Not one but two WD Hunslet 4-6-0Ts made their debut at Tracks to the Trenches 3 this year! In addition to the War Department Locomotive Society running No. 303 for the first time, Accucraft UK Ltd (key supporters of the TTTT trilogy) will unveil their own 1:19 scale, live steam version of this locomotive during the event (likely to be 14th July)!
Hunslet produced 155 of these 2’ (60cm) gauge locos during WW1 for service behind the trenches in France, sharing their duties with Baldwins and Alcos procured for the same role. After the war they were scattered to the four winds, examples ended up in South America, Australia and Palestine as well as England and Scotland. In 2005 The War Office Locomotive Society repatriated No. 1215 (No. 303) from Australia and its restoration is now complete. A percentage of the retail profit from each UK sale will be donated to this locomotive, a greater percentage if ordered directly from Accucraft (UK) Ltd.
The model is internally gas fired and has slide valve cylinders. The boiler is fitted with a water gauge with blow down valve, lubricator with drain and pressure gauge. It will be available in either 32mm (gauge 0) or 45mm gauge (gauge 1), the latter as per the 3’ gauge locos supplied to Balfour Beatty in Scotland. The model will only be available in satin black (with no running number) and will carry a UK RRP of £1950.00. They will carry item numbers S19-29A (45mm gauge) and S19-29B (32mm gauge).
Photos to follow during the event, but for now – here is the real thing!
….and things are hotting up!
An unusual project is underway (we always need one before an event)….
…plus the toy box is getting rather full (but always room for another)!
We are pleased to confirm that this rather pretty new-build Decauville will be joining us at Apedale for Tracks to the Trenches.
…and we promise (especially if the owner’s reading this) to be more careful with Edgar than the French were. The photo, by the way, is a bit of mystery (but likely to be taken at a French Fort) – the background is full of interesting things like Crochat petrol-electrics, a Kerr Stuart “Joffre”, a pair of RL-type Orenstein diesels, and what looks like a Gmeinder.
The first (and sizeable) load of equipment arrived at Apedale today from our friends at the Lincolnshire Coast Light Railway – including the Ambulance Van, Class P Ration wagon and Bent-Frame Motor-Rail (yes – you can never have too many wizz-bangs!).
Sadly this is not the occasion where the 2 surviving ex-Notcon Ambulance vans meet though! The heavily dismantled MRT based survivor is still off site for a very thorough restoration!
Just don’t know what is going on, but we seem to have problems with Simplex locos falling into shell craters. Strangely, this seems to happen just before the Tracks to the Trenches events. It is clearly the fault of the loco drivers.
It’s been a bit manic down the Valley in the last few days!! Two of the stars of the Tracks to the Trenches event this weekend have joined us – the Baldwin from Leighton Buzzard and the Hesketh Bank Joffre.
Apparently our local coal merchant heard that we now had two Joffre-class locos on site and was seen reaching for the holiday brochure.
The horse people have been with us, rehearsing for the horse haulage demonstration using our newly-manufactured swingletree.
Finally, we had a slightly unexpected visit by what seemed to be the entire loco fleet of a Scotrtish peatworks; one loco was unloaded and the rest disappeared as quickly as they arrived!
So, 4 hours to go the the big event opening – see you there?