Sunday, 24 March 2019

Tuesday And Thursday Gangs


A light start to the day with only two sleepers to change.  Only two?  Ahh yes but they were two of the most difficult to get to.  In the first picture Colin sizes up the job and the access.  Maybe time for another cup of tea just to make sure.

After a fair bit of digging and jiggling around the sleepers have been removed. Dave, Noel and Colin are still standing whilst John checks and prays that getting the new sleepers in will be easier.
It's a wiggle and a squeeze and 'Jack' also comes to help as the last sleeper is coaxed in to position.  This photo shows how little space there was to manoeuvre the sleeper in to position.
And that's it, job done.  The two sleepers are in, rails clipped up and just some packing and minor adjustments to complete.
What's next then?  OK you need to shift that track panel built last week to the right.  After consulting the plans and setting out the alignment on the ground it was worked out that the first track panel of the centre road needed to be moved slightly.  Time for crowbars.  The yellow line on the ballast indicates the correct alignment of the centre road.  This is the before photo.
After some leverage with crowbars the alignment was declared good and time to move on.  Whilst we are here how about another panel of track?  I think that there is a rivalry between the teams as to who can fine an excuse to lay track.  A very good thing as we have rather a lot still to do.  Here the sleepers have been laid and the iron men are about to help with the positioning of rails.
That's it, job done, another panel on the centre road, I shall have to have a count as to how many are still to go.  In the last Tuesday picture after a good days work the team head back to the shed to put everything away.
Thanks to all who came on Tuesday and to Andy G for the pictures.


The regular Thursday sessions continue and a wide variety of jobs were tackled.  The (almost) Jones brothers and Alan took a trip to Llynclys to service a point ready for the operating season.

John continue in his 'workshop within a workshop' inside the suburban coach making replacement parts for the coach and finishing previously restored parts.  Here John is carefully
Whilst the glue dries John continues with work on further panels.
Outside the Thursday Gang not to be outdone by the Tuesday Gang have to lay another panel of track on the centre road
That's number three by my counting and it takes us just to the end of the platform ramp, the next panel will take us between the platforms.  The first time that two lines grace the platforms at Oswestry since track in the station was lifted way back in the late 1960's.  Another success for CHR.
Alan P and Keith continued with the tamper/jacker packer.  Still a long way to go but progress is being made.   
Thanks to all who attended and to Andy G for the pictures.

Until next time

Wednesday, 20 March 2019

2019 Leaflet

The new leaflet is now available with brief details about the CHR and the sites at Oswestry and Llynclys, look out for these in the local area and in leaflet racks. 

The website will be updated shortly with the 2019 operating days, we look forward to seeing you on one of our trains.

Friday, 15 March 2019

Thursday Gang, Track in Their Blood

The Thursday Gang seem to have been suffering from withdrawl symptoms with having to take a temporary break from the linking up of the two sections at the accommodation crossing. 

Not to worry a further cunning plan has been devised and the team were soon leaping in to action for the transformation of Oswestry station.  The target was to get on with preparations for the relaying of the middle road.  The middle road will allow a run round loop to be installed and is part of the plan to relay all three roads through the station.  Will that make us the only standard gauge, ex national network line to have a centre road in a station? Answers please.

Further in the future the relaying of the down platform road will bring back the characteristic station layout. Tracklaying on the third road will not be undertaken until the platform wall has been rebuilt, relaying the track now would hinder access for the bricklaying team.  If you want to contribute to the appeal for fund for this work the donation button is on the website, we even take cheques and cash if you visit to see progress.  There are plenty of opportunities to become involved with restoration or operations if you so desire.

Apart from the work on the Permanent Way there were many other jobs going on around Oswestry station.  John continued in the shed with the woodwork on the suburban coach.  Outside Andy G took the following pictures of work in progress.

We start with Alan and Keith and their continued quest to bring the tamper back to life.  It might look like Keith is relaxing and soaking up the sun but some serious fault finding was going on.

The universal adjustment tool has been brought in to play and progress has been made.  Alan and Keith after some head scratching are making progress.
Another check and test to see if everything is now as it should be. 
More work is needed but progress is being made, with all of the work going on the tamper will be a great addition to the working fleet.  Keep up the good work chaps!

In the station it was time to do a bit of shuffling.  These stored sleepers needed to be removed to allow access to the temporary track which was due to be updated as part of the centre road.  Dave, Tom and Ryan offload the sleepers to their short term storage location.  
The weather kept us on our toes and between showers Tom and Dave take a break to review progress.
It's back to work moving sleepers up into the platform road (from where they will be moved across to the centre road as relaying continues).  Dave R observes the station speed limits as he pushes the trolley whilst in the background Tom, John and Dave D prepare another load
Dave and Tom unload the sleepers and to the right of the track is the space that will soon be occupied by the centre road.  If you look closely you will see the rainbow which appeared after every passing shower.
Once the sleepers were out of the way it was time to remove this piece of track, Whoever laid that needs shooting said someone... Guilty as charged as that is a bit of my handy work... Although it was only ever meant as a temporary siding for sleeper storage it's good to see it now being relayed as part of the new Oswestry track layout. Here the team of Tom, Colin, Noel, Glynn and Ryan in the front and Dave R, John W and Dave J behind decide who should pull the trigger.
With no Steve for the fishplates it was down to the two Daves and Colin to do the honours, here the first fishplate of the centre road is installed.
With the  correct number of sleepers now in position it was time to install the rails with the help of the long arm of the truck.  Once in place the rails and sleepers were adjusted in to position. The next picture from Glynn shows the team in action working as one.  A true team effort. 


Back to Andy's pictures for  a view along the first panel.  Now doesn't that look a lot better!

The final picture is the team heading back to a well earned cup of tea.

A very big thank you to all who turned up and it's so good to see another piece of the jigsaw coming together.  Thanks to Andy and Glynn for the pictures.

Until next time.

Thursday, 14 March 2019

Lineside Clearance

As mentioned previously we have been preparing for the operating season and putting our house in order.  This includes tidying up and cutting back the vegetation before we go in to the nesting season when it is no longer possible to disturb hedgerows.  Colin sent a picture of the area to the north of the crossing alongside the Cambrian Railways works where the team spent some time on clearance work.  The pictures shows the point at the north end of the run round loop,

Afterwards the team went to the crossing of the A483 to continue lineside clearance. The air was quite cold and there was a strong wind, snow was also in evidence but the dedicated team continued until the lure of tea intervened.  Thanks to Colin for the picture and for the team for braving the arctic conditions.

The second newsletter has been published and there are more details about future plans including the relaying of the centre road on Oswestry.  Have you signed up yet?  You can sign up on the CHR website. link on the right hand side of this page.

Until next time.

Thursday, 7 March 2019

Thursday Gang

The Thursday Gang were in action again with thirteen people concentrating on the tidy up efforts around the station.  A big effort saw another skip arrive and be filled with scrap metal that will further help to fund our activities.  No pictures so far as people were busy all day.

Part of the Gang then went on to replace a sleeper at the station before gravitating back to the tea urn.

Inside the shed work continued on the restoration of the suburban coach, the usual gang of three continued to make progress and were later joined by some of the others after tidy up activities around the station were completed.

Until next time.

Mothering Sunday 31st March 2019

How about a treat on Mothering Sunday?  We will be running an afternoon tea special.  Details and booking through the CHR website, the link is on the right hand side of this page.

It will be a chance to sample the run from Oswestry in the recently arrived Mk 1 coach.

See you there?

Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Tuesday Gang

Tuesday's heroes were in action again and carrying on the packing and tweaking of the recently laid track.

This crack team were in action doing what they do best, sitting around and contemplating life whilst watching someone else do all the work.  Well not really.  This new fangled technology has many applications and the latest App will tell you how far we have to go, how many sleepers left to lay or even how many calories you have burned up during your day.  Here Steve, Glynn and Dave are watching and checking on something, what could it be?
The subject of the time and motion study was new recruit Brad.  A warm welcome and big thanks to Brad who joined in with the other four to make up the Tuesday working party.  Here Brad is digging back some of the spoil to allow better access for track tweaking.

Brad passed the audition with flying colours. Thanks to Andy G for the first two pictures.  As you can see in Glynn's photograph from the bridge the alignment is improving and we are progressing with making this section ready to receive trains. This photo was taken at the end of the day whilst returning back to base.
There is still plenty to do before the operating season starts and we will be carrying on with housekeeping and further work on the extension.  Regular mid week sessions are on Tuesdays and Thursdays with the occasional extra day as well.  Weekends are also available for those who work during the week.  Would you like to join in?   

Thanks to all who joined in on Tuesday and to the photographers Andy and Glynn.

Until next time.