|We took a picture of Bert Ferrule - Bert Ferrule took a picture of us.
A curious feature is this two way intercom system in the cab, called a 'LOUDAPHONE'. I think that name makes it clear what it sounds like.
Of course it is made in SR territory, in Surrey.
Unfortunately, good as it is, the SHARK does not fully complete the ballast distribution job, and it has to be finished off manually. About 2/3 of this shovelling job was effected by the small team of three today. We worked along the downside cess, levelling it to sleeper height so that the sleeper ends are visible and can be walked upon. In the afternoon the weather became quite sunny and beautiful, but also very hot, so that we had to swap our orange bomber jackets for lightweight and more airy Hi Viz vests.
At the end of the day the class 73 took the empty Dogfish back to Laverton, where they will be refilled almost immediately. A further ballast drop, also including the new turnout in Toddington yard, will be effected tomorrow. Whether there is enough spare ballast at Laverton for a third train, or part thereof, remains to be seen.
What happens next?
The 'Last Mile' share issue is running, and we are accumulating a fund which, inter alia, will enable us to purchase another round of new rail to get us to Peasebrook Farm (bridge 4). This purchase is pencilled in for June. In the meantime a contractor will repair 3 culverts, the first of which, at Little Buckland, is what is holding up further track laying at the moment. This work will start on May 16th and will take +/- 6 weeks.
The PWay are never idle, and are quite busy in Winchcombe yard doing other stuff at the moment, and for example were called out to repair a broken fishplate just south of Greet tunnel. Next on the extension will be cutting the bolted rail ends off the rails on the through road at Laverton. This is quite a laborious job, with 4 ends to cut on every panel. After the ends with the fishplate holes in have been removed, every rail will have to be released and dragged southwards, ready for welding. This job could start in a fortnight or so.
There's a GWR enthusiast out there on the clearance gang:
Have you copped '5977 Beckford Hall' yet? Does this sighting count?
The choice of Beckford Hall is quite fitting, as it has actually been split into appartments, just like this one. Judging from the scratch marks round the hole, it's quite well used too.