Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Give my regards to Broadway

We've just returned from a few days visiting elder daughter in Broadway in the Cotswolds, a pleasant break we take annually. It's a lovely part of the world; villages of honey-colored stone in the evening sun -  quite stunning. Lots of fabulous pubs serving superb food and ale. And a great heritage railway, too.

We visited the Cotswold Falconry Centre near Burford-on-the-Hill (highly recommended), enjoyed local villages, and of course I had a day on the Gloucester Warwickshire Railway, including their new northern extension to their restoration of the original line, up as far as Broadway itself (the line originally connected Cheltenham to Stratford-on-Avon via Broadway).

Next stop Honeybourne, to the line's original connection to National Rail's main Oxford to Hereford main line?

Please click on any picture for a larger image.

Broadway from Fish Hill 

Chrystal the Snowy Owl at the Cotswold Falconry Centre 

Claire with Desmond 

Vulture sunbathing 

Wet Wednesday morning at Toddington station on the Gloucester Warwickshire Railway. Our loco for the day is 2807, an ex-Great Western 2-8-0 freight engine, which offers scant weather protection for the crew on a day like this. 

Newly-opened halt at Hayles Abbey. This is a replica of the original one at this location.  

The steam train ran from Toddington down to Cheltenham Racecourse via Winchcombe, then back up to Toddington. From there we headed north (above) on the new extension of the line to Broadway

Crossing Broadway Bridge 

A damp member of the footplate crew, with the inadequate tarpaulin between cab and tender which doesn't really keep the rain off 

2807 runs-around the train at Broadway ready for the return journey to Cheltenham. It's carrying an appropriate head board. 

I left the steam train at Toddington (for now!) to have a light lunch before joining the northbound Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) to have another run up to Broadway 

 The advantage of the DMU is the view out of the front. Here approaching Broadway station.

The recently built station at Broadway is a credit to the railway. It's a close replica of the original station which was closed and demolished on the 1960s, and the quality of the brickwork and canopy is superb. 

Only the 'up' platform is currently in use. The down platform has no shelter as yet, just the immaculate replica Great Western signal box, which has yet to be fitted out and commissioned. The loop points at Broadway are currently operated by ground frames and as yet there are no signals in use.


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