The Friends of the
National Railway Museum

South of England Group
Vice Presidents: Richard Hardy; Sir William McAlpine Bt, FRSE, FCIT, FRSA

Last Update

    7 April 2011

Severn Valley Railway
  20 July 2002

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On  20th July, twenty four Friends joined the summer outing to the Severn Valley Railway.   The party had arrived from all over the south and despite some problems on the main-line railway, we had all made it to Kidderminster in time for the 12.45 departure.

We set out from Kidderminster aboard the Observation Saloon marshalled at the front of the train.  We were hauled by 46443 on the 70 minute journey to Bridgnorth.

 During the trip north we enjoyed a superb buffet lunch served up by the two very professional stewards.  Our position at the front of the train meant that we had a good view of the loco crew as they negotiated the line, some of which was still suffering from speed restrictions due to the earlier flooding.

At Bridgnorth the party split, some going to view the delights of the town, while others took part in the guided tour of the locomotive workshops.  The Railway has an impressive collection of heavy machine tools which, with their boiler shop, are capable of handling the heaviest of overhauls.

Several engines were seen undergoing maintenance and restoration, including 80079, 75078, 47383, and 7714. Our knowledgeable guide was a young female volunteer - a welcome indication that the railway has a continuing future ahead of it.

Our return was at 14.50, the party dodging the rain showers to get aboard the observation car, some by way of the real-ale bar on the station platform.

The south-bound trip had a number of station stops while we waited for north-bound trains to pass, both service passenger trains and footplate experience runs.

The leisurely trip allowed us to finish our lunch - with sweet, cheese, and coffee, again served up by the stewards.  The weather was fine during the return but on our arrival at Kidderminster, the clouds opened once more.

This wasn't too much of a problem, as most of the party had decided to go round the station museum, shop and finish in the cafe - for a few more refreshments (surely they still weren't hungry!).  By the time we had finished the clouds had cleared and we made our various ways home.  All in all, a very enjoyable social outing and, as you will see, everyone was smiling at the end of the journey.