Category Archives: WDLR

More, more & more!

WHHR locos arriveThe steady stream of arrivals of exhibits for Tracks to the Trenches has continued.
Our friends in Skegness, the Lincolnshire Coast Light Railway Historic Vehicles Trust have sent a Class P Ration Wagon, which makes an interesting contrast with the similar wagon from Amberley which arrived a few weeks ago via the War and Peace show. The two Welsh Highland Heritage Railway locos – Motor Rail 264 and Baguley 760 arrived in some style. MR264 is, of course, the oldest Motor Rail in Great Britain.
Finally, and perhaps best of all, the long-awaited arrival of HC1238 – the Trust’s Very Own Steam loco – took place. This, along with the Joffre and Brigadelok – took part in a photo charter, and very good it all seemed to. Many, many Pixels were harmed during the day. Hudswell 1238 on a demo freight
Bogies galore!In other news, our genuine First world war wagon fleet continues to swell – with several large projects nearing completion. This is perhaps just as well, since the event opens on Friday!

 

Stop-Press – more locomotives and equipment head to the Trenches…..

We are pleased to confirm that 2 more locomotives have now been added to the line-up at Tracks to the Trenches.

Armoured MotorRail 435 of 1917 (WD number 2156) is coming to us from the Ffestiniog Railway/Mike Hart – this locomotive, exported to St Kitts after WW1, was re-built to its current form a few years ago and is normally resident on the Ffestiniog Railway. As a 1917 built Motor Rail, and a very low works number, we know that this machine saw active service in France during some of the main fighting.

The 2nd loco is somewhat different – A Kerr Stuart “Wren” (number 3114), built in Stoke-on-Trent in 1918 whilst Reginald Mitchell (designer of the Spitfire WW2 Aircraft) was serving his apprenticeship in the company. This is diminutive locomotive, representing the home-front, was built for the Ministry of Munitions and worked at an armaments dump in Driffield during the war. It has been restored and is normally based on the Vale of Rheidol railway. 3114 will also be accompanied to Apedale with a German Wasserwagen – these water tenders were often seen with the “Brigadelok” locomotives.

We are extremely grateful to both organisations for their help and support towards Tracks to the Trenches.

Nearly there…..

Time is certainly speeding up as we approach the start of the Tracks to the Trenches event!

The last weekend has again seen terriffic progress on-site and after much blood, sweat and tears (mostly the event organisers!) we are very pleased to announce that the Tracks now really do reach the trenches!!!!

Below are a couple of photos of the latest arrivals to site. More to come, watch this space….

Today (1st September) is the deadline for advance ordinary ticket sales – local schools are still able to group-book until 5th September (please contact us – we will do our best to help).

Advance tickets are still available direct from our on-site station shop on Saturday 6th September.

Brigadelok & Joffre locomotivesBritish War Office Class B & D wagons

Much progress!!

If you are part of the organising team, you would be thinking that the Tracks to the Trenches event is getting dangerously close!

As the event opening is getting ever closer, we are able to see much visible progress on all fronts. Below are just a small selection of photos of recent developments. New railway, new loco, re-activated loco…… all coming to an event near you very soon!! Advance purchase tickets are still available until 1st September. The Group booking deadline has also been extended until 1st September & local schools can book until 5th September (just into term-time!). Please see here.
Hudswell steams!Joffre on the move....Trench railway

War and Peace – a taster!

20hp & 40hp meet at War and Peace!The Moseley Railway Trust has – for the second year – been operating a temporary railway at the War & Peace Revival military (mega) show in Folkestone.
This year, Apedale resident Motor Rail 2197 was joined by Amberley’s MR1381 “open” 40hp Simplex- which was even repainted for the event. The gathering of these locos and the British Class D & P open wagons, plus a typical trench tramway water carrying wagon, provided some tantalising tasters for our own event in September!

 

Moseley Railway Trust announces a preservation first at September 2014 Tracks To The Trenches event – and On-Line ticketing is now available!

The Moseley Railway Trust is delighted to announce a preservation first at the Tracks to the Trenches Gala. For the first time, a re-union of each of the four different types of War Department Light Railway “Motor Rail” locomotives will take place.Shell damaged "Open" tractor

These pioneering little locomotives made a huge contribution to the Allied war effort during World War One. They were used to move supplies and men from marshalling yards right up to the front line.
The smallest of these was the 20HP tractor – on which the driver was fully exposed to both the elements and the effects of enemy fire. Surviving accounts tell of hair-raising exploits including trains disappearing into newly-created shell holes. There will be at least three, maybe more, 20HP tractors in operation at Tracks to the Trenches – one of these will be visiting Apedale from the Welsh Highland Heritage Railway.Motor Rail 20hp "Bent Frame" #264
The other three types were all 40HP, powered by a Dorman four-cylinder petrol engine. The three types were:-
40hp Open SimplexThe Open version. This had steel ends, and a simple roof supported on four poles. The Open version will be represented by loco No.1381, which will visit Tracks to the Trenches courtesy of the Amberley Museum and Heritage Centre in West Sussex.
Protected SimplexThe Protected version, which added steel doors and a much more substantial roof to the design. Apedale resident No.1369 will fly the flag for the Protected. This loco was restored a few years ago on the “Salvage Squad” TV programme, and recently spend a period on display in the Dutch railway museum in Utrecht.
40hp Armoured TractorFinally, the Armoured locos, which were intended for the most hazardous duties, and afforded the driver a reasonable degree of protection from small arms fire and the like. Loco 461 is a unique survivor of this design, which resembles a small tank on rails. This locomotive visits the event courtesy of the Greensand Railway Museum Trust and the Leighton Buzzard Light Railway.
Phil Robinson, MRT Chairman, said “This meeting of the Motor Rails will be a preservation first, and something which the event organising team and the various locomotive owners have worked very hard to arrange. This is yet another reason why Tracks To The Trenches should be firmly written into every railway enthusiast’s diary!”
On-line ticketing is now available for the event – tickets bought on-line avoid the gate queues and qualify for a free copy of the event guide. Tickets can also be bought for a night-time photoshoot on Friday 12th September, and for the very limited number of “Access All Areas” passes, giving unparalleled out-of-hours and behind the scenes access, ideal for the keen photographer.