NELPG publishes its own bi-monthly newsletter NELPG NEWS, which is posted free to all of the group's members. The history of the group is chronicled in its pages.
The Q6 superheater header is fitted and hydraulically tested. The top half of the cab and roof are re-fitted and progress with boiler cladding is good. A new design of firebars is produced. The K1 is back on the NYMR after winter maintenance, with much work undertaken including the fitting of a blow down valve and new spark arrester. The J72 cylinder block is reassembled and is hydraulically tested, and fitted back into the frames.
After the Q6 boiler passed the required tests it was found that the boiler expansion bracket had been wrongly fitted, requiring remedial work, with taper wedges fitted. The rest of the boiler contract is to complete including fitting of regulator rod, regulator etc. Work continues in pipe fitting, cladding etc. The K1 returned from Fort William to Carnforth and then to the NYMR to run the Esk Valley service. The front pony truck has been removed for axle box work and remedial repairs found to be necessary to the front pin. A crack has also been found on the exhaust steam side requiring a welded repair. The J72 cylinder casting holes are now reamed and valve faces refaced. Work has been done in smartening the Deviation Shed. The 40th Anniversary Meeting is reported.
The Q6 boiler passes the insurance company hydraulic test and the first fire since 1982 is lit on1 October. Sorry but no dropping or rocking grate yet! Work on the tender progresses. The K1 is at Fort William and problems with other locos means extra work and changes of planned wash out arrangements. The repaired J72 cylinder block is back at Hopetown. Work is complete on removing scale from the boiler. Possible railtour options include a rerun of the SLS Three Dales railtour. The 40th Anniversary meeting is to be held on 28 October at the original venue.
The P3 is on display in Darlington North Road Railway Museum. The Q6 boiler overhaul is all but complete. Keith Hudspeth paints the tender. The K1 travelled to Fort William on 24 July after a loaded test run on the 20th. After a few days in traffic work was needed on a firebox stud, cylinder lubricator and smokebox spark arrester. Work continues on the J72 with work on the eccentric straps, spring hanger bolts and new axle box crowns and horn face wear plates cast. The outside of the boiler has been needle gunned. The J27 appeal is launched. The 40th anniversary railtour may be over Shap and Ais Gill.
The last fire was dropped from the P3 at North Road works on Monday 29 May 2006, prior to overhaul. The P3 is stored temporarily in the Hopetown Workshop, until ground conditions allow a move to the Museum. Since 1996, it has ran over 35,000 miles on 7 different railways and 2 museum sites. The Q6 boiler overhaul is progressing, but the engine will not steam in 2006. The K1 10 yearly overhaul is completed in nine months! A detailed report is provided. Work continues on the J72, particularly with the axle boxes and the cylinder block is taken to Cast Iron Welding Services for repair. An appeal is to be launched for the overhaul of the P3.
A lottery grant of Â£50,000 has been awarded toward the restoration of the J72, and now repairs and overhaul may begin. Thanks to Dave Pennock for the lottery success. The cylinder block is likely to need costly cast iron welded repair. The P3 approaches the end of its boiler ticker and is working at NRM Shildon, prior to moving to Darlington for the North Road Works 40th Anniversary weekend celebrations. The Q6 boiler work continues and the firebox work is complete. Work has started on the new smokebox. The K1 overhaul is progressing and a detailed report is provided, including work to the blastpipe and the new backhead.
The P3 has been steamed at Locomotion, Shildon. The Q6 is in the Deviation Shed awaiting completion of the boiler overhaul by NYMR. The piston valves are ready for fitting. The K1 firebox side repairs are now complete. It has been decided to replace the backplate with the work to be undertaken by Alan McEwan in a very short timeframe. Two small areas of firebox plate have also been replaced using Huck Fasteners in the repair process. The frames have been taken to Thonaby for tyre turning by road saving considerable expense and time. The J72 cylinder casting has been removed from the frames for cleaning and examination. Heavy sacle has been removed from inside the boiler whilst the paint has been stripped from the wheels. Plans are being developed for NELPG 40th anniversary events.
The P3 is at Locomotion at Shildon where the boiler ticket has been extended to 10 June 2006. The Q6 boiler repair is still awaited and is holding up progress on the overhaul. Maurice Johnson has been contracted to fit the valves. Work continues with painting the tender. The EGM has approved a spend of Â£200k for the K1 overhaul and it has since been discovered that a new boiler back plate will be required. Work on the axle and axle boxes is almost complete. Richard Campbell is overhauling the drivers brake ejector. It has been decided to remove the J72 cylinder castings from the frames for assessment to determine how they should be repaired. The axle boxes are being examined. All the horn faceplates will have to be renewed. New side rod bushes have been cast. NELPG membership stands at 561.
The P3 is working at Locomotion Shildon. The Q6 overhaul is awaiting completion of the boiler which is progressing slowly. Keith Hudspeth is making good progress with painting the tender. The costs of the overhaul are set out. The K1 has been returned from Fort William early "dead" following discovery of a firebox crack which required a boiler lift. The boiler is being examined to determine extent of work required. The EGM will consider whether the 10 yearly overhaul should be undertaken now, or in 3 years. The J72 wheelsets have not been removed. All boiler tubes have removed. The HLF decision is awaited . The result of the livery ballot is that the J72 will be finished in BR apple green station pilot livery.
The Q6 frames are now stored in the deviation Shed awaiting completion of the boiler by NYMR, on which progress is slow. Work commences on repainting the tender. The P3 is at Locomotion Shildon where it has steamed a number of times including at the goods weekend. The K1 is in regular use on the Jacobite having run on 31 occasions by 21 August, including on 21 consecutive days. The J72 boiler has been lifted of the frames at Hopetown and a start made on removing boiler tubes. It is now apparent that the cracking to the cylinder block is worse than feared. The livery ballot is announced and a revised bid submitted to the HLF. A membership review has demonstrated that there is a dearth of younger members. Martin Lloyd and Ian Pearson have passed out as steam drivers on the NYMR.