The Lavender Line
We are very excited to announce some provisional details for our first diesel gala in 9 years. With a huge line up of loco’s and rolling stock set to take stage over the weekend of 7th and 8th July the gala weekend is rapidly becoming a must see event for the diary.
Loco’s in action:
0-6-0 Ruston ‘Valiant’
0-4-0D Andrew Barclay
0-4-0 Planet No 15
Thumper Unit 1133
There have been ongoing talks within the operation team at the Lavender line to ensure that the gala weekend can be as interesting and varied as possible. It is hoped that our resident thumper unit 1133 will be operating out of platform 2 throughout the day giving you the opportunity to ride behind one of the southeast most memorable trains. 1133 retired from the mainline network in the summer of 2004 as 205033, soon after this she was transferred to the lavender line and has stayed ever since. One of our very dedicated volunteers has spent countless days and hours restoring the much neglected thumper unit to her former glory. 8 years on and 1133 is soon to emerge from the sheds with a new look set to put all other thumper units to shame, with her brand new southern green livery lined in orange its certainly going to be a sight to behold.
In-between thumper unit 1133 taking passenger trips from platform 2 we are hoping to run another service from platform 1 which will consist of our Wickham railbus, goods trains or passenger trains which will be shared between our resident Ruston diesel Valiant and one of our privately owned diesels Andrew Barclay which will be on passengers duties for the first time in over 10 years! This beautifully restored loco has been a resident at Isfield for a number for years, she did venture out the sheds in 2008 for trial runs but the owner wanted to ensure the vacuum system was fully functional before hauling any passenger services.
There should also be cab rides available throughout the day from the dock located next to platform 1 which will allow to getup close with one of our diesel shunters, either Valiant or number 15 Planet will take charge of these duties but more details on this will be available closer to the event.
This event is certainly shaping up to being yet another fantastic gala weekend and with an all diesel line up the air will be blue! There will be an intensive timetable in order all day from 10.30 until 5.00 with all trains departing Isfield station and calling at our new halt ‘Worth halt’ which is due to open mid June. Riley’s railway will also be in operation during the day with train rides behind one of the miniature diesels, all money raised for Riley’s railway goes towards charity and a very good cause. If you would like to know more on the diesel gala please email us or keep an eye out on our latest news for updates.
More details and timetables for the diesel gala will be available sooner to the event so watch this space!