Vol 01: Mainline 2001, Well Tank Weekend

Mainline 2001: Highlights include double-headed Halls and Panniers in the snow, Clan Line’s last trip before overhaul, and Duchess of Sutherland in Devon.

Well Tank Weekend: In April 2003, the Bodmin and Wenford Railway launched Beattie well tank no. 30587 into public service with a weekend of special trains. The weather was perfect, and the little engine is simply gorgeous!

YouTube clip: Well Tank with brake vans

Double-headed Halls at Fenny Compton

GWR Hall class 4-6-0s 4936 Kinlet Hall and 4965 Rood Ashton Hall:
at Fenny Compton in the snow, crossing the Aynho viaducts, and dashing through Radley station in the dark on 4th March

Mainline 2001

Foot & mouth disease meant that I didn’t stray very far from home in 2001. Even so, there was much to see. Two old friends, Clan Line and Blue Peter, bowed out, and a newcomer, Duchess of Sutherland, impressed mightily. Flying Scotsman took over VSOE Pullman workings, the Watercress Line’s Green Train went to Stratford upon Avon, and Nunney Castle went through the Severn Tunnel.

Details of the locos and locations, and some frame grabs, can be found here.

Approx. running time: 43 mins

Beattie well tank 30587 at Pendewy, B&WRWell Tank Weekend

On April 7th & 8th 2003, the National Railway Museum’s Beattie well-tank locomotive, no. 30587 was launched into public service on the Bodmin & Wenford Railway with a weekend of special trains. This programme covers all the activity: coaling and watering in the morning; passenger trains to Boscarne Junction and Bodmin Road (oops – Bodmin Parkway these days!) shared with pannier tank loco 4612; brake-van specials to the outskirts of Bodmin; shunting in the evening. It finishes with a ride on the evening “pasty special” to both Boscarne Junction and Bodmin Road, filmed from the veranda of a brake van and from the line-side, returning after dark.

See a short video clip (hosted on YouTube.com)

Historical Note

85 of Beattie’s 2-4-0WT well tanks were built by Beyer Peacock between 1863 and 1875. Most were scrapped at the end of the 19th century, but three were kept to work china clay trains between Wenford Bridge and Wadebridge. Their short wheelbase made them ideal for the line which had many tight curves. They were finally withdrawn in 1962, but two survived into preservation: no. 30587, featured in this programme, belongs to the National Railway Museum, and was restored at The Flour Mill locomotive workshops at Bream in the Forest of Dean during 2001 and 2002; 30585 is at the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre, Quainton Road, near Aylesbury, where restoration started in 1999, and was completed, with more help from The Flour Mill, in September 2006. More details of 30585 here.

Approx. running time: 42 mins

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