Unfortunately I was unable to make it to Washford this week due to work commitments. However David Temple has stepped in and has captured the goings on at Washford this week with his trusty camera.

Loaded and ready to depart for the Mid Hants Railway

As was publicised two further wagons left Washford destined for the Mid Hants railway last week and arrived safely earlier this week following a short layover at the hauliers yard in Templecombe due to the MHR Diesel Gala that was happening last weekend. Our Treasurer Martin was on the ground at Alresford when they arrived and reported their safe arrival. The wagons contained a large amount of the museum and shop furniture from the Washford site which we are planning to use as display cabinets in the new museum being set up in the Alresford Goods Shed. I am told the team at the Mid Hants took no time in unloading the contents into the vacant space in the Goods Shed. 

It is our intention to have displays in the Goods Shed Museum and also the BG ready and open for the Autumn Gala at the Mid Hants Railway. This is a stretch target but the team are rising to the challenge and it is hoped the first museum artefacts will be delivered to the new location in the next few weeks. The MHR Autumn gala is currently being planned with a theme very much linked to the S and D. The trust are actively engaged in supporting the MHR event team and there are a few surprises planed. Watch this space and the MHR railway for further details!

The Washford Shunt

With the two wagons gone and a vacant space outside the shed, no time was spared and Tuesday saw a big shunt at Washford. With the use of the trusty Andrew Barclay 0-4-0, Nigel and the team removed the BG from the shed following the attention to its roof over the last few months ready for a test to see if the weatherproofing has been effective. If all goes to plan this will depart for the Mid Hants during July.

Nigel, one of the Trust’s Directors happy at work

With the BG out of the shed David was able to capture some better images of the progress on the CCT. The wood is due to arrive on site any day to support the reconstruction. Corrosion to the metal work having been dealt with the reconstruction of the roof guttering is the next focus.

A better view of The CCT

David also captured a better image of the main shed now that the signs have been removed from the walls. Very little of the museum artefacts stored in this area are left to be packed up and it is planned to complete this very soon.

A view of Washford Shed

Next came a move of the next two wagons to depart for the Mid Hants. These are the London and South-Western Ventilated Van and the AD Open 4-Plank. In order to be picked up by the haulier they need to be on no. 2 road outside the shed. Transport window dependant these will depart Washford in July. The line of wagons to be moved is slowly decreasing.

The next two wagons to depart are moved to the loading road

After all that hard work the Tuesday Gang deserved a well earned rest and a cup of tea.

Tea break time

Museum Stewards

With the progress at Alresford we are now looking to recruit a new team of Stewards to man the space. Our friends and partners at the Mid Hants have very kindly offered to coordinate the recruitment of anyone interested in helping out. Please see the details below and if you would like to get involved please contact Izzy.

We are looking to recruit a team of Museum Stewards to support the opening of the new joint museum space in the Alresford Goods Shed.

The role will include:

·       Ensuring the museum space is ready for opening, tidying up, cleaning touch surfaces etc.

·       Overseeing the space to keep an eye on the objects and installations.

·       Engaging with visitors to talk about the content and answer questions, participating in object handling sessions or similar activities. 

The museum is planned to open from the 1st October. If you would be interested in this role please contact Izzy at events@watercressline.co.uk

Don’t forget the Progressing our Future appeal. The appeal is vital to support us moving forward and to ensure we are able to continue to preserve what has been built up over 50 years. Please consider giving what you can. Details can be found here: https://www.sdrt.org/appeal-for-the-future-of-the-trust/

Chris Ruddick, Projects Director