The Spinney Light Railway News

2nd February 2019

Unfortunately a cancelled working day. It looks good but it was better warm at home!

“February “February

Pictures above from Alan Ainslie 1st February 2019

19th January

“January “January


A guest NewsMan today as Tim has changed his internet service provider and the new provider is not providing service!
However Tim sent the pictures which surround this text and the following copy:

"There were lots of us there today in the damp weather almost all working on the carriage shed project. David G, Alan, Mick and Rob worked on the internal track assembly, Robin, Adrian, Jamie and Richard assembled the track at the shed apron, Tim and Peter supplied 6 wagons of ballast and spread it under the new track.

Cliff used the leaf blower to clear all the railway of leaves and David D surveyed the railway for damaged sleepers and noted likely places for a derailment. Counting all those sleepers should help David sleep!

Tim particularly thanked hostess June for her supplies of tea, cake and encouragement."

DG's bit: The weather was quite foul - intermittent drizzle with thick cloud, the only relief was the lack of wind.
Well done workers for sticking to the tasks. The good news is in the pictures showing railway now connected to the new shed. Like last time we left the ballast wagons stored in the shed.PROGRESS!


Finally, it is good to report that we had some fun, sharing jokes and poking fun at each other. The picture above, taken by Peter, shows Tim sharing one of these jokes.

5th January

“daveoldoakbufferstop” “oldoaktrackconstruction”

A good turnout today for the first meeting of the year, only Bob and Jamie missing. We all wrapped up to beat the cold and thanks to June and helper Eric for the teas and cakes. Dave M removed the Old Oak buffer stops and has taken it home to renovate as the metal work was showing signs of rust and the paint was peeling from the buffer. One panel was required to be constructed to bridge the missing link in the new line connecting the carriage shed to the turntable. This panel was inserted and ballasted and will be tamped next time. The new line can be seen next to the carriage shed in the last picture. Cliff arrived so we stopped for lunch. After lunch, Cliff and Dave MB continued with site clearance of the many leaves still on the ground. Alan A was also tidying the site around the carriage shed. We also have a fallen tree across the railway between Baytree and Dingly, this will need removing at sometime as trains cannot pass. Most people can be seen in the pictures.

“carriageshed57” “carriageshed58”

The carriage shed project became the main focus for this winters maintenance / construction activities. Pictures show Mick C and Alan S assembling the first length of track inside the carriage shed. They spent most of the day on their knees so will feel pretty stiff sometime soon. They managed to assemble a complete siding to the other end of the shed. Nick worked on the carriage shed apron track work, cutting rails to suit, whilst Peter continued with the roof, making good progress. Remaining roof job involves top 'A' pex and coping stones at the door end.


The picture on the right shows the first ever wagon to enter the new carriage shed and be stabled there for next time, we will have to have an opening ceremony another time. The wagons were used to transport the ballast from the pit to the new line which can be seen on the right of the carriage shed, more trips will be required next time. Discussions were held regarding how the doors and hinges might best be constructed and we await a firm decision. Both Mick C and Alan S were competing with David G on having the filthiest clothes, but David G still wins by a mile. Robin supervised all the track construction.

20th December

“mickclanline” “sueclanline”


Thursday saw the chance meeting of Spinney friends on Clan Line which was travelling from London Victoria to Sherborne and return. Whilst Mick and Sue travelled in luxury, wined and dined, Dave MB was part of the support group and did what was necessary to ensure a smooth operation. Dave managed to get Mick and Sue on the footplate at Victoria as can be seen in the pictures. There is also a video on the google group of Clan Line arriving at Clapham Junction. Dave can be seen in the right hand picture admiring the ground.

15th December

Due to inclement weather forecast (again, it is the time of year for it), today was cancelled and here ends another year, next meeting will be in 2019.

1st December

Due to inclement weather forecast, today was postponed and rebooked for Saturday 15th December.

17th November Pack away

Pack signals away and prepare locomotives for winter shut down. Thanks to June for the teas and cakes (see last picture).

“petesignal” “lunch171118”

All bar one signal have been disconnected, washed and stored in either a signal box or engine shed. The loco exit signal has been left out as Bob is currently working on it. Left hand picture shows Peter either sitting comfortably or praying to the signal before disconnection and storage. Richard and Adrian moved an insulated block joint on the approach to Old Oak and detected a track circuit problem at Dingly. Right hand picture shows most of us having lunch and signals waiting to be placed in Baytree signal box. Not in picture were:- Richard, Adrian and Cliff who just managed to get out of view of the camera. Bob e mailed to say he could not make it, hope we see him before Christmas.

“mickdavidalanlocos” “mickgrate8”

Mick steamed Kate for the last time this year and ran the locomotive up and down the loco siding before blowing it down and oiling for the winter. Mick removed the grate and the effects of this years running has meant some winter maintenance as can be seen in the right hand picture. Surprised the fire did not fall straight through or perhaps it did! Cliff tried to light a fire in Clan Line but was unsuccessful, suggested he learn from scouts and rub sticks together. First picture was taken because it is so unusual to see David G attending to his locomotive, in this case cleaning it, records show that this has happened twice. Jamie worked on his locomotive and concentrated on pipework between locomotive and driving truck.


Other activities included leaf blowing by Dave M and Dave MB to tidy the site. During the railway clearance it was noted that on the loco yard exit road, many sleepers were below ground level so the offending earth was dug away to allow the sleepers to breath to avoid rot. Discussions about ballast cleaning included use of a cement mixer and water supply. The picture on the right shows Sophie who after many had left, knocked the plate onto the floor and finished of the cakes - no dinner for Sophie.

Next time

Next meeting is the 1st December and will be the last one before Christmas.

3rd November Fish and chips and fireworks


A wooly hat day especially as the day progressed, ran trains ending with fish and chips and fireworks. Cliff arrived early so we had an earlier lunch than usual however this did not mean we started running any earlier. The first train ran at 14.34, probably one of our worst start times, can we try and get back to 13.00 start time next year?. We did not stop for tea as per usual as we planned to stop earlier in time for fish and chips. The default controller was unable to attend, something to do with being in hospital, some people go to great lengths to get out of being controller, we wish you a speedy recovery. We therefore all appointed Jamie as he did a good job last time with the help from his son Henry. Thanks to June for the teas and cakes and Dave MB for the firework picture.

“fireworks1” “fireworks2”


The end of the running season was marked in the usual tradition of fish and chips followed by fireworks which was very relaxing and entertaining, a really nice end to the running summer season. Peter kindly bought the fireworks and another year of excellent fireworks. The rockets (except three) were very loud and a couple of wooden rocket sticks found their way back to us. Unfortunately my phone camera could not capture the colours but Dave MB sent me one of his pictures. Henry enjoyed the sparklers.

Loco news

“davenickbaytree” “jamiebaytree”


Six locomotives on track today were:- Scott line, 73115, 33029 Charlie, Jesse, Royal Scot 6109 and LMS 7163, however Jamie reported problems with LMS 7163 and retired early. Cliff had to make three repairs to Jesse, mainly the drain cocks (know the feeling) before running. My L94 is still waiting to be re assembled following front end repair work to the smoke box, weather been too cold and work been too demanding. The Spinney freight wagons had an outing today and can be seen in the picture below. They did play up a bit and I eventually found the cause was buffer locking. Alan S ran the Royal Scot as light engine as we did not have any passengers other than Annika and Henry.

S & T news

“nickoldoak” “heatheroldoak2”

Bob e mailed to say he could not be able to attend today and signallers were:- Old Oak - Peter and Dave MD, Spinney, Adrian and Richard, Baytree - Mick and Dingly - David D. David D seemed to be having a great time in Dingly which is not his normal signal box, and very jovial, good to see friends enjoying their time at the Spinney. Pictures show Peter and Dave MB operating Old Oak and exchanging the token with Nick and Heather. Adrian and Richard had to rectify a fault at Spinney and the telephones did not initially work because the power supply had not been turned on!

Next time

Next meeting is 17th November when we will put the signals away and start winter maintenance. Robin has e mailed a list of jobs which include continuation of the carriage shed project.

End of Current News

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