‘SUlKY SER­viCE’ FOR BlUEBEll ClO­SURE 60th

Steam Railway (UK) - - News Focus -

The Bluebell Rail­way has planned a se­ries of events to mark the 60th an­niver­sary of the line’s ‘sec­ond clo­sure’ by BR in 1958. A spe­cial timetable for part of Fe­bru­ary and March will recre­ate the so-called ‘sulky ser­vice’ that BR was forced to op­er­ate on the Lewes-East Grin­stead route, from Au­gust 7 1956 un­til March 16 1958. It had first closed the line on May 28 1955 – but thanks to a cam­paign, this was ruled by a pub­lic in­quiry to be il­le­gal. To mark the ac­tual an­niver­sary, a spe­cial train for in­vited guests will run on March 16, fol­lowed by a pub­lic event on March 17/18. BR ‘4MT’ 2-6-4Ts were reg­u­lars on the ‘sulky ser­vice’, but un­der-over­haul Bluebell resident No. 80151 will not be com­plete in time for Fe­bru­ary. Bluebell Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Di­rec­tor Roger Gar­man said that “al­ter­na­tives are be­ing con­sid­ered.”

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