North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group

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Q6 Blog

A record of events, activities and our work with the Q6

Wednesday 10th July 2019

A very warm slightly cloudy with the very odd spot of rain at Deviation shed today with Steve Hyman, Nigel Bill, lan Pearson and Nigel Hall. The T2 was in traffic working from Pickering on the 11 am departure. The J27 was down at the MPD at the back of 4 road awaiting a new spring to replace the broken one, which should be delivered next week! Cups of tea first thing then a shed clean up started mainly on 8 road and 7 road footpath. Scrap steel and old fire bars were removed to the scrap skips old scrap. Timber removed to the lighting up compound down at the MPD on 5 road and also old used rags. Bins emptied the floor swept.

Steve worked mainly in the workshop making space to house the small lifting crane which Paul Hutchinson brought over from Carnforth and also some of the brick arch formers and rearranging some of our tools. He also vacuumed the floor area. Paul Hutchinson and Angie arrived at lunch time while we were having our snap on the bench outside Deviation shed,delivering a water pump which is now stored upstairs awaiting to go to Fort William in a couple of weeks time for washout purposes.

A smell of propane gas from our gas bottle was evident ,and after spraying soapy water around the fittings a leak was discovered from the gun . Ian went to the boiler shop to report the situation. Tom shed boiler Smith came and to inspect the propane and found leak from the gun and also the hose . Tom advised us that this equipment must not be used , we have put a label on not to be used until the boiler shop personnel have rectifying the problem.

The J27 drawbar spanner has been on the back of the tender. In the shed at the moment is the class 37 on 7 road which at the north end being worked on by the diesel fitters and assisted by the French students , it should be out at the end of this week. No. 5 and 80135 on 6 road. Nothing on 8 road. The track on 8 road is in a very poor state a broken rail and sleeper that are rotten and almost non existent see Nigel’s photos.

The area of the broken rail - Nigel Hall

The break - Nigel Hall


Wednesday 3rd July 2019

A glorious sunny day at Newbridge yard today with Nigel Bill, Jon Bradley and Ian Pearson assisting Barney Casey MPD mechanical Foreman to connect engine and tender together.

We arrived at Newbridge at 9am , the engine and tender were in the yard awaiting being shunted together. Both loco and tender had arrived yesterday afternoon and off loaded. We had to wait a while the standard tank 80136 was was being prepared for service, so we settled for a cuppa and sat and enjoyed the morning sunshine. Once 80136 had gone the T2 tender was shunted onto the pit and secured with hand brake and wheel chocks. Then loco was brought onto the pit and connected to the tender with the drawbar pin and safety pins put in and secured. Barney secured the water ,vacuum and steam heat hoses together, while we pulled up the big drawbar nut with me on the large ratchet spanner underneath the tender, Jon ,Nigel and Steve Elliott (charge hand) pulling on the rope until I could get the locking plate and cotter on and secured with a split pin. The job was completed by 12 noon. Barney went back to Grosmont; we stopped at Newbridge with boiler about 3/4 full of water. Nigel put a warming fire in. The tender was quite low on water so the hose was put in. Then the locomotive was oiled up ready for it trip back to Grosmont tomorrow. We had our lunch about 13.45 at Newbridge yard in the hot summer sun.

After locking the cabins up at Newbridge we returned to Grosmont and had a coffee in the station caffe and then up to MPD and Deviation shed. A quick natter in Deviation shed and another cuppa then it was time to go. Nigel and I with some of the shed staff called into the station hotel for pint of ale on this hot afternoon; it was lovely!


Wednesday 26th June 2019


T2 loaded up this afternoon - Mark Thompson

A cold foggy wet drive over the moors to Newbridge yard at Pickering this morning .With Ian Pearson and Jon Bradley, our job was to assist Dave Cholmondeley and Curtis Clifton MPD fitters to split engine and tender . The T2 was parked outside the P/way shed with the J27 in front , in steam awaiting its crew to prepare and move it onto the pit road after 5428 Eric Treacy was moved out of Newbridge yard to work the 9.25 train to Whitby.

We disconnected the hoses and tied them back out of the way and removed split pins from the safety links and main drawbar pin . Then it was cuppa tea time while were waiting of the J27 to move from the pit. When the J27 had gone the 08 shunted put the T2 on the pit .Once on the pit we were able to remove the drawbar locking plate put on the large ratchet spanner and with Curtis under the tender adjusting the spanner and the rest of us on the rope pulling the spanner handle we eventually loosened the big nut then eased it enough to remove the main drawbar pin. All pins ,cotters and locking plate have been stored in the fireman’s side locker. The job was completed about midday Jon and I returned to Grosmont and had lunch on the bench outside Deviation shed. After lunch Jon completed some woodwork on the bench around the stove and then gave it another coat of paint while I did some tidying up in the workshop.

No 8 road in Deviation shed has been tidied up a lot by the S160 lads there are a few items still to move . There is some scrap of ours to remove next week which is in the 4 foot and the sides of the track . Also quite a few broken and rotten sleepers and a broken rail piglet is aware of this. He hopes to get some repairs done to the track when the new point is fitted on 6 road which is ready at Newbridge yard.

With a warming fire lit, the T2 is prepared for action on the Mid Norfolf railway - Andrew Jeffery

On Thursdat 27th he T2 arrived and was unloaded at Dereham, joined to its tender and a warming fire lit ahead of the gala weekend. Curtis Clifton and Andrew Jeffery  are down there as reps for the weekend with the loco.

With a warming fire lit, the T2 is prepared for action on the Mid Norfolf railway - Andrew Jeffery


Wednesday 19th June 2019

A dismal rainy morning at Grosmont yesterday but it brightened up and got quite sunny and warm later on. Steve Hyman, Nigel Hall, Ian Pearson and myself made their way through the rain for an early morning cuppa. During the morning we also had a brief visit from Paul Hutchinson and Angie to collect some bits for the K1, and from Jon Bradley who was on driver training to Whitby. Jon brought in the last piece of the bench near the stove which he is going to fit later this week. Bill Dobson also made a brief appearance.

After a lot of chitchat we finally got on to some jobs given to us by the shed fitters for the T2, which is currently on wash out. One was to grease the locomotive and tender brake gear, and the other was to fit chains to the inside of the tender locker doors. While Nigel started sorting out the paint locker, putting some part used cans in his van to take to Hopetown, and doing a general tidying up, I did the monthly defibrillator check. Down at the running shed, Steve got started on the locker doors and Ian set about finding a decent grease gun. By the time he had found one in working order, it was lunchtime which was had in Deviation Shed.

After lunch Nigel painted Jon's bench with the red gloss paint used on the other benches in the building. Steve fitted a chain to the fireman's side locker door on the T2, but the driver's side will have to be done next week (if the engine is still on shed!). Ian and I completed greasing all the brake gear although it did involve repairing our own grease gun and borrowing one from the railway. Ian is firmly of the view that we need a new grease gun and should scrap some of the ones we have.

The Class 37 is having its motors repaired in Deviation Shed on No 7 Road at the moment. MPD management had taken pity on the diesel fitters trying to work outside in the heavy rain of last week and had asked to move it into Deviation Shed so they were under cover. The S160, now named Omaha, has moved out of Deviation Shed and is in the running shed where it remains with a non operational air brake. A replacement is apparently on the way from the Isle of Wight Railway where air braking is the norm. So no running in as yet prior to its move to Dartmouth. The S15, No 825, now looks very smart with all its cladding on, after being painted and lined out by John Furness. William Parrish says it is now nearly finished, but, as we know, those last bits can take a seemingly interminable time to completion. No 29 is also looking almost ready, with cladding and side tanks installed, but still awaiting its cab. The J27 was stood, in steam, outside the running shed for most of the day, before moving down to Grosmont Station in the sunshine for the 1630 trip to Pickering.

There was a steady stream of visitors to Deviation Shed during the day, although many did not stay long once they saw the Class 37. The new turn out for No 6 Road has now been delivered to New Bridge and is being assembled by the PW Dept. No date yet for its installation, but once done it is likely that No 5 will then be moved out for its long awaited assessment. Dame Vera Lynn frames are due to be moved in shortly and will go on No 7 Road, as they have requested pit access. It will though be kept mobile at all times and will move out once we need the space for our own locomotives.

Locomotives running yesterday were 5428 Eric Treacy which was swapped with the Standard class 4 No 76079 at lunchtime, Schools Class Repton, No 961 , B1 1264 which was swapped with the J27 for the 1630 to Pickering, and Class 25 Diesel D7628 on the last run to Whitby.


Wednesday 5th June 2019

Ian reports a fine cloudy day with some bright intervals at Grosmont today, with Bill Dobson, Jon Bradley, Paul Jameson and Ian himself. Kettle on and the usual cuppa and a piece of coffee cake specially made by Paul’s wife Maggie - a real treat. I missed out again!

The T2 had been stopped on Monday lunchtime with a broken right intermediate spring which was changed on Tuesday. Barney provided a list of other smaller jobs to do today, which Bill, Paul and Ian got on with, while Jon got on with the seat he was constructing around the stove. He also got a coat of paint on the seat and backrest. The jobs on the T2 were to repair a steam leak on the pressure gauge union at the manifold, the reverser indicator in the cab was very slack and needed attention, and the righthand injector delivery pipe in the cab was leaking. Paul shimmed the reverser indicator and repaired the leak on the pressure gauge union at the manifold. Bill repaired the righthand injector delivery pipe. Ian found that the righthand intermediate cork was missing again. This has been giving trouble for quite some time, so, a week ago, Ian shortened a step stay bolt to see if that would solve the problem. Obviously it hadn’t, so today the bolt was put in upside down which has a flat head and doesn’t protrude down very far. The engine was moved around the yard a few times and the cork was still in situ and not sheared off. Fingers crossed that it has been finally sorted.

Lunch was had outside Deviation Shed today alfresco. Bryan Orange arrived after lunch to assess with Paul Jameson the changes needed to the fire exit doors, and also with Luke, the NYMR's electrician, regarding new LED lighting in Deviation Shed. On the Railway, the J27, Black 5 Eric Treacy, No 926 Repton and D7628 Sybilla were in traffic. The S160 was in the MPD Running Shed on No 5 Road and lit up this afternoon for a steam test tomorrow.

There will be no working party next week, 12 June, as neither Bill, Ian, or Jon are not available.


Wednesday 29th May 2019

Ian Pearson reports a fine sunny morning today, but cloudy later, at Grosmont with Bill Dobson, Ian, and, later, Jon Bradley. Bill brought a wreath which he fitted to the smokebox door in memory of Derek Norris who passed away on Saturday morning.

T2 No 2238 passing Deviation Shed with the 1130 to Pickering carrying a wreath in memory of Derek Norris on 29 May 2019 - Ian Pearson

Ian noticed that the right hand intermediate side rod cork had sheared off. It was hitting the top step stay bracket securing bolt, so Ian removed the offending bolt, cut about 1/4” off, replaced the bolt and tightened it up. A new cork was fitted. He checked the cork later after a run to Pickering and back, and the new cork was still in situ and in one piece. Jon had an 8x4 sheet of plywood delivered from Wilf Noble of Ruswarp which Ian and Bill carried up to Deviation Shed from the MPD. Jon arrived about lunchtime with more wood for the winter rest room that he is constructing round the stove. He had also brought some old breeze blocks which Bill and Ian have put outside the east of Deviation Shed. These may be useful for the pathway or wall when the fire door escape route is completed.

Lunch was had in Deviation Shed with quite a few visitors popping in, although there was not a lot to see as No 7 Road is now clear of locomotives with the move out of the S160 to the MPD. After lunch Jon worked all afternoon on the benches around the stove, while Bill and Ian cleaned the pit out and looked around for some mesh type material to fit into the sump to protect it from getting full of ash. They couldn’t find anything suitable so Bill is going to acquire some next week. The pump gave a lot of trouble today: sometimes it worked OK and sometimes it wouldn’t. It must have been taken to bits half a dozen times, but it did work eventually. Sorting this out took up most of the afternoon.

The J27 was still on washout, with the T2, 76079, 926 Repton, 80136 and Diesel 26038 Tom Clift working trains on the Gold timetable.


Wednesday 22nd May 2019

Ian reports a lovely fine sunny day at Grosmont yesterday with Bill Dobson, Nigel Hall and Ian in attendance. There were also social visits from Jon Bradley who was driving Repton all day, and Roy Marshall who was getting information and photos of the J27 for a railway modelling company.

After the usual cuppa, Bill and Ian went down to the MPD to work on the T2 which was inside No 5 Road. Barney was working on the fireman’s side clack box and Adrian Dennis was working on the front safety valve. Bill worked all day on the right hand front and rear cylinder cock carrot valves, while Ian fitted both of the steps stays. A delivery of 2 firebox side bars for the K1 were off loaded, marked up, and stored on the racks at the side of No 4 Road. As part of the review of fire safety in Deviation Shed, Nigel removed all the bolts from both fire doors in the workshop to make them legally compliant. He also made some adjustments to the latch on the east door as the latch was difficult to open. Further work is planned so that this door opens outwards, and an additional fire exit door is to be installed in the roller shutter door at the south end of the building once the S160 moves out. Lunch was had on the bench in Deviation Shed.

After lunch, Bill carried on with the cylinder cocks carrot valves, and Ian worked on the T2 lubricator which had a missing bolt on the front right hand side. After dismantling all the feed pipes and the drive, the lubricator was lifted and moved slightly backwards. Barney then tapped out the hole where the missing stud should have been, and refitted the lubricator back in position - many thanks to him for doing this. Nigel cleared out the space under the workbench by the stove, and with help from Bill and Ian, the J21 chimney that was stored there was moved out and put near the cage pending removal. It is to be offered to the J21 group initially, failing which to the new build G5 (or as Chris Cubitt said Class O!). Nigel then stacked all the coach brake blocks neatly and quite a few other items. He also washed up all our pots.

The J27 was in traffic working the 11am and 2pm from Pickering as it had been from the beginning of the week. It is however, shortly due to be stopped for its 28 day washout. Also running were 76079, Repton and D7628. There were also quite a few visitors in Deviation Shed during the day.


Friday 17th May 2019 - Rocking Grate

Mark O'Brien writes:

Today I have been busy with finishing the rocking grate mechanism.

Locked - Mark O'Brien

Unlocked - Mark O'Brien

Rocked - Mark O'Brien

Now it’s all together and working I have a few modifications to make and a few things to finish up and tidy up. But other than that it works fine.


Wednesday 15th May 2019

A lovely warm day at Grosmont yesterday with Jon Bradley and two late arrivers in lan Pearson and myself. Not a lot to report, with Jon busy with his wood work skills making a new seating bench around the stove, I did the monthly defibrillator check, washed up, and filled the water bottles (I know my place!) while Ian removed all the old coats and overalls from the north wall at the bottom of the stairs near the fire door - most of these have been put in the skip. Ian also removed the ash build up on the outside of the fire door.

Lunch was had on the bench outside Deviation Shed. I had to leave early due to commitments at home and Ian was on a refresher run to Glaisdale and Battersby with the B1 No 1264 later in the day.

The T2 was on the 1100 departure from Pickering (it had been on that diagram all week), but was taken out of traffic when it arrived at Grosmont and replaced with STD 4 No 76079 for the 1230 return. It was brought up to the MPD to be weighed and put on No 5 Road. It is apparently sitting down on its springs and various bits are catching. The weighing is likely to take a couple of days, and I suspect the intention is to have the work done and it returned to traffic in time for the weekend diners.

The J27 remains spare engine as the Pickering - Grosmont service trains have had to be strengthened this week to cope with an increased number of coach bookings. Piglet expects it to be back in operation next week though, as those trains revert to their normal four coaches.

Within Deviation Shed, the S160 is now nearing completion and is likely to be moved down to the running shed by the end of next week. The move out of No 5 and move in of Dame Vera Lynn is now likely to be delayed until well into June, tied in with the expected delivery and installation of the new turnout to restore access to No 6 Road. Bryan Orange is also arranging for a new fire exit to be installed in the roller shutter door at the south end of the Shed, with the work likely to be done once the S160 moves out.

No formal news from Carnforth about the K1, but my spies tell me that an unidentified locomotive was out on the Hellifield Circle yesterday, and an ECS movement, limited to a maximum 59mph, from Carnforth to Fort William is scheduled for tomorrow. In which case it looks as if the K1 will be there for the booked start of its Jacobite season on 19 May, for which great credit and thanks are due to Paul Hutchinson and his team for their superhuman efforts in getting this winter's repairs completed in time.


Saturday 11th May 2019

Having been at Grosmont yesterday on a driving turn, Ian Pearson reports that he was told that the copper ring and steamseal did not work when the T2 was steamed on Thursday. The cover was therefore removed and resealed with three turns of 5mm graphite jointing and steamseal. The engine was back in traffic yesterday on the 12.30 from Grosmont to Pickering. After returning it went back to Pickering on the 16.30 pm. No more cylinder leaks reported, and it is on the roster for services today.

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