How good it is to see LILIAN now restored, refurbished and back from her major refit. She had just been lit up for the first time when I saw her, and Nigel wondering what pipes or joints may require that extra bit of tightening. At this stage LILIAN was still under wraps minus her tender and looking rather angry, but she heard Nigel say that she might be back in service the next week. The mood change on this news was perceptible! After some finer points of adjustment round in Toad Hall – all rather like the Swindon Works Trials Unit in old GWR days – LILIAN entered service at the end of June, and has since been in regular use when it’s not raining!
At the same time as LILIAN was being lit up again, there was a party from MARY TAVY primary school on a visit. They were all so busy in the museum with their clipboards and questionnaires making the most of their day. Their interest in everything was infectious and just one of the things that makes a visit to LSR so different and enthralling. There was LILIAN covering them in smoke. Were they worried – not at all, although what their mothers would say about their smart uniforms at the end of the day might be another matter.
The Season is now in full swing, with Live Steam as always every day ( except Saturdays when the A team â€“ and the engines have a much needed day of rest). It is 52 years now since the last running of the famous ‘Atlantic Coast Express’ through Launceston, with the final run on 5th September 1964, and then the final closure of the line 50 years ago in October 1966. Had Nigel and Kay decided not to come to Launceston there would not now be any railway left in North Cornwall at all, let alone something that has become a gem. Ideas might be afoot to do something perhaps special in October to mark the occasion, so watch out for future developments.
If you want a real treat have a look at this video on Youtube of “The Snowdonian Limited 2016“. You will find VELINHELI (on her grand summer holiday) at the head of the Special doing sterling work on the Ffestiniog Railway triple heading from Porthmadoc up to Blaenau Ffestiniog. Quite a sight, and we think Velinheli is doing all the work! Enjoy.
Louise in the café is reporting very brisk business, with great demand for her home produced goodies. Open every day the railway is running from 1030 onwards. Well worth a visit either before or after a trip up the line.