Work Report – Saturday 25th March 2017

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Editor's Note: Owing to holidays (mine - very nice, thank you) we have a few reports to catch up on. Apologies for the break in service!   WORK REPORT 25/02/2017, or "LETS DO DUST & STRAINING" Arrived at Strawberry at 09:00. Shed heaters turned on and Section 4 Sub section 6 amendment (a) of depot operating instructions carried out. As some of you may be aware rules and regulations have to be reviewed from time to time to ensure that the rule is still fit for purpose. Section 4 sub section 6 is still fit for purpose, including the optional Bacon Butty but to ensure that the rule remains relevant for the railway in the 21st century, Amendment (a) has been added. This gives the option of Bacon Butties to…
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Work Report For Sat 11/03/2017

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Good morning everyone. This should bring us up-to-date on the work reports. Thank you for your patience, but as you can tell from the live Twitter and Facebook videos, us drivers have to steel ourselves before dipping our toes in the murky waters of Being a Fitter for the day. It's not easy, folks! Before we get to "Wot I Did With My Spannerz" by Chris Buckland (written in crayon, available in all good dustbins), an update on the fundraising effort. As of today we have 180 backers on JustGiving who have pledged a total of £5,580. We still have 22 days before the appeal finishes on 3/4/17 (see what I did there?!) - the price of a pint will help us immeasurably. The price of a round will help even more.…
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Work Report 11th and 12 February 2017

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Good afternoon, everyone. Today's report has been submitted by our Chief Engineer. “THIS SATURDAY WE ARE BEEN MOSTLY FIXING TRAINS! Another cold and grey day at Strawberry Hill but another day getting the unit ship shape and Bristol fashion. First job of the day: sign in & get the heaters on then brew up the tea. Railway work cannot start till tea is consumed; the local induction procedure Section 4, Sub section 6 states :- ‘Before any work is carried out on rail vehicles, staff must ensure that they have consumed at least two cups of steaming hot tea. It is optional to have a bacon buttty with the consumption of tea but this is not a mandatory requirement for rail vehicle maintenance to be carried out.’ So tea was…
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Fundraising News

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As some of you will be aware, we have launched a crowdfunding effort via the JustGiving website to raise funds to further the restoration of the unit. These funds will be controlled by the SETG and spent exclusively on No. 3417; as of today we have already raised nearly £3,000. With the private sponsorship mentioned in our latest Work Report, that total climbs to nearer £4,500. You can also donate funds for No. 3417 directly to the Bluebell Railway,  the details of which can be found here. Your support is vital to allowing the unit to run again; all we are asking is a cost of a pint of beer. Can you spare £3.50 for the VEP? £3.50 isn't much, but a few of them soon adds up to something much bigger…
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Full Work Update

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After the hectic weekend we have had time to regroup, calm down and take a deep breath. First of all, we are absolutely delighted with the reaction to the video we posted of No. 3417 on Saturday. To hear the shed filled with the noise of a running MG and Compressor, a noise that hasn't been heard on the Southern Region since 2013, was a wonderful thing and we are very very pleased to have seen the positive reaction from so many of you. All credit has to go to our Chief Mechanical & Electrical Engineer Chris Buckland and his team of fitters (Darren Franklin from Southern Railways and Steve Trower of SWT) for the magnificent job they've done to this point. What this proves that the mechanical fabric of…
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Latest from Strawberry Hill Depot

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This was taken at Strawberry Hill a few hours ago by our Chief Mechanical & Electrical Engineer Chris Buckland. As you can probably tell, he's rather excited. We all are. Today has been an astonishing day. [video width="800" height="450" mp4="//www.setg.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/IMG_3741.mp4"][/video] Today is the day No.3417 was energised for the first time since 2013. We are very, very proud of what you're about to see.
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Strawberry Hill Work Day – Sat 21 January 2017

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At Last! AT LAST!! We're into Strawberry Hill depot! Last Saturday marked the first work day we've been able to arrange for nearly 12 months. I won't bore you with the drawn-out story of Why and Where, but suffice it to say that we have been impatiently waiting to finally regain access to 3417 for a very long time, and working very hard behind the scenes to make it happen. To illustrate where we are at this moment, and where our restoration project starts from, we should explain the current state of the unit: The unit is stabled inside Strawberry Hill Depot - for the benefit of clarity, the doors of the shed are classed as the London-end, whilst the buffer stops are the Country-end. From the London end, the…
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Bombardier Ilford Depot Visit 29/05/2015

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On Friday 29th May representatives from the Southern Electric Traction Group visited Bombardier's Ilford Carriage Works to assess progress on the restoration of the Bluebell Railway's unique 4VEP EMU No. 3417. As those of you who are following the unit's progress on Facebook and Twitter will be aware, the first vehicle - Driving Trailer No. 76262 - has already been processed through Ilford's state-of-the-art paint facility. Bombardier have informed us with a wry smile that this first coach required "more prep" than they were expecting. It also acted as the test bed for the vehicles yet to be processed so that the rubbing down, prepping and undercoating can be carried out as efficiently as possible on the remaining three coaches. To say that we are impressed with the results would…
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Bombardier Ilford Depot Visit 23/01/2015

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"Bombardier's Ilford Depot - No.3417's current home." On Friday 23rd January representatives from the SETG and Bluebell Railway visited Bombardier's Ilford Carriage Works to discuss the timetable for commencing work on the Bluebell Railway's celebrity 4VEP multiple unit, No. 423 417 'Gordon Pettitt.' As has been mentioned in previous reports, Bombardier have offered both bodywork repairs and a complete repaint for the unit. This work will be carried out by trainees as part of Bombardier's apprenticeship scheme. Paul Oldacre (project manager) talked through the specifics of the refurbishment, involving re-skinning the coaches before giving the unit a high-quality repaint in two-pack paint. Bombardier will process one coach at a time, with the first vehicle due to move into the sheds by mid-March at the latest. Bombardier have additionally agreed to fit…
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Bombardier Sponsorship Announcement

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Bombardier Sponsors Refurbishment of Unique Southern EMU Press Release Here (Opens New Window) October 8, 2014 Berlin Bombardier apprentice program helps renovate historic electric multiple unit (EMU) rail vehicle Bombardier Transportation, in partnership with the Southern Electric Traction Group (SETG) and the Bluebell Railway, are delighted to announce their sponsorship of the refurbishment of the Bluebell Railway's unique 4VEP unit, No. 3417 Gordon Pettitt. Undertaken as part of Bombardier's extensive apprenticeship programme, the four-month refurbishment will include corrosion repair and a high-quality repaint. A living piece of British Rail heritage, the No. 3417 Gordon Pettitt, was part of the British Rail Class 423 series of trains that served Southern London, Kent and Sussex starting in 1967. After being taken out of service in 2005, No. 3417 was handed over to…
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