Skegness Water Leisure Park, Sunday 17th September 2017
Jurassic, the elegant and historic steam locomotive on the Lincolnshire Coast Light Railway, is planned to go back into service to pull its first public passenger trains in more than 30 years on Sunday 17th September 2017, in connection with the “Classic Wheels” event, the Classic Car & Bike Show, at the Skegness Water Leisure Park.
The Show will raise funds for the Skegness Lifeboat Station and the Lincolnshire Air Ambulance. Entrance will be £2. Train fares of £1 return and donations will go towards the upkeep of the line’s historically-significant collection, much of which is also owned by a charitable trust.
Jurassic is planned to steam on the LCLR’s tracks adjacent to the Show’s venue in the Park, in Walls Lane, Ingoldmells, PE25 1JF. Trains will run from 11.00 to 3.40 pm, with some initial services being operated by or in conjunction with one of the LCLR’s fleet of historic Motor Rail “Simplex” diesels, the design of which dates back to the First World War.
The third annual “Classic Wheels” event will feature
• Private Classic Car Collection displays
• Club displays
• Trophies and Awards
• Classic Motor Cycles
• Trade Stalls
• Refreshments and Bouncy Castle
The historic locomotive has been restored to working order by volunteers from the charitable trust which owns it, financed by the Heritage Lottery Fund and donations. The 114-year old locomotive, has successfully operated three days of trial trains, as the restoration neared completion. Work to repair the boiler, smokebox and firebox was contracted out to the North Norfolk Railway”s workshops at Weybourne near Sheringham and some other jobs were contracted to local firms and specialist suppliers.
She was built in 1903 in Bristol by Peckett and Sons Ltd., for the quarries and cement works of Kaye and Company in Southam, in Warwickshire, together with similar locomotives named after prehistoric geological periods.
Jurassic runs on tracks just two feet wide, which made her a perfect fit for the rails of the Lincolnshire Coast Light Railway, who bought her in 1961 to help operate their services linking the bus terminus at Humberston, near Cleethorpes, with the local beach and holiday camp. When that location closed in 1985, she was moved into store and then to the LCLR’s new location in the Skegness Water Leisure Park, close to Butlins, Ingoldmells, north of Skegness. The line reopened to passengers in 2009, since when the historical significance of its unique collection of rails, locomotives, carriages and wagons from the trench railways of World War One and industry and farms in rural England has become more widely recognised.
In 2016, the Heritage Lottery Fund awarded Jurassic’s charitable trust, £43,000 for her restoration and for interpretation of her significance to Britain’s economic and transport history.
The first task was to dismantle the locomotive, so that the boiler and firebox could be sent to the North Norfolk Railway.
Once these repaired “vital organs” were returned to Lincolnshire, they could be reunited with Jurassic’s frames. Her long elegant chimney has been put back in place; the injectors (which allow cold water to be transferred to the boiler, to produce steam) have been repaired and refitted, as has the connecting pipework for steam and water. The gauge glasses (which show how much water is in the boiler); the regulator (which governs speed); the reversing lever (which controls the direction of travel) and associated fittings, have all been refitted and tested.The locomotive has its first test steaming prior to the refitting of the cab and water tank with LCLR engineer Paul Walkinshaw. 31/5/17 (© Dave Enefer/LCLR)
The large cab (which can accommodate four adults, including the driver and fireman) has been sand blasted to remove 114 years of accumulated soot, grease and grime; the saddletank (which carries reserves of cold water) has been repaired and put back in place. The loco’s insulation, boiler cladding, a new whistle, brass dome cover and other fittings which replace originals stolen several years ago, have all been fitted.
The careful repainting of the whole locomotive – red for the buffer beams, and Middle Brunswick Green for the cab exterior, saddletank and cladding; black for the chimney, smokebox and running boards, has been complemented by lining out in black and gold, producing a strikingly beautiful finish.
Meanwhile, work continues to extend the LCLR by approximately 200 yards, to include a new run-round loop, which will accommodate Jurassic more readily and enable longer trains to be operated. It’s hoped this will be completed in time for the 2018 season.
Railway spokesman, John Chappell, said: “We’re thrilled that visitors to the third annual Classic Car and Bike Show should be able to take a steam train ride with Jurassic – truly a case of ‘Classic Wheels’.”
“Jurassic has been attracting visitors to the railway from throughout the UK, many of whom might otherwise not have been aware of the many attractions of Skegness and our hope now is that she can operate many of the Railway’s services in 2018”.
Full details on the Jurassic story and the Lincolnshire Coast Light Railway on www.lclr.co.uk