Weekend Rails

what we do for our kids

Tales of the Andrew Briddon Loco collection

Elsewhere - www.andrewbriddonlocos.co.uk - you can see the "official" face of the locomotive collection my son has built up. Here on "Weekend Rails" you can read a blow-by-blow account of our work in restoring and improving them.

A fond Claire-well and multiple tasks

14th November 2010

During the week we said a metaphoric goodbye to another of Andrew’s locos – “Claire” – depicted below. It was I suppose inevitable that with three ‘identical’ Hudswell Clarke 0-4-0DHs – “Claire” “Grace” and “Beverley” – Andrew needing to thin out the numbers would lead to one or even two of them departing, but I have fond memories of “Claire” – one of the most travelled locos in the collection.

All I wanted was a quiet birthday

17th October 2010

Monday: All I really wanted was a quiet birthday, a chance to wallow in self-pity about another year having gone by without becoming a millionaire, featured in a TV documentary, recognised by the Heritage Railway Association (did I ever tell you that my skills have nothing relevant to railway preservation, according to the HRA?) and so on.

Charging around

3rd October 2010

At the end of last week’s blog, I confidently forecast my popping in to Rowsley on Monday to photograph 14 901 hauling a decent-sized freight down to Darley. I should know better than to count chickens, or locos.

Of a Fourteen and fuel

21st November 2010

OK, so just who was it decided it was the last weekend of the month? Regular readers will recall that according to Andrew, the last weekend is the one where all good plans go belly-up. For Andrew himself, it was time to go visit the girlfriend, so after a week of night-shifts on Manchester Metrolink (he’s on placement there) he headed off Friday evening having arranged for 14 901 to return to Rowsley so that I could continue with the pegboard and strip on Saturday.

Of a weekend "off"

19th December 2010

With Andrew on a long weekend break at Butlins with his girl friend, you might be excused for assuming that I would be partaking of all the usual pre-Christmas jollities, like shouldering my fellow man out of the way at my local shopping centre, but you would be wrong. It was pretty much business as usual.

Of Drewry and snow

28th November 2010

On Monday I was back up to Elsecar, to oversee the departure of Drewry 0-4-0DM 72229. Heanor Haulage arrived pretty well to time, with a folding neck trailer rather than the normal low loading type. This has the advantage that the rails are built into the folding part, and having unfolded, forms an instant ramp.

Of more b***** snow

6th December 2010

On Monday we went up to Elsecar to recover the lorry sheet that covered the Sentinel “George” only to discover that Elsecar had already removed said sheet “in case it was theirs”. Ho humm. Plan A had been to see the loco on board the lorry heading to pastures new, but the latter was apparently stuck in snow somewhere in Scotland.

Of one Teddy and Another

24th October 2010

Thursday: Andrew decided it was time to release the news. Whether this was because his birthday was Friday and he was in the mood for excitement, I don’t know, but he instructed me to re-jig the pages on his website (www.andrewbriddonlocos.co.uk – but you knew that really). In fact, the pages had been ready for some time – a news piece and a page on the new acquisition, it just took an hour or so to release these, alter the category header to menu them and update a few other bits.

Monday, 18 June 2012 01:00

Of Pegboard and Strip

31st October 2010

What we laughingly refer to as the “hall” in Briddon Towers has for the last fortnight been occupied by seven 8 x 4 sheets of pegboard, and out the back, amongst the spare Land Rover gearboxes, oil drums, tomato plants and assorted bric-a-brac that took up residence where the Wickham once stood, were 25metres of aluminium strip.

Of primer, brackets and ball-cocks

8th November 2010

Saturday: Plan A had been to head out to Scunthorpe, but during the week I’d had trouble with a leaky ball cock on the loo and Saturday morning it started again, so I cut another washer and when that made no difference, headed down to Wickes to find that of the 6 ball cocks they stocked, none looked remotely interchangeable.

Of Sentinels and such

12th December 2010

"George" hiding behind the snowdrifts.

The snow had cleared enough that the move of “George” was back on, and we had notified the Elsecar secretary accordingly. So when I rolled up on Monday morning to find no EHR personnel on site and the loading area still obstructed by snow, I was a little concerned.

Of Teddies and Deadies

10th October 2010

Monday: I went back over to Peak Rail in the afternoon with the alternator for 14 901. Just as I arrived though, Andrew’s loco “Charlie” was on its way south to Darley Dale with Robin driving, so I grabbed a couple of shots.


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