December 2019 Update

John Whitcomb

It is with deep sadness that we learned this month that EMF Trustee John Whitcomb had died suddenly at his home. Not only was John the Fund’s Treasurer, but he was also an active volunteer working on the locomotives over many years. This is a profound shock to the Fund, as it will be to the other groups on the Severn Valley Railway, for whom John had dedicated so much of his life.

We know you will join with us in sending our deepest condolences to his family.

7812 Erlestoke Manor Overhaul Update:

Work has pressed on over the autumn on many aspects of the bottom end of 7812 Erlestoke Manor as we move towards reassembly next year. At the time of writing this update, 7812 was in position over the wheeldrop at Tyseley Locomotive Works in readiness for re-wheeling with its coupled wheels.

The frames are also largely fully painted having had a minimum of 6 coats of paint applied.

On 5th October, Andy Poole is seen applying more red undercoat between the frames [Photo: Adrian Hassell]:

By mid-November the frames were in final top coat black and Venetian red ready for re-wheeling. [Photo: Mike Solloway]:

The final work required to ready the couple wheelsets to be put back under 7812 has been taking place [All photos by Adrian Hassell]:

On 15th November, Des Ainsworth puts final black top coat on the trailing wheelset, after being returned from having new crankpins fitted at South Devon Railway Engineering:

Meanwhile, Terry Jenkins fits the axlebox T-pieces which the springs hang from on the leading wheelset:

A complete set of new springs waiting to be fitted:

On 13th December, the trailing coupled wheelset was fully assembled and ready to go underneath 7812:

New copper steam pipes have been made by Speyside Copper Works in Elgin:

Work has also been progressing on refitting the valve gear. On 16th November, Terry Jenkins and Ian Whitlam are seen trail fitting the eccentric straps for checks. This is much more easily done before the wheels go back under the engine… [Photo: Adrian Hassell]:

On 30th November, EMF volunteers working with Tyseley Locomotive Works staff refitted the piston valves to both cylinder blocks. Both valve chests have been rebored and the valves have had new snap and wide rings, and replacement gland sleeves [Both photos courtesy of Ricky Sault]:

EMF volunteer Ian Whitlam, is seen easing the driver’s side valve in:

And later on, the fireman’s side valve is seen after having been fitted:

Finally on 14th December, Terry Jenkins and Jimmy Norris are seen pressing new brasses into the coupling rods [Photo: Ricky Sault]:

7802 Bradley Manor:

7802 Bradley Manor has now been ‘winterised’ at Tyseley. More news on the plans for this locomotive in early 2020…

3,500 Gallon Tender T2329:

Tender 2329 has made good progress over the autumn. This is a very heavy rebuild of an ex Barry tender & and in this photo by Ricky Sault on 30th November only most of the horn blocks, horn ties & back steps are original. Everything else is new to the GW design:

Back on 5th October, EMF volunteer Dougie Hutton was applying the 1st coat of primer to the new spring hanger brackets [Photo: Adrian Hassell]:

From the Archives:

This month, Fund member Robert Darlaston has contributed some photos of 7802 Bradley Manor during its final year in traffic with British Railways. First we see 7802 on the turntable at Whitchurch while working the SLS Cambrian Farewell rail tour on 17th January 1965:

We also see 7802 at Westbury (Salop) on its penultimate working of the up Cambrian Coast Express, on Saturday, 30th October 1965 which Robert took from a window of a passing diesel unit:

Finally, the Fund would like to wish all our members and supporters at Happy Christmas and prosperous 2020. In the meantime, if you are interested in joining the Erlestoke Manor Fund, please visit our ‘Want to Help?’ Section here:

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