News from the Bluebell Railway 26 October 2014  
Recreating the golden age of steam for passengers of all ages, the Bluebell Railway has a large collection of vintage locomotives, carriages, and equipment and holds many special events throughout the year.
Floreat Vapor: Let Steam Flourish! The Bluebell eNewsletter is sponsored by the Bluebell Railway Preservation Society
In This Issue
DDD125: Cash For Cover Appeal
Christmas Afternoon Tea Returns
An Exciting Christmas in Store
Christmas Afternoon Tea Returns
Woods Publishes Lancing Record
All the Trimmings
Autumn Colours
Enjoy These Beautiful Photos
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Bluebell Railway October 2014
Videographer John Wiseman's band provides the music for this look at the Railway.

Bluebell Shop  


Bluebell Museum & Archive  


"Branch Line," with poet Sir John Betjeman, parts 1-3.

Locomotive Roster  


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Walkscene "Railway Children" Walks  


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Bluebell Railway
The Railway on 4 Oct., 2014, by John Stocker.
Bluebell Railway - 02-10-2014 - Braunton and 47237 Railtour
"Braunton" and No. 47237 Railtour, by Martin Lawrence.

Northern Extension Project Progress  


   Just Giving  


Keep Up the Pressure Appeal


Bluebell Railway Trust  




A day out at Bluebell Railway in the heart of Sussex, by Nick Goldring.
A day out at Bluebell Railway in the heart of Sussex, by Nick Goldring.


"Brazil" by the East Grinstead Concert Band, at Ypres, 11 Oct., 2014.
Carriage & Wagon Updates
& Societies

Bluebell on the Bluebell
"Bluebell" on the Bluebell, by John Harwood.
Station Facilities

Archivist Tony Hillman has chosen some London Transport photos from the John J. Smith collection, in honour of the recent use of the Chesham set for LT celebrations.
Archive photos can be
browsed and purchased here .

Baker Street, 1954
Return to East Grinstead - Bluebell Railway Highlights 2013
Bluebell Railway highlights from 2013 by "PreservedRailway".
An Overwhelming Response!

Says Funding Director Roger Kelly, "The Cash for Cover Appeal has got off to a stunning start with (as of 26 Oct., 2014)
£109,040 bein g raised in the first two weeks from 760 donations.
"There are just three weeks remaining to reach the target of £125,000 for matching funding and then move beyond that for the additional £100,000 to complete the roof over the carriages. If you have not made a donation, now is the time!

"We are all delighted at the response so far and say a big 'thank you' to everyone who has made a donation."
DDD125: Cash For Cover Appeal

Bluebell Railway Cash for Cover Appeal
Bluebell Railway Cash for Cover Appeal
Tired of seeing rows of carriages under canvas outside Horsted Keynes station?

The Cash For Cover Appeal is raising money to put a roof over four roads and the current maintenance road to house historic rolling stock.

The estimated cost to cover four roads and up to 20 carriages is £350,000 (£250,000 of this figure will pay for all supports and roof for 10 carriages).

If £125,000 in donations is achieved by 15 Nov., 2014, generous matching funding will enable us to cover 10 carriages and to commence work in 2015. If, by the time the work starts, an additional £100,000 has been raised, full cover for up to 20 carriages can be realised.
Thank you!

Some Testimonials from the Cash for Cover JustGiving Page

"A great project that deserves all of our support. Hopefully these priceless vehicles will now be safe from the elements."

"Great Work. Deserve all the help and praise you get."

"Looking forward to having some more vintage carriages behind the draw hook!"

"Undoubtedly one of the most deserving railway heritage projects of our time."

"A very worthy project. We need this facility. Very best of luck."

"Let's get the Brighton Directors Saloon in the dry, asap!"

"Good luck with the project for future generations."

"A different type of extension this year but just as important."

"Let's get these carriages out of the rain."
C&W Report: The Importance Covering the Coaches

Few of the coaches we're currently restoring are ones that have been previously stored on the Railway over the long term, the exception being Bulleid Composite No. 5768. That coach had been in Bluebell Railway service for 20 years and then stored beneath a tarpaulin for 15 years. A major area of work has been on the roof, where a substantial area had rotted away completely due to water ingress and which was unable to dry out under the tarpaulin.

With the completion of several existing projects over the next couple of years, the focus of the C&W Department is expected to shift away from pre-grouping non-corridor vehicles--we now have a good number available for service and the Southern Railway Maunsell and Bulleid stock has been neglected in recent years. We have a dozen Maunsell coaches, but only three in service. Only three of our nine Bulleid coaches are in service.

Overhead cover for Southern Railway stock will prolong the working lives of those carriages currently in service. For carriages awaiting overhaul, cover is essential if we are to build up complete operational rakes of each type. Without cover we will be treading water and never make progress.

For instance, in spite of having a volunteer team working exclusively on Bulleids for nearly two decades, we have dropped from a peak of six (in the later 1980s and early 1990s) to three operational examples. Those restored in the 1970s have succumbed to the ravages of the British climate; rain has rotted out window frames and corrosion between body and underframe has led to "rising floor syndrome".

To return to the overhaul of Bulleid No. 5768, the structural timber and steel cladding of all seven passenger compartments is now complete, with the last area being the south end. Here the last corner pillar requiring replacement is being made, and the floor is almost ready to go down in the toilet, after which the last internal partitions can go back in. Work on fitting out the compartments is ongoing, starting with the ceilings.

By Richard Salmon, BRPS Trustee
& C&W Volunteer

Well done to self-described cricket nut and eagle-eyed reader George Beagley, who used Wisden to correct the record concerning the 1896 Lord Sheffield's XI v Australia cricket match mentioned in the eNewsletter's previous issue. That match was in fact drawn and not won by the Aussies, as we reported (the editors are obviously too pessimistic!) It was a three-day match, with five-ball overs. Read George's summary here .  
An Exciting Christmas in Store

The Bluebell Railway operates many different Christmas Specials throughout December with something for everyone.

Specials include:
  • Santa Specials
  • Victorian Christmas Specials
  • NEW FOR 2014 Reindeer Specials
  • NEW FOR 2014 Fairy Godmother Specials from East Grinstead
  • Horsted Keynes Carol Service
  • Christmas Shopping Specials
  • Golden Arrow Pullman Dining
  • Festive Feast Christmas Meal
  • Christmas Afternoon Tea (see below)
Book early to avoid being disappointed! Find out more at

Christmas Afternoon Tea Returns

This year, the Railway will once again be running the popular Christmas-themed Afternoon Tea service in early December.

Treat yourself to a very special experience on board one of our beautifully decorated carriages in which you will be served a delicious Christmas Tea in warmth and comfort as you watch the winter evening closing in on the passing countryside.

Christmas Afternoon Tea will run on 3 and 4 Dec., 2014, departing Sheffield Park at 3 p.m. Priced at £43 per person, it is the ideal way to start the countdown to Christmas. Book now by phoning 01825 720800. More information can be found here .

DDD125 donors also have been signing up for the eNewsletter in droves. eNews now reaches 5,752 readers! Thank you for your support!
Woods Publishes Lancing Record

Glen Woods has published Lancing 1956 , a record of vehicles out-shopped from Lancing Carriage and Wagon Works from November 1955 to December 1956, including loco-hauled and EMU overhauls, new wagon builds, and conversions.

Says Glen, "The information comes from the Lancing 'Out' register, which is owned by the Bluebell Railway Museum Archive, and the majority of the book consists of unpublished material. The register commences on 28 Nov., 1955 and continues until 1965, so there is potential for further volumes.

"The majority of the Bluebell Railway-owned vehicles appear in the register, and I have passed on to Richard Salmon and Dave Clark the information collated thus far. Nineteen fifty-six was a particularly interesting year because of the abolition of Third Class and the return to green for loco-hauled stock."
The 193-page book is bound in an A4 landscape format and is available from Amazon (please consider using Easyfundraising when purchasing online) or from St Petroc InfoPublishing, PO Box 59, Wadebridge, Cornwall PL27 9BP (cheque for £19.99 plus £3.20 p&p).
"Any proceeds creditable to myself from the sale of this book will be donated directly to the Bluebell Railway Museum Research and Records Centre," adds Glen.

All the Trimmings

Enjoy a traditional Sunday carvery--including locally sourced meats and all the trimmings--in the Railway's relaxing, friendly restaurant, located in the Birch Grove Suite at Sheffield Park Station. Special, discounted train travel plus a one or two course meal is available.

Booking is essential. You can book a table between noon and 2:30 p.m. by contacting the Customer Service Team at 01825 720800, or call into the Travel Centre at East Grinstead Station or the Sales and Information Office at Sheffield Park Station.

The Carvery is available most Sundays; upcoming dates are 2, 9, 23, and 30 Nov., 2014. For more information, click here .

Fans of American railroads might enjoy some "sneak peak" video (plus photos and more) from the TV show Railroad Alaska . I guess you could say this is "extreme railroading!"
Museum Archive Photo eNewsletter Special Offer:
If you order before the end of November 2014, you will receive a voucher with your prints offering a discount of up to 20% off your next order. To get the voucher, write "eNewsletter" on the bottom of your order form. The discount voucher can only be used for 6" x 4" prints. Vouchers are valid until end of April 2015. Order your prints now!    
Autumn Colours
Photo by "hehaden": "Every October I visit Sheffield Park gardens to enjoy the wonderful colours of Autumn and every year I find myself standing on the same spot." Available via creative commons.

For some more autumn photos, read this " Little Lewes " blog.

Enjoy These Beautiful Photos of the Railway

Photos from Brian Lacey from 18 Oct., showing P Class No. 323, E4 No. B473, and U Class No. 1638 (taking on water, above).

Some lovely photos of Sheffield Park in autumn, by Keith Duke, taken on 10 Oct.

Steve Guess's gallery from 11 Oct.

Martin Lawrence's October gallery .

John Sandys' set from 20 Oct. (also below ): "A lovely sunny and surprisingly warm day today, with passengers visiting the Railway and also Sheffield Park Gardens, both just coming into lovely Autumn colours."

Thank you for your ongoing support of our ever-growing Railway. Don't forget to share this eNewsletter with friends, colleagues, and family, through social media and email. See you trackside in the heart of beautiful Sussex!

John Walls
eNewsletter Editor-in-Chief, Bluebell Railway Preservation Society