Watercress Line

P-way Blog 17th Nov

Saturday 17th Nov 2018

A report by Corina Silk with photographs by Corina and Adrian.

A very cold but dry day greeted the gang, the complete opposite of the preceding Saturday. After tea and a chat work began. No service trains were running during the day, which meant the gang were granted access to the track under line occupations taken out between Medstead and Alton and Ropley to Medstead. As a bonus, they also had Mark in attendance to help out operating the RRV (Rail Road Vehicle).

They split into two teams with a busy day ahead of them. Mark loaded bags of ex. Butts Junction Signal Box bricks onto the company transport from the dock, and Eddie, Martin and Chris then went down to Ropley to unload them at the site where the Great Missenden Signal Box is being re-constructed. The bricks will be used in the construction of the locking room section by the Building Group.

Adrian C, Adrian N, Martin B, Brian Ha, Pete, John (driving Wickham 1) and Mark went up the line to the site of the Butts Junction Signal Box, where they collected several more bags of reclaimed bricks and two lengths of double headed rail (which formed the lintels over the signal box locking room tunnel), and transported them back to Medstead.

Corina stayed behind at base to paint the lifting bars and steps for Wickham 2’s restoration.

Once both of the gangs had returned back to base the van was loaded with another shipment of bricks for a second trip down to the Ropley site. The Alton gang including Corina went back up the line to Alton for a much needed breakfast at the Station Cafe. On the return journey, two concrete sleepers, more bags of bricks, stone slabs and cast iron pedestals were picked up from the Butts and taken to Medstead.

With all of the items offloaded, all of the gang the apart from Adrian C and Corina went down to Ropley to carry out some fettling work on the extent of the new siding laid to date by the mid-week gang.

Adrian and Corina stayed behind to cut the re-claimed rails to length, which are also to be reused in the Great Missenden Box works. They then went down to Ropley to help the others, who had been joined Steve H. Corina also took the opportunity to oil the London end point work.

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