A quick update from Stow station where a good deal of construction work has been going on. The down side now has large retaining walls which provide the sloped access to the footbridge. Work is also getting underway on the station car park area.
A day of pleasant sunshine brought a good number of volunteers up the hill, which allowed a variety of jobs to be done.
The main task of the day was to move the bracket signal which is going to be located at the southern end of the platform, from its storage site down near the Eskbank footbridge. Once safely positioned on the trolleys the assembly was pushed up the hill. The signal will now be cleaned up and painted ready for lifting into position, hopefully sometime in April.
Further work was carried out on the point rodding run, with the area around the compensator benches compacted using the whacker, to reduce any chance of lateral movement when the levers are being thrown. Further leveling and packing remains to be done, but it is pleasing to see this job moving forward.
Alan and Bill were on site and making a start on the exhibition coach, ready for the new season.
Peter and Tom were busy in the old Mk1 coach. With Davie making further progress on the coupling rods on the Fowler. Chris took advantage of the mild conditions to start touching up the white paintwork on the platform edge.
Last, but by no means least, Joe was busy with a number of gardening jobs. These included building a new box display for the platform, which will give us lovely display of spring flowers. He also has a large amount of spring flowers to plant in the area around the platform.
The terminus of the line at Tweedbank now has track and is looking more like a railway than the building site it has been so far. The progress along the line continues at a good pace although there is still a huge amount to do. Tweedbank is starting to take on the look of a reasonable terminus station, rather than the bus stop type halt it could easily of been, but for the lobbying of groups like the ‘Campaign for Borders Rail’.
A milder day at Whitrope saw a number of volunteers on site and several jobs progressed.
A small S & T gang worked on the point rodding run, with the point blades now connected up to the lever frame, allowing the point to be moved from the lever frame. There is still a large amount of adjustment to be made to the whole run before everything operates as it should, but it was nice to see the point moving when the lever was pulled. Hopefully this job will continue to progress over the next few weekends.
Alan and Bill were up working on the exhibition coach in preparation for the new season. Tom and Peter were working on various jobs including giving the brass-work on the Ruston a good polish. Chris was touching up various bits of paintwork and Davie has turned his attention to the coupling rod on the Fowler.
The first track weekend of the year saw dry but rather cold conditions on site.
A very good turn out of volunteers on Friday, Saturday and Sunday saw a number of jobs undertaken. The main focus was work on the second track in the cutting down to the tunnel, with excellent progress being made. All the materials unloaded last weekend were used up and several more panels of track are now complete.
Work continued on the point rodding runs with the benches for the angle cranks set up. These are composed of two large concrete blocks and two hardwood sleepers, so everything is very heavy. Lots of huffing and puffing was required to finalize the location of the bench, but it is there now.
Elsewhere the railbus received some work to the air system and an ‘A’ exam.
Joe was up working on a gate for the platform and potting up bulbs for the new season.
Saturday also saw the appearance of the latest thing in ballast laying technology, fresh from Tony’s workshop. Unfortunately no photographs are currently available as it is a highly secret prototype, keeping watching this site for further news.
Considering the temperature it was great to see such a good turn out of volunteers, well done everyone.
We have just received some photographs taken earlier today of the completion of the rail laying with the rails now in place all the way to the Tweedbank terminal. There is still a huge amount of work to do on the line before it is handed over to the operating division, but today marks a significant step in the reinstatement of this first section of the Waverley Line.
All photos courtesy of Mr A. Hadwin
With track-laying back underway the track-laying teams are making making rapid progress towards there final destination at Tweedbank. Rails are now well into Galashiels and will soon pass through the site of the old Galashiels station. Although there is still much work to do we are fast approaching the seminal moment when rails are in place along all of the route.
A good number of volunteers on site enjoyed a pleasant winters day at Whitrope. There were a couple of inches of snow on the ground but strong winter sunshine made for good working conditions. Tony dropped of a load of pw gear ready for the upcoming track weekend.
Work continued on a number of other jobs around the site.
The opportunity was also taken to do some driver training runs in snowy conditions.