The Lavender Line
Isfield Station
Nr Uckfield
East Sussex
TN22 5XB

Lavender Line News

26th September 2014

Final October Gala details now available!

We are now just over a week away until our annual October Gala weekend kicks off on Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th October.

There is plenty to keep you entertained over the weekend including a great selection of home fleet locos in action, visiting vintage vehicles and of course the atmosphere of a Gala weekend.

What’s happening over the Gala weekend-?

A Gala weekend is a chance for the Lavender Line to show off its home fleet of both steam and diesel locos. We will be running 2 steam engines, 2 diesels and of course of beautifully restored DEMU Thumper unit 1133. Expect an intensive timetable, top and tail specials (locos either end of the train), visiting traction engines, classic cars and our famous Cinders Buffet where you will find our well known full English breakfasts which will be available over both days.

Highlights of the Gala weekend-

• 2 Steam engines, 0-6-0ST Kitson Austin 1 and 0-4-0VBT Cockerill Yvonne

• 2 Diesels, 0-4-0DM Andrew Barclay 805 and 0-6-0DH Ruston Valiant

• DEMU Thumper unit 1133 in Southern Green

• Intensive timetables

• Riley’s miniature railway by platform 2

• Visiting vintage vehicles including traction engines, steam rollers, steam wagons, classic cars, classic buses and musical organs

• Top and tail specials with both steam engines

• Brake van rides from Dock platform

• Cab rides from Dock platform

• Parallel running with main service train

• Early bird specials

• Full site access including beautiful walks and photographic opportunities at Worth halt

• Great selection of real ales on offer at the Laughing Fish pub

The stars of the show-

Steam locomotives:

0-6-0ST Kitson Austin 1- Built in Leeds 1932 Austin 1 was brought brand new by the Austin motor works in Longbridge for shunting duties around the yards. There were 3 steam engines named Austin, 1, 2 and 3. Only Austin 1 has survived into preservation. She arrived at Isfield in 2003 and after a short overhaul in 2008 she returned to the railway in 2010 and has been on long term loan from the Llangollen railway ever since.

0-4-0VBT Cockerill Yvonne- This unique looking vertical boiler tank loco arrived at the railway in March of this year with the intention to run her to the end of the year where her 10 year boiler ticket expires. Built in Belgium 1920 she spent most of her working life at the Brussels gas works as a slow speed shunter. After passing through several hands she is now owned by society member Colin who takes much pride and care in Yvonne. Take note of the unique and sometimes loud bark from her chimney when hauling heavy loads.

Diesels locomotives:

0-4-0DM Andrew Barclay 805- Works number 805 was built for the war department in 1941 by Andrew Barclay of Scotland. A true war hero, 805 spent much of the war helping with the efforts to defend Britain as an unsung hero of the railways. She too has passed through several hands with some missing history during the late 1950’ and 60’s. 805 has been under going trials over the years with slight teething issues but she was formally launched into service at the railways diesel Gala back in July this year. She will be seen on parallel runs and brake van ride duties from the dock platform on the Sunday of the Gala weekend.

0-6-0DH Ruston Valiant- Known as ‘The Ruston’ to many members at the railway, this reliable and powerful diesel has served the railway well over the past 5 years. Built in 1962 by the Ruston foundry she was built as a powerful yard shunter and was used by network rail right up until 2005. Ruston was a replacement for the Lavender Lines former steam engine ‘Blackie’ which suffered boiler issues in 2003, she was sold and Valiant took her place as the railways own loco. ‘The ‘Ruston’ will be on parallel run and brake van duties on the Saturday of the Gala weekend from the dock platform.

DEMU Berkshire unit Thumper 1133- There is no doubt that one of the biggest stars of the Gala will be our very own Thumper unit 1133 of which has just returned to full time service after an 8 year restoration job. Our ever dedicated Thumper specialist Chris has spent countless hours and days ensuring that 1133 is one of the best examples of a Thumper unit you will see. Turned out in a beautiful Southern Green livery she is the pride of the Lavender Line. 1133 will be in service on both Saturday and Sunday of the Gala weekend running from platform 1.

Timetables and what’s happening-

There is a lot happening over the Gala weekend which involves both our steam and diesel fleet including top and tailing, parallel departures, cab rides and lots more!

Locomotives in action:

0-6-0ST Kitson Austin 1

0-4-0VBT Cockerill Yvonne

0-4-0DM Andrew Barclay 805

0-6-0DH Ruston Valiant

DEMU Thumper 1133

10.00- Thumper ( platform 1)

10.30- Austin 1 & Yvonne with 108 & royal coach ( platform 2)

11.00- Thumper ( platform 1)

11.30- Austin 1 & Yvonne with 108 & royal coach ( platform 2)

12.00- Thumper ( platform 1)

12.30- Austin 1 & Yvonne with 108 & royal coach ( platform 2)

13.00- Thumper ( platform 1)

13.30- Austin 1 & Yvonne with 108 & royal coach ( platform 2)

14.00- Thumper ( platform 1)

14.30- Austin 1 & Yvonne with 108 & royal coach ( platform 2)

15.00- Thumper ( platform 1)

15.30- Austin 1 & Yvonne with 108 & royal coach ( platform 2)

16.00- Thumper ( platform 1)

16.30- Austin 1 & Yvonne with 108 & royal coach ( platform 2)

17.00- Thumper ( platform 1) Last round trip.

Cab rides will be available from 10.00am on both days from the dock platform, 0-6-0DH Ruston Valiant will be on brake van and cab ride duties for Saturday 4th with 0-4-0DM Andrew Barclay 805 taking over duties on Sunday 5th.

There will be parallel runs from the dock platform to the overhead bridge when a train departs either platform 1 or platform 2, this parallel running offers you a unique view of the train departing whilst the two trains make their way out of Isfield station.

Where to eat during the day-

Cinders buffet:

The railways Cinders buffet will be open from 8.30am to 5.00pm with hot food being served until 4.00pm. Our famous full English breakfasts will be available from 8.30am both days ensuring the perfect way to set up your day! Lunch will also be available at Cinders buffet during the day with extra sandwiches and cold snacks also available.

Laughing Fish pub:

If you are staying the whole day how about kicking your day off with one of our full English breakfasts then carrying it on with a pub lunch. The Laughing Fish pub located next to the Lavender Line will be serving food throughout the weekend from 12.00pm with a fantastic selection of local real ales on offer too, what a great excuse to visit!

What are the prices for the Gala weekend?

This year we are offering our Gala entry tickets our lowest prices to date. The ticket will allow you unlimited train rides throughout the day, full site access which includes the play area, signal box, station access and walks around Worth woods at Worth halt, access to see the visiting vintage vehicles, cab rides from the dock platform and the opportunity to experience cab rides on both steam and diesels(Subject to a small donation fee for cab rides)

Our lowest Gala prices ever!

Adults- £10.00

Children aged 3-15 - £7.00

Children under 3- Free

Senior citizen- £8.00

Family ticket (2 Adults and 3 children) - £30.00

If you would like to enjoy a cab rides on either our steam or diesel locos just ask the driver on the day, one full round trip from Isfield to Worth halt will be £5.00 for steam and a donation of your choice on our diesels from the dock platform. Unfortunately we cannot guarantee cab rides on our Thumper unit. For steam footplate rides you must be aged 14 or over and be wearing suitable clothing.

Where to park over the Gala weekend:

This year the public car park will be located in the field which neighbours the Lavender Line just behind the Laughing Fish pub. The display of vintage vehicles will be in the railways car park located next to the station. Access to the station and site will be via the new gate located half way up the car park. Final details of how to enter the field for car parking will be confirmed this coming Sunday on the latest news section.

What is expected to be in the vintage vehicle display:

There is a great selection of visiting vintage vehicles set to be displayed over the Gala weekend with something for everyone whether you’re a classic car lover or a steam enthusiast.

• Classic cars

• MG Owners club visiting

• Steam rollers

• Traction engines

• Steam wagons

• Buses

• Vintage musical organs

• Classic lorries

• Classic motorcycles

The display for this years Gala weekend will be held in the railways hard standing car park, the public car will be located in the field next to the railway just behind the Laughing Fish pub as stated in the section for parking above.

We are very much looking forward to welcoming you to our 4th Annual October Gala weekend which is expected to be a fantastic event. There is something for everyone over the Gala weekend from steam trains to classic cars, to quiet countryside walks and intensive train departures.

More information on the parking will be avalible this coming Sunday, the public car park will be in the field neighbouring the railway behind the Laughhing Fish pub with the display of classic vehicles located in the railways