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MON 23 OCT

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Track Pack - November 2013

Hi all, welcome to the penultimate edition of Trackpack for 2013, we are still working hard to complete our new home in Griffins. The situation remains as it was last month with the workshop still not complete, so we are still in a state of disarray. We have got a new internet connection which has been working well until recently. Sadly we had to move some temporary wiring in the pump house by the new shed and it has proved fatal for our internet and email connection to the new office. So I am sending this edition from my home computer again and will ask you to again use my home email address to contact me. I will let you all know as soon as our usual email address is up and working reliably again.

December 2013 Working Weekend - Saturday 7th & Sunday 8th

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The Griffins Sidings complex and Changing Trains building on 14th November 2013.

At the moment we are working on the last of the points in Griffins, the PW workshop access point, and we may well have some jobs left on that and on the sidings by the next bash. Otherwise the main thrust of the weekends work will be to install 100 new sleepers round the curve into Griffins and all the new check chairs. They have been laid out ready to go and we hope to have two teams working from both ends and it would be nice to meet in the middle on Sunday afternoon! It is a big ask as we will be changing sleepers in the traditional manner, so lots of digging out is required. As the sleepers are undrilled we will need to make sure the 3/4inch gauge widening is maintained as every sleeper is fixed in place and drilled. If we have enough volunteers we will also try to put the check rail in and pack the sleepers with the BLH machine.

So lots to do on the final bash of the year; it will be one of the last major tasks on the Changing Trains track project. We will be pleased to welcome you all to the new HQ again, and the usual terms and conditions apply with festive refreshments supplied to help the tasks along.

What's Been Going On?

Our last bash was again very productive in the Griffins sidings complex. The point building part of the weekends work went very well, and now we have a good deal of experience in putting the various parts together; we managed to get a large amount of work done in the two days. We had a very good turn out of volunteers so we also managed to have another two gangs working on Saturday besides the point gang. A small gang worked with the BLH machine and packed the track inside the shed on what we call number 3 road. This is opposite the platform so need to be gauged to make sure levels were correct for both cross-level and height and width for the platform. This gang continued out into the yard packing right up to the entrance point during the day. Finally another small gang help with the movement of materials to site from the barnfield and the overflow car park. The new check chairs and sleepers for next months bash were collected from storage and put round the curve to Griffins using the company van and Wickham trolley to get the materials to site.

Sunday was taken up with more work on the new point and also starting to get materials ready for the final point in the yard to be funded by the HLF.

So once again we had a brilliant turn out and managed to get a fantastic amount of work done over the weekend, my thanks to you all for the hard work put in on all the various tasks.

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The new Civil Engineering workshop under construction.

What Else Has Been Going On?

Again, as in the last few months, most of our time has been spent working in Griffins on the siding complex. Work has been progressing well, lots of fixing down of pointwork and siding construction. We have also done a lot of drainage work, putting in a new drain along the base of the grass bank where it was badly needed as the siding area was getting very wet under foot after the recent rainy season.

The Friday gang are still based in the old hut as the new workshop is not yet ready to be used. Their work on lineside clearance is taking place on the Wootton section at the moment and steady progress towards Havenstreet has been made.

Nothing much else has happened out on the running lines over the last month, so we will have a great deal to catch up with in the New Year when we can leave a completed siding complex in Griffins!

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No.4 Road; an inspection pit will be constructed in this location.
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Shunting in progress on 24th November 2013, all of the connected roads now contain stock.

January 2014 Working Weekend

Just a heads up on the first bash of 2014. We will be having a break from Boxing Day until the 3rd January, apart from covering the New Years Day running. We will be having our normal working weekend on the 4th & 5th, with details to follow in the December edition of Track Pack.

That’s it for now then folks, hope to see you soon.

Dave, Pete, Phil and Ian.