As I mentioned in the last post, with family visiting for the weekend there was no chance of any modelling, but I did manage a sneaky railway visit. We'd originally intended a bit of a walk, but the weather on Saturday wasn't great, so we switched to going to our local garden centre for brunch as well as plant shopping, and then a short walk, weather permitting. The weather permitted, so we drove five minutes down the road from the garden centre and parked at the side of the road. Literally 30 seconds after getting out of the car we heard the unmistakable sound of a steam whistle.
The railway, which at this point we could hear but not see, was the Kirkless Light Railway. This is a 15" gauge railway which was built along the track bed of the old Clayton West branch of the Penistone Line. The original branch line closed in 1983 and the first section of the narrow gauge railway opened in 1991. Now it runs for almost the entire length of the old branch line, around 3.5 miles and includes a 500 yard tunnel. Interestingly for a steam railway, every locomotive permanently at the railway was built specifically for it and so there is an rather odd mix.
We headed south-west from where we had parked and picked up the railway as it appears out of the tunnel heading towards the terminus at Shelley. We'd been walking by the railway for only 10 minutes or so before we again heard the distinctive sound of a steam engine. Unfortunately we weren't in the best place for taking photographs.
Fortunately all the engines are different colours so I can tell you that the train was being pulled by Badger an 0-6-4ST built at the railway in 1991. On the way back to the car we were treated to another train passing us, this time being pulled by the diesel engine Jay.
Given how close the line is to where we live I need to go back and have a proper look around, maybe on their gala weekend when there will be lots of trains running.