I seldom get to visit the Mid-Norfolk Railway so when the opportunity for a week-end break in Norwich coincided with a diesel gala I jumped at the chance. After several years, it was good to see and hear 50019 Ramillies in fine form.
This was scheduled to be one of its last workings as it is due an extensive overhaul in the near future that will see it out of operation for a lengthy period. I am hoping that it will be finished by the next time I manage to visit this railway again - in a couple of year's time.
A marvellous sight greeted me upon my arrival at the East Lancashire Railway the other day - that of locomotive 40135 warming the stock using its operational boiler. There is something really evocative about steam heating. This method of warming carriages has long since gone with 1986 being the last booked year for regular use in British Rail. The Class 40 Preservation Society have done an excellent job to reinstate such a feature on this locomotive.
The future for 50033 Glorious is becoming clearer with a possible sale to a third party. In 2003 the NRM decided to dispose of the locomotive, subject to a suitable home being found, because of an inability to commit to future maintenance and storage costs. 50033, still owned by the NRM, spent a period on loan to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway during 2004 until a home was found at the STEAM museum in Swindon as an indoor static exhibit. It had been planned for the locomotive to relocate to RailSchool, at the Royal Docks Heritage Railway in East London. This plan was abandoned and since 2007 it has been dumped outside in an unserviceable condition at the Birmingham Railway Museum, Tyseley.
On a separate note, a replacement power unit has been found for 50044 Exeter in Portugal and recently transported back to this country.
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