Steam Railway Issue 534

In this month’s edition of Steam Railway, we find out just exactly what goes into preparing and running a main line railtour, by joining the support crew of ‘Merchant Navy’ No. 35028 Clan Line. With full behind-the-scenes access, we follow the volunteers as they prepare the big Bulleid ‘Pacific’ at Stewarts Lane depot the day before the tour and accompany them in the support coach during the trip itself, before observing the team as they dispose the locomotive at the end of a hard day’s work.

Staying in the south-east, we explore Kent’s 2ft 6in gauge Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway, fresh from its hugely successful ‘Three Brazils’ weekend and ten years after the line fully reopened following the threat of closure. We find out how the line bounced back from the brink and what its plans are for the future.

Elsewhere, we look at the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway’s industry-leading volunteer welfare block and how crucial it is for steam railways to care for their volunteers’ wellbeing; we explore the fascinating history of the unique surviving Haydock Foundry 0-6-0WT Bellerophon and its main line heritage; we celebrate the 80th anniversary of the ‘Austerity’ 0-6-0STs; we look back at two of Midland Compound No. 1000’s final railtours with the man who helped organise them; and we go on holiday with Paul ‘Piglet’ Middleton’s steam tram Lucie during its visit to Belgium.

As always, we bring you the very latest news, comment and analysis of the stories and issues affecting the world of steam preservation, with insight from industry leaders, all backed by stunning photography.

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Steam Railway Issue 534