From the ‘Mercian’ May – June 1966 Vo.5 No.3
From the Editorial
The past few weeks have seen a number of developments both at Hednesford and at Chasewater. Much effort by Melvyn Balance, Brian Hames, Frank Craddock and Ken Martin has transformed a large number of our collection of iron and brass into gleaming exhibits for open days, and I thank the lads for this useful contribution.
Further items to arrive have been some LNWR destination clocks and finger boards from Walsall Station, some roof vents and other parts for the GER Brake from our good friend Mr. Plyer and his colleagues of the GE Society, and a load of wooden rail keys for Chasewater from the Severn Valley Society for which we sent our grateful thanks. Other work at Hednesford has involved a general tidying up of the site for Open Day at Easter which attracted a fair number of visitors, among them two or three new members. Particular thanks to our attractive salesgirls, Penny, Pat, Pauline, Dorothy and Jean for their help in raising just over £20 for the funds.
The work on tracklaying at Chasewater has progressed slowly but surely and has now reached the point where it becomes double track up to the museum building. Work has been speeded up considerably no doubt because of the acquisition of our first loco – albeit a diesel – which is working up at Chasewater and is proving a boon in moving the NSR wagon and heavily laden platelayers’ trucks.
The loco has cost £50 – all subscribed for by about a dozen members – to save the general funds, and it is being recorded here for all to see that we are deeply grateful for this fine gesture. This is only the start; we have more offers to consider. The next one is a small saddle-tank in full working order at about £75. How about a few advance donations?? Offers to me in the first instance, please. More details will be given when these are to hand. Continuing the money matters section, we have three steam locos to move from Warrington to Chasewater at an approximate cost of £250. The Treasurer has already received a few donations as a result of the appeal made in the January edition. However this is far from enough and we MUST move the locos within two months or we shall have to forfeit them completely. Please, PLEASE help us to raise the ‘lolly’ before the end of May. Contact either the Treasurer or myself as soon as possible, donations (or interest-free loans) desperately wanted.
The weekly Tote has now been launched and is going very well thanks to the faithful few who are selling tickets each week. To date over £20 has been raised for the funds; this could be trebled if we can sell more tickets. I do appeal to all members within range of the Depot to call and collect books of tickets for sale among their workmates and other contacts, please contact Albert Holden at your earliest convenience for tickets and full details of the Tote.
A.A.Chatfield – Hon. Editor
The Tote was run successfully for a number of years, bringing in much needed funds for the Society.
Hon. Treasurer’s Report
Planet Diesel Loco. Members will be interested to hear that we have now acquired a Planet four wheel diesel locomotive. It was built by F. C. Hibberd around 1930, the exact date and history of the loco is, as yet, unknown. It is powered by a Paxman 50 hp 3 cyl. Engine, and is capable of pulling several wagons.Laurence Hodgkinson
The loco has been delivered to Chasewater where it is in regular use on P. Way trains. Members are now at work on repainting and repairing the body where necessary. This has to be done on weekday evenings as the loco is on duty every weekend. Any members willing to assist should contact me so that definite working times can be arranged.
It is important to complete restoration work as soon as possible as the loco is on show to the general public to a greater extent than any other item of rolling stock at the present time.
We would like to express our thanks to members Roger Hateley of Lichfield who has done all the negotiating for this valuable item of equipment.