NELPG publishes its own bi-monthly newsletter NELPG NEWS, which is posted free to all of the group's members. The history of the group is chronicled in its pages.
With the J72 and K1’s winter maintenance now complete, and cold and insteam tests satisfactorily carried out for the regulatory bodies, both locomotives are ready to once again start earning revenue, the former on the Wensleydale Railway and the latter on the Jacobite, though with a few pre season charters thrown in for good measure!
This issue is much about communication, to the extent that members should be left in no doubt about what is going on within the Group! Members have expressed concerns about communication, the Committee believes that these have been taken on board. However, channels of communication have been in existence for some time – the NEWS itself, the Group’s website, the monthly social meetings, working parties and the annual open meeting. We are conscious that there is always room for improvement in communications, particularly with the increasing costs of traditional methods and the continuing changes in technology that are occurring. The Committee will be considering this over the next few months, but wants that discussion to be informed by members’ views. They are important to us. So please read the article on page 28 and let us have your thoughts on the issues that have been identified, and any others that you think we should be looking at.
It has been a year of mixed fortunes for the Group. Thanks to the earnings of the K1 and the J72, superbly augmented by the incredibly successful Patron scheme, the Group’s finances are once again holding up well, which means that we have been able to absorb the costs of the unexpected repairs to the K1 and the additional spend on the Q6. Looking forward to 2014, we expect the K1 to again be available for hire on the main line as well as on heritage lines, the J72 to again strengthen out ties with the Wensleydale Railway, the Q6 to make its long awaited return to active service on the NYMR, and the J27 boiler overhaul to commence in earnest.
Generally good news this issue; on the plus side there is the splendid news that the J27 boiler overhaul has gone out to tender with, hopefully, work progressing in 2014. At the Wensleydale Railway, under Fred Ramshaw’s guidance, the J72 has been steadily racking up the miles and, once again, earning revenue that we once thought unlikely. The K1, despite a firebox problem that is well documented in this issue, will complete the Jacobite season during the last week in October.
The J72 had a brief, but successful visit to the Derwent Valley Railway, as part of the 100th anniversary celebrations; it returned to the Wensleydale Railway and during August has been working 4 days a week and up to two round trips a day between Leeming Bar and Redmire.The K1 has had a successful summer on the West Highland Extension. However, on Saturday 17th August a problem in the firebox was detected where some stays appear to have broken. The locomotive was immediately stopped and as this issue went to press arrangements were being made to return the locomotive to Carnforth for detailed examination and repair.
The K1 works the Wasnbeck railtour with the K4 and the North Yorkshire Moors 40th Anniversary Special with No 29 before commencing another Jacobite season. The J72 hauls shuttles with the "Old Gentleman's Saloon" during the 40th Anniversary Gala.
The K1 and support coach moved from Carnforth to Bury on 21st February via Hellifield, Blackburn, Bolton and Manchester Victoria, and the move went very well. The move was in time for the K1 to appear at the East Lancs gala over the weekend of 23rd/24th February where it worked on its own and double headed with the K4 61994 The Great Marquess.
John Marsland has agreed to take over from Peter Robinson as our Treasurer whilst Fred Ramshaw and Ben Duncan are standing down as directors.
Some recent erroneous reportage in a national railway magazine, suggesting that the NELPG was moving its home base away from the NYMR to Embsay, has had to be refuted.
The J27 cylinder block has been trial fitted. Joem will be leaving the Wensleydale Railway on 27th December to go to Hopetown for a retube and winter maintenance. It has been decided to replace the Q6 inner firebox sides; the work is to be carried out by LNWR at Crewe. John Hall has recently had to resign as NELPG Secretary because of ill health; Chris Lawson takes over.