“On Shed” September 2019 Edition.


Preserving the steam locomotive legacy..and more..on film”


Now features at  Wonderful World of Trains & Planes, Birmingham


Image may contain: sky, cloud and outdoor

Pembroke Coast Express.(C) Robin Coombes.

Welcome..and News

Editor’s Selection: Coal.

Editor’s Selection: An Appreciation-Tim Fischer (3 May 1946 – 22 August 2019)

Editor’s Selection: A House with a View (WHR!!)

100 Trains….the journey so far….
Steam Tube Photographic File
Steam Tube Video Vault
Steam Tube Blogs
Tornado…The Story so far…
New & ReBuild News.
B & O Railroad Museum TV
Mainline Steam Schedule
On This Day in History.
Radstock to Frome Railway Project
Christian Wolmar… Railway Historian.
Around the UK’s Heritage Railways A – Z “R”
30742 Charters
Back Page.

Welcome..and News

A warm welcome to this September 2019 edition of “On Shed”, the monthly magazine of “Steam Tube — The Home of Steam on the Net!”

The usual features are here..but there are a couple or so new items for you to ponder and enjoy.

Firstly, a tribute to the late Tim Fischer, former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia, and Australian Ambassador to the Holy See….and a great supporter of railway preservation. His contributions to Steam Tube  are noted here.

Do you fancy the thought of living in a cottage in Snowdonia close by the Welsh Highland Railway, and Tan-y-bwlch Station? The contact me for more information.

And we are pleased to add the 47XX Project to the listing of new and rebuild projects currently underway.

Editor’s Selection: Coal.

This is a subject that is not going to go away anytime soon, and is causing deep disquiet in some circles. Recent news items have added to this feeling.

Behind the scenes, though, much effort is being expended in making representations to governments on the heritage sector’s significant contribution to local economies, not least in the number of tourists that frequent heritage railways to enjoy the experience. Of course, the “banning” of coal could have the effect of all mines closing ..leaving no supplies for the sector, except to import..and very expensively at that. So something needs to be done.

WATTRAIN is at the forefront in making such representations in this matter. You could join and add your thoughts on the subject.  www.wattrain.net

Editor’s Selection:

An Appreciation-Tim Fischer (3 May 1946 – 22 August 2019) 

I first met Tim Fischer at the inaugural WATTRAIN Congress at the National Railway Museum,York in October 2012.

Indeed, that was a momentous day, not just because I was able to meet a pillar of the preservation and heritage movement world-wide, but also because that was the day when the A4 Pacifics 60008 Dwight.D.Eisenhower and 60010 Dominion of Canada came into the country (Liverpool Docks) in preparation for the Big Six Gathering in 2013.

The quality that struck me most was his integrity, his being true to himself and his deeply held values and principles.

This was highlighted for me when he announced to the gathering that he was not going to be travelling behind Tornado on the arranged charter trip for visitors to the Congress. His reason? He was disappointed that certain technical adjustments to the A1 were not included in the building of “Tornado”, even though these refinements would not be visible.
As I was developing my own website “Steam Tube” at the time….indeed, that was the reason an invitation to speak at the Congress was extended .. he very kindly provided materials for inclusion. I am deeply grateful for his contributions.

Indeed, he has provided a post script to the last WATTRAIN newsletter and its featuring of the Papal Train……..

Tim Fischer never stood still. He was not just about the past, and heritage preservation.

He was about supporting innovative technologies that would extend the life of all things preservation and enhance the visitor experience.(See WATTRAIN Newsletter for July & August 2019.Contribution from Shaun McMahon)
He has made some suggestions as to the material that should be included in WATTRAIN..such as a locomotive hall of fame….

It would be appropriate that this section of the website should bear his name, reminding us of his contribution to WATTRAIN and the world railway heritage and preservation movement.

You may like to watch this documentary on Tim Fischer’s life from ABC Australia on YouTube.. “Trains, family and politics: Tim Fischer’s well-lived life | Australian Story”

Editor’s Selection: A House with a View (WHR!!)

Have you ever wanted to own a house within sight and sound of a heritage railway of note?

Well, the editor knows of such a house in Maentwrog, just over a mile away from Tanybwlch Station on the Welsh Highland Railway in the heart of Snowdonia!

The following photos give an idea of the location and the property. Please feel free to send any enquiries to me at peterlewis2@gmail.com. I will forward to the appropriate person!!


Tan y blwch Station in 1900 and 2008 (Wikipedia images) 

100 Trains….the journey so far

One epic, and collaborative, voyage. 40 individual train trips.

The Wheelchair Tour of Scotland 2019.

I would prefer to make this journey in one go. However, the progression of my condition now means that I’m limited to about one week away at a time, at most.

Therefore, the tour will be made in two stages (possibly three depending on the future progression of my ataxia).

With each stage being centred around my participation in a specific Kiltwalk. First Glasgow. Followed by Dundee. And possibly Edinburgh too.

The tour will also be train-based. Highlighting the current partnership between MND Scotland and the Scotrail Alliance.

The tour will also showcase the natural beauty, and attractions, of Scotland. Attractions that are easily accessible by rail. Scotland really is very lucky to have some of the most beautiful railway lines, not just in Europe but, on the planet.

Stage 1. Glasgow Kiltwalk, West Highland Railway, Isle of Skye, Inverness, Edinburgh.

Stage 2. Stirling, Dundee Kiltwalk, Aberdeen, Inverness, Thurso/Wick.

Stage 3 (possible). Falkirk, Borders, Berwick-upon-Tweed, Edinburgh Kiltwalk.

A Wee Bit of Personal History:

I was diagnosed with spinocerebellar ataxia in 2015.

Although I was told that I would eventually need to use a wheelchair (I now do), I could still walk quite well at that stage – although with the, increasing, need of a walking stick.

So I used my final walking days to raise funds and awareness of this rare condition (I raised £1,100 during previous “walking” events – the longest of which was a 500 mile walk in Spain).

Now though, the progression of my ataxia means that my wings have been clipped somewhat. So all future fundraising can only be in Scotland from now on (and even closer to home in Ayrshire in the future perhaps?).

I have chosen MND Scotland as the beneficiary this time. Ataxia is so rare that there is no Scotland-specific charity for the condition, but it has similarities to MND: a neurological condition affecting motor abilities – and similarly incurable at present.

And it is this “at present” which is so important.

If a cure can be found, it will be found. But only as a result of medical research. Which requires funding.

So, to do “my bit”….


“Steam Tube- The Home of Steam on the Net!”

Steam Tube is now found on Facebook….and whoever wishes may post their latest videos and photographs for all to see and share. The Facebook page has now had over 1,000 likes! And Rail Tube, a 24/7 rolling railway news blog has 1,500 plus likes! So, please feel free to add to the pages, and lets make Steam Tube live up to its ambitious tag line (which was what was added after the first video and photograph was uploaded!!)-“Steam Tube – The Home of Steam On The Net!

Steam Tube Blogs.

Over the past year we have been able to share some excellent blogs, notably “Steam Age Daydreams”..and there have been other contributors Chris Eden Green, Ronik24, Chris Spencer and Dick Bodily to name but a few ..

Please feel free to alert us to any other steam related blogs that will help build a significant historical resource for others to enjoy.


Tornado…The Story so far…


  • Saturday 7th September – ‘The Aberdonian’ – Edinburgh to Aberdeen and return – bookings through Tornado Railtours
  • Saturday 28th September – ‘The North Briton’ – London and East Coast stations to Carlisle via the Settle and Carlisle Railway and return (re-scheduled from 17th August) – bookings through Tornado Railtours
  • Saturday 5th October – ‘The Pennine Explorer’ – Leicester to Carlisle via the Settle and Carlisle Railway and return with pick ups at Loughborough, Derby, Chesterfield and Sheffield – bookings through Tornado Railtours
  • Saturday 2nd November – ‘The Illuminati’ – West Midlands to Blackpool Illuminations – bookings through Tornado Railtours
  • Saturday 7th December – ‘The Christmas Bath and Bristol Express’ – West Midlands to Bath and Bristol Christmas Markets – bookings through Tornado Railtours
  • Sunday 8th December – London to Lincoln Christmas Market – bookings through Steam Dreams
  • Saturday 14th December – ‘The Christmas White Rose’ – London to York and return (Tornado from London to York, Union of South Africa from York to London) – bookings through The Railway Touring Company
  • 2020
  • Saturday 21st March – York to Edinburgh and return with pick-ups at Durham and Newcastle – bookings through The Railway Touring Company

The Trust respectfully requests that anyone wanting to see Tornado follows the rules of the railway and only goes where permitted.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Tornado-at-Stratford-Parkway-1650-23rd-March-2019-.-2-1024x575.jpg

60163 Tornado passing through Stratford Parkway at 1650 on return leg to Manchester Piccadilly with “The Bard of Avon” Rail tour,Saturday 23rd March 2019.

New & ReBuild News.

(Click on Image!)





Big Boy




And we are pleased to add information on another New Build project!!

Rebuilding the ultimate British 2-8-0


Churchward’s last great masterpiece, the 47XX mixed traffic 2-8-0, is among the most iconic locomotives ever produced for the Great Western Railway. Only nine of these huge locomotives were built, primarily for fast overnight freight work, earning them the nickname ‘Night Owls’.

Ironically the heyday for the class only came in the post-nationalisation years when the potential of these locomotives for use on heavy Summer Saturday passenger trains was recognised. In recognition of this they were turned out in fully lined BR passenger green livery.

None of the class survived, but over the years many people have expressed a desire to see a 47XX 2-8-0 in action again. Now the Great Western Society is creating a new member of the class, No 4709.

We hope you will enjoy visiting this website regularly to keep up to date with the build progress and discover how you can help.



B & O Railroad Museum TV

Each month the B&O TV Network, starring actor Michael Gross, spotlights a moment in B&O Railroad history. Take a journey into the past and view one or all of these episodes posted on YouTube.

Mainline Steam Schedule

This listing is offered in good faith, so there is no guarantee offered or implied.Please confirm running with the relevant tour operator.

And adhere, please, to Network Rail’s photographic guidelines…..HERE

The tour schedule for September 2019..…and beyond…can be found  at Railway Herald

5043 at Honeybourne 4th October 2014

On This Day in History.


First Great Central Railway Class 8K 2-8-0 freight locomotive, No. 966, is turned out of its Gorton locomotive works, England. The class, designed by John G. Robinson, will exceed 650 in total and see overseas service during World War I.

01/09/1905 The Witham rail crash in England kills 11


William Dean, Chief Mechanical Engineer of Great Western Railway of England 1877-1902 (b. 1840).


Restored “Big Boy” No 4014 on post rebuild test run. (May 2019) Image Courtesy Bob LaPrelle.

Union Pacific Railroad take delivery of the first “Big Boy” steam locomotive.
By 1940, the National Defense Act encouraged railroads to develop faster, more powerful locomotives in preparation for wartime requirements. Union Pacific responded with the 4-8-8-4 Class 4000 Big Boy, a 132-foot long, 1.2 million-pound hulk. Because of its great length, the frame was articulated, or hinged, to allow it to negotiate curves. Its power was ideally suited to climb the 1.14 percent grade of the Wasatch Mountains. The last Big Boy made its final run in July 1959. There are seven Big Boys on public display in various cities around the country. They can be found in St. Louis, Missouri; Dallas, Texas; Omaha, Nebraska; Denver, Colorado; Scranton, Pennsylvania; Green Bay, Wisconsin; and Cheyenne, Wyoming.


The replacement South Western franchise, awarded to a joint venture of FirstGroup and MTR Europe, was formally launched at London Waterloo on September 4. The franchise had begun on August 20,


Last ‘Cornishman’ express ran over the Stratford-upon-Avon to Cheltenham route: this and other express trains were re-routed via the Birmingham – Gloucester line.


The Liverpool and Manchester Railway opened.
During the ceremony, William Huskisson MP, became the first person to be killed by a train.


Beyer, Peacock and Company of Manchester, England, steam the first Garratt articulated steam locomotive built to the design of Herbert William Garratt, K Class No. K1 for the Tasmanian Government Railways’ North East Dundas Tramway

17/09/1912 The Ditton Junction rail crash near Widnes in England kills 15.


Oliver Bulleid, chief mechanical engineer of the Southern Railway (Great Britain) 1937-1948, born in New Zealand (d. 1970).


14 die as a result of the Grantham rail accident on the Great Northern Railway (Great Britain) when a sleeping car train is derailed passing through Grantham railway station at excessive speed.

24/09/1917 The Bere Ferrers rail accident in England kills 10 New Zealand soldiers


Herbert William Garratt, English steam locomotive builder and inventor of the Garratt locomotive type (b. 1864)


The Stockton Darlington Railway opened. It was the first passenger rail service, the steam locomotive travelled at 10mph.

27/09/1919 September 27–October 6 

Railway workers in the United Kingdom stage a strike, called by the National Union of Railwaymen.


Third class sleeping cars are introduced on those British railways providing such a service


Formal opening of first electrified section of Giant’s Causeway Tramway in Ireland, utilising hydroelectricity

Radstock to Frome Railway Project

Welcome to The Radstock to Frome Railway Trust and the Radstock to Frome Railway Project. We are a charitable organisation with the primary aim of assisting the reopening of the redundant railway line between Radstock and Great Elm (near Frome), with the aspiration at a later stage to extend the railway back to Frome junction and reconnect with the national rail network.

This is a community interest venture, and in order to succeed need your support. We are currently discussing the project with other interested parties to maximise the support and our capabilities to make a success of this project.

Radstock is a town has a fine industrial heritage and a bright future ahead. The Radstock to Frome Railway Trust is committed to assisting the opening of the railway as a valuable resource for the community. A designated section of the former railway land (inside Area 3) has been set aside for the possible reinstatement of a rail link there. Our organisation will maximise Radstock’s potential as a tourist destination, situated between and near the historic cities of Bath and Wells, and play an instrumental part in reviving the local economy.

However, we are unable to do all this without your help and kind generosity. On the 2 nd October 2014 The Somer-Rail Trust was registered by the Charity Commission as a charity in England and Wales (1158749). As a group we are steadily increasing in number and would appreciate your help and support moving forward with this project, if you can assist us please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Our Facebook/Twitter group pages are an excellent way to share memories, and view photographs (old and new) of the line. The Trust’s quarterly newsletter ‘Along the Lines’ includes all the latest developments and a background history of the railway.

Thank you for your interest in the Radstock to Frome Railway Project.

Christian Wolmar… Railway Historian.

Book review: The English Railway Station

Christian Wolmar is a regular speaker at conferences, meetings and seminars both in the UK and abroad on transport and, specifically, rail matters. He often speaks at conferences on the latest development in the rail and transport industries and gives lectures on all his rail history books

Christian gives around 30 talks per year and has spoken all around the country, as well as in Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, France, the United States and Australia where he has twice been invited to provide his expertise. He has given two lectures at the Royal Geographic Society.

The Story of Crossrail

Latest Book: The Story of Crossrail

Around the UK’s Heritage Railways A – Z “W“etc Here


The World Alliance of Tourist Trams & Trains       New Europe Railway Heritage Trust Logo

30742 Charters


Back Page:

Image may contain: one or more people

Oh Mister Porter.(C) Robin Coombes.