Wednesday, 1 June 2011

More on the 'Tebay Platform'

Up at Kirkby Stephen East for a while this afternoon and the amount of progress since the weekend was just amazing. This is a very exciting time to be a volunteer on site and if you are tempted I suggest that you get down and get your overalls on quick! This will be a time that one day will live in legend in the story of the rebuilding of the Stainmore Railway.

The widening of the running line extension to the 'Darlington Platform' is well underway but what really got me excited today was the work being done one the other side of the building on the Tebay Platform. The foundations were being dug to extend the platform facing westwards, and a gang were hard at work rebuilding the stone work of the platform wall.

In British Rail days in the early 1950's the Tebay Platform lost its trainshed roof and later the outer retaining wall from the 1886 rebuilding was lowered and one bay at the east end was demolished. As you can see from the photograph the roof added when the station served as the 'bobbin factory' is low and barely clears the roof of the Gresley coach parked for restoration in our cavernous workshop. But given time, patience and money it is all very restorable. As soon as we have the work on this 'facing' complete we will be connecting up these track panels to the rest of the track on the site.

There hasn't been this much building work in progress at Kirkby Stephen East since the trainsheds were rebuilt more than a century ago. It is iinteresting to see what the digger is turning up here as the concrete foundations go in - today I noticed in the trench a cast iron pipe that must have supplied water to the Stockton & Darlington water column here. I wonder where they got the supply from before the hydro-electric supply  at Stenkrith was available.

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