RECENT NEWS > Letting off Steam at The East Somerset Railway, Cranmore!
At The East Somerset Railway Diana Walker

Letting off Steam at The East Somerset Railway, Cranmore!

Back to our childhood? The Railway Children !
Greeted warmly, as we were at the East Somerset Railway in Cranmore on Wednesday, a small group of us enjoyed an afternoon of enthusiasm and hospitality, and benefited from a host of photographic opportunities, rarely encountered previously by any of us.

Meeting earlier than usual trackside, we were rewarded almost immediately by an approaching locomotive belching steam. With the platforms and the signal box giving us a combination of great viewpoints and fascinating conversations, we were royally entertained by employees and volunteers alike, and urged to explore at will- so that is what we did!

Mindful of the work in progress in the engine sheds, a stone’s throw from the main station along a footpath, we initially kept to the tourist viewpoints, but were soon invited with our cameras to venture deep into the heart of the restoration areas. Here volunteer enthusiasts were hard at work on ageing engines, and painstakingly painting coach and bodywork that had seen better days. The sparks were flying and the blowtorches were roaring, but we were guided skilfully around, hoisted onto faded footplates and shepherded into ancient storage cupboards in search of appropriate subject matter.
Ancient artefacts from a bygone age tumbled from benches and gathered in corners, jumbling into ready-made still life studies that caught our eyes. The sights, sounds and smells of yesteryear assailed our senses, and we happily snapped away in an environment that captivated us for the entire afternoon.

Meandering back along the footpath, we dallied a while at the museum under the watchful eyes of the station budgie and cat, exploring the ticket office, waiting room and mailroom, before once again capturing the beaming faces of the driver and the guard, as the train decoupled and shunted its way back and forth on its final journey of the say. To finish, we enjoyed a welcome cuppa with scrumptious cake at the café, served by cheerful, chatty ladies, and taken outside into the fresh air of the Somerset countryside. What a lovely afternoon in this gem of a popular venue as the British Summer turns to Autumn, and we at NRPS eagerly look forward to a very full programme of events every Thursday as usual!

Jenny Short 01.09.2021

A selection of photos from all four members who went on this trip will be in a gallery for all to see as soon as they are sent to me ! These will also be forwarded to the east Somerset railway as requested by them to be used in their social media and other campains.

The fungi are sprouting early at Beacon Woods and beckon members for an early start to Autumn subjects.

I propose that on Wednesday 8th we meet at 2pm by the main entrance to the woods (which is the one on the Old Frome Road that is closest to the A37 and has parking space which is a bit limited so share cars if possible.) The postcode given is BA4 4LB but if you find parking here is full, go further along the road as there are a couple more entrances and you can walk back for the meet up. Come prepared to get down on your knees and equipped with portable lights like small torches etc if you want seriously good shots- otherwise just enjoy a walk round this ancient site that includes a Bronze Age burial mounds, old quarry pits, and a central circular earth bank with a single standing stone. There are springs ponds and gullies and sometimes it gets muddy in places so be prepared with footgear too. let me know by Tuesday lunchtime if you will be joining us and give me your mobile phone number in case we miss you or youare delayed and we can recce.