our area of Staffordshire being placed into Tier 3 for COVID safety measures. We have made this very difficult decision to […]

Site progress

Despite Lockdown2, some work has been progressing on the Apedale site; sadly, the site is currently closed for (almost) all volunteering activities, but the contractors working on two projects have made good progress.A Water Tower is being created at the south end of the line. This should add visual interest, and make servicing steam locos […]