18th September 2011
It has been a busy but sad week in the run-up to my father’s cremation at Bournemouth. We were surprised at how many came – the chapel was full to overflowing – and in the “wake” afterwards we learnt how many New Milton area residents were on his publicity circulation list. It seems that he had a group of avid readers of all Andrew’s press cuttings, and I was asked “you are the one who was on Scrapheap Challenge, aren’t you?” by people I’d never met before.
19th June 2011
Sadly the cunning plan Andrew had hatched last week didn’t work. In fact, not only – when he rang up on Friday lunchtime – was he unable to secure the services of the required contractor, but the “boss” declared she was on holiday that day! He was not at all impressed with such customer service and we may be looking at an alternative solution.
5th June 2011
We should have been into a thoroughly productive weekend, but somehow, things went a little awry. Up to Friday early afternoon, we were hoping to be at Scunthorpe on Saturday but again, the vital element in the plan was declared not available this weekend, and shortly afterwards Andrew succumbed to a heart-felt plea from his girl-friend to make an additional trek down to see her on Saturday. Before he left, he stripped out the DVLR’s free-issue exhauster for “Pluto” to check rotation and exactly how, if needed, it can be reversed since space within the casings is severely restricted and turning it physically round may not be feasible.
26th June 2011
14 901 has continued to be in the centre of our minds this week. Having been handed over in the first few days of April, we are, under the operating agreement, due to do a 3-monthly “A” exam in the first few days of July, but the “hunting” that the engine was apparently exhibiting was reportedly getting worse, and after it ‘died’ at one point we were under pressure to bring it forward.
10th October 2010
Monday: I went back over to Peak Rail in the afternoon with the alternator for 14 901. Just as I arrived though, Andrew’s loco “Charlie” was on its way south to Darley Dale with Robin driving, so I grabbed a couple of shots.
24th October 2010
Thursday: Andrew decided it was time to release the news. Whether this was because his birthday was Friday and he was in the mood for excitement, I don’t know, but he instructed me to re-jig the pages on his website (www.andrewbriddonlocos.co.uk – but you knew that really). In fact, the pages had been ready for some time – a news piece and a page on the new acquisition, it just took an hour or so to release these, alter the category header to menu them and update a few other bits.
21st November 2010
OK, so just who was it decided it was the last weekend of the month? Regular readers will recall that according to Andrew, the last weekend is the one where all good plans go belly-up. For Andrew himself, it was time to go visit the girlfriend, so after a week of night-shifts on Manchester Metrolink (he’s on placement there) he headed off Friday evening having arranged for 14 901 to return to Rowsley so that I could continue with the pegboard and strip on Saturday.
26th September 2010
I have been doing a lot for Andrew this week. For starters having agreed to Plan B for the air cleaners on the ‘14, I started looking for a suitable modern rectangular air cleaner element. I identified 3 from my old Fleetguard catalogue, but a quick call showed that one was obsolete and the others had not been sold in the UK for years.
3rd October 2010
At the end of last week’s blog, I confidently forecast my popping in to Rowsley on Monday to photograph 14 901 hauling a decent-sized freight down to Darley. I should know better than to count chickens, or locos.
14th November 2010
During the week we said a metaphoric goodbye to another of Andrew’s locos – “Claire” – depicted below. It was I suppose inevitable that with three ‘identical’ Hudswell Clarke 0-4-0DHs – “Claire” “Grace” and “Beverley” – Andrew needing to thin out the numbers would lead to one or even two of them departing, but I have fond memories of “Claire” – one of the most travelled locos in the collection.