The AppealThis new group hopes ultimately to return the crane to full working order, but this initial appeal is to first restore its looks and fabric, and made it a reliable, rolling exhibit well presented in an appropriate colour scheme with its fabric intact and in working condition, together with interpretation and history boards, explanatory leaflets and a website presence.
You can donate online through JustGiving, but if you wish to contribute a significant sum, our costs are lower if you can send in a cheque, so please do use the separate Donations and Gift Aid Form, which is available here (as a pdf file, which will be downloaded to your computer for you to print out). The Appeal target for this initial phase of work is £25,000.
You can also donate via JustTextGiving - which is free of charges - simply send a text to: 70070 saying "bbsc83 £10" to donate £10 (or you can give £5 or less if you wish!) - please add Gift Aid if you are able to.
These funds will be held by the Bluebell Railway Trust (Charity Registration No. 292497) and procedures and controls lie within that arrangement to ensure that funds are properly accounted for and spent. Your donations towards this scheme will be most welcome; reports will be available on this web page and in Bluebell News to keep you appraised.
The project is headed by Neil Cameron and Chris Hunford. The crane is at present standing in a siding in the West (Up) Yard at Horsted Keynes.
Progress to date - July 2013
On 21st. July 2013, a hot Sunday afternoon (one of the hottest for several years) members of the 9F Club continue to top-coat the frames of the crane and runner. (Steve Booth)
The 9F Club and other volunteers have pressure-washed, primed, undercoated and top-coated in black the west side of the main crane carriage. At present, volunteers are not allowed to "work at height" so work is generally limited to that which can be carried out from ground level. The yellow-painted items are the rear two of the four outriggers which give the crane additional stability when lifting. One slides out on each side. (Roger Barton)
The east side of the leading Stokes weight-relieving bogie and jib runner vehicle. Once again, the 9F Club and other volunteers have pressure-washed, primed and undercoated the under frames. The main structure is in black top-coat while the headstocks are in red undercoat. One of the handwheels controls the handbrake while the other controls the weight-spreading mechanism which reduces the axle loading of the main carriage when travelling to and from site. The weight-relieving bogie was invented by Ransomes and Rapier in 1904. (Roger Barton)
The east side of the crane with the headstocks now in red top-coat. The far (rear) Stokes bogie, which carries a water tank, was overhauled in 1998. (Roger Barton)
Another view of the east side of the crane. (Roger Barton)
The 9F Club during one of their regular working days on the crane. Neil Cameron has pressure-washed an area of framework prior to their arrival and the Club members then focus on further cleaning/scraping and the application of primer. (Steve Booth)
Project Launch - April 2012
This new group hopes ultimately to return the crane to full working order, but we plan first to restore its looks and fabric, and made it a reliable, rolling exhibit well presented in an appropriate colour scheme with its fabric intact and in working condition, together with interpretation and history boards, explanatory leaflets and a website presence.
The first step was for the steam crane to move from Kingscote to Horsted Keynes to facilitate the overhaul, and this was achieved on 21 February 2012, as seen in Mike Hopps photo on the right.
Chris Hunford, Bluebell Loco Driver and BRPS Trustee, and Neil Cameron, from the original restoration team dating back to 1981, will work together to establish a safe working area into which volunteers will be welcomed, set up base, and set about the task described above, and also survey the crane for a possible later return to full working order. Fundraising of £25k will fully fund this preliminary activity.
We have at present minimal equipment, so more will need to be purchased, and improvements made to the area around the crane's location at Horsted Keynes. At this time it is anticipated that more than half this amount will be donated privately within a year; the balance will need to come from fundraising, so all contributions are most welcome.
The steam crane at Horsted Keynes, having just been moved from Kingscote to facilitate the overhaul (Derek Hayward - 21 February 2012)
Go to the web page for the Steam Crane
or return to the Loco Works News
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