A fine selection of historic locomotive fittings and other artefacts from the steam railway has been put together by the Supporters' Association for Manx National Heritage to exhibit at the House of Manannan in Peel. The centrepiece of the display is the chimney off 1873-built locomotive No.1 'Sutherland', kindly loaned by Isle of Man Railways, accompanied by brassware, lamps and other period items. The exhibition is on display in the foyer of the House of Manannan from now until November 2017.
The Supporters' Association will be holding an open evening and film show at the Falcon's Nest Hotel, Port Erin, on Friday 21st April 2017, from 7.30 pm onwards. It provides an opportunity to discuss volunteer roles within the Association and future projects in support of the Steam Railway. Please see letter from Bill Cubbon (IoMSRSA Chairman) below.
The event is open to members and non-members, we look forward to seeing you there.
Due for publication on 30 August 2017, authors Martin Jenkins & Charles Roberts. Hardcover, 160 pages. Publisher Pen & Sword Transport.
"This stunning selection of colour views, dating from the period 1953-1980, includes most of the vessels operated during this period by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company and The Ramsey Steamship Company. Passenger boats and freighters are seen at ports on the island and on the mainland. There is comprehensive coverage of the Peel, Ramsey and Port Erin lines operated by the Isle of Man Railway with some outstanding views taken during the 1950s, together with excellent portraits of most of the locomotives, as well carriages, vans, wagons, lorries, stations, staff and signal boxes. Also covered are Douglas Station and its environs, St John's junction and the Sunday 'specials' to Braddan. Many of the rich mix of bus types operated by the railway subsidiary, Isle of Man Road Services, are seen in a variety of locations. Included are some of the vehicles delivered just before and shortly after the Second World War. There are good views of the fascinating Ramsey Pier Tramway and its unusual rolling stock, as well as rare scenes taken as early as 1953 on the Groudle Glen Railway.
For anyone who loves the Isle of Man and its wealth of vintage transport, this book provides a remarkable trip down memory lane and a colourful reminder of some of its lost glories. The book is dedicated to the memory of John McCann who took brilliant colour views on the island starting in 1953."
Three more lineside structures on the Isle of Man Steam Railway have recently been added to the Protected Buildings Register, by reason of their important architectural and historical significance. This follows submission by the Supporters' Association of a number of building registration proposals to the Government's planning department in recent years, with a view to helping conserve wider Manx steam railway heritage and social history. The three new protected structures are:
The crossing Gate House at Ballasalla Station.
Originally built during the 1880's to the same design as the gatehouses at The Level and Four Roads, the Ballasalla Gate House was extended by the Isle of Man Railway Company as late as 1962 to accommodate a ship's wheel with which to operate mechanically the swing gates and observe the road. This is the sole example of this operating method on the Isle of Man, a similar proposal for Quarterbridge crossing was not progressed before the Peel Line closed.
The stone-built Ballasalla Water Tower.
Dating from 1911, itt is the only 'original' water tower in operation on the steam railway today.
A similar water tower at Castletown was demolished in 1981 and a larger version sited at Port Erin was demolished in 1986. Both those locations have 'modern' era replacements.
The stone-built Gatekeeper's Hut at Four Roads, Port St Mary.
Dating from the 1880's and replacing an earlier wooden hut, this is one of only two stone-built gatekeeper's huts remaining in original 'as-built' condition (the other being at The Level) and in a good state of repair. On-site restoration work was undertaken by the Supporters' Association in 2013.
The historically significant 1874 Mill Road crossing gatekeeper's hut returned to the Steam Railway at Castletown on 4 March 2017 after extensive off-site restoration work undertaken by the Supporters' Association. Some minor fixings and fittings are still to be added in situ. Our thanks to Culture Vannin and Greenfields Joinery for their support with this important heritage conservation project. Ready more about this project at www.iomsrsa.org/projects
Middleton Press is due to publish a new book at the end of March 2017, titled 'Isle of Man Railway Journey' by author Tom Heavyside. It expands the publisher's Narrow Gauge Branch Lines series which has previous covered in B&W the lines to Peel, Port Erin and Ramsey by steam, and the east coast electric route Douglas to Laxey, Snaefell & Ramsey. This new publication is in full colour, 96 pages, 120 photographs plus large scale maps and other details of local history. Available to (pre-) order direct from Middleton Press and from other stockists.
Details of the planned events for the the 2017 Heritage Transport Festival, taking place 26 to 30 July, have been published by Isle of Man Railways. To view/download the leaflet, CLICK HERE.
The 2017 Timetable for the Isle of Man Steam Railway, Manx Electric Railway and Snaefell Mountain Railway has been published by Isle of Man Railways. To view/download a full copy, please CLICK HERE.
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