The WSR Special Events Planning Team would like to advise visitors to our diesel gala this weekend that despite the presence of two class 50 diesels, Nos. 50007 “Hercules” and 50049 “Defiance”, at Bishops Lydeard these locos are unable to be used on WSR services over the weekend. The visit of these two locomotives was not planned by the planning team and thus no allowance was made in the loco allocations and crewing arrangements that are planned. However our friends at GBRF used the locos as traction for the move of the two class 20’s from the Severn Valley Railway at Kidderminster to the WSR as part of their own crew training regime. As the loco diagrams and crews were all arranged and completed before we were aware of this we have been unable to make provision for these locos to be used during the gala, to do so would only mean less work for the hired in class 20’s and class 26 or the home based diesel hydraulics. This would not be good use of our budgeted expense to put the event on. We also have no trained drivers available to work the 50’s on the WSR at this time. However we do hope to be able to position the 50’s in the bay platform siding at Bishops Lydeard to allow viewing and photography.
Despite this why not come along to the WSR this weekend to enjoy the sight and sound of our own diesel hydraulics, in the 40th anniversary year since the end of hydraulic locos on the Western Region, the distinctive whistling class 20’s and the throaty thrash of the class 26 as they climb through the hills of West Somerset. We also of course have our Real Ale Trail on all weekend in conjunction with the Small Independent Brewers Association (SIBA) at Minehead, Stogumber and Bishops Lydeard. Hopefully we’ll be able to hire in a class 50 for a future diesel gala on a formal basis