“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” ....Oscar Wilde

Thursday 1 March 2012

So Let's Get 'Steamy'.....

On Sunday morning there was a haunting sound reverberating throughout the neighbourhood. It was something I hadn't heard for many years. Both my OH and I quickly exchanged eye contact and smiled. It was just that kind of sound...you couldn't do anything but smile.
What was that sound? It was a steam engines whistle! Not something you hear everyday, especially when there is a fire band restriction. 
It was such a haunting yet beckoning call, that we quickly rounded up the dogs and dashed out to see if we could catch a glimpse.
Like many public transport we just missed it...but that wasn't the trains fault it was purely ours.
Here was a quick glimpse as she steamed away... Now why do I refer to her as her I wonder? Isn't it strange the way we tend to do that with cars and engines etc. that are thought of fondly. 

I'll try and give you some details about her.....but please forgive me if I don't use the right speak.

She's a K153~ K class. Wheel arrangement 2-8-0. One of 21 preserved K class locomotives! K153 had been under extensive overhaul by Steamrail after extensive railtour use, and was released into service in November 2003.

As you probably have guessed I don't know a great deal about Steam Engines, in fact I'd go so far as to say I know nothing about them, so I'll leave you to just browse in peace. If you have any questions please leave a comment and I'll try to get an answer from someone who may know.

 (apologies for this photo ~ not the best quality)

I might mention at this stage that because we only caught a quick glimpse initially, I wanted to stay near the railway line until she returned for some better shots. My OH thought I had lost the plot, because it was so warm and we'd got about 45 minutes to wait. See readers...how I think about you, especially the guys because I'm aware that most of my topics are not macho minded. Anyway to balance the scales, I remained so that I could bring you this post. .....Please it was nothing..... ; )
Meanwhile my OH returned the dogs home and came back armed with bottles of water, and my sons camera. I immediately sent my backup (my OH) onto the bridge nearby, so that he could take some photos too. One thing I knew for sure was that I was going to capture this baby!
So I made myself as comfortable as possible sitting at the end of the platform on the concrete floor. Let me tell you that 34C for 45 minutes gently frying on hot concrete isn't the most comfortable place to be. But I hope it was worth it....

 Can you see the Drivers..... They must have been sweltering!

 The look of sheer delight on all the passengers faces made me smile too. Children have possibly not seen a real steam train except in the Harry Potter movies before this trip...
I later heard that the Fire Engine made an appearance too, due to a spark setting the grass along the track alight. Serious stuff when there's a fire ban posted, but thankfully the guys put it out pretty quickly. They really are hero's : D

I couldn't finish the post without letting you hear that incredible sound. So after what seems like hours I've found it....You have no idea how many youtube videos I've watched and listened to to find the right one and sounding like the one we actually heard on Sunday....so please have a listen and see if that haunting sound gets to you too.

(Thanks to Matt Oaten for shooting this amazing footage. If you are a train enthusiast check out some more of his work).

So chaps I hope you liked todays post...don't be shy you can leave a comment if you wish : D


  1. Oh my gosh how cool is this. I have never saw a steam train all but in movies! My first thought was that of Harry Potter movies, thanks so much for sharing!!!!

    1. I've only seen one other steam train Laurie (other than the movies of course) that was at Llangollen in Wales here's a link to their website: http://www.llangollen-railway.co.uk/page.php?id=1.

      We went for a day trip when we came home from overseas one summer. I tried to find the photos yesterday but couldn't. I know there in one of those boxes ~ but where?

      I'm so glad you enjoyed the post...I just thought it was something completely different and one possibly for the guys. The girls seem to like it too. :D

  2. Wow - I've not seen a proper seam train since I was a little girl ... and they were old fashioned even then lol

    1. Hi Chele, thanks for stopping by....
      I'm kind of glad I can say the same thing too. I can thankfully say I wasn't around when they were the normal method of transport. I wonder though when I look at the trains now and compare them, they had such a lot more going for them back then...the sounds of the whistle and engine, the smell and generally a lot more character too. Hence I suppose why 'Thomas the Tank Engine' programmes and stories became popular. They used to be my daughters favourite when she was a toot, although she had such trouble saying the name ;D
      They seem to have personalities....oh my I'm turning into an enthusiast!

  3. What a wonderful post and photo's too. Thank you for sharing,especially that lonely sound of the whisle.

    1. Thanks Amy for your kind comment. I really appreciate it.
      I'm so glad you enjoyed the post because I wasn't sure about it.
      I love the whistle sound ~ gets me ever time.

      (I actually replied to your comment earlier but then noticed just now its vanished??? So I've replied again!)

      I hope you have a wonderful weekend :D

  4. How wonderful that there are still some around and you did a great job of capturing it.

    1. I just couldn't resist...I loved seeing the sheer joy on all the children's faces. It would be terribly sad if they missed that experience...so to all the enthusiasts that literally keep the wheels turning and that amazing whistle blowing, thank you! :D


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