On a frosty, sunny February day I escaped to the Kent marshes for a day out on the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway.
Here’s Hurricane looking lovely in her blue livery. She hauled my train from Hythe to New Romney.
At New Romney I had an all day breakfast (very tasty), visited the model railway exhibition (good fun), and rummaged around the secondhand bookshop (yes, of course I brought a book!).
When I visited they were giving loco shed tours – how could I resist?
First to the carriage shed. Twice a year every carriage is given a service. They are lifted on a hydraulic jack, the bogies are removed and the chassis, brakes and bogies serviced. No pits here.
Then to the old loco shed. Surprisingly clean because it had just been given its weekly wash with kerosene to remove the grease.
The new engine shed is very spacious.
The RH&DR has large large workshops. Here’s Number 6 dismantled for overhaul.
And No. 6’s boiler..
The RH&D team can do most of the work themselves, and they contract out the boiler work and turning of loco drive wheels. They have some super CNC machines for making parts, such as these brass components.
In one part of the workshop, partly hidden, was a newly refurbished Northern Chief waiting for better weather before entering service. The RH&DR engineers have done a nice job, she looks great!
Outside in the yard was a regauged Simplex. They had left the keys in – I could have taken it for a spin.
Off to Dungeness, this time hauled by Green Goddess, the first RH&DR loco built in 1925. At 91 years old she’s still going strong and the ride to Dungeness was very enjoyable.
When we entered the shingle headland the view was superb.
Dungeness station was being refurbished and the trains were not stopping there. We went round the loop and headed back to New Romney.
I stopped for a coffee, changed trains and was hauled back to Hythe by Captain Howey. She’s not the prettiest loco but her livery is very showy.
Everyone on the RH&DR is helpful and friendly and they helped to make the day special.
Afterwards I walked into Hythe for steak and chips.
Now that’s what I call a day out!