Welcome to the Rudloe and environs website.
Here you will find news, articles and photos of an area that straddles the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in north-west Wiltshire.
Contributions in the form of articles or photos are welcome. Even those with completely contrary views to mine!
Thanks to the website builder 1&1 and Rob Brown for the original idea.
Rudloescene now, in January 2014, has a sister, academic rather than anarchic, website about Box history here: http://www.boxpeopleandplaces.co.uk/
It contains thoroughly professional, well-researched articles about Box and its people.
Contact rudloescene through the 'Contact' page.
Steam emerging from Box Tunnel after GWR King 6024 'King Edward I' has passed with a 'down' special
27th June 2021, Royal Scot can be seen (well, the train can) departing Bradford-on-Avon below
3rd May 2018 and Stanier 'Black 5' 45212 approaches Bathampton Junction with the Cathedrals Express; the Limpley Stoke Valley forms the backdrop.
30th November 2017 and a Bath Christmas Market special from Poole passes under the bridges and tunnels to the east of Bradford on Avon station with Stanier Black 5 45212 in charge.
6th September 2017 - railway roundabout in north-west Wiltshire. Peppercorn A1 Pacific 60163 Tornado, with the down Belmond British Pullman at Bradford-on-Avon; an up Freightliner (American company Genesee & Wyoming) goods at Chippenham; a down trial run of one of the new Hitachi dual-mode trains, also at Chippenham and finally the up British Pullman behind Bulleid Merchant Navy Pacific 35028 Clan Line, again at Chippenham.
26th April 2017 - LMS Royal Scot class 4-6-0 no. 46100 Royal Scot at Bath Spa with the return leg of the Horsham-Bristol Cathedrals Express
7th September 2016 - Peppercorn A1 4-6-2 Pacific 60163 Tornado passes Bathampton crossing with the down Belmond Pullman. Six nerds were in attendance at the crossing (five on this side, one on the other), principal among whom were two guys who take great pleasure in watching points move.
This locomotive (indeed all steam engines) is a work of art ... but wait a second ... there's trouble at t'mill, the cabside appears to have dropped, certainly the painted lines outlining the cabside and the tender don't line up and neither do the cabside number and 'BRITISH RAILWAYS' on the tender. I told you I was a nerd.
Steam engine Yorky powering the swinging cradles at Carter's Steam Fair, Victoria Park, Bath - 4 August 2013.
Not steam I appreciate but this was also at the Steam Fair and I haven't seen one for years:
Thingley Junction in the 90s
In the 90s, Thingley was being used by a steam preservation society or enthusiast as temporary storage for steam paraphernalia. I believe that 4953 Pitchford Hall (frame seen in the photographs) was bought by a Dr John Kennedy in 1984 so maybe all this stuff was his. If my memory serves me correctly (but probably not!) I did hear a rumour many years ago that the Avon Valley Railway (Bitton) was involved. Click on image to enlarge and view caption.
Archive steam shots from the early 60s using a hopeless camera (a bad workman always blames his tools). I used to belong to the Bristol Locomotive Society and went all over England, but mainly 'up north' and the (east) Midlands, on Sundays, searching for steam. The pictures get progressively worse but it was grim and grimy at the end of the Industrial Revolution. The 'WD' at Hullavington, for example, just looks like a grey blur but the top of the signalbox and the larches are in focus! More to come (you'll be pleased to know!) .....
We used to cycle to Hullavington from Chippenham to see the more exotic engines (Britannias, WDs) to be found on the South Wales line. The named trains (Capitals United, Red Dragon, South Wales Pullman etc) caused some excitement as they would often be pulled by Kings and were occasionally double-headed which was something rarely seen on the Bristol line. Hullavington was a lovely country station, surrounded by larches, with a signalbox, sidings and coal yard.
On one occasion, I was standing on the down platform when the signalman came tearing out of his signalbox to tell me to get off the platform. Apparently my bright red shirt could have been taken by a driver to be a red flag indicating that trains must stop. I spent the rest of the day either on the footbridge or in the waiting room. Lucky in a way as I 'acquired' a collection of luggage labels I found there - see some examples below.
More recent shots. More to come ...
A video of Bittern twixt Box and Middlehill tunnels on 3rd September 2014 follows ...
And a video of Battle of Britain 34067 Tangmere drifting through Sydney Gardens on 6th December 2014
... and a video of Black 5s 44871 and 45407 arriving at Bath Spa on 16th December 2014
... and a video of 34067 Tangmere at Sydney Gardens, Bath on 7th March 2015
... and a video of 35028 Clan Line in Sydney Gardens, Bath on 13th May 2015
... and a video of 61306 Mayflower departing Bath Spa with the down Cathedrals Express on 4th June 2015
... and a video of Nunney Castle at Chippenham Station
Reg and Colin's great railway adventure in the tracks of the Titfield Thunderbolt - June 2013