Hello everyone. Todays outing was a simple yet very enjoyable one. It was my third and final rostered turn of the year at Ryton Pool Miniature Railway. As it was a Bank Holiday a double-crew was rostered so that two trains could be operated together. The Class 37 electric (a Compass House product) was used on a three car rake, as was my steed for the afternoon: 0-4-0 Sweet Pea "John Owen". I steamed the Pea using the usual parrafin-wood and electric blower, before switching to the steam blower when required. The little green engine soon came round whilst I oiled her up for her public service. The service was due to run from 1pm until 4pm as usual but the electric was in action from 12:30, carrying some early passengers. "JHO" meanwhile was still warming up on shed at this point.
A Smokey Start With "John Owen"
With the loco in steam myself and Steve lifted her onto the track. I then 'walked' the loco down to the carriage shed where we collected three passenger cars and coupled them up. The Pea then took us as an ECS move to Ryton Halt where the first passengers boarded. For the rest of the afternoon we worked an intensive service, alongside the Class 37 and her train. As the hours passed we carried 188 people: not bad for two little trains!
"John Owen" Waiting Behind The 37s Train
I drove the steamer on every one of her runs, and she was brilliant. She steamed well, pulled well and presented no problems. The passengers; particularly the adults; seemed to prefer the steamer, finding her perhaps a little more 'interesting' than the simple electric. The locomotive ran well right up until she was disposed and put away; the last train being hauled by the electric at just gone 4pm. All in all a very enjoyable afternoon. You can't beat driving this engine with a full load on a sunny afternoon :) . Cheers guys. Sam...