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Working visit 47

Arrived just before ten and got on with scraping down the roof sticks in the brake compartment of which there are five in total. One roof stick in the centre is slightly wider than the rest and is faced with a 5/16th plate (in mint condition) that no doubt helps to maintain the roof profile in the absence of a partition. Allan stuck at this task most of the day and managed to finish two and part scrape the other three.

Meanwhile, Dave stuck resolutely to his self allotted task of removing countless nails and studiously ignored John's entreaties to block up a windowless quarter-light and a drop-lightless door. During its time as a dwelling, thin strips of fabric (most probably curtain material) had been nailed around all the doors in an effort to keep out unwanted Welsh draughts and it is the tacks that held this fabric in place the Dave is trying to remove with varying degrees of success.

All three of us mucked in to remove door A.6 without any undue difficulty, which was then taken outside and placed on the picnic bench for John to work on. He was later joined by Ian Salisbury (Elsecar member) who seems to get great satisfaction and joy out of scraping down doors.

Allan helped John to extract the drop-light with the aid of a tongue and groove off-cut and a rubber mallet - a job that was far more resistant to our efforts than it sounds in the telling. John then proceeded to strip down the door by removing numerous brass screws and taking off various bits of moulding, match boarding and the garnish rail.

This brings to nine the number of doors we have removed to date and A.6 is by far and away the best of the bunch. Underneath all that paint it is almost in pristine condition, even the drop-light appears to be about the best we have encountered so far. Much debris was found inside the door but unfortunately there was nothing of note such as a few Hull & Barnsley or even some Neath & Brecon tickets to drool over!

Next working visit will be Tuesday 18th March.

Working visit 46

On the face of it, last Tuesday was one of our better days with some real solid progress being made. Arrived around the usual time of 10 o'clock with John Wrigley riding shotgun. Harry Stenton on site taking tubes out of the 'Mardy Monster'. No Dave Yates this time as he other commitments to attend to.

John W and Allan made a start by taking off door B7 and set it up in the brake comp for John B to get on with when he arrived an hour later. Allan took the opportunity to finish scraping down the roof boards while the brake comp was vacant and let out a thankful cheer when the job was completed, well, not quite, as the roof sticks still need to be finished off before he can say "job done".

John W meanwhile was put to power sanding down the roof boards and roof sticks in the extended comp C. While we were thus engaged, John B arrived and set about scraping down door B7. At some point in the distant past a hole had been bored in the lower panel of the door for a pipe or an electric cable, so John B cleaned up the hole and made and glued in a teak plug which to the untrained eye could well pass as a knot! John W having sanded down the roof boards started scraping down the match boarding in comp C which Allan had abandoned in the autumn in favour of the roof boarding.
Being a young man, John's work rate was most impressive as he managed to scrape down an area of approx 12 square feet in a relatively short time before finishing off with the power sander.

Having vacated the brake comp Allan carefully took off the beading around of a broken widow to the right of door B2. The glass was then eased out with the help of John W wielding a rubber mallet from the inside of the coach. Once this was removed, the gasket and solidified mastic in the rebate was cleaned out with hammer and chisel in readiness for a replacement quarter-light. Three new sheets of safety glass are on order for the quarter-lights and the cost will come in at around £65. A little more scraping was done around the window before refitting door B7 and heading for home.

Next working visit will be on Tuesday 11th March. Join us if you can. Joiners especially welcome.

Working visit 45

After a fortnight's hiatus it was good to be back at Elsecar. We had a good turn out, with John, Dave, Mike and Allan making up the team. Allan arrived first and got on with scraping down the ceiling boards in the brake comp before being turfed out for getting in the way yet again; If you recall from the last report, he had about 15 square feet to go at and managed just over half that before the door gang took over. The door in question was B.7 which John and Allan took off and set up in the brake comp. Once supported on the workmate and the saw horse it was set upon with some gusto by John and Mike with some equally industrious assistance from Ian Salisbury in the afternoon.

Allan retreated to our dining area and continued scraping down around the quarter-light on either side of B.7 doorway. As it was quite pleasant outside, the door gang re-located to the picnic table which allowed him to go back to the roof boards.

Dinnertime saw the arrival of John Wrigley where conversation centred around the P.2 new-build, Dub Dee's and NYMR motive power. Afterwards he continued to assemble a structure which started life as a bunk bed. It now has a worktop with shelving underneath transported that very morning by Dot's Taxi Service. Dave suggested that it could be used as a counter in the guards comp but what he has is mind to sell we know not. Could it be some sort of waterproof garments or number 1 splash guards perhaps? However, once this interesting erection was assembled to Dave's satisfaction he reverted back to his more mundane nail extracting business.

Being half term, a good few folks were knocking about around the station so Allan spent quite some time in his ambassadorial mode. Visitors were by and large young mothers with small children in tow. One little chap was full of questions about the engines and carriages and wanted to know the whereabouts of Thomas and Percy! He and his mum were well impressed with the 'Earl of Stafford' which has just been out-shopped in her new blue N.C.B. livery which showcases the unending talent of young Luke Booth.

It is important to show interest and spend some time with people who may be a little disappointed that no trains are running. Hopefully, they left contented and with intentions to return at a later date. Late in the day the door gang took the match boarding off B.7 and discovered some women's type magazines and the remains of necklace. Could they be Rubies? We should be so lucky! That's all folks!

Next working visit Tuesday 4th March.

Working visit 44

What an awful morning, with heavy rain and snow falling. To begin with, door G.9 was the centre of attention, and John re-fitted the restored waist panel that had literally dropped out on an earlier visit. This done, Allan assisted him to remove the fixed droplight frame by unscrewing the mouldings that held it in place. Great care must be taken so as not to spoil the screwdriver slot on the brass screws holding in the mouldings otherwise the task becomes that much more difficult.

Allan left John to carry on scraping down the freed-up droplight and the door rebate and returned to scraping down the roof boards. By sticking at it, he managed another 16 square feet or so, leaving approximately the same amount to do on the next visit.

John took things as far as he could with the door without taking it off its hinges yet again and started scraping down the end and side walls in the brake comp. Once all this scraping down has been done, we can power sand, fill in all the nail holes, prime, undercoat and gloss paint. The final colour according to extensive and authoritative notes by the late Guy Hemmingway being cream. Having tired of scraping down the roof boards Allan did a little scraping above B.7 door just to round off the day.

We looked in on the joiners working on the CCT who were taking down the ceiling. It was interesting to compare this BR vehicle with our own wooden bodied Southern Railway designed CCT at Goathland .

Speaking of Goathland, a working party appears to be in the offing for Saturday 1st March so this may be a good time to say that more volunteers are needed up there. If you have not yet visited our rolling stock this is a good opportunity to come along and see what needs to be done and become involved in some way either on or off site. Please contact us to confirm date and times.

Next working visit to Elsecar 25th February.

Working visit 43

Last Friday was (near enough) the 1st anniversary of No.1's arrival at Elsecar (the day - not the date, as that was on Saturday). A condensed progress report charting our work will be prepared in the next few weeks for inclusion in the spring newsletter.

Dave reported back for duty and it was just him and Allan this time as John had another engagement. Having the brake comp to himself, Allan concentrated the day's efforts on scraping down the roof boards and was mightily pleased (if somewhat shattered) with the progress made. To better understand the scale of the job, the ceiling area of the brake comp is approximately 72 square feet and by the end of the day roughly 40 square feet has been done. This figure should take into account what was done in the previous two visits, although last week's efforts were somewhat minuscule. It should also be remembered that all this work is being done with a scraper that is barely 20 mm wide.

Dave meanwhile assembled a timber frame made of an exotic hardwood of some description that he had brought from home. This sturdy construction is to serve as a temporary bench until such time as it is required for rebuilding the missing section of body framing. The exercise also offered the opportunity to tidy up the end of the coach which was getting a bit piggy. Dave also affixed three more coat hooks in anticipation of a 100% increase in volunteer labour come the better weather. We travel with hope if nothing else!

Finally Dave got back to his nail extracting business and managed another 16 before home time.

Next workday is Tuesday 11th Feb, subject (as always) to the weather.


The AGM will be held at the Market Hotel in Elsecar on Saturday 31 May 2014 at 13:00. We have requested that refreshments be made available (including tea and coffee) for which a small charge may be asked for. To make it more of an enjoyable occasion we are hoping to make coach No.1 accessible to viewing by our members.

Don't forget, there is plenty to see and do at the Elsecar Heritage Centre and Railway, so why not make it a day friends and other family members can enjoy as well.

We know this is a little far for our East Yorkshire members so perhaps we can balance this up next year by having it somewhere in the Hull area.

Working visit 42

We arrived just on ten to find Luke Booth unlocking the main gates. Luke is the young man who is dismantling the coal wagon referred to in an earlier report and it was quite fortuitous that we met up with him as Allan had some paperwork for him. Hopefully, this will encourage if not directly help with the rebuilding programme.

Stuart and Allan found time for a chat about the wagon with Luke and also spoke to Del Tillings about the GUV being refurbished and used as a museum dedicated to the life and times of Elsecar and Cortonwood collieries. When the time comes for the GUV to re-locate to Cortonwood site then coach No.1 may take on the roll of 'museum' rather than being a 'hospitality' annex to the beer tent. Incidentally the GUV is in point of fact a CCT as it has end doors.

Once John had arrived at around eleven we made a belated start by taking off door G9. Allan had made a start on scraping down the roof boards in the brake comp but had to clear out as he was getting in the way. John and Stuart spent the rest of the day scraping down the door on either side and trying the take out the fixed droplight. In the event, the brass screws holding in the mouldings proved extremely difficult to extract and unfortunately a number broke off. Meanwhile, so as not to get under foot, Allan had retreated to our dining room (comps A & B) and proceeded to scrape down door B7 and the quarter-light frames on either side. At least we were snug and dry inside as the wind pushed and pulled at the tarpaulin and the rain battered down. What an awful day it turned out to be!

Working visit 41

Life is busy at the moment - what with membership renewals coming in almost daily. If we have yet to acknowledge your subscription or donation, then please be patient as we work through the backlog that has developed.

The good progress has been maintained and together John and Allan put in the forward guard's lookout ducket window. So full of confidence were we after putting in the second new quarter-light last week in little over 30 minutes that we decided to time our efforts and see if we could beat it. In the event we failed miserably and the job took about an hour and 15 minutes - start to finish.

The problem was the pinning-in of the 3/8 square section teak beading. There was just no room to swing a hammer and even the pre drilling of the beading was not as helpful as envisaged.

Notwithstanding that the inside edge beading was difficult enough, the outside edge beading was almost impossible until the ever resourceful john resorted to a 'G' clamp and squeezed the panel pins in!

After all this frustration we went back to the simple things in life like scraping down paintwork. You will be relieved to hear that the roof boards and rook sticks have all been done in comp 'C' and that Allan has now moved on to the brake comp where excellent progress is being made.

John directed his efforts into scraping down the match-boarding. One of the reasons that scraping down the ceiling in comp 'C' took so long it that the compartment had been extended back in to the brake comp with a false partition at some point when it was lived in. Therefore compartment 'C' is larger than it should be.

I hope you found the newsletter interesting reading and something that you look forward to receiving. So I'm taking this opportunity to remind members that 'copy' is always welcome and always needed.

If you have any personal memories of the H&B route as a working railway or a relative worked on the line or that you have photos that we have not seen before or ephemera that may be of great interest to H&B devotee, then we would be pleased to hear from you. More modern day material is also welcome as part of the line is still very much a living entity.

Working visit 40

We put in the second of our replacement quarter-lights. As an indicator of our growing proficiency, the whole job took little over half an hour to complete from start to finish from laying in the 'Arboseal' tapes to screwing home the new window mouldings made by John. The next to be tackled will be the very narrow 'guards' forward look-out window but new square section mouldings need to be made before we can proceed. The remainder of out time was spent scraping down the paintwork. An end to this saga is now in sight and Allan hopes to finish the compartment roof on the next visit. Doubtless you will be as much relieved as him to hear the last of this time consuming job for the time being. It has been no easy task working above head height week in week out.

Changes are afoot at Elsecar with a substantial platform being currently erected around the isolated GUV by contract joiners. The much dilapidated and isolated coal wagon ensconced in a corner at the rear of the station site is in the process of being dismantled and will hopefully be rebuilt to become a gate guardian at either Elsecar or Cortonwood.

These once commonplace wagons must be as rare as hen's teeth these days and its a shame that so many wooden wagons in preservation have been shunted to the very back of the restoration queue and then lost due to more pressing matters. The Stock Fund is fortunate indeed that our two have been rebuilt and are now kept snug and dry in the Goods Shed Cafe at Goathland.

Working visit 39

A belated but Happy New Year to you all. Tuesday 7 January was the first working visit of 2014 so let's get stuck into the follow up report. Not a bad day with sun and a couple of showers but thankfully fairly warm for the time of the year. Arrived at ten and untied the tarp. Once again Dave and John arrived by Dot's Taxi Service with our founder Mike Haddon rolling up about an hour later. Mike came bearing gifts in the shape of a wall clock and a plastic garden chair to add to our creature comforts.

Having started the day by scraping the roof sticks in comp 'C' John and Allan put in our first quarter-light. This involved clearing out the original screw holes with a drill, cutting strips of 'Arboseal' to length and embedding same in window frame. We then introduced the glass and applied brown mastic to the edge and mouldings which were then screwed into place with new brass screws. This was all very much new territory and we will become more proficient as we progress.

The opportunity to put in a second window was thwarted by the onset of a particularly heavy shower. John however, had made some new mouldings which Allan had varnished for this one and they needed to be measured, mitred and drilled before said window could be fitted anyway.

After lunch, Dave hung up the new wall clock and screwed in a couple of coat hooks before retuning to the guards comp to continue with nail extraction. His 'tally' for the day amounted to some three dozen! Mike and John carried on with scraping down in the guards comp while it battered down outside and Allan continued with scraping down the roof boards in comp 'C'.

One last thing. Newsletters have gone out this week so could you give some thought to the appeals contained therein for copy and assistance at Goathland and Elsecar, we really do need more shoulders to the wheel.

Working visit 38

Once again John, Dave and Allan put in the time to edge number 1 a little closer to a presentable status. Allan returned a restored and varnished garnish rail for door G 10 which would be temporarily refitted before the day was out. Together John and Allan took off door G 10 in order to take off door G 9 for the very first time. A preliminary examination suggests that this door is in far better condition than we first thought it to be and requires little more than a thorough scraping down and the replacement of some missing internal match-boarding. The fixed droplight appears to be in good condition which is itself a great blessing. Allan left John to it and continued scraping down the roof sticks and roofing boards in comp C with a little of the same in the corner by the ducket in the guards compartment.

Dave meanwhile was given the task of finishing off the saw horse by assembling various bits of wood to provide a sturdy support to use in conjunction with the workmate. During the day Allan took time out to engage in ambassadorial mode once again as a couple of couples with grandchildren came to look around the station. One child was particularly taken with the carriages in the platform and wanted to know what various things were, such as buffers, corridor connections and couplings. Perhaps he will become a member in 10 years time!

Working visit 37

More of the same really, scraping down in the guard's and comp C. Allan helped John take off door G 10 once again. John did some gluing and clamping then put the inside match-boarding back on - having taken it home for stripping and staining. Looks much better than it did! Dave put two curved brackets on end wall of guard's comp for shunting pole (one of six donated to Stock Fund by Rockware Glass many years ago) just for a bit of ambiance you understand. He then returned to his nail extracting business before heading for home at half two.

John and Allan went across to the Antique Emporium where a number of cheap tools could be had. John bought a couple of moulding planes for two quid each and Allan bought a joiners divider, also for two quid. On the way over Allan stopped to take photos of the signal finial which he thought may be an H&B one perched on its stumpy mock-up lattice post; on closer inspection it turned out to be of SR origin, but as H&B, and some LSWR and SR are to all intents and purposes one and the same, what the heck! Perhaps when Sprotborough sig cabin comes to Elsecar we may see the signal in operation on a taller wooden post!

As the afternoon wore on, John and Allan attempted to take off door G 9 but in the event were thwarted by the hinge pins being burred over. Allan finally got them moving after filing, hammering and twisting before punching them out with a suitable drift. The door remains on its hinges till tomorrow when we shall see just how bad things are. A waist panel was falling off and the internal match-boarding had been at some point replaced by a sheet of plasterboard. The teak flavoured 'Arboseal' for the windows has arrived at long last. Last working visit for this eventful year is tomorrow.

Working visit 36

26 November 2013. Our little group which normally numbers three, was strengthened on this occasion with the welcome addition of John Wrigley who turned up quite out of the blue shortly after Allan arrived.

We made a start by taking door G10 off its hinges and Allan showed him how we scrape down by working always with the grain and using short strokes, by which time John and Dave had rolled up. Together the two Johns took the door outside so that work could continue on the picnic bench as the weather was more conducive to working outdoors than on previous occasions. Allan continued with his efforts scraping down in comp 3 - there is a long way to go yet.

Dave meanwhile had a go at general tidying up and then proceeded to construct a saw horse with some timber Allan had brought for just such a purpose.

We had a visit from a 'Chocolateer' (I kid you not) who has a couple of shops in the Heritage Centre. He had been itching to see our coach for some time, but of course the only time it open to view is when we are present and the tarpaulin peeled back. On Saturday Allan brought along wife and grandson for a trip on the Santa Special. A very enjoyable experience and a credit to those Elsecar members who gave up their time to make it all happen.

Afterwards, called in at the Antique Emporium and found a couple of copper 'Kenyon' paraffin burners which may have come out of railway lamps. So bought the pair for four quid just in case they may come in useful. Saw same on ebay for £13 each!

Working visit 34

A bright but perishingly cold day, so once again we opted to work indoors for most of the time. Door G5 was taken off its hinges yet again and put on the 'workmate' in the guards comp for John to work on. By the time it was rehung in the late afternoon the restoration work was almost complete with only sanding down and varnishing outstanding. With the aid of clamps screws and glue, all splits have been closed and new sections of teak spliced in where required, which included replacing repairs done many years ago that had not stood the test of time!

Dave and Allan faffed about with C8 door blocking boards as we had not had any washers to hand to put behind the nuts last week. Allan then carried on with scraping down in comp 'C' while Dave cut some MDF to size in order to bridge the gap in the 'workmate' - better for to support the door.

At lunchtime we had the pleasure of dining from a collapsible table donated by Mike Haddon. Dave and Allan tackled that troublesome tarpaulin yet again; after last week's adjustments it turned out to be too high on the platform side which left too much bare wood exposed to the elements. Allan brought along some fresh rope and with Dave re-laced the 'tarp' so that it was just about equidistant from the ground on all four sides. As a preliminary to this work, all frayed rope was cut back to clean ends and fused together by melting with a super-duper lighter brought along specially for this purpose by Dave. The end product was much more workmanlike and the coach is now well hunkered down against the winter weather.

In the run in to Christmas, we hope to put in a couple of new toughened safety glass quarter-lights and also three look out windows in the guards comp. In order to facilitate this task, 3 roles of teak coloured 12 mm x 3 mm 'Arboseal' glazing tape from Ashead Ratcliffe & Co Ltd of Belper are on order.

We had another brace of visitors who had lived in Ferriby near Hull at sometime in the past. So we spent some time regaling them about Elsecar, the coach and the Stock Fund. After they had left, John Boddy suggested that we should have a visitors book for people to sign and pass comment. An excellent idea!

Working visit 33

Dave and Allan proceeded to block up the missing door with the second of two 4' x 3' boards which should help to make things more cosy as winter sets in.

Allan then carried on for the rest of the day with scraping down the roof boards and roof sticks in comp 'C' which is to be for the time being a foyer or reception area. One partition wall will tell the story of the H&BR and show the work of the Stock Fund in words and pictures. In this way we hope to give the casual visitor some idea of what we are about. As a case in point, we had a couple of chaps drop by on official business in connection with the railway - one of whom was very interested in what we are doing and greatly impressed with the condition of the coach considering its great age. In this respect we see ourselves not only as devotees of the Hull & Barnsley but also as ambassadors for the Elsecar Railway while on site.

Meanwhile, John set about further repairs on door G5 which again was taken off its hinges, the better to work on. At midday we were pleasantly surprised when our illustrious founder Michael Haddon joined us, and following an hilarious lunch he joined forces with Dave on his next task.

Mike and Dave shot off to the local ironmongers for some stout hooks and eyes. These were then screwed into redundant sleepers placed around the coach by the lads from the relocatable building next door who are on a track maintenance course. The idea behind all this effort is to lace the tarp down to something substantial before the winter storms set in. Mind you, by the look of things he might have just gone over the top with this one unless he knows something that Michael Fish didn't all those years ago.

Talk of seats (re last report) brought forth an interesting email from our esteemed historian - Nick Fleetwood. It would seem that Nick has uncovered some very fragile drawings of the original rolling stock in the NRM archives. These were duly photographed and will eventually be made available to us on disc so that the intended seat can indeed conform to original spec. Next working visit (subject to weather conditions) will be Tuesday 19 November 2013 - be seeing you?

Working visit 32

Visit 32 took place on Tuesday 8 November. John continued with repairs to door G5 and to the guards lookout ducket. The door was once again removed from its hinges and placed somewhat precariously on the workmate donated by Bob Ferguson, and further repairs were then carried out in the relative comfort of the guards comp.

Allan directed his efforts to scraping down the roof boards and roof sticks in comp 'C'. The roof sticks had been painted black by the previous occupant so that the coach interior resembled a olde worlde dwelling or pub. All the roof sticks are as 'sound as a pound' as are the roof boards - which is very encouraging. With the coach having been lived in, the owner presuambly made sure the roof didn't leak, and we suspect that there are many layers of roofing felt preventing such a scenario.

Dave continued with his temporary wiring arrangements - temporary insomuch as it all consists of B&Q 4 plug extension leads supported by judiciously sited cup hooks - each screwed into a convenient nail hole as the last thing we want is yet more holes to fill in! Recent sales of 'cup hooks' have probably been at an all time high! Dave also fitted and tested 2 more smoke alarms in comp 'C' and the guards comp. After extracting a handful of nails to add to his growing collection he set about drilling and fitting a 4' x 3' blocking up board in C8 doorway. This job hopefully will be completed next week and help to keep out the winter draughts somewhat.

We need to improve our indoor dining arrangements and there was much talk of fitting a seat along the end wall of comp A. This may take the form of a temporary structure that will eventually be replaced be something conforming to the original spec - whatever that may be. John Roebuck (Elsecar Member) stopped by to talk and Ian Salisbury maintains a keen interest in our progress.

Working visit 31

Dave put in another 4 plug extension to the guards comp so that we can run a fluorescent light off it, then carried on with his nail pulling. He reckons that the number so far extracted is over 1 000, with plenty more to go at! John with Dave's help took off door G5 and did some work on it in the relative comfort of the guards comp. He also attempted to close a wide split in the guards lookout ducket but with little success as he didn't have all the necessary tools. He considered the day's work very unsatisfactory but that's the way it is sometimes.

Allan continued to scrape down the ceiling boards and the area around door C3. The plan is to make compartment 'C' a sort of temporary reception area for interested people to view by making it presentable. One partition will become a picture gallery of Hull & Barnsley and Stock Fund photographs which will give the visitor some idea of what we are about as a society. The missing door (C8) and the missing section of body side representing a very draughty 6' x 4' hole will be blocked off for the time being with a couple of 3' x 4' boards. In the late afternoon an Old Chap called Jeff Hall from Swinton dropped by to see us with some odds and sods he found when clearing out of his garage. These included a LNER cold chisel, 2 grafted BR Engine Driver's hats (ancient and modern) and an LMS signal lamp without its innards - rescued from the S&K.

We are making progress with each passing week. Next working party is 5 November 2013. Any help would be appreciated!

Working visit 30

Dave has put up a fluorescent striplight in the workshop area (comp's A and B) and temporary wiring in the shape of four plug extension leads. He plans to put a second striplight in the guards comp.

He finished his by pressing on with nail and tack extraction. For those of you siting at home, it's hard to convey the shear number of nails the previous owner has brayed into the woodwork, and each and every one puts up a fight to resist Dave's efforts to pull them out. Perhaps there was nothing else to do during long winter evenings before television!

Allan arrived on Wednesday and proceeded to do some indoor scraping. Efforts were centred on comp C around the missing door and the ceiling boards. It was nice to see a few more Elsecar lads on site and meet one or two new faces as we don't usually see many about on Tuesdays which is our main working day. Harry Stenton told me that an old chap had come over from Hull on the Monday to see coach No.1, but he was disappointed to find the coach under the tarp. I wonder if he was one of our members! Work proceeds at home on restoring another droplight to pristine condition. This is a bad one with many splits and other damage that will take some time to repair.

Working visit 29

Following our list of wants in the last report, Dot and Dave turned up with a fire extinguisher, a smoke alarm, a 4 plug extension lead and an RDC adaptor but no cuddly toy or fondue set. All of which was financed yet again out of their own purse and pocket. The other needs remain, to which we would add a trestle or a pair of saw horses for door restoration as we will invariable move inside the coach to work as winter closes in. No doubt, we shall think of something else as well.

Dave fitted up the fire extinguisher and smoke alarm which - hopefully, like the first aid kit and accident report book we shall never ever have need of. Dave (also now known as Dave the Nailer) also affixed the 4 plug extension using a couple of convenient nail holes of which there are many as he can well testify! With these jobs out of the way he continued his one man war on said nails, panel pins, tacks and anything else that was protruding out of the wood work, and is amassing an impressive collection in a Sarson's pickle jar. Meanwhile, Dot was engaged in scraping off the paint inside and around the B2 door area. This is excellent work for developing the biceps or simply giving you arm ache for a couple of days. John and Allan took off door G5 so that lower panel repairs could continue and some time was spent sanding down and picking out all those interesting flecks of paint lodged in the the wood grain. Allan's allotted task was centred on the waist panels, where once again he resorted to wetting the wood with water, wire brushing vigorously, picking out paint with a scriber, allowing to dry, then sanding down. If anyone knows of a better way - then please do let us into the secret.

Time was also spent scraping down the insides of doors G9 and G10. So there you have it. The next visit will be on Tuesday 22 October 2013.

Working visit 28

Once again the regular quartet were in attendance and arrived just after 10.00 am for a six-hour stint. Shortly after work got underway, a plaintive voice was heard crying for help. On looking around to see where this was coming from, Allan espied a face poking out of the ventilator window of a mark 1 carriage parked in the station. It would appear that a couple had let themselves in to sample the ambiance when the door had closed behind them. Not being familiar with the purpose of droplights they thought they had locked themselves in. I went over to release the somewhat embarrassed pair and then explained to them how to extricate themselves in future. This was their first visit to Elsecar so Allan spent quite some time talking to them about the railway and the history of the area.

John and Allan then set to work on rubbing down door A1 and picking out the paint flecks while Dave continued extracting umpteen nails, panel pins and cable clips. Dot concentrated her efforts on scraping down inside the coach - which is a big job in itself.

At dinnertime we were once again joined by John Wrigley who was making deliveries in the area. Following our sandwiches, Allan attempted to open door G10 in the guards comp. Like all the others, this had been locked and the handle sawn off, thus making it extremely difficult to open. As this door opens inward, he knocked out the hinge pins and pushed the inner edge of the door inwards while at the same time John pushed door G9 outwards. With John and Ian helping, shear brute force won the day and we eventually succeeded in separating them.

Door G10 was then taken outside for dismantling and to extract the broken droplight frame which is now a homework project. With the door now on the picnic table and once again joined by Ian Salisbury, we set to work scraping it down and repairing a split panel.

Working visit 27

Following a second coat of paint, Dot's blackboard on the workshop partition is now ready for use and the first aid cupboard now has an accident report book, again funded out of Dot's purse. Slowly but surely we are becoming more and more organised with each passing week. Our needs now include - a fire extinguisher, a couple of smoke detectors, a cylinder vacuum cleaner, a small kitchen table and four chairs, some portable lighting (for the dark days of winter when working inside), a fondue set and a cuddly toy. Some low level staging for outside would be useful, something which we could probably make out of decking boards and a couple sleeper off-cuts to give a working height of around 18 inches.

However, back to last Tuesday. Dot once again wandered off into the boondocks with loppers and hedge shears and is keeping the bocage at bay. The blackberries are just about finished but Dave continues to scoff those he can reach when he is not extracting countless nails and metal cable clips. John and Allan removed door No.1A and proceeded to dig out the many flecks of paint embedded in the grain with a combination of water, wire brush, scriber and patience. Very slow work but there is a positive improvement in the appearance after a good sanding down. John took home the droplight as he was not satisfied with his earlier efforts to clean out the grain. On the homework front, another droplight has been restored and will be returned to the coach next Tuesday. A restored garnish rail has revealed the shadow of previous lettering No.1 B T and the remainder (probably HIRD) obscured by a label advising the traveller not to lean out of the window. Ian Salisbury put in an appearance and once again lent a hand.

We were delighted to receive a visit from new member Andrew Creaser - who together with his father, travelled over from Hull to see coach No.1. Andrew, (if you recall from my report in the spring newsletter) was the catalyst that resulted in the Stock Fund becoming custodians of the coach! We were happy to show Andrew and his father around and we hope the both enjoyed their visit to Elsecar. We also had a visit from three elderly visitors who wanted to know what we were doing and we were happy to chat with them for a few minutes. It's surprising how much interest is being shown in the coach. If our working day was a Sunday when trains are running and there are plenty of people about, then we doubt if we would get much done for talking! Next working visit Tuesday 8th October. Be seeing you perhaps?

7 May 2013

After un-sheeting No.1 Allan took the opportunity to take photos of some shunting operations carried out by Harry Stenton using the Y.E. Co diesel 2895 to put the Mardy Monster back to bed after a busy weekend.

Mike Haddon set about tidying up the guards compartment by breaking up large pieces of hardboard into something more manageable and filling the dustbin with general rubbish.

John continued to work on the guards ducket and removed yet another split panel for repair. Match-boarding that he had taken home for varnishing was then re-affixed to the door we had worked on on our last visit. Allan continued with therapeutic scraping where one can engage automatic pilot and let the mind wonder a little.

We then made an effort to open and remove another door; this we did successfully apart from the middle hinge breaking free from the door due to badly corroded screws. This is going to create difficult problems at some point. We then placed the door on the picnic table which makes it easier to work on. Time didn't allow us to finish scraping it down but John removed the match-boarding as yet another homework job.

Del Tellings stopped by to admire our efforts and is very pleased and delighted with our progress and with the general condition of the coach as revealed by all our scraping! He also took some photos of the almost restored door to put on their web site. With the sun well past the yardarm and the approach of Tiffin time we rehung the door, tied down the tarp and left for home. Next working visit is Tuesday 14 May, join us if you can.

4 May 2013

Just John and Allan this week as this working visit was only firmed up on the Thursday night. Our efforts this time centred on the first door we had done work on way back in early February. We took it off its hinges and laid it across Peter's picnic table which doubles as a most excellent work bench at just the right height. We spent quite some time scraping it down to bare wood, paying particular attention to the ventilator which we find very difficult to do while the doors are in situ.

Allan has heavily invested in a 'Bahco' scraper which is the same as the one John has, and which Allan has been borrowing for the past few weeks. This wondrous 'tool' has helped get along better with the droplights at home but even this wasn't up to removing some of the paint, so Allan had to resort to a ray (heat) gun! Still, we are getting there as now all three droplights have been stripped on both sides and two have been dismantled.

After a thorough scraping (with a little help from Ian Salisbury) John proceeded to take off the match boarding and the sliding ventilator for sanding down and varnishing as a homework project. We then moved on to work on the guards lookout ducket with Allan doing the scraping (it's getting to be therapeutic, like scraping off wet wallpaper - if you like that sort of thing) and John carefully removing a broken panel. This too will be taken home for repair and varnishing.

Our labours were now and again interrupted by the occasional visitor from the beer tent and its nice to see that our efforts and our presence is creating a little interest to both visitor and Esecar volunteer staff alike. With the afternoon wearing on, the door was re-hung, followed by the usual photographs before sheeting up and heading home at four of the clock. Next working visit will be on Tuesday 7 May. Will you be there?

23 April 2013

Windy conditions made un-sheeting No.1 somewhat difficult and preventative measures were needed to stop it blowing off. Work then commenced with the taking off of the guards comp door which John was working on last week. We were resting it on a combination of a cupboard and a dustbin so we could do some work on it without undue difficulty.

John concentrated on fitting the lower teak panel that he had struggled with last week while Derek Vause set about some controlled vandalism in the guards comp. This involved taking up some of the floor covering in order to expose the degree of rot in one corner. It was deduced that at one time a wash basin had stood in the corner and water spillage from it over the years had been a contributory factor. Taking up the floor covering also exposed where the brake column had been.

Derek also took off much of the hardboard skinning around the guards ducket and along the end of the compartment, extracting numerous nails and panel pins in the process. Allan was back to scraping. We had our 'snap' at the usual time of 12.30 p.m. and our little band was surprised and delighted by the arrival of John Wrigley who was once again making deliveries in the area and dropped in to share in some banter and to see how we were getting along. During the day quite a few Elsecar lads came over to see what we were doing and also a number of young PW trainees who were under instruction from the relocatable building across the way.

Later in the afternoon Pete Sargieson and his wife Brenda came along with a picnic table reduced to a kit of parts which we then proceeded to assemble. This exercise came to an abrupt halt as we had the wrong sized nuts which meant a quick trip to B&Q.

Meanwhile the brake comp door was re-hung and Derek varnished the new panel during which time numerous photos were taken. Peter has once again donated a small selection of new tools and some bags of screws. We have also had a couple of saws donated by a friend. Finally the picnic table was assembled to everyone's satisfaction and the coach sheeted up before we all went home.

No working party next Tuesday as John will be at Goathland; John would welcome any help up at Goathland this weekend and joiners are always welcome.

Mike Haddon has had a photo of coach No.1's arrival together with an article published in 'Steam Railway'.

16 April 2013

After signing in and un-sheeting No.1 Allan unloaded the wood that Stuart had brought from Goathland the previous week and made a start on the never ending job of scraping off that perishing cream paint.

John Boddy was once again engaged in the interesting work which entailed removing a broken panel on the outside of the guards comp door. A replacement panel which had also travelled down from Goathland was then marked out and cut to size with Allan having the honour of sawing the first straight edge. John carried on with this interesting work and Allan went back to scraping, later rebelling against this monotony by taking out the brass screws that held the top mouldings that remained in two quarter lights that had been removed some weeks earlier. This is not so easy as one must avoid damage to the screwdriver slot at all costs.

A pleasant distraction was the regular comings and goings of the Mardy Monster accompanied by that delicious steamy aroma and frequent whistling for the crossing at the station throat. Around 2.30 pm Mike Haddon arrived to lend a hand and as punishment for his late arrival was rewarded with a scraper. Peter Sargieson was somewhat luckier, as he arrived around three o'clock bearing gifts in the form of wood, a cupboard and a fine selection of quality tools thereby avoiding doing penance with the dreaded instrument. We are most grateful to Peter for providing much needed tools - in particular the sander which should come in rather useful. Other tools include a Jig saw, battery powered drill and a selection of twist drills and assorted bits and bobs.

John didn't quite manage to fit the new panel to the guards comp door, so this will have to wait till next week. Just before packing up, Allan took the beading from around the guards lookout ducket window and attempted to remove the broken glass but without success so this too will have to wait until next week.

Allan has been stripping paint off the quarter light window mouldings and developing a reasonable technique to remove all those pesky little flecks of paint that lodge in the grain of the wood. He has also ordered and paid for two panes of toughened glass for the quarter lights and this came in at £42.13 for the pair. In total fourteen broken windows need replacing, so perhaps you may like to consider sponsoring one or more?

By the by, proof positive at long last the our new arrival in indeed of H&B origin. A brass strip removed from the bottom of one of the droplights is branded H&BR in tiny letter stamps. So small that they were only revelled when the metal was polished with glass paper and wire wool. 

6-7 April 2013

No Elsecar report this week, as Allan went up to Goathland on the Sunday just gone. The Hull contingent, consisting of Brian Crowther, Bruce Robinson and Dave Longstaff joined John Boddy there on the Saturday. Jobs undertaken were: taking the winter tarpaulin off coach No.40 and stowing away, hanging a restored door on the restored comp of 40, and cutting and fitting ceiling mouldings. On arrival, John showed Allan over the restored comp and he was suitably impressed with the high standard of work that has been carried out by Dave and Bruce. Viewing over, our efforts that day would be concentrated on coach No.58. After taking photographs of the task in hand we erected a temporary working platform consisting of a steel box, a saw horse and three stout planks with a metal frame to the rear to prevent workers falling off. The platform as built, was no more than 2 foot high, which was just about right for the work we had to do on the semi-corridor side of the coach.

We started by taking off the mouldings around the large lower panel and carefully removing the panel itself, part of which may be salvaged. Following more photos, we then took off the narrow panel and moulding just below the window. We were surprised to see evidence of the hessian membrane that had been glued to the back of this panel at the time of construction, and this too was photographed. With the framework exposed, we could see just how much this had rotted over the years and will need to be replaced. Just to make matters worse, a steel bolt which secures the grab-handle had invariably expanded with rust and has split the door post. In the event, this stubborn little so and so took some getting out.

Later in the afternoon, John wanted a tarpaulin which was covering a restored section of the coach moving further along so that it would cover the newly exposed framework. This was achieved (not without difficulty) by resorting to a squeezy bottle throwing contest in which we all took part. Let me explain. In order to pass the ropes over the carriage roof from ground level, one end is tied to the tarpaulin and the other to a water-filled washing-up liquid bottle which is then tossed over the carriage. The bottle can then be used to haul the canvas up on to the roof. Repeat this exercise five times and hey presto we were able to reposition the tarp. Sounds easy doesn't it! oh no it's not. Perhaps throwing the squeezy bottle should become an Olympic event!

With the tarp repositioned, we set to work chiselling out the bad wood and de-rusting the angle irons before leaving for home at 5.30 pm. Just to make the journey interesting, Stuart's poor little car was pressed into service as transport for five longish lengths of timber for coach No.1, plus a teak panel for the guards door, all of which left very little room for driver and passenger. We had had a good day and it was joy to get up to the line once again notwithstanding a chill east wind. But there was steam to warm our spirits and No. 61264 looked perfectly splendid in the spring sunshine!

Next working party is at Elsecar on Tuesday 16th April at 11.00 am.

Coach no.1 acquired

An exciting new chapter has opened for the Hull & Barnsley Railway Stock Fund, with the acquistion of the body of coach no.1 from the National Museum of Wales. The coach dates from the opening of the railway in 1885, and was moved to its new home at the Elsecar Heritage Railway on 1 February 2013.

The general condition of the coach is better than it actually looks. At first glance the coach looks scruffy, has some damage and many missing fitting and mouldings. However, on closer inspection the fabric is remarkably sound - it would appear that many layers of roofing felt have done an excellent job of keeping out the rain for 127 years. 

Exhibition about Hull's own railway

The Hull & Barnsley Railway Stock Fund has an exhibition at the Hull History Centre from April 11 2012 to the end of May. The exhibition will highlight what was once marketed as "Hull's own railway", looking at how and why it was constructed, with a photographic display of the route between Hull and the now dismantled Ouse Bridge near Drax power station.

2012 AGM

The 2012 AGM will take place at the Bowman's Hotel in Howden at 12:30 on Saturday 5 May 2012.


Humberside Aggregates has made a generous donation of £250 towards the restoration of Coach 40. We are currently raising funds for gas light globes.

North Cave station for sale

North Cave station, ex H&BR

The old H&BR station at North Cave is currently up for sale. More details from Carter Jonas of this impressive conversion of a former railway station offering flexible and well proportioned accommodation of much character set within private and established grounds of around 7 acres.

AGM 2010

The 2010 annual general meeting was held at the Bowman's Hotel in Howden at 12.30 on June 26 2010.

Luggage rack appeal launched

H&BRSF members with cheque

19 November 2009: Almost 70 people packed into the upper room at the Wellington Hotel in Howden on 18 November to watch a slide show entitled "The Hull & Barnsley Railway - Then and Now". Extra chairs had to be brought in to accommodate this number, which is about the limit of the room's capacity. The evening covered the Hull Cannon Street to South Howden section of the line, with nostalgic old photographs being presented alongside up-to-date slides.

In addition, there was a short talk and display on the restoration to date, primarily on Coach 40. A roll of the upholstery fabric recently purchased to refurbish the coaches was on display, along with the usual sales stand.

The evening also saw the launch of the Luggage Rack appeal, 48 of which are needed in the restoration of Coach 40 . Several cheques were received for this appeal, which has now got off to a good start.

In addition to the many members present, the evening was enjoyed by a number of non-members from the surrounding areas, and from initial impressions, it would appear that after seeing the on-going work of the Hull & Barnsley Railway Stock Fund several individuals were considering joining the society.

Members' evening

Wellington Hotel 7.30 pm, Wednesday November 18th 2009

After the success of last year's members' evening, the Hull & Barnsley Railway Stock Fund will be holding another at the same location - the Wellington Hotel, Bridgegate, Howden. It will take place at 7.30 pm on Wednesday 18 November 2009, and will be free.

There will be a presentation on the very interesting topic of The Hull & Barnsley Railway - Then and Now. Additionally, there will be a presentation on restoration in general during the last two years, and the progress on Coach 40 in particular. A roll of the upholstery fabric purchased by donations will be on display, and as usual, the sales team will be in attendance.

So come along and grab a seat on what promises to be a great evening. Last year's event was packed, and with the anticipated local interest in the slides, we expect this evening to be even better attended. We look forward to seeing you there.

Well done, but now we're on to racks!

Railway upholstery

27 September 2009: A big thank you to all those who contributed to the purchase of the fabric. Congratulations, with your help the Trust managed to purchase the upholstery fabric for Coaches No 40 and 58. It is now safely stored, waiting the time when Coach 40 is ready for reupholstering.

Several jobs need to be undertaken before then, but the next major financial hurdle is the production of the luggage racks, which to be authentic, are of design not readily available. Eight are needed for each compartment, so a total of no less than 48 are required.

A pattern has to be made, which will probably cost several hundred pounds, and then it is anticipated that each rack produced from this pattern will cost approximately £40. This does not sound much, until you multiply this sum by 48! Nearly £2000 is needed to manufacture the luggage racks for Coach No.40.

Work on Coach No.40 is going well, but if each member sponsors a rack at £40, then the date of the refurbishment of this historic vehicle will come even nearer. Please help if you can as we draw nearer this goal!

Seat moquette collected

Railway upholstery being collected

26 June 2009: Allan Halman and Phil Mathison with the seat covering material, which has been collected from manufacturer Camira Fabrics in Meltham, Huddersfield.


Drax power station 18 June 2009: Drax plc have generously donated £300 towards the cost of restoring former Hull & Barnsley Railway Coach No 40, owned by the Hull & Barnsley Railway Stock Fund.

Work on the coach, which is located at Goathland on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, is continuing apace, and it will soon be ready for re-upholstery. The fabric has already been bought, and this kind gift will go towards this re-upholstery work.

Anyone interested in the former Hull & Barnsley Railway, or the work on the coach, which has appeared in several film and TV productions, can find out more from the Hull & Barnsley Railway Stock Fund.

Seat covering

Railway upholstery

The seat moquette has now been ordered, in conjunction with other carriage preservation societies. Funding has been assisted by a generous donation from Drax Power Ltd.

Further donations to help with the cost of installation are very welcome.

AGM 2009

The annual general meeting was held at the Wellington Hotel in Howden on May 16 2009.

Slide show

A slide show was held at the Wellington Hotel, Howden on November 27 2008.

Text and pictures © Hull & Barnsley Railway Stock Fund or the respective authors and photographers. is maintained by Andrew Grantham.