Lucky at Lapford
Exe Valley Steam?
May I be allowed to comment on your Exe Valley item?
Some pictures are captioned about the 'diesel era' on theExe Valley. My understanding is that the diesel era lasted one day - the last day*.
For some strange reason, the WR trained the loco crews on diesels (even though I expect some left the railway service on closure) and operated the last day only with Class 22 haulage, not steam. This seems a weird and nasty thing to do, as many people must have come to "pay their last respects" and found steam gone.
I think the 3 and more coach trains were only run for the last day. Normally, one or two Autotrailers sufficed, although I have seen photos of an 'illegal' train with three Autotrailers being pushed, which was officially forbidden.
*As I understand it, latterly, only one round trip a day was by dmu, otherwise the line being a steam stronghold.
Sincerely, Eric Stuart Any comments or information please!
Furthermore It so happens that I am currently writing two articles: one on Trains That Went Backwards and the other a review of steam Push-Pull/Autotrains. It's surprising how little seems to be 'out there'. The fact is that any engineman who worked such trains is probably at least in his mid-70s now, so you can see that dipping into the 'collective memory' is getting problematic.
The Backwards train article is about such things as gravity shunting, that went on at such places as Yelverton, Maiden Newton, Helston and Banff in Scotland. The Cornish website has helped me somewhat, but, again, memories are rare!
if you get any 'gen' from any of your members, or if you could put out a request for any recolections of gravity shunting or Autotrain workings, that would be appreciated.
After all, much of our hobby is from folk sharing their recollections and passing them on; Again, can you help please. Eric Stuart