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A successful year for M&GNJR Society

16th July 2018

The Society held a well-attended AGM at the Morley Club in Sheringham on July 14.

Members had a detailed printed report mailed to them in advance of the meeting, outlining the features of a highly successful year with strong financial performance and many highlights. These included the B12's visits to the Great Central and Severn Valley railways, the naming of WD 90775 as "The Royal Norfolk Regiment" and Wissington's visits to the Colne Valley and her Summer residence at the Beamish Museum. The Y14 continues to be a great favourite on the NNR and is to be seen at the head of the railway's Vintage Set which runs as an additional train on a number of days in the Summer period. Progress on the Class 31, a major project, proceeds well and it is hoped to be the star attraction at Members' Day on October 6th.

This year has seen the return to traffic of the Society's unique Gresley Quad-Art set following the painstaking task of stripping, varnishing and repainting - very impressive it looks too and popular with passengers during the NNR's Suburban Week in early July.

Membership remains healthy and the Society publication "Norfolk's Railways 1927 - 1966" has been a best seller locally.

The Board of Trustees enjoy the confidence of members with the four trustees standing for re-election being returned.

In opening the meeting and welcoming members, Neil Sharpe, pointed members to the written report for the success of the past year. He said he would restrict his remarks in the meeting to announcing three exciting pieces of news.

The start of 2018 saw the passing of the Society's two presidents, RHN "Dick" Hardy and Sir William McAlpine. The Trustees were delighted to announce that Julian Birley BEM, who steps down as chair of the NNR in September, has accepted an invitation to become the new Society President. It is wonderful to welcome such a "heavyweight" in the world of heritage rail to our ranks, especially someone who knows and loves our railway so much.

Secondly the Society has been able to add a truly East Anglian mainline locomotive to our stable, long term Colchester and Ipswich 08 D3935 / 08767. [See separate press release].

Finally - at least for the present - the Society has added an historically significant piece of rolling stock to its collection. This is LNER Thompson Brake Third dating from 1950. This was once the support coach for 60532 Blue Peter at Dinting Railway Centre, but is currently at Llangollen where its restoration is substantially complete. Once it has come to the NNR and the remaining work has been done, the coach is to be a 'special saloon' with a small bar area decked out with Festival of Britain regalia.

Verdict: a highly successful year, a bright future and a great meeting for the Society.

M&GN Society acquires a new locomotive

15th July 2018

The Society is delighted to announce the acquisition of a sixth locomotive to join its stable of four steam locos and one mainline diesel, in the form of Class 08 shunter D3935. The handover of the locomotive took place on Thursday when the loco took over pilot duties at Sheringham station from Class 11 12131.

The handover at Weybourne on July 12. Photo: Leigh Caudwell

D3935 was quickly into action during the Railway's highly successful annual Beer Festival [July 13-15] which saw restricted use of platform 2 by service trains. The loco brought trains into platform 1 once the train loco was released outside the station by Sheringham West signalbox.

Bringing D3935 back to life has been a long term project of over 20 years undertaken by previous owner, Phil Ward, who has lovingly returned the loco to "as new" condition. Phil knew the 08 well from his time at Colchester depot.

The shunter was built at Horwich in 1960-61 and first allocated North of the border to Kittybrewster [61A] in April 1961. It moved to Aberdeen (Ferryhill) [61B] in 1967 and to Thornaby in 1971, before heading to South East to Colchester in June 1972, breaking its journey briefly at Stratford.

D3935 remained a Colchester loco for the remainder of its BR service, often to be out-based at Ipswich working among other duties on the Griffon Wharf branch.

It became 08767 in February 1974 as part of BR's TOPS renumbering scheme.

It was withdrawn from service in January 1994 after almost 33 years in BR service and stored at Ipswich wagon works. It was then acquired by the North Norfolk Railway, where it worked during the 1990s before experiencing major mechanical problems. Phil Ward then bought the loco and began the project which has resulted today in such an impressive piece of work.

Neil Sharpe, Society Chairman, who drove the loco from the NNR's Weybourne depot to Sheringham on Thursday to enter service, informed members of the purchase at the Society's AGM held in Sheringham two days later, July 14. "D3935 is in superb condition following its long restoration" he said "so the Society is acquiring an almost new locomotive which will be a useful working asset to the NNR. The Trustees were keen to add a locomotive with such strong links to East Anglia to our stable as it fits the objects of the Society so well."

He told members that the purchase was made possible because of the successful year which the Society had had financially, not only through member support and income from our locomotives, but the result of a large legacy."

Trustees are also delighted that the money invested in purchasing D3935 is to be used to finance a further restoration project. "This is recycling at its best!"

Click for Gallery

New Loco

12th July 2018

We are delighted to announce the acquisition of our 6th locomotive. We have concluded the purchase of D3935. This loco will be working as the pilot locomotive at Sheringham. D3935 will be in use this weekend as part of the beer festival bringing in the rolling stock for each train.

Photos Courtesy of Steve Allen

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The Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway Society is the supporting charity of (and major shareholder in) the North Norfolk Railway, which operates a 5¼ mile heritage railway from Sheringham to Holt.

The Society actively works to preserve, display and operate a wide range of historical artefacts which include four steam locomotives and many unique carriages and wagons.

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