During my 2014 UK holiday I visited the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre in Quainton.
1 An overview
3 The first thing that strikes the eye when you enter the BRC is its main building. It is Oxford's former Rewley Road station building. Erected by the same builders as from the Crystal Palace similar techniques were used. It was disassembled in 1999 and reerected and restored at BRC in 2002. A remarkable feat, if I may say so.
4 Inside. The space of the station is used well for a shop, refreshments and a seating area. The guise of a station is upheld by a train at the platform.
5 Again a Castle class (see my photo album of my visit to the Didcot Railway Centre). As I have already made quite a few shots from this class I will show only a few general shots here.
8 Originally named Ogmore castle it was renamed Defiant in January 1941, commemorating one of the many types of aircraft which had taken part in the Battle of Britain.
9 The cab was accessible
15 The firebox inside
16 This "Special Saloon" behind the Castle was used by Churchill and Eisenhower. Two such carriages were built for high-speed travel (160 km/h).
19 Kitchen area
22 Communication centre. With even a telephone (imagine ;-)
24 Conference room
27 With a radiooooooo
29 Since I have been to Chartwell (Churchill's house) I feel a connection to the man.
30 Apart from a few school groups there were very few visitors. The museum was op for a "viewing day" which means there was nothing special going on and officially only the meusuem and the open air was accessible. In practice many of the volunteers were so proud of their work that I was often kindly invited in.
31 Two mail cars from the time that Mail and Rail were married.
35 I was kindly invited in and had a good chat with a man who once worked for the mail. I heard some good strong stories. I loved it!
39 One track of the line was broken up. The one remaining track of the line still sees occasional freight traffic.
53 From the footbridge of the old Quainton Road station the Engine Shed was in full view
55 There was a sign saying that the shed was closed but again I was kindly invited in and toured around
56 This is one of the reasons I came: this Sentinel locomotive is special in the sense that it powered by chain instead of conventional rod. It also has a vertical boiler ...
57 ... and a two cylinder vertical steam motor
58 Pity that it was under overhaul but I was nevertheless happy to have seen some of it.
59 This is an outline of how it should look. See it run on this video
60 At the back of the engine shed there were two fireless locomotives under overhaul.
63No 3567 Sydenham is a curiosity: it was built by a builder of (road) traction engines, Aveling & Porter. Based on the same outline they also built this railway locomotive in 1895
65No 2087 is one of the only six members strong OY-1 class by Peckett. It was part of a batch of four built to the order of Courtaulds in 1948.
68 Some tanks in need of a good paint job.
69 ..like this
70This loco was buit for the war department in 1940
74 In this engine the drive passes via a two speed gear box through a single chain to the front axle.
77 The BRS have no less than six Nissen huts, the contents of which will remain a mystery to me as they were not accessible to the general public. I sauntered around for some time but no one caught the bright idea of inviting me in....
80 Inside the museum there is a variety of objects on display
84 One of these Mail Locomotives featured in on of Michael Portillo's "Great British Railway Journeys"
88 If there is one peculiarity of British railways that I may choose to be the most appealing, than it will be the private ownership of goods cars, resulting in very colourful hodgepodge
89 A brake or guards van. Goods wagons were not braked. Only the locomotive and the brake provided braking power to freight. This asked skillful handling of goods trains and also resulted in low train speeds (40 km/h). The brake van was marshalled at the rear of the train so both portions of the train could be brought to a stand in the event of a coupling breaking. This practise slowly died out when trains were fitted with continous brakes which operated from the locomotive, but the phenomenon persisted until as late a 1980.
97 A Mansell wheel set. Special. Well, yeah, sort of, as it had a wooden body, supposedly resulting in a smoother ride. The introduction of steel ended this practise.
98 Another one outside
99 Three small wagon turntables
100 The museum does not only contain rolling stock per se but also various exhibits "more or less" related to railways
121 The smal end of the driving rod with the yellowish metal of the plain bearing. I wonder why this 1948 built locomotive did not get roller bearings. This was common practise in the US since the thirties. It reminds me of a statement I read somewhere: The demise of steam lies no so much in its inefficiency but in the failure to adopt all available techniques to improve its performance.
126 A rare view into the crosshead
128 The rear of the locomotive proper where the three drawbars were to connect to the tender
175 My visit to the BRC was, amongst other reasons, initiated by a photo of this Class 25NC of the South African Railways which I found in "Railways Restored 2013". I found it very impressive and I have dedicated a special photo album to this loco alone.