Alderney Railway

Alderney Railway

Postby Bomp » Sun Apr 05, 2009 1:37 pm

I'm in Alderney with work until Wednesday. Ever since I first got to Guernsey to live, I've wanted to come over and see the railway. http://www.alderneyrailway.com/

As you'd expect, I've been taking pictures. I'll post what I've got, and try to put them in order. It'll be a bit "bitty" to start with, as I've done New Town to half way to the top so far, but I'll label the pictures with location and direction where I can find it.

As I understand it, the railway was built to carry stone from one end of the island to build the breakwater at the other end.

I've seen most of it now, having driven round (and round and round) the island last night, but not taken pictures of it all yet.

As I've got another couple of days here, if there are any pictures I haven't posted that anyone would like, let me know and I'll try to get out and take some more. I don't know what stock I'll be able to get, but the permanent way should be readily accessible

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View from York Hill towards Braye showing level crossing signs.
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From that level crossing towards the breakwater. This section is or appears to be out of use.
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Braye Road station - the view from the level crossing towards the quarry (upper terminus).
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From the first crossing looking back towards the Breakwater.
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First crossing looking towards the quarry.
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That's all for now. I've got to go to work. Tomorrow's tasks are to get up to the quarry to see the LU stock I glimpsed last night and whatever else may be there, to get some pictures of the arrangement at the landward end of the breakwater - some parallel tracks/pointwork and a rail-served shed, and to go along the breakwater.
The best you can hope for is that when you leave, everyone hates you more than they hated each other when you arrived.

My layout thread: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=25837&p=685774#p685774
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Re: Alderney Railway - second batch

Postby Bomp » Sun Apr 05, 2009 9:36 pm

Starting from where we left off...

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Newtown Road crossing looking towards the Breakwater.
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Newtown Road crossing looking towards the quarry.
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This one shows some sort of buildings, of which more in the next couple. I don't know what they were or were for. The usual answer I'm finding in Alderney is that they are likely to be some sort of Occupation building, be it gun emplacement, bunker, fortification or other things. Given its location and rail link, I wouldn't be surprised if it's some sort of loading mechanism.

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Closer view of the previous subject.
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Looking back at the previous subject from the upper side.
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I have other views, but they're of the permanent way and mainly show grass with the occasionally visible sleeper and rails poking through the grass. It's tempting to get a picture of every foot of this railway, mainly because it's short enough to walk in a morning in both directions and take the photos. We'll see.

More photos tomorrow when I go to the breakwater and the quarry. I'll get the crane/wagons and the LU stock when I'm there, but the locos live tucked up in the shed. Or at least, I couldn't see them this afternoon.
The best you can hope for is that when you leave, everyone hates you more than they hated each other when you arrived.

My layout thread: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=25837&p=685774#p685774
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby SouthernRegionSteam » Sun Apr 05, 2009 10:02 pm

This truly is a fascinating railway, I have the article from Railway Modeller here somewhere, must dig it out.
Great pictures, thanks for posting them (don't you just love that overgrown track!)
If you could post more from your visit that'd be great! A great set of photos to take inspiration from too.
thanks,
Jam :D
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Bomp » Sun Apr 05, 2009 10:33 pm

SouthernRegionSteam wrote:This truly is a fascinating railway, I have the article from Railway Modeller here somewhere, must dig it out.
Great pictures, thanks for posting them (don't you just love that overgrown track!)
If you could post more from your visit that'd be great! A great set of photos to take inspiration from too.
thanks,
Jam :D


I remember many years ago reading about it in the Railway Magazine and thinking that Alderney was too tiny to have a railway. I think one of the things that attracts me to modelling it is that you could do the whole thing - the island is only 3 miles long, and the railway itself only about 2 miles long. I haven't done the sums, but I bet you could do it a fair amount of justice in OO and maybe get it all in N. To start with, I'm going to look for features I can get into my current/proposed layout/extension.
The best you can hope for is that when you leave, everyone hates you more than they hated each other when you arrived.

My layout thread: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=25837&p=685774#p685774
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby SouthernRegionSteam » Mon Apr 06, 2009 8:59 am

Absolutely, I reckon you could fit it in 00 in 42metres if my calculations are correct :shock: Not that i'm tempted of course :roll:
So yes you probably could fit it all in in N (21m) ... maybe one day 8)
Grab as many interesting features as you can, there's plenty of 'em! In the article there were some good photos including bits of rusty rail in undergrowth at Mannez Quarry. Also a good photo at Golf Club Crossing...

Jam :D
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Re: Alderney Railway - back by the breakwater

Postby Bomp » Mon Apr 06, 2009 12:29 pm

This morning, after I'd been to the German Pier on the south coast (a very strange experience! it looks like an abandoned slate quarry building, but there's something not right about the place) I went to the Alderney Museum and thence to the breakwater.

What I learned in the museum is that, if the lithograph is to be believed, there was once an extensive yard by the breakwater, and branches to Crabby for Fort Doyle to the West and to another Fort planned at Whitegates area. There is also an 0-4-0 tender loco depicted, but I don't think I've seen other pictures of it. Could it be a generic loco put in by the artist? Who knows. It seems that there used to be more of the railway than I'd believed previously. Also, the Germans relaid a portion to (I think) metre gauge, but I'll need to look more into this.

To start with, a view of the German Pier. It's far from clear how whatever they landed here got to the rest of the island, but I have a couple of theories. The bits sticking up could be a winding house (though more likely to be at the top of the ropeway?) and there's a lump of concrete which could have been a foundation for a pylon. The other possibility is that with a slave labour force (FOUR concentration camps!) you could make people carry stuff. I don't know what they brought in, though, so I can't really have any informed input. One thing I can say from my visit there is that a railway has no way to get close - cliffs either side.

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Cachaliere Pier, South Coast of Alderney
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Then I went to the railway again.

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The Breakwater from a distance.
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This one is from the other end of the stretch with gravel between the rails. From the museum information, I reckon this is where the junction for the Crabby Branch turned west. Further on in the pictures, I think I've got the trackbed of this branch. I should add that here and throughout, I've made up my own names for locations on the railway apart from the breakwater, as there's little around to say what they are really called.

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Alderney Railway towards Breakwater.
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Some of the rails on/near the breakwater are obscured or missing...

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Sad looking rails in the builder's yard.
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Severed end at the breakwater
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There is stuff stacked on the rails, and in places structures have encroached.

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Boats and things stacked on the rails
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More breakwater stuff stacked
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This shed is rail served, but no indication of what for. Could have been a loco shed, but possibly also covered siding for the Fort there? As with so much, more research needed.

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Shed at the breakwater
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Looking the other way from by the shed.

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The other way, back inland.
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And then I looked for the Crabby Branch. I reckon that the culvert by the Fire/Ambulance Station is built for rail rather than road, and I found one solitary rail in the dust by the road. I'll go for another closer look down there later on to see what, if anything, is at the other end.

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View across Crabby Bay towards Fort Doyle showing culvert (?).
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Rail in dust - remains of Crabby Branch?
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That's all for now. Tomorrow or later I'm going to the other end to see what I can see. If anyone would like the full size original files, drop me a PM and I'll send them on when I get home.
The best you can hope for is that when you leave, everyone hates you more than they hated each other when you arrived.

My layout thread: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=25837&p=685774#p685774
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Claude_Dreyfus » Mon Apr 06, 2009 12:35 pm

There is something extremely modellable about these small self-contained networks...and your pictures are a positive boon to anyone considering modelling a subject like this. I am watching this with a lot of interest... :thup
Got a touch of the Vapours and turning Japanese... :shock: N Gauge of course.

Our Club website

and finally...

Claude's Prototype Photo Thread
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby SouthernRegionSteam » Mon Apr 06, 2009 3:46 pm

Thanks for posting those, they are really interesting! I'm pretty sure I'm right when I say that the rail served building was a loco shed...
Claude_Dreyfus wrote:There is something extremely modellable about these small self-contained networks...and your pictures are a positive boon to anyone considering modelling a subject like this. I am watching this with a lot of interest... :thup

Absolutely, even a layout around 6ft long in 00 could expose a lot of this atmosphere!
If you could dig up any more history it would be really interesting even if it was just something to refer back to.
A great set of photos, thanks for taking the time to post them :thup :clap

Jam :D
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby grw184 » Mon Apr 06, 2009 6:54 pm

Hi

Just an FYI that in the 'Archives' section at http://www.irsociety.co.uk/, they have a quite informative article on the construction of the breakwater, including track plans and operating diagrams

Look under 'Back Issues' and scroll to Issue 52

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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby SouthernRegionSteam » Mon Apr 06, 2009 7:03 pm

grw184 wrote:Hi

Just an FYI that in the 'Archives' section at http://www.irsociety.co.uk/, they have a quite informative article on the construction of the breakwater, including track plans and operating diagrams

Look under 'Back Issues' and scroll to Issue 52

GRW184


Here's the link GRW184 is refering to:
http://www.irsociety.co.uk/Archives/52/Alderney.htm

Thanks GRW148 :thup

EDIT

http://johnlawontherails.fotopic.net/p36243630.html

http://images.google.co.uk/imgres?imgur ... N%26um%3D1

http://images.google.co.uk/imgres?imgur ... 6%26um%3D1

some useful links perhaps?
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Re: Alderney Railway - Last Batch

Postby Bomp » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:30 pm

Evening all! Here are the last pictures for now. I'll start with the Crabby Branch. I found what I think is a cutting for the railway, though there's precious little trace apart from the culvert I found earlier. I'll try to get a picture of that from the beach for more detail.

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Crabby Cutting.
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Then back to the breakwater when the cars and lorries had gone home.

Starting with a view of the two-level rails on the breakwater. It's less than clear whether you're allowed to walk down it, so this may be my best view of the breakwater. I'll see whether I can get on it tomorrow.

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Breakwater.
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Then the granite wall built across the rails... quite an impediment, I'd've thought!

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Wall at Breakwater.
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Last one at this end, a point lever in the road by the shed at the breakwater.

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Point lever
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I went to the top end hoping to get into the yard. Unfortunately the gate was shut, so I'll have to walk up there tomorrow. Since I was in the van, I found another vantage point...

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Vantage point
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This is what I could see... an aerial view! Sort of panning from sheds to the running line:

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Shed end.
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Shed end.
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According to a map I've seen, there was more track in the lower portion of this picture. Not sure it shows up in this, but I think I saw it. I'll get another picture if I can get into the quarry tomorrow.

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Old track?
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Further along towards the running line.

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Loop in quarry.
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The crane and stone wagons from above and from the road.

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Crane from above.
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Crane from road.
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The loop ends and the running line begins.

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Points at running line end.
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Two views from the road of the running line. Please excuse the "company car" in the second shot...

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Towards quarry.
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Towards Town and the Breakwater.
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That's all for now. There may be more if I can get to the quarry tomorrow, in which case I'll get close ups of the LU coaches and see what else I can find in the sheds. Like windows for looking through.

As ever, PM for full size pictures when I get home.
Attachments
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Shed end 2
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The best you can hope for is that when you leave, everyone hates you more than they hated each other when you arrived.

My layout thread: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=25837&p=685774#p685774
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby SouthernRegionSteam » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:39 pm

towardsquarry.jpg looks to be such good modelling potential there, might even have a go as test track or static model for photographing...
Thanks so much for uploading those, they're great, all really good shots.
Now wheres that plank of wood I had lying around...
Interesting to see that the point lever is still there and that all the track is concrete sleepered!
Great reference material there,
Jam :clap
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby JohnH » Tue Apr 07, 2009 1:03 pm

Great photos - many thanks for posting these shots. When does the railway operate?
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Bomp » Tue Apr 07, 2009 3:44 pm

JohnH wrote:Great photos - many thanks for posting these shots. When does the railway operate?


Next weekend :wall :wall :wall

And I think weekends in the summer.
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Bomp » Tue Apr 07, 2009 9:27 pm

Update on pictures...

I got to the quarry and took some rolling stock pictures. I also stuck the camera under the shed door and got some unusual angles on the loco/s and Wickham car.

Unfortunately, I have failed to download the pictures from the camera (more strictly I have failed to find them once the camera has claimed to have put them onto the computer). I'll have another go later but if I fail, I'll put them on when I get home tomorrow.

Sorry...
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Gwiwer » Wed Apr 08, 2009 12:06 pm

Good to see Alderney about to come back to life for another season. One of only two places you can still ride on 1938 tube stock in passenger service, and the other one is also a small island!
The Penhayle Bay Railway is HERE Please leave a message after your visit.

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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Steve K » Wed Apr 08, 2009 1:15 pm

Gwiwer wrote:Good to see Alderney about to come back to life for another season. One of only two places you can still ride on 1938 tube stock in passenger service, and the other one is also a small island!

Stupid question, but would that be IOW? I thought you meant another Channel Island for a minute, but Alderney's unique in this respect, isn't it?
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Gwiwer » Wed Apr 08, 2009 1:26 pm

Yes, Isle of Wight. Not a Channel Island but an island in the Channel nonetheless. And small on a World scale.
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby papagolfjuliet » Wed Apr 08, 2009 2:23 pm

Fascinating pics. Incidentally, the runner for that steam crane is actually Sentinel 6909 of 1927, or what's left of her.
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Bomp » Thu Apr 09, 2009 11:06 am

Okay, a few more pics while I get a moment. Track ones to start with.

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Towards the crossing by Whitegates.
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Behind Whitegates.
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Further on behind Whitegates.
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A (the?) long straight between Whitegates and Mannez quarry.
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A loading place?
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Closer view of loading place.
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Closer view of the other end of the loading place.
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Later on I'll put some stock pictures and a couple of close ups of what I think may be interesting features...
The best you can hope for is that when you leave, everyone hates you more than they hated each other when you arrived.

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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Bomp » Thu Apr 09, 2009 2:51 pm

This is the last of the pictures. I have more than what I've posted, but they are similar to those already posted or detail/close ups of such things as the stone wagons in various states of dilapidation or such like. I have several views of the coupling between the loco and the tube stock, of which I've only put two here which give the general idea.

The crane to start with. It's looking very sorry indeed now, but then there's very little covered accommodation so it's been outside for a while, I should think. There's a photograph of it in the museum in Town in I think 1985 where it's by the shed at the breakwater looking in not too bad condition.

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Crane from right.
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Crane from left.
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Crane rear.
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Data panel from crane? It was on the ground behind it...
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Then a very poorly looking wagon. There are three by the crane, and I got pictures of each. This one is, I think, the worst of those three, but there are others in various stages of decomposition/dismemberment in the rest of the area. I should point out that I'm not having any sort of go at the people who run the railway. Just observing.

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Stone wagon looking very poorly. Some were not quite as bad as this one!
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The tube stock from a lower angle than the previous shots.

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Tube stock from ground level.
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And the coupling arrangement:

Tube stock end:

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Coupling bar on tube car.
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Please pardon the strange angle - I had to stick the camera through the gap at the bottom of the door and point and shoot. I got some of a Wickham car in as well!

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Coupling on loco.
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Back to the track for the last few. There's a sharp curve as you leave the quarry:

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Flange lubricator on sharp corner just leaving the quarry.
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And two shots of what I think is a crown on a sleeper. Up at this end there are several sleepers with crowns on - but why? Are they original Admiralty sleepers? I'll ask next time I'm over if I can find a man who knows...

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Sleeper with crown on it.
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Close up of crown on sleeper.
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While I was walking up and down the railway, I was passed by lots of lorries which were taking stone/hardcore etc from the quarry to the new breakwater they are building. Wasn't that why the railway was there in the first place? Shame they can't use it to build the new one as well!

Short of requests for anything I've not posted, that's all! I realise you don't know what I've not posted, but I have a few more of the stock in the quarry area. I didn't post them all as they are pretty similar to what I've already posted, but there are close ups and details of the wagons which I took in case I fancied building one. You can see all the construction!
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby pointstaken » Thu Apr 09, 2009 4:02 pm

Fascinating photos, thanks, Bomp. Anyone fancy building that crane and weathering it ?

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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Gwiwer » Fri Apr 10, 2009 12:14 am

I am intrigued by those "crested" sleepers. I have never seen anything like it before. I don't recall any such existing on the various Admiralty branches around Priddy's Hard or Elson Gate off the Gosport line so they may be quite unique. A great pictorial record of a very unusual line, many thanks for posting.
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Re: Alderney Railway

Postby Adam » Fri Apr 10, 2009 8:38 am

Crown? The close up looks like the remains of a normal centre line marking - C with a vertical line through the middle. Admitedly, I've never seen a sleeper with those either...

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