Hello, I've had a fandabidozi day riding up and down on the chuff chuffs. I love playing around on steam trains. The Mid Hants Railway is also known as the Watercress Line, it runs from Alton to Alresford, passing through Medstead and Ropley. You buy a day ticket and can ride up and down all day, getting on and off at whichever stations take your fancy. We spent time at all four of them, exploring, and chatting to people. Everyone was in a happy mood, all enjoying their day out.
For two days the theme has been a WWII Christmas, with civilian and military re-enactors returning home from the war. There was song and dance and Christmas merriment.
This is our train now waiting to depart from Alton Station.
A picture from the train window as we were stopped at Ropley. We went all the way to Alresford first, then stopped at the other stations on the way back.
Some had come in their military vehicles.
More re-enacters in forties costumes.
The railway is mostly run by volunteers, and everyone we spoke to was happy to answer our questions. The signalman invited us into his box and explained how everything worked. His enthusiasm for his work was evident, he told us he had worked for forty years as an engineer on the railways, so knew all about the mechanics of it. He could fix things if it went wrong.
and in the other they have a green triangle. These keys are passed to the train drivers as they pass through the station. It's a system which ensures the safety of the trains. It sounded quite a complicated system to learn.
These are for changing the points and signals.
Here is the signal man getting ready to exchange the keys with the train driver. They are in a sort of leather handbag thing with a steel handle, which can easily looped over the arm or grabbed while the train is moving.
We hopped off at Medstead for an hour to look round.
There is Carol looking for the train.
you can read about it here. They have lots of exciting events throughout the year, some of them are very popular and have to be booked well in advance. It is a charity and all the money goes into the preservation of the trains and stations. It's a great day out.
Tomorrow is a trip to see John from Don't unplug your hub. He has a new dog you know, a German Shepherd called Mia. I'm looking forward to seeing them both. Toodle pip.