Dashing for Cover: The Cash for Cover "Double Donations Dash"

Many of you will be familiar with the story of the new carriage shed at Horsted Keynes, but it is worth re-telling.

For many years, a large number of the carriages awaiting restoration have been stored on part of the former Ardingly branch.  Many of these carriages are unique and therefore have been retained for future long-term restoration. Most of the coaches are covered in protective sheeting, but this is regarded only as slowing down the deterioration process.

Almost exactly four years ago, it was decided that additional storage facilities were a priority to house up to 25 of these carriages in dry conditions whilst awaiting their turn in the restoration queue.

The new carriage shed has four storage roads to accommodate those carriages and, in addition there will be an annex, referred to as the Heritage Skills Centre, to house the trim shop and also to provide training areas so that essential skills can be passed on to future employees/volunteers.

Also four years ago, a major funding campaign was launched to raise money to finance the initial groundwork, the steel frames of the building, and its roof. This phase of the work is now complete, despite significant issues on the embankment down to the adjoining stream. Work in this area--known affectionately as "Dingley Dell"--has stabilised the embankment, making it possible to prepare for track-laying to access the shed.

Earlier this year the first carriages were moved into the shed on the first two roads. The remaining two roads are almost ready for completion, but work on the floor and more has to be completed first.
The next stages of the work are to clad the external walls and to start the internal fit-out. Money permitting, some of the work on fitting out the Heritage Skills Centre will also be undertaken in the next phase.

The Railway has therefore launched a new campaign in an effort to raise money for the next phase of work.

This Cash for Cover "Double Donations Dash"--which runs through to midnight on 30 Nov., 2018--aims to raise £250,000: £100,000 from donors, which will be matched pound-for-pound up to £100,000 thanks to the generosity of a benefactor. Both types of donations will be eligible for Gift Aid, and this could potentially raise the total by a further £50,000.

Can you help us invest in the future of our carriage fleet? If you can, payments can be made in two ways ...

Please give directly online at this webpage , or by cheque, including this Gift Aid form . Post cheques to "Cash for Cover Double Donations Dash", Bluebell Railway Trust, Sheffield Park Station, East Sussex TN22 3QL.

Thank you, as always, for your support!

By Trevor Swainson, Funding Governor, Bluebell Railway Trust

Southern Railway Brake Composite No. 6575 

Built at Eastleigh works in 1929 as one of the first "high-window" design of Maunsell corridor stock. The higher windows on the corridor side enabled passengers standing, as nothing changes, to more comfortably look out of the window and to observe the name of stations.

This carriage was one of the Railway's very first two, arriving in May 1960. It returned to service in 1981 after a comprehensive overhaul of the passenger area, but a leaking roof and structural problems in the brake van area led to its withdrawal in 2000. It has been under storage under tarpaulins ever since. Now stored in the new carriage shed, it would be a fairly straightforward overhaul for it to join the Maunsell set.

London & South Western Railway No. 494

Built in 1911 for the principal express trains out of Waterloo station, No. 494 came to the Railway as a stripped shell in 1975, having seen a decade's service as a camping coach and then another decade in departmental service. It has never run on the Railway. This was a Corridor Third and is a rare survivor of the most numerous carriage type in the South. Its restoration to running order is entirely feasible, and it is an important vehicle to conserve.
C&W Update by the Numbers: 54, 328, 949, 1482, 4754, & 5768

Bulleid Corridor Composite No. 5768 has moved into the paint shop for the final coats of gloss and varnish to be applied, together with the sign writing. The carriage is all but complete internally.

The space where it has been sitting was taken by another Bulleid Open Third, No. 1482, which has been having an intermediate overhaul with attention being given to sidelights on the east side, some of which have been removed and resealed, and the interior.

The seats are in the process of being retrimmed, and this work will resume after the carriage has been used for the Giants of Steam weekend. A new battery box is also being constructed.

Work on Pullman Car 54 continues at a steady pace. At the moment the timbers for the new ends are awaited. Two new gusset plates have been drilled ready to fit to both the north and south ends of the underframe, and trimming work on the newly constructed seats is progressing well.

The consultation with A. Dunn and Son over the restoration of the marquetry panels has revealed a problem: the company does not have a way of lifting the marquetry and veneer off the old backing boards for it to be glued to new ones. The suggestion was that new panels would be produced, reusing the old marquetry when possible. We were not happy with this proposition as we want to save as much of the original interior as possible, so an experimental panel has been tackled in-house by contracted woodworker Kuristo Demans (see photo above).

Kuristo has carefully removed the layers of the old backing board with a router and then glued the panel front on to a new birch ply board. The backing board showed signs of woodworm, so the remaining thin layer of backing panel was treated to prevent further attack. Kuristo then repaired the veneer and completed the job by applying French polish to give a beautifully restored panel. As a result, the option of marquetry panel repair and restoration in-house is being considered.

Lastly, BR Mk1 Second Open No. 4754 progresses; the bottom photograph shows the sidelights on the east side being prepared for removal by Chris Partridge. Stroudley Brake Third No. 949 is having its doors fitted; the double doors on the east side have had to be newly constructed. And the compartments of Stroudley 5 Compartment Third No. 328 are being painted and prepared for scumbling, to make best use of available light before the roof boards are fitted. These new boards are being stored under 949 for acclimatisation.

By Sheina Foulkes, Supervisor, Carriage & Wagon Department

Here Comes a Giant!

Julian Clark offers these photos of No. 60009 "Union of South Africa" arriving at, and steaming on, the Railway on 10 Oct., 2018, for the "Giants of Steam" gala. See John Sandys' gallery below for more photos of the A4 ...

PLUS ...

"Union of South Africa" with a "Flying Scotsman" headboard, by Mike Hopps.

The A4 pulling the 3:30 p.m. at Horsted House, by Julian Clark.


"Giants of Steam" on 12 Oct., 2018, by "SatNavDan".

"JR Railway Videos": "In preparation for the Bluebell Railway's 'Giants of Steam' gala, LNER Gresley A4 No. 60009 "Union of South Africa" ran tender first as 5Z94 Southall-to-East Grinstead on the morning 10 Oct., 2018.  The move is captured slowly crossing Riddlesdown Viaduct."

Camelot Society's CCT Van Update: Bumps and Bars
The planks for the upper part of the CCT Van's floor have all been cut to size and screwed down, and because this involved nearly 500 screws, this task represented much hard work done by the team. The four metal checker plates (one for each set of side doors) have been recessed into the floor and fitted, and the floor is now complete.
On the roof the torpedo vents have been fitted and the roof canvas has received its first coats of paint.
Meanwhile, door furniture (handles, locking bar, door bumps, etc.) has been fitted to both pairs of west side doors by Steve Cubitt and Alex Morley. The northwest pair have subsequently had the furniture removed, and the doors have been taken back down for painting which is being done in the north end of the van. This work has been separated from the south end where we're doing wood work by a "curtain".
Chris Broadbridge has completed the final pair of side doors which now await fitting. Morever, a start has been made on fitting the bottom plank to the sides. This fitting is made tricky by the bar that runs down the inside of the van that contains holes allowing a fixing bar to be fitted from side-to-side to prevent a vehicle inside from moving. These bars are fixed through the bottom side plank, and where there is a metal plate on the outside, through that as well.

The bars also happen to be heavy. We estimate that the heaviest weighs approximately 50 kg (or about 1 cwt for those who prefer Imperial). Once these bars have all been fitted and the various mouldings that go around the inside of this are sorted out, we can turn our attention to ordering the ply for the sides.

Richard Salmon has already made the fillet that fits between the plank and the floor, but there are also two additional mouldings that fit above and below the metal bar that still have to be machined up.
Many thanks to all who are working on this project, as always it is impossible to mention everyone by name.
By David Rhydderch


Steamworks! Family Festival Set for 20-21 Oct., 2018

The Railway's new innovative, interactive experience will open on 20 Oct., 2018, at Sheffield Park station! Situated in the locomotive shed, SteamWorks! uses touchscreen displays, colourful information boards, and interactives to bring the science and mechanics of steam to life.

Learn more here.

Oh Captain, My Captain

Mike Anton describes his photos [top row and bottom left] as "some rather wet shots of 'Baxter' working hard" up Freshfield Bank and at East Grinstead. Mike reports that Ben Dingley and Matt Holloway were crewing this special train, while BRPS Chairman Graham Aitken was guard. This was the Captain's final steaming on the Railway before an expired boiler certificate. She will enter the Steamworks! exhibition pending an overhaul.

Tim Gray's quite wonderful photo shows members of the Locomotive Department and the workshop staff assembled on "Captain Baxter's" footplate, in advance working her last train.


Nick Dearden's video features "Captain Baxter's" last journey on the 6 Oct., 2018, pulling the Observation Car: "Fletcher Jennings 0-4-0 No. 3 'Captain Baxter', built in 1877 and from the Dorking Greystone Limeworks, has now been retired, following the end of its boiler certificate. Filmed at Horsted Keynes arriving and departing on its last up journey on a rainy dull evening. Standard 5 4-6-0 No. 73082 "Camelot" can just be seen and heard leaving for Sheffield Park from an adjacent platform."

Mike Anton: "A special late afternoon trip to East Grinstead with the LNWR No. 1503 Observation Car was organised [for 'Captain Baxter'] but unfortunately the weather forecast was correct and the trip was rather wet and dark." [Still, the weather made for an atmospheric journey!-The Eds.]

The Railway has added an intermediate Loco Driving & Firing Experience: Footplate Extra , on 3 Nov 2018. This is a rare and exciting opportunity to experience first-hand firing and driving of one the Railway's fleet of historic steam engines!
Getting a Lift

Sam Bee took this photo of No. 928 being lifted with the loco works overhead cranes on 3 Oct., 2018.

Can You Help? Cataloguing Volunteers Sought

 BR C14 class No. 30589 
at Eastleigh, scanned and recorded by volunteer Cliff Swift.

The Bluebell Railway Museum Photographic Archive Section is looking for people to help catalogue its photographic collection. The constantly expanding archive already contains thousands of items which are destined for the new Records and Research Centre.

A group of volunteers has been engaged in the cataloguing process for the past six years and now needs to expand to meet growing demand. We would welcome the participation of Bluebell Railway members with an interest in the railways of southern England and not currently actively involved in the Railway.

People with experience in the scanning of photographic prints and negatives would be particularly useful as would familiarity with Microsoft Excel and Access and Adobe Photoshop software. Monthly meetings are held at our storage base in Horsham, where the work is coordinated. In advance of the new Sheffield Park facilities being available, all the practical work is done in members' homes to suit their personal schedules.

Members of the group devote significant amounts of time. Anyone with sufficient time and interest coupled with a methodical mind will find the work absorbing. If you are attracted by the prospect of consolidating and continuing the progress, please email

By Chris Wilson
A Spooktacular Halloween at the Railway

Boo! The Railway is getting into the spirit of Halloween this year with two so-good-they're-ghastly events during the witching season ...

Halloween Scream Train

Calling all children: Are you brave enough to join us for a spooktacular train ride to discover the spooky side of the Railway at Horsted Keynes Station? Meet Brigid the Witch and her hapless sidekick Brian the Wizard who will be your guides to fiendish fun and games, tricks, treats, and more.

Come in costume and join in the ghostly goings-on: raid the dressing up box, put on the face paint, and come as your favourite hallowe'en character! Frightening fun for all the family!

Learn more here.

Dystopia Station

This Halloween experience--for 14 years and older--takes you to Dystopia station, an eerie place plagued with a frightening dystopia epidemic. A perfectly preserved attraction in the middle of nowhere: visit, if you dare ...

Book online here.

Some exciting late autumn/early winter events for your calendar:
Exmoor Steam

A picturesque photo of "Camelot" departing Minehead on the 9:55 a.m. Minehead-to-Norton Fitzwarren service on 30 Sept., 2018, by Paul Cousins.

Roger Cruse's photo shows "Camelot" at West Somerset Railway, departing from Bishops Lydeard, near Pixfords Farm, on the evening of 29 Sept., 2018.

Popular "Behind the Scenes" C&W Tours Extended Through October
The Behind the Scenes tours of the Carriage & Wagon Department every Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. have proven to be a hit with our visitors.

Initially, we were attracting about 25 people each week, but some of the tours during the summer have attracted upwards of 60 people, which has required them to be split into two groups with a second--and on at least one occasion a third--tour guide. We estimate that about 1,000 people have taken the tour.
These tours seem to attract a much greater percentage of "general public" than the tours we normally do on special days that are much more enthusiast-dominated. The feedback from participants has been very positive, with several tour guides receiving standing ovations at the end. Donations in the collecting box towards the Maunsell Restaurant Car are also up on last year.
As they have proved so popular, we are continuing the tours through October (originally they were to finish at the end of September). So if you're curious as to what goes on in the depths of the C&W works, you still have a couple of Saturdays to get down to Horsted at 2 p.m. for a peek behind the curtain at what we do. We are hoping to repeat the tours next year, probably from Easter to the end of September.
Well done all, and thanks to all those who have acted as tour guides.
By David Rhydderch

From the Archive
Tony Hillman: "For those missing some Southern Giants this weekend, take a look at
these, all from the Joe Kent collection!"
No. 35018 "British India Line" working the down "Devon Belle" at Clapham Junction on 21 July, 1951.

Better Know a Heritage Railway: York-Durham

The York-Durham Heritage Railway (YDHR) winds through the beautiful Oak Ridges Moraine between Uxbridge and Stouffville in Ontario, Canada.

A nonprofit organization operated by volunteers, the YDHR is a descendent of an early narrow gauge rail company developed in the 1860s by William Gooderham, a well-known distiller from Toronto, to carry grain to his distillery, lumber for export, and cordwood for resale. The line is also associated with the old Toronto and Nipissing Railway --the first public narrow-gauge railway in North America, chartered in 1868--as well as the Midland Railway, and later the Grand Trunk Railway.

In 1920, the now-standard gauge line became part of the Canadian National Railway. During the 1980s and 1990s, northern sections of the line were decommissioned, but in 1996 the section between Uxbridge and Stouffville re-opened as a heritage service. South of Stouffville, a regular commuter service continues to this day on the original route.
Photo Gallery  
This photo from Brian Lacey, taken on 2 Oct., 2018, shows the S15 on the first day of this year's Autumn Tints.
John Sandys (11 Oct., 2018): "A sunny but blustery day greeted 'Camelot' as it headed the Autumn Tints/Souper Steam Special, also a couple of shots of our special visiting loco, the A4 'Union of South Africa' glinting in the sunshine at the Loco Yard. Lots of shunting by the 09 in preparation for the 'Giants of Steam.'"

Thank you for reading our eNewsletter. It's because of you-- our members, volunteers, visitors, and supporters --that the Railway continues its success. Please continue to support us by passing this issue onto your friends, family, and/or colleagues by , or encourage others to sign up for the twice-monthly eNewsletter at this link .

If you ever have a question, comment, or contribution, don't hesitate to get in touch with me at 

John Walls
Editor-in-Chief, eNewsletter
Bluebell Railway


Bluebell Railway Privacy Policy


A Standard 5MT on the mainline! No. 73082 "Camelot" rolls through Clapham Junction on 1 Oct., 2018, on her way home, by "TheModster".


Eagle-eyed readers caught an error on the 30 Sept., 2018, eNewsletter. Julian Heinemann's 18 September photo of "Camelot" behind No. 37688 was taken at Reading and not at Clapham Junction.  

From the British Pathé Archive: Railways Test Speed Locos (1948)

Streamlined locomotive No. 60007 "Sir Nigel Gresley" standing outside shed ready to be tested. Fireman stoking fire. Close up shot of a driver sitting at controls. Close up shot of fireman looking at steam gauge. Close up shot of steam gauge. Close up shot of the driver looking from cabin window.

Long shot of the locomotive No. 60007 on roller track in shed. Angle shot of driver leaning out of cabin. Close up shot, pan, wheels revolving. Long shot, the workmen looking at locomotive. Close up shot of the two workmen talking. Mechanic under test bed checking machinery. Man leaning through locomotive wheel. Two men looking on. Engine standing on test bed. Wheels revolving. More shots of testing machine and the wheels turning.

Roll Along's "Legacy of Stepney's Home" (aka the Bluebell Railway) from Thomas & Friends.

The Locomotive Duty Roster has been updated , with plans for loco usage through October and November.
Two footplate videos onboard "Camelot," with Bob, Mike, and Greg, by Mike Anton.

From the NRM Archive: Henley's magneto electric double needle telegraph, 1848-1852

This telegraph system , which did not require a battery for operation, was patented in 1848 by W.T. Henley and T. Forster. 

Instead of a battery, the instrument was powered by magnets and electro-magnetic currents, using pedal keys. 

The needles for indicating letters could only move in one direction, but the code was the same modified Morse code used by other telegraph systems.

From the Glossary

The force exerted by the thrust of the connecting rod on the crank and transmitted to the rail with each revolution of the driving wheel. Rotating masses must be balanced but since this is only the wheels and the connecting rods, this is reasonably easily done by balance weights.

Reciprocating masses such as pistons, piston rods, etc are much more difficult to balance. They are balanced at the wheel centres and on the crank axle itself. In fact the design of the crank axle may be inherently self-balancing to some extent.  

It is not desirable to balance 100% of reciprocating mass because this would result in the load on wheels dynamically changing during rotation (and this is exactly what hammer blow is).  

It was common practice to balance 60% of reciprocating mass but this was found to cause hammer blow, so was reduced to 30% on two cylinder engines. 

Four Autumn Tints specials are on offer this year: Souper Steam, Steam & Cream, Autumn Tints, and the Observation Car. Book online for the remaining dates in October
Your Painting: South Grid

* Full Title: South Grid Railway Sidings (British Railways poster artwork "Service to Industry")
* Artist: Terence Tenison Cuneo
* Date: 1962
* Medium: Oil on canvas
* Size: 105.4 x 130.9 cm
* Collection: National Railway Museum

In the News


@GordonDudman 12 Oct.
Replying to @Burbagefox1 @bluebellrailway
This fantastic vintage set, includinging the 1897 GNR Director's Saloon will be running today and Sunday. Visit the saloon for a cuppa and a slice of cake.

@BlastScience 12 Oct.
One week today! We're doing a #Forces #Show as part of the @bluebellrailway #Steam Event, October 20/21. 1.30pm both days. Full steam ahead! Roll up roll up!  ... #steamworks #family #festival with @stevesplan

@gnome_garden 12 Oct.
I had my first ride behind the A4 Union of South Africa today, so pleased I did as I didn't realise that next year the engine will be withdrawn from traffic next year @bluebellrailway

@booradley76 10 Oct
Me and Dad just spent ages figuring out that the railway station at the end of this @VodafoneUK ad is Horsted Keynes on the @bluebellrailway but the image is back to front. How sad are we looking at signal gantrys and everything - strangely satisfying! 

@HHTCNews Oct 9
Amazing events coming up in @Haywards_Heath - @SilverSundayUK events, charity hikes, talks & music @Clair_Hall, spooky Halloween fun at @BluebellInfo and @bordehillgarden, movie nights, & free drop in sessions from @4SightVS @GoHaywardsHeath 

@Sussex_travels Oct 8
Great to trip yesterday on this with the youngest. One very happy girl (and daddy!) When I was around her age I was traveling on these in service! Thanks to the @bluebellrailway and volunteers for the Vintage Bus day.

@coastliner711 Oct 7
Great day out at the @bluebellrailway vintage bus running day with a ride from #Eastbourne on preserved Volvo Olympian followed by a train ride to #EastGrinstead and a ride on a preserved M&D Dennis Dart to #HaywardsHeath enjoying the Sussex countryside in the autumn sunshine.

@tms1967 Oct 6
Enjoying afternoon tea on the @bluebellrailway (although most of it has gone now - just the scones left!) @CopleyHill

@nicgoobrich Oct 6
Today is Captain Baxter's last day in service. Easily my favorite engine on the @bluebellrailway, so full of character. A shame I was never able to see him in action on this boiler ticket. Hopefully one day in the future I will!

@AnnieBoslem Oct 4
Day one @ChaineGB #chapitre with @ChaineScotland. Wine tasting @RidgeviewWineUK #thefrenchhavecompetition then lunch on @bluebellrailway. Thanks to all the wonderful teams for spoiling us #chainedesrotisseurs #amicale #friends #laughter #steamie

@chrisrailwayph1 Oct 2
Seen here at the @southdevonrly's Buckfastleigh workshops in 2015, Union of South Africa will be at the @bluebellrailway's Giants of Steam Gala 12-14th October--and I have tickets! #unionofsouthafrica #gresley #bluebellrailway #giantsofsteam

@MrTimDunn Sep 30
Replying to @MrTimDunn @Captain_Deltic
Loads of @bekonscot buildings are vaguely inspired by stuff the staff loves. Splashynge station - which is one of mine , behind the aerodrome - is sort of based on Kingscote at @bluebellrailway




Bluebell Railway
Sheffield Park Station
East Sussex
Near Uckfield, TN22 3QL