15th May 2011
The invoice arising from last weekend’s auction appeared on Andrew’s e-mail account on Monday and caused a certain amount of consternation. Payment methods acceptable to the auctioneers versus the time available were slightly conflictive – so on Tuesday I added organising a banker’s draft to my list of things to do, which included booking a 3.5ton dropside to collect the purchased lots.
6th March 2011
The run of bad luck seemed to follow me into the first few days of March. A commercial job on Monday got delayed an hour after a chap in a 4×4 and a trailer succeeded in parking it at 45 degrees across the A1 southbound. Although I almost caught up with my plan, the knock-on effect was that when I pressed the button on my bit to make the customer’s bit function, the latter didn’t and I had no time to investigate.
23rd January 2011
Saturday: Andrew was away again, but Mrs B (well, having earned her disapprobration by depicting her in last week’s blog, I had better henceforward refer to her as Steph,) and I had planned on a quiet day on the 14’s troublesome window frames. Rowsley was very quiet – save for two young men dressed as American GIs who appeared to be patrolling the station site. I was tempted to point out that it is still 7 months to the Warring 40s event at Peak Rail but concluded that there was really no reason to intefere. After all, they had guns.
8th May 2011
The overlap between my activities with Andrew and commercial work has been extensive again this week. It was after all, Andrew’s acquisition of the re-railing jacks from Doncaster that enabled me to broker the deal that saw the East Anglian Railway Museum acquire the Plasser crane, and while I was there putting the engine back in, I’d had a chance to have a quick look at more bits coming up for auction. So it was that on Wednesday I back yet again in Doncaster, “officially” inspecting the lots of an on-line auction due to close on Friday.
13th March 2011
Andrew had the day off work on Wednesday and we travelled down to Bicester to view the latest batch of MoD rolling stock that Ramco has on tender. I have many memories of Bicester, from commissioning brand new Thomas Hill locomotives, conducting training courses in old carriages, testing a repowered Ruston and being happily unaware that the brake van at the back of our train was no longer on the rails… They weren’t always happy days, but I knew people there and the place always seemed a hive of activity.
3rd April 2011
There is an old adage that says “a job takes the time available to do it in”. It can be all too true. I was back at Rowsley anyway on Monday, and Steph followed me over later to resume work in 14 901’s cab, this time rubbing down and giving the old grey steelwork a coat of Magnolia. When I had finished I joined her, and when Andrew had got home from work and changed he came over and we all three carried on until nearly dark, Andrew taking over on Magnolia detail while I was handed the masking tape and after Steph and I had masked off the desk top, I painted it with a fresh layer of Hammerite.
25th April 2012
Two weekends sandwiched with Bank Holidays – what more can you ask for? Well I suppose quite a bit, but let’s see what we can do with it. Pity that the next one classifies as the last of the month – or was it this one?
2nd May 2011
No doubt about it, this classed as the “last weekend of the month”. No: no problems reported from the Carmarthen direction, well, other than a phone conversation about a minor fuel leak, but progress has not been without problems.
30th January 2011
I blame the Rev W Awdry. The portrayal of what we know today as a Class 08 as the evil, slimy ‘Diesel’ in the Thomas books must have had a profound effect on the young, impressionable me, and influenced my view of what a good shunting loco should be. Today I can rationalise it much better – and have done in a few places...
3rd January 2011
Tuesday Dec 28th: For the first time in over 33 years, there is no Land Rover in the Briddon household, with the departure of the 1960 Series II which has languished in the garage since 1986, when I was given a company car. This has no relevance to a railway blog save that it explains why, as its new owner had first travelled from Sutton Coldfield to somewhere up north and was collecting it on the return leg, by the time I had eased the venerable Landy down the drive on its handbrake and on to his trailer, it was easily lunch time and 2pm before we arrived at Rowsley.