The section of track mentioned below has now been realigned back to its original position of 2011. Here the railhead is being ground to profile where it has been welded. The result is that long wheelbase locos should now be able to pass over this section with no trouble
This section of track is to be slewed back to its original 2010 alignment.
This should remove the problem being caused to long wheelbase locos. Preparation work by Oscar Battle.
Harrogate trip – closing date for bookings is Saturday 11th Feb. Don’t leave it too late!
Please note that there will be a cut-off date for booking in early Feb. By this time, any intending visitors must have completed the booking process specified by Barry Fane in the posting of 7th Jan (below).
Since 2021, the society has been running highly successful pop-up public services during the months of October to March. If you would perhaps like take part, you are invited to join the pop-up mailing list. Please contact the society secretary via the contact form on the website. You will then recieve weekly emails on the subject. (If you already recieve these you need take no action.)
COACH TRIP TO THE MODEL ENGINEERING EXHIBITION AT HARROGATE, SATURDAY 11th MARCH 2023.
Due to the poor uptake in the past and the fiasco of the last trip the booking arrangements have been amended for the next outing.
The initial requirement will be for a sixteen passenger coach driven by one of our members and booking will require a deposit of £10.00 with an overall cost of £25.00 to be paid when the booking is confirmed.
If the 16 seats are oversubscribed a waiting list will be started and if the list gets anywhere sufficient a larger coach may be considered.
If the sixteen seats are filled but the waiting list is insufficient to require a larger vehicle then the deposits will be refunded to those on the waiting list.
If you wish to travel, please pay Barry Fane your deposit, cash on Tuesday or cheque made out to NDSME by mail (preferred), without delay.
Also please provide a stamped addressed envelope to cater for any refund.
A very busy pop-up today
Today was the busiest day since Sept 2014!
Brian Parker awaits departure with one of many full trains today.
The A3 came out for a test steam today. Chris Shingles has made splendid progress with the regulator mechanism and looks pleased with the result.
Coming up on Sunday Jan 1st is the return of the traditional New Years Day Steam-up. It’s also for electric and other forms of traction too. A chance for suitable new members to maybe take a society loco around the circuit under supervision. BF will also be organising soup for everyone too. 1000 onwards.
Progress on the workshop extension
Richard Henderick installing the roof support beam.
A prototype New Model point lever assembly is now undergoing practical trials.
It is situated here. If anybody has any comments or suggestions on this new style lever please contact Peter King (email is in the Special Notices section of the members area)
The sub-zero temperatures mean that ice is forming on hard surfaces at the site.
Philip Moore has delivered two bags of brown rock salt for de-icing. Use them – dont take a risk!
Temperatures are not expected to return to normal much before the end of the month.
Philips team have repaired the fence that was destroyed by intruders last year.
This will once again prevent people from taking short cuts by jumping over the raised track.
The first Christmassy Trains day was busy, thanks to the good weather.
Tunnel of Lights popular, as it was last year.
Full trains most of the day
The last lighting net for the tunnel being prepared by Brian, Philip, Barry and Peter.
The finished result, ready for Sunday
Mike Riches loco Tod, away for rebuild, returned to EP today in its new form, wider, longer and with other modifications
now – 2022
Anybody know anything about this?
Member Peter King is creating a prototype for new point lever mechanisms. The existing levers throw at 90 degrees to the track. The New Model Point Lever will, in prototypical style, throw parallell to the rails. Astonishingly, there are now 17 points, many of which do not have levers , and there will be two more required for the new g/l storage tracks. Once the prototype is tested and approved, the society will have the required number laser cut and a small select team will assemble them.
Science Week at the Forum.
On Monday 13th Feb 2023, the society will have a stand at the Engineering Day during the Science Week. Needed are exhibits, transport and members to help staff the stand during the day. If you can help, contact Philip Moore. Don’t leave it to The Few as happened with the recent Lowestoft Exhibition!
In the tunnel, a team of Brian Sayer, Philip Moore, Brian Jacobs and Barry Futter have been installing supports for Christmas lights, prior to the Christmassy Trains in December. These new plastic arches replace the former wooden wedges, which were not really satisfactory. The Tunnel of Lights will run through December into early January. This was hugely successful last year and we hope to make the tunnel even more colourful this year, generating significant funds for ndsme and the charities we support.
Guards on trains at EP – the rules
During private member time.
Light engines on the circuit are not required to carry a guard EXCEPT when
(a) The driver is a junior member that requires supervision by a full member, OR,
(b) when a train is carrying any non-members (including family)
In these two conditions a guard MUST be carried.
During hours when the railway is open to the public,
A guard MUST be carried on all trains. A light engine is regarded as a train.
Permission to light run must be sought from the stationmaster or signalman, as appropriate
Junior members requiring supervision are not permitted to drive light engines.
Activity on the raised track. Here, Mike Fordham, Barry Futter and Chris Poore continue replacing wooden sleepers with plastic
Up to date info is now available to park users via QR code. Not for dogs though, they don;t have thumbs
Please note that the deadline for nominations and resolutions for the AGM has now passed and any received after this date will be regarded as invalid. Those already recieved will form part of the AGM.
ndsme in the community
Today we entertained a party from Clare School who were learning about evacuation of children during WW2.
(Photo credit Clare School)
The students all had a great time, with lunch “out in the countryside” with Spam sandwiches and ginger beer!
It was a pleasure to do this for the school. Thx to all the volunteers involved.
The AGM will be on Saturday 3rd December at the URC. Members should look out for email or postal communications on this matter.
On Sunday 16th we had a rare visit from the unique 7.25 gauge Duke of Gloucester.
This model, owned by ndsme members, is believed to be the only model of this famous loco in 7.25 gauge. The level of detail is exquisite!
Peter King is a member of the 7.25 Gauge Soc. and is exhibiting his most recent build on their stand at the Midlands Exhibition
ndsme members were invited to tea in the Lord Mayor’s parlour yesterday, where they presented a cheque to Homestart Norfolk, following the charity day for the Lord Mayors Fund on the 29th August. (photo credit Norwich City Council). Laura Forster, Civic Officer, commented, ” Thank you for … organising the day to raise the funds. The Lord Mayor and the charity very much appreciate everyone’s efforts at the railway.” (photo credit Norwich City Council).
Members who bring locos to the park are reminded that, when using the lift,
A message from Pete King.
These levers have not been vandalised but have been angled deliberately to allow for potential wider stock.
Don’t attempt to bend them back!
A list of charitable donations for 2021-22 is now available in the members area.
The formal public operations season has finished and we now resume the pop-up mode. This means that the emphasis shifts from members being asked to attend if they can, to members attending if they want to. For some members this will give a welcome break from trains every Sunday and for others it will mean being able to attend train sessions during the close season when they could not during the summer. Winners all round really.
Todays action at EP
The main water valve has been repaired, the new brass handle was fabricated by Brian Jacobs…
…and the void was promptly filled and concreted by The Two Brians.
Meanwhile, Chris Poore made adjustments to the raised track to accommodate
the new plastic sleepers.
And at Parkside, Chris Shingles and Mike Fordham wewre reinstalling S&T fixtures.
In Other News
On Monday 26th, ndsme said goodbye to Corby, off to a new home “somewhere in England”.
Although appearances at EP were uncommon, this loco was alway welcome as a reliable and powerful puller.
The open footplate gave it a distinctive industrial look too.
The society will be holding an EGM on Saturday 01 October at noon. This will be to approve the updated Articles of Association. In the interests of covid safety, this EGM will be held outdoors at Eaton Park. Seating will be limited and allocated on first come, first served basis.
A recent water leak has caused a hole to be dug.
Here, The Two Brians look into it!
The redundant plastic fence from Larch End could be repurposed at Parkside.
Mocked up here, what do people think?
Peter King attended the recent 7.25″ Soc. AGM at Echills Wood.
His photos can be found here
Plastic battens were delivered today for the raised track repairs which Philip Moore is overseeing.
Meanwhile, platform repairs were being undertaken by Peter Davies.
Steam returned to EP today, after an absence of some two months.
Present were Paul Sherwood’s and Pete King’s locos, seen here towards the end of the day. Brian Parker also attended for the first half of the session. A welcome return to normal autumn weather has considerably eased the motive power situation at EP.
Would members please note that the use of steam engines (other than oil or gas fired) is currently prohibited at EP due to the continued enhanced fire risk. There is only one permissable exception which is that a steam engine may be fired, in the pit only, for boiler testing purposes.
This situation is reviewed weekly.
The chuck guard on the lathe has now been repaired. Members are reminded that they should use the chuck guard at all times. It is there for users protection. Remember, accidents do not just happen, they are caused! Please report any defects in safety equipment to Estates Officer Philip Moore.
Peter Davies and Brian Jocobs working on track maintenance during the running season.
Temperatures are more reasonable now.
Here, they are correcting damage from a contractors grass cutter strike.
The Jim crow in its original form wasn’t going to work so Brian modified it.
Meanwhile, James was testing his new LBSCR E2 loco
The Lord Mayor visited EP for the charity day in support of the Lord Mayor’s Fund
With the Lord Mayor and Consort are, l-r, Richard I, Philip, Tom, Richard IV, Andrew, Malcolm, Steve ,Barry.
Brian Parker brought hs 5″ A4 specially for the day and it ran faultlessly for four hours.
Thanks also due to the Coles, Richard the Gardener and Brian Sayer for providing other traction.
Ben Fraser prepping his 14xx for a boiler test, which it successfully passed.
Boiler tests can be arranged by contacting Barry Fane, Chris Shingles or Brian Baker,
Please note that the lathe is currently out of use pending repair to the chuck guard..
Where a safety defect is found, on any item, please inform the Estates Officer, Philip Moore
We have opted to maintain the moratorium on steam for the 21st August. We review this on a weekly basis and the time is still not right to resume steam.
One of our current projects is making progress. Here Philip Moore shows the new (reclaimed) canopy support that has just been installed. It will replace the one on the far right which will be removed and associated wiring re-routed. This is to facillitate the realignment of the track from the turntable to the station throat. The concrete work was done by, inter alia, Brian Jacobs and Richard Crook
A question often asked by new members and prospective applicants is, “Can I run my loco at Eaton Park?”
Well, here are the current regulations
1) Members may run their locos at Eaton Park on any day as long as there are at least two members present. An under-16 must always be accompanied by an adult
2) During hours when public trains are running, a second crew member must be carried and the driver must be aged 16 or over.
3 Signage protecting the level crossings must be put out and recovered after cessation.
4) Steam locos must have in-date certification and be fitted with a spark arrestor.
Although the field has now been cut and all the scorched growth removed, we have opted to maintain the moratorium on steam for the 13th and 14th August. We review this on a weekly basis and the time is still not right to resume steam.
We have not run coal fired locos for a month now. Oil or gas fired locos might be a possibility for the future, or even a necessity, as these scorching summers become the norm.
This pic shows why we currently have a steam ban in place.
We are reviewing the situation on weekly basis but, looking at
the forecast, it doesn’t look good for the next few weeks.
On Saturday Brian Parker gave us a very interesting talk on the adaptions he has made to his loco.
Who else might like to do similar? Contact Mike Fordham if so.
Head Gardener Richard was, however, equally interested in motor bikes!
Peter Davies renewing track fixings. Track maintenance takes place every Tuesday throughout the year. This track was laid in 2015 and secured with 5mm screws. These are now being replaced with 6mm screws which will be less prone to failure. In the background is the very useful flatbed wagon, it is far easier to transport large items on this than on wheelbarrows.
New point lock mechanism devised by Pete King.
Please do not step on this as it is not designed for carrying weight!
Some pics from the action at EP today, when temperatures were more reasonable
Richard Hendrick works on the PW hut extension
Malcolm Pettitt investigates why the Cl 42 is still not working
Brian Sayer repairs his Cl.66
Chris Shingles works on the A3 while Brian Jacobs poses nearby.
Today saw a welcome return of the Cole’s Class 70 model. Believed to be around 40 years old, here it poses with what, at first glance is a double stacked container train, but in reality is passenger cars stacked 1 on 1.
Complete with driver!
Please note we are not using steam locos today, due to the fire risk to the park
Due to the predicted high heat today, members attending EP should consider this advice from gov.uk
Why this is important
The heat can affect anyone, but some people run a greater risk of serious harm. Remember to think of those who may be more at risk from the effects of heat – these include the following:
- older people [ie most of us!”], especially those over 75
- people with a serious chronic condition, particularly heart, breathing or mobility problems
- people on certain medications, including those that affect sweating and temperature control (for example, diuretics, antihistamines, beta-blockers and antipsychotics
- people who are already ill and dehydrated (for example, from gastroenteritis)
- people who are physically active (for example, manual workers)
What you can do
Stay out of the heat, cool yourself down, keep your environment cool or find somewhere else that is cool.
Avoid being out in the sun during the hottest part of the day (around midday) and plan your day to avoid heavy activity during extreme heat.
Bring everything you will need with you, such as a bottle of water, sun cream and a hat.
If you have to go out in the heat, walk in the shade, apply sunscreen, and wear a hat and light clothing.
Drink plenty of fluids: water, low fat milks and tea and coffee are good options.
Look out for signs of dehydration such as increased thirst, a dry mouth, dark urine, and urinating infrequently or small amounts.
Avoid extreme physical exertion. If you can’t avoid strenuous outdoor activity,, keep it for cooler parts of the day – for example, in the early morning or evening.
If you intend working in the field – don’t go alone!
Be on the lookout for signs of heat related illness
Heat exhaustion and heatstroke are two potentially serious conditions that can occur if you get too hot:
- heat exhaustion is where you become very hot and start to lose water or salt from your body. Common symptoms include weakness, feeling faint, headache, muscle cramps, feeling sick, heavy sweating and intense thirst
- heatstroke is where the body is no longer able to cool itself and a person’s body temperature becomes dangerously high. Heatstroke is less common, but more serious. Untreated symptoms include confusion, seizures and loss of consciousness
- Severe heat exhaustion or heatstroke requires hospital treatment.
- Call 999 if you or someone else have signs of heatstroke including:
- fast breathing or shortness of breath
- a fit (seizure)
- loss of consciousness
- not responsive
Please note that, due to predicted extreme temperatures today, trains will not be running. Apologies for any disappointment. We hope to be back on Friday 22nd with trains for Bluebell Primary and Colman PTA. Normal service should be resumed next Sunday.
Today was BR Blue Day, with all trains pulled by locos in the BR livery of the mid 60s to early 90s.
We’re thinking of expanding this idea for next year.
This has just been forwarded to the website and may interest those with steam engines and even those who don’t. It is the 2005 IMLEC competition (International Model Locomotive Efficiency Competition). It comes in two parts with the second part showing Pete King competing at about 40 minutes in.
Even in the relentless heat, basic site maintenance continues.
Brian Jacobs trims the hedges (above)
while Richard Crook deals with all the trimmings (below)
Members of the Narrow Gauge Railway Society who visited Eaton Park this afternoon.
An NGRS special train.
In the afternoon, after our guests had departed for Yaxham,
Pete King gave some of the newer members instruction on his engine.
It augers well for the Stafford project later this year
A very successful BBQ took place yesterday, at which Janet Steel dedicated the bench she has provided in commemoration of her late husband and long term member Barry Steel, fondly remembered as a kind and gentle soul who was always willing to help others.
In this pic, Mrs Steel, her daughter and grand-daughter.
Many thanks are due to The Two Richards, Wells and Hendrick , who cooked the food. Also thanks to Mrs Moore who organised the provisions, and to Philip who helped eat them, as well as starring as The Pub Landlord. Delicious cakes were supplied by Mrs Hendrick and also by Ms Karim.
More pics in the gallery
The members BBQ is today. Weather looks set to be warm and dry. Site opens 1830 for members and their families. Burgers, hot dogs, drink, the usual goodies, plus trains and cake. It doesn’t get any better than this! Forget the pizza zone, enter the burger zone!
Fishplate greasing today. An important if unexciting task. Here Peter Davies is slackening fishplates and then using spray grease to lube the fishing surfaces. This is important because the rails must be able to slide in the plates when heat lengthens them.
Not seen at EP for a while is Paul Sherwoods Iceni.
It’s had its tyres reprofiled and was at EP for dual testing, which it passed.
Also enjoying the dog days at EP today was Ben and Bob’s Corby, a powerful and popular engine.
On Saturday 9th July, we are hosting a party from the Narrow Gauge Railway Society. Members are invited to come and meet them and also to take part in the private members session in the afternoon. From 10am
Coming up at Eaton Park…
Sat 2nd July – First Saturday of the month, private members day
Sun 3rd July – public trains
Weds 6th July – society BBQ, from 1830
Saturday 9th July – private members session from 1300
Saturday 16th July – BR Blue pop-up.
One week to go to the,
SOCIETY SUMMER BBQ
at Eaton Park on Weds 6th July.
All members and their families are invited.
Guests from the NRS will be amongst us.
Arrive from 1830. Food from 1900 by the Two Richards
0% alc. and other soft drinks at Phil’s Bar…and Pimms too!
There may also be trains!
Covered accommodation if showers.
From the park...
Malcolm Pettitt”s 5″ gauge GER T26 2-4-0 No 490. The original is in the Science Museum collection.
Scamp receives attention to improve performance
Following the Narrow Gauge Rly Soc visit on Sat 9th July, the rest of the day will be taken up with a private members play/training session.
The summer BBQ is just three weeks away. We need some items to assist the catering/bar team.
If you can spare any of these please bring them to the clubhouse on the Tuesday before
1) cool bags or insulated buckets, to keep drinks and ice chilled on the day
2) a nice pitcher to mix Pimms up in
Works at the park today,
Pete King is working on a new design of locators for the turntable.
Philip treating woodwork under the supervision of new member Barry Futter
Richard Crook doing his thing with the strimmer. Things are growing fast now!
A second lightweight battery drill has been burnt out by drilling into concrete, this is beyond the capacity of these drills. For drilling into concrete please use the SDS drill, which was acquired for just this purpose
Prerparations are at an advanced stage now for the society BBQ on Wednesday 6th July. This will happen come rain or shine as we have plenty of undercover accommodation available if required.. All members and their nuclear families are invited.
Spotted at EP recently
This is ListerMan.
A descendent of Ned Kelly.
Public services this Sunday 12th will be all electric.
The following Sunday 19th will be a douible bill fea. Maid Marion and Corby
On Monday 29th August we will hold a train day for the Lord Mayors charity, which this year is Home Start
Please note that the sliding gate requires using with extra care pro tem, as one of the structural members has failed.
Three Class 66s at the members day today. A fourth joined after this pic was taken.
Good News! After only three months, Sweet Briar Road is open again. Journies to EP should be considerably easier now.
This is why…
there is a compulsary STOP at the field exit!
New resident at EP is this AME Class 66
08 May 22
Two members engines enjoying a quiet smoke in the pit today.
A member’s new “Scamp“, a diminutive yet interesting petrol-electric.
05 May 22
Some action from the recent B/Hol Monday,
Brian P pulling a 5-car public train. His engine just gobbled it up!
DieselMike doing the yearly oil/filter change on his Lister.
03 May 22
Following extensive electrical and mechanical work by Ian Carter and Malcolm Pettitt, the Class 42 is now fit for service again.
Here, Malcolm gives it a test. (Pic P King)
29 April 22
A Saturday members meeting has been arranged for August., See events page for details.
28 April 22
Ndsme is considering laying on a coach to the Midlands Exhibition in October.
If you are interested, please reply to the email you should all have received.
The cost will depend on the numbers travelling.
23 APR 22
Sweet Briar Road remains closed and Anglia Water indicate that it will not reopen until late May. In the meantime the official diversion has huge tailbacks so it is probably easier to travel via the Inner Ring Road and exit via Unthank Rd or Earlham Rd, both of which will regain the Ring Road near the park.
A reminder that, if anyone in your family feels “under the weather” or “not quite right”, these could be early warnings of a covid infection. In this case you should NOT attend EP until it is resolved as you risk bringing the virus to EP. Covid is highly infectious and is likely to transmit from one family member to another easily. Covid symptoms include,
- a high temperature or shivering (chills) – a high temperature means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
- a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
- shortness of breath
- feeling tired or exhausted
- an aching body
- a headache
- a sore throat
- a blocked or runny nose
- loss of appetite
- feeling sick or being sick
If you have COVID-19, you can pass on the virus to other people for up to 10 days from when your infection starts.
- try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 5 days
- avoiding meeting people at higher risk from COVID-19 for 10 days, especially if their immune system means they’re at higher risk of serious illness from COVID-19, even if they’ve had a COVID-19 vaccine
This starts from the day after you did the test.
1)…For those trying to view the EPMR facebook page (or any other public page such, as 7.25″ railways), facebook is currently throwing up a log-in wall which means you won’t be able to view unless you have an account. Whether this is a permanent feature or a temporary glitch remains to be seen. UPDATE 15/4/22 SINCE RESOLVED
2)…The society is actively investigating setting up a dedicated raised track group to oversee the refurbishment. Those members who expressed interest in this project will be contacted shortly with a view to arranging an initial meeting, possibly on a Tuesday, possibly at the Eaton Park Community Centre. Once a viable structure is in place then the membership can be consulted for approval for the expenditure.
3)…Public trains running on Easter Sunday and Monday. Interested members are invited to assist.
The membership renewal cycle is now complete. Members who have not renewed will be sent one final reminder.
Membership cards will be retained at EP for those members who did not provide an sae. These cards will be available for collection on Tuesdays or Sundays.
The 2021-22 membership year is drawing to a close. Over two thirds of members have successfully renewed so far. In order to retain your member privileges, do please renew by 31st March, after which date your membership will cease
Renewal forms are available in the clubhouse for those that need a hard copy.
At Eaton Park today we...
…took the white fence down at Larch End
to create space for a storage siding…
…and replaced a drive chain on the Class 42…
…the other bogie will also be done
Pics from the DEC Ukraine Appeal benefit day. Just over £1500 was raised.
One of our busiest days in recent years, with a unique Hunslet double- header.
More pictures in the Gallery.
Preparatory work for new raised track storage.
Clearing away two years of organic matter
The new covered raised track storage siding will go here. The white fence will be relocated.
Temporary duckboards installed in the pit pending a more permanent solution to the flooding problem. These have been made from recycled plastic pallets.
Pete and Jim repairing the turntable
Two pics from the pop-up action today. Jim McDonell’s Glen class and Brian Parker’s Maid Marion, pulling busy afternoon trains. Brian’s loco ran for a full five hours and was still going strong at the close of play!
Pete King and the track team resleepering in the field today.
This is the last point to be done in the field
The Sweet Briar Rd closure looks like it may be for some time.
21 Feb 22
Raised track (refurbishment) consultation
If you have a view on this subject then please respond asap. The consultation closes in a few days.
21 Feb 22
Please note that the ring road is closed between the Dereham Road roundabout and Hellesdon Hall Road. This is likely to remain closed for up to 14 days. Diversion in place but expect significant queues at all times during the day
19 Feb 22
Storm Eunice caused some degree of difficulty in Southern England but at EP this was the only thing of note. We got off lightly!
17 Feb 22
Phil doing some painting during “play hour”.
17 Feb 22
Hello Hello I’m back again!
Excalibur arrives back at EP after a spell at the manufacturers for fitting of upgrades.
Any day now…back in service! Seen here with the owners.
17 Feb 22
Mystery pair of gloves
Who has left these behind?
16 Feb 22
A new page for latest news from ndsme