2nd August 2020

Hello, and yes – we’re back!  After the enforced shutdown, trains began again this weekend.  Unfortunately the Station and Weighbridge Teas will have to remain closed for the foreseeable future, due to the Covid restrictions.  After hibernation The Wombles are finally out and about again, albeit not at full strength yet due to social distancing, etc.  We had a ‘soft start’ with limited numbers of Wombles on selected jobs, mainly to do directly with the restarting of train services.

On the Station, the roses are now past their best and a start has been made on dead heading them all.  Our usual catering team have turned their hands to gardening as they currently can’t sell their wares.

There is still a lot to do however.  Less glamourous, but definitely necessary, is the new door ‘vacant/engaged’ lock which has been fitted in the Gents.  You would think this would be a quick job, but oh no!  By the time the lock had been modified to fit, and the door frame woodwork tidied up, a whole day and a half had passed.  Anyhow, all that is left to do is paint all the wood.  The outside ‘Gentlemen’ sign wood frame was rotten, so a start has been made on making a new one.  The fire bucket racks on both platforms have also had some attention with a complete repaint.  The platform edge and the garden edging have been repainted white – there’s just the planters left to do, if there is enough paint

On the GW Mink van, half the east side has been given a coat of dark grey undercoat.

Down the lineside, at Platelayer’s cottages crossing, a lot of scrub growing out of the river retaining walls has been cut down.  The cut stumps will be treated with stump plugs shortly to prevent regrowth.  Even further north, around the 14½ mile post, a large blockage in the river – formed of fallen trees, branches and general detritus – has been removed.  This has exposed another damaged section of retaining wall which will have to be dealt with.

South of the Station, the renewal of the west side lineside fence has restarted with 12 posts installed and backfilled.  They are now ready for a start to be made on fitting the fence rails.  Only another 90 odd posts to replace!

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