The Train from Spain Appeal

Latest News

  • Whillan Beck launch weekend

    A launch weekend for the Train from Spain will be held at the early May Bank holiday from Saturday 5 May to Monday 7 May. The Train from Spain will be named as ‘Whillan Beck’ at 12 noon on Saturday 5 May. There will be a train for invited guests at 1.10, then a public train at 3.10. In the evening it is planned to hold a photo-shoot around the engine shed. On Sunday 6 May, it is planned to run an early morning photographic charter with Whillan Beck and then for trains to be double-headed during the day. In the evening, a special train will be run to Dalegarth for an auction of Ratty memorabilia in aid of Whillan Beck fundraising. The auction will include one of the cast nameplates for Whillan Beck. We are inviting sealed bids for this unique item from members unable to attend the auction in person. Please send sealed bids to the Secretary (contact details on page 2) to arrive by Friday 4 May.    

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  • Inaugural train

    The Train from Spain entered service on 17 March 2018. Donors to the project were invited to ride behind the locomotive on its inaugural trip. During a brief ceremony around the locomotive on Ravenglass turntable, Sam Dixon observed that the invited guests would be the first passengers to ride behind the locomotive in nearly 90 years. Despite flurries of snow, the locomotive performed admirably, achieving Dalegarth without fuss. The hardier supporters enjoyed listening to the crisp exhaust from the open carriages, whilst the more sensible retreated to the comfort of the closed saloons.  

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  • Nameplates cast

    The nameplates for Whillan Beck were cast during November at Thurton Foundry in Norwich. The official naming ceremony is planned for Saturday 5 May 2018 at the May Bank Holiday.

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  • Whillan Beck arrives at Ravenglass

    The Train from Spain, Whillan Beck, arrived at Ravenglass on 21 November 2017. The loco is now resplendent in its new Caledonian Blue livery. It will carry out testing at Ravenglass during November and December.    

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  • Whillan Beck to go to Kingmoor

    This Saturday, 22nd July, the train from Spain will be visiting the DRS open day at their Kingmoor depot. It will be sat on a trailer behind Traction engine, Providence. In the afternoon it will then start on an exciting journey back to Ravenglass, along the A595 and A596 stopping in Workington overnight before continuing on to Ravenglass the next day. Don’t miss your chance to see this spectacle and the progress on the Engine and its tender. Though not complete yet, we are very close, and getting closer to the Oktoberfest event that will see it launched and see it run with 2 of its sister engines visiting from Germany and Austria!

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  • New Tender for Whillan Beck

    The Tender that came from Mataro with the Train from spain, to be named Whillan Beck, was sadly not fit for use on the R&ER, not only did it not hold water but the driving position was high up, leaving the driver looking over the cab and inhaling all the fumes. To bring it into line with the other Ratty locomotives it was decided to build a new tender which could incorporate items such as a belt driven compressor, air brakes, a hand brake and lockers for the radio, tools and for the drivers belongings. This will hopefully be completed over the next few months but this requires a lot of new parts to be bought or made. If you would like to see the list of components that are required please visit the tender component sponsorship page.

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  • Name and Livery decision

    AND THE WINNER IS… The Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway Preservation Society membership has voted on its preference for the new name and livery to be carried by its new locomotive – the Train From Spain. We can officially announce that the winning colour scheme is that resembling the blue of the former Caledonian Railway. This choice will give the Train From Spain an immediately unique identity, as none of the other engines in the railway’s main fleet carries a blue scheme. The membership voted to name the engine Whillan Beck, after the watercourse which passes under the railway line at the Dalegarth terminus in Eskdale. This name complements the ‘river’ theme in the names of three of the R&ER’s other steam locos – River Irt, River Esk and River Mite.   A breakdown of the votes will be published shortly

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  • Workington Model Show

    The Workington model railway show is on again this November – 19th/20th. Members of the Train from Spain team will be going to show off the railway and pass on more information about the train from Spain. If you’d like to find out more information why not come and see us or if you’d like to get involved and help with the exhibition please contact Peter Mills on volunteer@rerps.co.uk For more information about the show check out their website. http://www.solrail.co.uk/exhibition.html  

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  • 8457 History by Tom Whitbread

    Krauss No. 8457 – The ‘Train from Spain’ Maertens ‘Liliputloks’ A History By Tom Whitbread In 1925 Krauss of Munich, an Austro-German engineering company specialising in railway locomotives, produced the first of it’s class ‘K3/6’ engines.   These 15” gauge, 1/3rd scale 4-6-2 pacific locomotives were intended to operate on the miniature railways commonly found at the large, open air exhibitions then popular throughout Europe.  Ultimately, they were to become one of the most numerous classes of 15” gauge locomotive, with fifteen examples constructed between 1925 and 1950, as well as three similar locos constructed in 1937 by Krupp of Essen.  Indeed, among German enthusiasts they are known as ‘Maertens’sche Einheitsliliputlokomotive’ – ‘Maerten’s Standard Miniature Engines’ which reflects the ‘Einheitslokomotive’ – standard engines – built by the German State Railways between the first and second world wars. PHOTO:  Roland Maertens aboard one of his ‘K3’6’ class Pacifics. They were designed by Roland Maertens, Chief Engineer of Krauss’ Light Railways Division, and a close friend and confidant of Henry Greenly, designer of the R&ER’s ‘River Esk’ as well as the fine pacifics built for the Romney Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, in Kent.  These latter engines were based closely in their styling upon

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  • Want to get involved?

    The train from Spain fundraising group is looking for more volunteers to help promote the new locomotive,   run events or even just talk to people about the train from Spain. Numerous exciting events are planned for the next year and we would like some people to help us organise these events and help run them when they are happening. If you are interested in getting involved in any way please contact us at moderator@trainfromspain.org

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