The gate pins date back to the early days of Dartmoor Railway and an enthusiastic 'Risk Assessor' who decreed that gates be positioned between the canopy stanchions when quarry trains were operating. Apparently they thought diners at the buffet would throw themselves 'lemming like' in front of the quarry train.
So there was a 'great faff' in erecting and then removing the gates each week as the Sunday Rover train was allowed to operate 'ungated'. All quite bonkers of course and the railway quietly forgot about it after a change of management. Quarry trains then operated normally ungated and surprisingly no lemmings appeared!
Quite what will happen in the future if and when freight comes from the quarry will be interesting. But we now have a yellow line and regular announcements to stand behind it so it will probably be OK. Just have to hope the lemmings aren't colour blind or deaf?
You've possibly heard rumours about the Plym Valley Railway acquiring another pacer. Well, I can now confirm one has arrived today. GWR 143 618 left Bristol St Phillips Marsh depot today and arrive at the PVR just after midday. A quick dash down after work just in time to watch the last car being unloaded.
The 143 is fully operational and will be able to rescue the 142 if it was ever to fail as well as being able to run a four-car train. We are very grateful to GWR for considering us to the 143618.
I've attached a couple of pictures for the CRS website.
Regards, Ben Warren.
All the best, Paul.
Keith Turley, David Tozer & Clive Smith
I am inclined to agree with Roger Geach. It's not Laira. I go for Launceston, looking north.