East Anglian Railway Museum

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The station building
The museum and station

The East Anglian Railway Museum is located at Chappel and Wakes Colne railway station in Essex, England, which is situated on the former Great Eastern Railway branch line from Marks Tey to Sudbury. Services on the Sudbury Branch Line are operated by Abellio Greater Anglia.

The museum has a wide collection of locomotives and rolling stock, some of which are fully restored, two are conversion into Thomas and Toby replicas while others are undergoing repair and restoration. The Restoration Shed was built in 1983–4, before which most work had to take place in the Goods Shed or in the open. On event days, steam train rides are operated over a short demonstration track.

The museum also plays host to three popular annual events: the Winter Beer Festival held each February the Cider Festival held each June, and the Beer Festival held each September. During the festivals, additional late-evening trains on the Sudbury Branch Line allow festival-goers to return home by train subject to provision by the train operation companies. There are no moving exhibits during festival weekends, although train carriages are usually open to sit in and enjoy a drink, with one wagon doubling up as The Shunters Arms at the summer festival.

Museum History[edit]

Formation of the Society[edit]

The Museum was originally formed as the Stour Valley Railway Preservation Society on 24 September 1968. The SVRPS was established at Chappel & Wakes Colne Station in December 1969 after a lease was obtained from British Rail to use the vacant goods yard and railway buildings, including the station building. The first public steam day took place three months later.

The goods shed and station buildings were quickly restored; with a workshop being set up in the goods shed to enable maintenance and restoration work to be undertaken on the rolling stock.

The Birth of the Museum[edit]

The Stour Valley Railway Preservation Society was renamed to the East Anglian Railway Museum in 1986 to represent its focus on representing British railway history, rather than just operating trains. The museum gained charitable status in 1991 (Registered Charity No. 1001579) and became a Registered Museum in 1995.

Since 2005, the museum has had a greater emphasis on interpretation and display facilities, although a large variety of events still take place each year to raise funds for the museum's activities.

Steam locomotives[edit]

0-4-0 Saddle Tank - No. 2039 'Jeffrey'
No.54 Back in service
Andrew Barclay 0-4-0 'No. 11' at the Spanning the Century Event in 2005, where it celebrated its 100th birthday
John Fowler & Co 0-4-0 being used as a Toby the Tram Engine with Henrietta coach

The museum has a collection of industrial steam locomotives,[1] in various states of repair.

Operational[edit]

  • Bagnall 0-4-0ST outside cylinder Works No. 2542 "Jubilee" Built in 1936.
Returned to traffic in April 2007 after an 18 month overhaul and now used regularly on steam services.
Painted lined brunswick green and black.
  • RSH 0-6-0ST inside cylinder No. 54 "Pen Green" built in 1941. (Works No. 7031)
Back in public service on 21 March 2008 following conversion into a Thomas the Tank Engine look-alike.
Returned to Service in 2005 after many years of sterling work on both preserved railways and the main line. Currently it is on hire at the Churnet Valley Railway until the end of its' boiler ticket.

Under overhaul[edit]

  • Andrew Barclay 0-4-0ST outside cylinder Works No. 1047 "Storefield".
Returned to traffic in 1999 after a rebuild, currently undergoing a ten-yearly overhaul.
Painted unlined dark blue.

Awaiting overhaul or restoration[edit]

Built in 1943. Awaiting a major restoration including new inner firebox. Currently on static display outside the museum entrance, painted black, lined-out in red and white.
Built in 1942. Arrived at the East Anglian Railway Museum in March 2013 from the Battlefield Line Railway. Painted dark green, lined-out in red and yellow. This locomotive is currently awaiting evaluation as to the work required to get it operational again. The locomotive will need new boiler tubes and a new firebox.

Diesel locomotives[edit]

The Museum has a collection of industrial diesel locomotives.

Operational[edit]

  • Drewry0-4-0 War Department no. D72229.
Operational and on hire from Andrew Briddon Locos due to class 04 overhaul. Painted in Army Green and now a regular on shunting and some passenger duties.
Operational and used as a 'Toby' for Thomas the Tank Engine events, has even got a Henrietta coach. Painted brown and grey.
Operational but only used occasionally due to lack of electric start. Painted blue.

Under restoration[edit]

Undergoing a major restoration. Painted blue.
Under overhaul off site. Painted unlined black.

Diesel multiple units[edit]

50599 at Chappel and Wakes Colne

Two Class 101 DMU DMU cars are in operation at the museum. The units are owned by Diesel Unit Preservation Associates Ltd. DUPA own other railcars which can be found in use at various preserved railways in the UK. Both are painted in BR Blue with full yellow ends. No. 56358 was a regular performer on the Marks Tey to Sudbury Line until 2001. No.51213 is facing South and No.56358 facing North. The unit is mainly used on Day Out With Thomas Events where it runs as Daisy The Diesel Multiple Unit.

Electric multiple units[edit]

British Rail Class 306 unit 017 was transferred to the museum in mid-2011 for a five-year loan period.

Blur[edit]

On 13 June 2009, alternative rock band Blur performed a concert at the museum, where they had performed their first concert in 1988. As in 1988, the band played to around 150 people in a goods shed. This concert was their first since 2001 and the first show of their 2009 mini-tour, which was followed by the band head-lining at the Glastonbury Festival and performing two concerts in Hyde Park.

In November 2009, a plaque was erected on the East Anglian Railway Museum by PRS for Music. The Heritage Award was a celebration of Blur and the location of their first live performance.[2]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°55′33.8″N 0°45′32.6″E / 51.926056°N 0.759056°E / 51.926056; 0.759056