Saving steam

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Saving Steam


Saving Steam The story of the transformation of England’s steam heritage into the multi–million pound industry it is today has been written many times elsewhere. This is a pictorial essay – just a glimpse – behind the scenes. Living many thousands of kilometres away on the very tip of Africa, means that my exposure to British steam power is limited to the odd visit and even then, when time permits. This short story is of one such visit. Planned during a week in which an aged parent awaits discharge from hospital, it was days of quick dashes from one part of the country to another, fitting in other commitments and bedside visits between them all. As if that weren’t enough, I was learning the ropes of a new camera – one brought with dual intentions; reducing the physical haul of DSLRs and exploring photography verité with a completely different technique to my previous work. The black and white images here are the result. I can’t think of a better way to show industrial archaeology and its resurrection.

Paul Perton Rooi Els, Western Cape August 2011


Coaling stage North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Boiler North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Boiler awaiting restoration North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Scrap? North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Axle North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Levers* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Buffers* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Repairs in progress – no. 60007 A4 Pacific “Sir Nigel Gresley”* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Station clock* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Chimney casting from an A4 Pacific* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Driver’s controls – Bullied Pacific no. 34101 “Hartland”* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Swage block and coupling* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Outdoor storage* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Automatic train control warning bell and whistle pull – Bullied Pacific No. 34101 “Hartland”* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Stored horizonal millling machine* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Former British Railways (Eastern Region) axle box* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Cabside number – Bullied Pacific No. 34101 “Hartland”* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Pipe storage* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Stored machinery* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Fireman’s–side cab detail – Bullied Pacific No. 34101 “Hartland”* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Long–term storage North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Axle North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Diesel shunter awaiting restoration North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Hard though it is to believe, from these rusty and eroded components comes new life. The following images show what restoration can achieve; rebuilt locomotives bringing excitement, memories and spectacle to past, current and (with careful management), future generations.


Speedometer – Stanier Class 5 4–6–0 no. 44767 North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Tender axle box, steam – Stanier Class 5 4–6–0 no. 44767 North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Stanier Class 5 4–6–0 no. 44767 between Grosmont and Goathland* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Preserved Great Western Railway locomotives on shed* Great Western Railway Society, Didcot


British Railways 4MT 2–6–4 tank engine no. 80104, coasts into Swanage station with a scheduled service train* Swanage Railway


Former Southern Railway S15 class 4–6–0, no. 825 departs from Grosmont with a service train* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Cab roof/tender detail, Stanier Class 5 4–6–0 no. 44767* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Smolebox, former LMS “Jinty” 3F 0–6–0 no. 47406* Great Central Railway, Loughborough


Motion – Stanier Class 5 4–6–0 no. 44767 North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Former North Eastern Railway Q6 class 0–8–0 no. 63395 storms up the steep bank into Goathland with a scheduled service train* North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont


Preserved Great Western Railway 4–6–0 Manor class locomotive, no. 7808 “Cookham Manor” on shed* Great Western Railway Society, Didcot


For the technically minded, these images were shot using the following cameras. Images marked * Nikon D700, Nikkor 24–70 f2.8 AF–S zoom All other images Sony NEX–C3 with either 16mm or 18–55 zoom Post production was handled on a Macintosh using both Aperture and Photoshop and in both cases, the Nik Software plug–in Silver Efex Pro2