December Updates

  • The new right-hand side frame section for 506 is manoeuvred for positioning in the works at Ropley
  • The old frame section was lifted on top of this to line up the many holes that required drilling.
  • These have now all been completed and the picture here shows the various holes which locate the cylinder and centre casting. It is hoped to have this frame welded into position by Christmas 2014.

Sales Department – HELP!

Having rejuvenated the fund-raising operation this year, we are now running out of items to sell. Thanks to a very small band of helpers, notably John ‘Barney’ Barrowdale, Ian Stephenson and Crawford Wright, we have managed to run the ULS stall at the Watercress Line Galas and events this year, and have raised a healthy £700 for the Society. Use of E-bay has raised a further £250 for funds. However, we are running out of second-hand books and other items to sell, both on the stall and on E-bay. We would also appreciate some help to man (or woman) the stall at events and hopefully expand to other railways’ galas and model railway exhibitions etc. So, if you could cull your libraries of any saleable railway books (no recent magazines please!) and donate them to the Society, we can turn them into cash to speed the rerun of 499 and 506. For E-bay, model railway equipment always sells well and items such as Ian Alan ABC’s command good prices. However, any saleable item would be welcomed. Offers of time to run our stall at events would be appreciated.

Please contact any members of the committee or me (Ian Coward) on 01252 613059 or email

499 Appeal Update

Following on from our last update, funds raised through the Appeal (including gift aid) have risen to £25,000. IF the cracks in the inner firebox of boiler No. 451 (506’s original boiler) now prove repairable then this becomes a ‘low cost’ project and the Appeal will stand at possibly half of the total cost for this part of the restoration. For a small group restoring a workhorse of a loco, as opposed to a big ‘namer’, this is a huge achievement.

HOWEVER, half raised means we will have halfway to go! It is our hope that the work can be contracted to the Mid Hants, so the sooner we know where we are with total funding, the sooner we can begin to discuss the level of work to be done and negotiate when it can start. If funds continue to come in beyond the level required to repair the boiler, it will enable us to outsource more mechanical work and really go for that target of a return to steam before 2020.

So PLEASE, keep spreading the word and encourage as many people as you can to sign up – don’t forget, £8 a month gets a seat on that very special commemorative train. If you do know of anyone interested in donating to the Appeal or maybe even signing up as a seat sponsor, please refer them to this website,, or they can contact us at

Thank you so much for your continuing support.

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