The Pied Piper appeal event at Highnam Court
The M. S. R. V. S. were invited again to attend the Pied Piper appeal at Highnam Court to give steam engine rides and raise some money for the appeal. The event is essentially a classic car show but over the years it has expanded to include many other attractions. The court is set in beautiful grounds with gardens and large lawns surrounding the building.
We had eight engines at the event and were very busy from the time the event opened up until about 3.30 when the public drifted away. All who attended enjoyed themselves and we managed to raise a total of £567.91 which the organisers were very pleased with.
This is a great event for the club to raise it’s public profile and it would be great to attend some similar events.
Blue LIas Weekend
The M. S. R. V. S. weekend at the Blue Lias Inn exceeded all expectations. What a glorious location set in the Warwickshire countryside alongside that beautiful cannel, set the scene for a weekend which all who attended were free to do as they pleased. We had a large field in which we were able to camp and run our engines.
The setting offered good meals at reasonable prices, you could take a walk along the tow path and around the fishing lake. All this added to the flavor of the weekend. The field is large and flat, giving plenty of space for camping and using your steam engine on. All this giving you all the ingredients for a relaxing weekend allowing you to do as much and as little as you want to.
The larger engines went on a short road run on the Sunday afternoon to a local pub and all who went on it had a great time. The roads were quiet and made for a enjoyable run. There being no restriction allowed all who attended to come and go as they pleased. You were able to steam up as you pleased and enjoy the company of all who attended.
I attempted to take part in the road run but after only a short distance I suffered a mechanical failure on the engine. The valve rod fractured and the engine came to an abrupt halt. As we had only covered a short distance, I was able to walk back to the Bule Iias and collect the trailer, which it on for a recovery. I have since replaced the defective rod and all is good again.
Tewkesbury Steam up
Pictures of this event can be found by Clicking Here.
The M. S. R. V. S. have put on another steam up at the Tewkesbury Rugby club which was reasonable well attended with club members and invited guests. Most people arrived on the Friday afternoon camping on the field and using the facilities offered by the rugby club.
The N. T. E. T. supplied some alternative fuel for us to try, it was given out to engines of different types and sizes. It is not coal and behaves differently to the coal that we are used to. The feedback received from the engine operators was in the main positive and is supplied in the form of brickettes. The smaller engines required these to be broken up into as much as four pieces to enable them to be placed through the fire door, so I guess we need the manufacturers to produce several different sizes of brickettes. The general consensus of opinion was it took a bit longer to build the fire from cold but once burning it burnt in a consistent manor giving an even heat. Most people needed to have a thicker fire bed and suggested that they used slightly more of this type of fuel than if they had been using coal. The fire also took longer to die down at the end of the day with more residual heat remaining for longer. As this is a manufactured fuel it contains no impurities so no clinker forms on the fire grate and you only get very fine dust in the as pan. I noticed that if the engine was left idle for an extended period the fine ash could block the grate and needed a good poke through to allow the air in. My overall impression is that it is not coal and behaves differently to coal; however, it is a usable fuel and I would be happy to use it again.
On the Saturday we had a small amount of rain first thing in the morning but it did not affect proceedings. The engines got lit up and people started enjoying the day. We had our usual run around the campsite which was well attended and enjoyed by the campers as much as the engine teams. Later on, we had a run to a local pub and a drive around the town which was also very popular with the people on the streets. The day was finished off by a friendly game of pub bowling and a few drinks at the bar.
On the Sunday it was a bit slower start for many who took a bit longer getting into steam. People did as they pleased and another road run was organised with a run to the weir for a photo opportunity then on to the old flower mill for some more photos a short run around the town and back to the rugby club. I must say both runs included engines of all sizes and full marks to the little Aveling who came on both and keep up with the larger engines. Full marks to that team.
A raffle was organised which raised some money which will go some way to off set the costs.
We finished the day with another run around the campsite and received a similar way as the previous day. Many photos were taken and a few children had a sit on various engines to have their photo taken.
A great weekend.