Hednesford News – Museum of Cannock Chase
Transformed gallery opens doors to visitors
Published on Thursday 3rd April 2014
A GALLERY celebrating the mining heritage of Cannock Chase has opened its doors following a £150,000 transformation.
Mining Memories, at The Museum of Cannock Chase, provides a new, permanent coal mining gallery for the local community, allowing people to experience a ‘day in the life’ of a miner and explore features of the mines. Visitors can try out interactive displays including a crawl-through tunnel.
The project, which received a £97,600 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, has also created an education package to make sure people of all ages get the maximum benefit from their experience at the museum.
Stuart Murray, Chief Executive of leisure and culture provider WLCT which manages the museum, said: “Mining Memories is a spectacular exhibition which brings the history of the Cannock Chase coalfield to life, providing a place for local people to go to reminisce and for young people in particular to learn about this important part of the district’s heritage. I’m delighted that we have been able to bring this project to fruition.”
Councillors were invited to visit the gallery earlier this week for a sneak preview of the gallery.
Councillor Christine Mitchell, Leader of Culture and Sport said: “The newly transformed gallery is a wonderful exhibition which captures the mining history of our District and brings it to life. I would encourage everyone to visit the Museum and find out about the District’s heritage.”
Reyahn King, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund West Midlands, said: “Coal mining was the backbone of the local economy and now the stories of the miners and the communities it supported can be told, in an imaginative and engaging way, especially to the younger generation.”
A special event celebrating the opening of the new gallery is being planned for June 28.
The museum is open from Monday-Friday, 11am-4pm (last admission 3.30pm) until Good Friday. From Easter Saturday until the end of September it is open daily, 11am-5pm (last admission 4.30pm).
For full details of opening hours, visit http://www.wlct.org/museumofcannockchase
Posted in Hednesford, News
Tagged Aldridge, Bloxwich, Brownhills, Burntwood, Cannock, CCMHS, Chasetown, Cheslyn Hay, Coal Mining, Great Wyrley, Hazel Slade, Heath Hayes, Hednesford, Heritage Lottery Fund, Lichfield, Mining Memories, Norton Canes, Pelsall, Staffordshire, The Museum of Cannock Chase, Walsall, Walsall Wood, WLCT, Wolverhampton
‘Gervase’ ready for the Industrial Gala,
March 29th & 30th 2014
267 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces
From Chasewater News – Spring 2003
Part 7 – Chasewater Heaths & Diesel News
Posted in Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces, News
Tagged Aldridge, Bloxwich, Brownhills, Burntwood, Cannock, Chasetown, Chasewater Railway Industrial Gala, Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces, Cheslyn Hay, Diesel, Great Wyrley, Hazel Slade, Heath Hayes, Hednesford, Lichfield, Norton Canes, Old Railway Lines, Pelsall, Staffordshire, Walsall, Walsall Wood, Wolverhampton
Successful Train Pull at the
Ecclesbourne Valley Railway
A team of volunteers from Derby’s Network Rail Branch successfully undertook a train pull challenge in aid of Sport Relief at Wirksworth Station.
The team of 28 participants hauled 27 tonne ‘Iris the Railcar’ for approximately 500 yards uphill into Wirksworth Station to the cheers of a packed platform of well wishers.
The event was the brainchild of Michael Nicholl from Derby, who started planning last year for the train pull attempt after watching a plane pull effort at Gatwick Airport. Michael contacted the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway for their help in hosting the challenge and it was fitting that that a Derby built DMU was chosen for the challenge.
Tom Tait the Railway’s Commercial Manager commented, “We were very happy to host this special event and congratulate the Network Rail Team in successfully completing the train pull which took a tremendous effort.”
The spotlight will be upon ‘Iris’ again in the near future with plans in place for her to be exhibited at Derby as part of the ‘Celebrating 175 Years of Derbyshire Railways’ events scheduled for September this year.
Driver Retires after Twenty Years
A train driver has retired after driving on the Matlock to Nottingham Branch line for twenty years.
Local train driver David Bevington visited the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway to take the controls of heritage railcar ‘Iris’ as part of a retirement gift organised by Phil Helme, Driver Manager at East Midlands Trains.
David started his railway career as a guard before realising a boyhood dream of becoming a train driver. He is a keen enthusiast of both steam and diesel locomotives and has always wanted to take the controls of a heritage train. The visit fuelled David’s passion for a bygone era and he has decided that much of his new found spare time will be spent as a volunteer on the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway.
Retired Driver David takes the controls
About the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway:
Wyvern Rail plc has worked with the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway Association to reopen the Duffield to Wirksworth railway in the heart of Derbyshire.
The line passes through the beautiful Ecclesbourne Valley to the award winning and beautifully restored town of Wirksworth, nestling in the foothills of the Peak District.
The line is a time capsule, with its intermediate stations largely intact and the layout at Wirksworth virtually unchanged since the days of steam.
There are 9 miles of single-track railway, which meet the Midland Main Line at Duffield Junction near Derby. There are five station sites, two level crossings, a yard with extensive sidings and a mineral branch to the old Middlepeak quarry at Wirksworth.
Services run at weekends between March and October and midweek throughout the summer and are timed to connect with Derwent Valley Line services between Nottingham, Derby and Matlock operated by East Midlands Trains.
CANNOCK CHASE MINING HISTORICAL SOCIETY
The first talk of this year will take place Wednesday 26th March 2014 at 3.00 p.m at our usual venue the Museum of Cannock Chase.
The talk will be by Alan Hill and is entitled the “Panama Canal”
The second talk will be on Wednesday 21st May 2014 at 3.00pm. Again at our usual venue the Museum of Cannock Chase.
The talk will be on “South Staffs Water” and will be given by David Moore.
All our talks are open to the general public so make an effort to attend and bring a friend.
Please see and note, the following has now been confirmed:
Hednesford Mining Memorial Phase III
Saturday 26th April 2014 – 2pm
Posted in Hednesford, News
Tagged Aldridge, Bloxwich, Brownhills, Burntwood, Cannock, Cannock Chase Mining Historical Society, CCMHS, Chasetown, Cheslyn Hay, Coal Mining, Great Wyrley, Heath Hayes, Hednesford, Hednesford Mining Memorial Phase III, Lichfield, Museum of Cannock Chase, Norton Canes, Pelsall, Staffordshire, Walsall, Wolverhampton
Railway Restoration Team Wins National Award
Class 119 vehicle W51073 as it emerges from the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway’s restoration
A team of volunteers from the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway has won the prestigious Railcar of the year award for their work in restoring a rare class 119 Diesel Multiple Unit. Diesel railcar enthusiasts throughout the UK have bestowed the accolade on the team following an annual competition that has restorers from other heritage railways throughout the country entering the highly respected contest.
In November 2008 the small team of volunteers decided to take on the mammoth task of restoring the unit to its former glory. The unit was withdrawn from service in 1993 and was an empty shell when it arrived at the railway in 2006.
The project represents the first full restoration that has taken place at the railway. The skills and expertise of the restoration team have been further recognised as other heritage railways are now sending their units for restoration and maintenance for the award winning team of volunteers to work their magic on.
Leigh Gration, the Team Leader commented “The class 119 is the only one of its class carrying passengers in preservation and I am very proud of the quality of work and dedication of the team in completing such an epic undertaking within such a short timescale.”
Opportunities will be announced on the railway’s website for passengers to ride with the driver in the cab or the chance to take the controls of the award-winning vehicle
W51073 undergoing her initial trials
WIRKSWORTH TO PROVIDE FIRST RAILCAR FOR THE BLUEBELL RAILWAY
HISTORIC FIRST VISIT WILL USE DERBYSHIRE-RESTORED CARRIAGES
Wirksworth, 30 December 2013: The Bluebell Railway has hired a two-car Diesel Railcar from the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway at Wirksworth, Derbyshire. The set will operate some winter weekend services on the Bluebell Railway between East Grinstead and Horsted Keynes whilst maintenance works take place on the line between Horsted Keynes and Sheffield Park.
The arrival of these railcars will represent a first for the Bluebell railway as they will be the first ever to visit the line: Passenger services were withdrawn in 1958 and diesel railcars seldom ventured into Sussex.
The two carriages have been refurbished maintained and repainted by volunteers from the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway DMU Group.Over the past decade, this group of youthful volunteers has created a facility at Wirksworth dedicated to the restoration and operation of Diesel Railcars (also known as Multiple Units) ranging from the 1956-vintage railcar ‘Iris’ to a Cross-Country railcar restored in 2013 to concours standard from a bare body.
Mike Evans, head of motive power for the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway said “It is great that the hard work of our youthful DMU Group can be appreciated not only at home, but also on other important preserved railways such as the Bluebell.”
Passengers will be able to enjoy the Sussex scenery through the driver’s cab for the first time during January and February.
Chasewater Railway Museum
The Chasewater Railway Museum has received a significant donation from Dr.P.Fuller in memory of her late father, Mr. Anthony William Eele Fuller. This donation comprised approximately 100 books, 50 DVDs, 30 videos, 5 pictures and a Hornby GWR Mixed Traffic train set.
The photograph shows some of the museum staff perusing a small part of the collection, some of which will add to the museum’s collection of books and DVDs while others will be sold to add to the museum’s funds for future purchases of railway artefacts. The model railway has already been sold to a member of the railway, making a significant contribution to funds.
The Chasewater Railway Museum sends Dr. Fuller sincere condolences on her loss and many thanks for the donation, which will be put to good use.
Posted in Chasewater Railway Museum, News
Tagged Aldridge, Bloxwich, Brownhills, Burntwood, Cannock, Cannock Chase, Chasetown, Chasewater Railway Museum, Cheslyn Hay, Great Wyrley, Heath Hayes, Hednesford, Lichfield, Norton Canes, Pelsall, Staffordshire, Walsall, Wolverhampton
Santa Specials 2013
SANTA SPECIALS : ALL TRAINS ARE NOW FULLY BOOKED.
WE WISH YOU ALL A MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR FROM ALL OUR VOLUNTEERS.
Posted in Events, News
Tagged Aldridge, Bloxwich, Brownhills, Burntwood, Cannock, Chasetown, Chasewater Steam Railway, Cheslyn Hay, Great Wyrley, Heath Hayes, Hednesford, Lichfield, Norton Canes, Pelsall, Santa Special Steam Train Rides, Walsall, Wolverhampton
The Best Of Eagles
Some time ago, Chasewater Railway had the pleasure of hosting a photo-shoot by ‘Talon’ the No. 1 tribute band to he great ‘Eagles’ , and on the weekend Nov 16/17 Nov 2013 the Railway was given a CD showing the results of the shoot, along with a very nice ‘thank you’ letter and some posters.
To see the original post about the photo-shoot go to:
Thank you very much ‘Talon’ we enjoyed your company and wish you every success in the future.
To find out more about ‘TALON’ go to their website: