The phone line between the Briddon Country Pile and the Structural Engineers got warm at the beginning of the week. Far from picking up an old drawing, as I had thought, the burying of the foundation pads below ground level in fact had a very important and insurmountable reason - the damp-proof membrane.
8th September 2013
In a post back in February ('of the locos at Scunthorpe') I bemoaned a certain magazine that took text from either this blog or Andrew's website, condensed it, and in so doing made it inaccurate and our work seem ineffectual. The latest edition came out on Thursday, and guess what? They've done it again!
4th August 2013
No sooner had I committed my anticipated demise to the web on last week's blog than news came through that on the contrary, my fellow Germans would valiantly defend against the Allies to enable the train – and me – to escape uninjured. But all of that in a little while.
28th July 2013
If you thought last week's blog was a little terse, then let me explain. Late in the week my computer had gone kaput. It had been struggling for a while, acting strangely, the usual error messages popping up with increasing regularity and certain pieces of software inexplicably taking up 99% of processor time, that sort of thing, but suddenly it went black. So I dug my father's old one out of storage, and was writing last week's instalment with the casing open and my two hard drives cabled up but sat on a shoe box alongside. Of course, Windows suddenly decided that as the hardware had changed radically,
21st July 2013
No sooner had I pressed the publish button on last week's blog than my phone rang. It was Ben Riley letting me know that the pieces of hardwood I'd passed him had now been transformed into the subframe for the Drewry's cab floor. I popped down one evening with Andrew to take a look, and sure enough the necessary longitudinals, cross-members and uprights were present and correct. Andrew did some painting on Libby's casing parts.
30th June 2013
If Andrew had been paying me for the time spent on his behalf this week I would be a wealthy man. For amongst the hours spent back at Briddon Towers, furiously painting (my shoes now have so many paint blobs on them that they match the mottled non-slip flooring at my dentists - I think this non-drip paint is wonderful) I have been chasing to and fro getting bits organised and generally being in the wrong place at the right time.
23rd June 2013
We were back in to Rowsley on Monday night. While I did some measurings for a new cross-shaft on the Drewry, Andrew and Rob made some highly satisfactory bangs and crashes as the Whiting jacks, having been offered for sale through Andrew's website with no interest, were loaded gently into a brand new, bright red scrap skip to go to Mr Booth's emporium. The main issue of the mid week has been the turbo off 14 901, but I am pleased to say that this has been quickly and satisfactorily resolved and we should see it back (and restored to health) in a few days.
9th June 2013
In lieu of his lost weekend time, Andrew had arranged to take Monday off, which as it turned out was a good thing as sleep deprivation meant that he didn't even stagger out of bed till late morning and Plan A, to whit head over to Scunthorpe, was out of the question. Meanwhile I found an e-mail telling me that Peak Rail were ready to sign the formal agreement over the use of Darley Dale yard, so we re-arranged a short session at Rowsley followed by a trip to Matlock for a meeting.
3rd February 2013
Those of my readers who like to think of themselves as regular will be aware that the first weekend of the month is generally regarded as the best weekend, where "things go right". It was a pity therefore that the Saturday was taken up with another Class 14 Owners group meeting, where the company was pleasant (people representing D9516, '20, '21, '23, '26, '31, '37 and '55 were there, and good friends amongst them) but when someone starts asking about the rumoured 10 spare Paxman engines that Swindon had for the '14s?
16th September 2012
It may surprise some people to know that I was an n.g. enthusiast before I became professionally involved with s.g. and in many respects I would rather be involved with 2ft than 4ft 81/2". I was at one point offered a job as Commercial Manager for Bala Lake Railway by the instigator and Chief-Of-Almost-Everything George Barnes, only for the company Chairman, Tom Jones (no, not that Tom Jones, this one was a Gwynedd County Councillor - you really must keep up with the Jones's...) politely to withdraw it as the railway "could not afford me".