Work has resumed on the extension, and in particular on the remains of Laverton loop, and its lengthy northern headshunt. The PWay Saturday gang made a good start with removing fish plates and de-clipping the rails, while the Wednesday gang today had a session after lunch, leaving a small party to continue the relay of road No.6 outside the shed at Toddington.
Once all the clips have been removed, inside and out, it's all hands to the crowbars and with another almighty heave, the length of rail is tipped out. It weighs just about a ton.
Now for the other side, or is it?
One small clip is gallantly resisting efforts to tip out the rail, by hiding under the ballast.
Special surgery is required from John, who this time does not have Robert to support him from behind, but rather an unfriendly bed of nettles.
Then, success ! This rail too is tipped out into the four foot, ready for collection.
This rail is not particularly bad, just slightly non-standard, so it is being taken up for use in the layout at Broadway. Once the rail is gone, the old headshunt will be re-graded and relaid with new rail. The new rail, enough for this section up to where the newly laid extension starts, has now been ordered for delivery after the holidays.
Small note at the end: It was striking how many bird droppings were concentrated on the rails on this stretch of the line, many more near Laverton than visible on this sample section. Some smallish bird, in large numbers, has sat here to rest on the rails. What could it be?