A slight change at Winchcombe to start with, as we are now running three trains in this busiest part of our season, so here comes the class 47 to pick up the third rake, parked next to our mess coach.
We were off to Stanley Pontlarge again, to finish off the twist that we part repaired last week.
For this we needed a supply of chippings, from this pile of 6 dumpy bags recently delivered.
Our little Landie will take them out to the site, together with all the tools. Well, should do, plucky little thing.
The issue was that there isn't that much room on the Landie and we had already loaded the compressor on to it, as well as all the tools. Where to put that dumpy bag of chippings?
The answer was to split it into smaller bits, so you see us here filling these handy rubber baskets that we use on the PWay.
The class 47 we met earlier then turned up, the second train of the day to go down to Cheltenham.
We had the impression today that the trains were not that well filled, strange. Maybe a coincidence, but there is a Prescott Hill climb event practically next door this weekend.
The second issue was that the stone chippings delivered were rather bigger than expected, and (initially at least) did not blow well.
The answer to that was to pack them under by hand, a very laborious process, particularly in this heat. Poor old Tony was noted to have turned a shade of bright crimson, but he is well, fear not.
This comparative picture shows the two sizes of chippings we had.
In the foreground is the correct size, more like gravel really, if you can imagine that.
Above the the oversized basket of chippings, which are clearly much bigger.
Here is 4270, back in operation and running very silently, we thought. In excellent condition therefore.
Here we are having our picnic lunch in the cool.
|OK, just three bits then...|
Work on the new car park has really started in earnest, and progress is rapid.
Meanwhile, the pile of material on the left (principally ex Little Buckland bridge repair) is being loaded into lorries, one of which can be seen leaving the site here through the future car park exit.
At this end cars will park at right angles to the embankment, stretching right down to the trees in the distance, with an interruption in the middle where there will be a stretch of green. Beyond the trees the car park will be a more normal, square shape.
Indoors, work was continuing on the fireplace. Last week, it was trial fitted. A peep through the window late on Wednesday revealed that Neal had put in the slate hearth, so what could he do today?
Combining the useful with the pleasant, we decided to break for lunch and give the cement the time to go off.
After lunch, the other upright was fitted, then the centre piece across the top that unites them.
Finally, the piece de la resistance, here are Neal and John fitting the mantlepiece into its slot on top.
At this point we would like to thank the select group of financial contributors that made this piece of our 'living history' possible. We did not waste your money, just look what you helped us to achieve ! There is no better way to donate money than for something that you can see, to which you can point and say: I helped to create that! Thank you all, you know who you are.
Taking a step back (and climbing half way up a ladder) you can see the new fireplace in its context, with the period style lights on too.
We still have to fit a picture rail here, and in the booking office.
Looking the other way, you can see the wall against which will be located the counter, with the kitchen in the room beyond. The counter will be made by our craftsmen at C&W and will be inspired by an example seen at Kidderminster SVR.
Behind the counter C&W propose a sort of triptych, a mirrored panel embraced by a set of decorated shelves left and right. That would be great.
Training for new staff for our Broadway cafe is under way - we were served tea at Winchcombe today by two hopeful candidates. Our verdict: Not bad, for a first mug.
By the way, our heritage team has been to Usk station goods yard to start recovering the old weighbridge house there, so if you want to read about that, check out the blog entry for it here: