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WED 18 OCT

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Track Pack - July 2016

August 2016 Working Weekend - Sat 6th & Sun 7th

With the Victorian Weekend due to be in full swing on both days, along with a Two Train service, the plan this time is to retire to the peace and tranquillity of Rowlands Wood.  Here the sleeper changing can be continued where it was left off last time, within sight of Ashey Grounds Crossing, before proceeding westwards.

There are already a dozen or so sleepers out alongside the track in this area but a further run before the weekend should ensure a good session for everyone to get their teeth into. 

Look forward to seeing everyone at the weekend, at the usual time of 8.30am in the P.Way Yard ready for the morning Wickham trip into the woods.

What's Been Going On?

Ashey Station formed the centre of operations over the June Working Weekend. The work to be done involved repairing or renewing the fences around the Station Crossing, and piece of land adjacent to it.

Despite a couple of Gang members returning to Havenstreet in connection with  Saturday’s Royal Visit the first section of fence, at right angles to the track, was up and in place just after dinnertime. The afternoon was spent putting the new (heritage) concrete posts next to the approach lane, digging through the previously advertised tough ground. One post in particular caused a bit of trouble as its location appeared to be over a large quantity of rubble. Local archaeologists presumed this to be remains of the old “Down” platform dumped there after it was demolished.

With the usual operative being on leave, a new operator spent most of the day cutting the Station’s large grassed areas using the ride on mower. Once it had stopped beeping at him the job went well, with everything looking very smart. The edges and sloped sections were tidied using a Brushcutter.

A smaller gang on Sunday were able to travel by company van to the site, and quickly pressed on with completing the fence post. Happily the digging got easier the further you progressed eastwards.

With the existing wires recycled and hairpinned to the new posts the job was completed. The afternoon was taken up by building a new timber return fence behind the SW corner cattle grid. This matched the design of the ones on the Smallbrook side of the crossing and are intended to prevent stock etc. cutting across the corner of the grid.
Many thanks to everyone who turned up to help out at Ashey over the weekend.

What Else Has Been Going On?

Once again the main focus has been on the control of the numerous areas of grassland etc. around and beside the Railway line.  It would appear the main growth spurt for this season is now passed as most of the recently cut sections have stayed down. These include a swaith beside the track that now extends from Wootton to Ashey stations, and then between Deacons Lane Bridge and Callaways Crossing. The bank behind Ashey Road Garage was cleared as a part of this effort and proved very hard going, eventually resort had to be made to a bladed brushcutter.

Before the breakdown of the powered cutting machines (aka The Billygoat et al) the Friday Gang made good progress all the way to the fence line between Ashey Station and Rowlands Lane Bridge. Not to be deterred by a little set back, they progressed onto the steep bank, where the larger machines are not so useable, between Havenstreet and Bridge Seven and cleared the whole area in two Fridays.

All the best,

Phil, Ian and Pete.


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