Steam Railway (UK) - - Headline News -

The Churnet Val­ley Rail­way has vowed to have a new Car­riage & Wagon work­shop up and run­ning by Christ­mas - af­ter the ex­ist­ing fa­cil­ity was wrecked in a dis­as­trous fire on the evening of Septem­ber 24. Es­ti­mated by Op­er­a­tions Man­ager Greg Wil­son to have caused around £250,000 worth of dam­age, the blaze wrote off BR Mk 1 First Open No. M3095, which had only just ar­rived on loan from the Cam­brian Her­itage Rail­ways at Oswestry. The CVR was due to keep the ve­hi­cle un­til 2019, in re­turn for restora­tion work. Power tools, stocks of paint, wood and fur­nish­ings were all dam­aged, along with com­pressed air can­is­ters elec­tric­ity sup­plies, and four car­riage lift­ing jacks. Weld­ing work is be­lieved to have caused the fire, which took hold three hours af­ter staff had left, the rail­way stated: “De­spite the use of ap­proved weld­ing prac­tice, it ap­pears that some smoul­der­ing was not de­tected.” Four fire ap­pli­ances were needed to tackle the blaze, which left large holes in the roof when the pan­els melted. Al­though com­plete de­mo­li­tion of the sin­gleroad build­ing can­not be ruled out, it is hoped that the main struc­tural steel­work may be fit for re-use - and with the cost cov­ered by in­sur­ance, the CVR aims to re­build the work­shop by Christ­mas. Said Greg: “As well as the fire brigade, we’d like to thank the North York­shire Moors Rail­way, which is loan­ing us another coach for the ‘Santa Spe­cials’. It shows that pre­served rail­ways stick to­gether.”


The gut­ted shell of BR Mk 1 First Open No. M3095 in Ched­dle­ton’s dev­as­tated car­riage work­shop on Oc­to­ber 1.

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