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The White Rabbit

NER 1903 Autocar

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I must get to Embsay and see this superb vehicle for myself very soon.

 

In the meantime, a question, if I may? I have seen the NER livery described as "Poppy Red & Ivory", but has anyone any recommendations for suitable proprietary paints which would suit, please? I've got a set of 4mm Worsley Works etches in my roundtuit pile, and would like to get busy with them ere long...

 

Thank you in advance.

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We're running every week on Wednesdays after Easter until the summer school holidays. 

 

Can anyone help Mark with the colours? I know several people were building or have built 4mm models, though none of the restoration team or I are amongst their numbers (yet!) we've been too busy with the full size article. A couple of us have threatened to build models afterwards, once the active work on improvements and final fettling on both vehicles is done. That's probably going to be 'ere too long'... 

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I travelled on the Autocar on one of its inaugural trips from Bolton Abbey Station to Embsay and return on Thursday,and what a superb vehicle it is.

A lovely sunny day  and its colours showed it off to perfection.

Well done to those involved for returning this vehicle to service .

Don.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

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Our visit was last Wednesday.  The vehicle was practically full (some extra chairs were put on at Bolton Abbey but were not needed).

Mostly gentlemen of a certain age, very knowledgeable too.

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And if you can't make it to Embsay, how about Warley?

 

We're pleased to be the full size exhibit this year. As well as No. 3170 herself, there will be key members of the restoration staffing our stand, so it's a prime opportunity to have a chat with some of the principal players in this project. If you are thinking about getting involved in any capacity, do come and talk to us. We'll also have some bits for sale and [of course] donations are always welcome. 

 

The autocar is operating for the next four Wednesdays, as part of the 'shake-down' programme. We want to ensure everything is working properly before we go to other railways. There's some work to do over the summer holidays, both mechanical and cosmetic, then we're running again on Wednesdays in September (also Monday, Thursday & Friday on the first week). The first three Sundays in November and then - a trip to the Midlands...

 

See you there? 

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I've no chance of making it to Embsay, but Warley, now, that looks possible.

 

Is there any chance of arranging it so that the punters can get into the saloon? I'd love to see the interior 'in the flesh' so to speak, and I'm sure i'm not the only one.

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Sorry John. Access to the interior was something we hoped to arrange (we were originally in favour of doing this if possible, both for the passenger saloon and the engine room) but because of assorted regulations, disability access and suchlike, it's not something we're doing. The regulations are rather involved and we/the organisers would have had to hire a ramp in or quite possibly make a bespoke ramp (or even two - given the Warley crowds we initially thought about a one-way system to avoid crowding/congestion inside) specially for the event and this would have added significantly to the cost and space. 

 

I know it's not the same but we will have enlargements of various photos, including the interior, on display on the stand. 

 

Alternatively, sooner or later the autocar will go to other railways for passenger operations. I'm not aware of any hires definitely arranged right now but I'd put money on it visiting the GCR again in the not too distant future and we have connections with Llangollen so it may well visit there sometime. 

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Looking forward to the Autocar visiting GCR & even the Mountsorrel branch!

 

Dava

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It would be great to have a vintage traction (none steam) gala limited to stock that is pre 1950 in build or design. I can think of several locos and other preserved stock that would be suitable. 

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On 22/06/2019 at 15:56, The White Rabbit said:

Sorry John. Access to the interior was something we hoped to arrange (we were originally in favour of doing this if possible, both for the passenger saloon and the engine room) but because of assorted regulations, disability access and suchlike, it's not something we're doing. The regulations are rather involved and we/the organisers would have had to hire a ramp in or quite possibly make a bespoke ramp (or even two - given the Warley crowds we initially thought about a one-way system to avoid crowding/congestion inside) specially for the event and this would have added significantly to the cost and space. 

 

I know it's not the same but we will have enlargements of various photos, including the interior, on display on the stand. 

 

Alternatively, sooner or later the autocar will go to other railways for passenger operations. I'm not aware of any hires definitely arranged right now but I'd put money on it visiting the GCR again in the not too distant future and we have connections with Llangollen so it may well visit there sometime. 

 

I understand the problems. Llangollen would be wonderful - and convenient for me - so I'll cross my fungers and hope!

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Time for an update. I need to let you know, contrary to what I said earlier, the autocar won't be running the Sundays in November. There's no heating installed yet (one of the things we are fund-raising for) and the railway felt it wouldn't be a good time of the year to run an unheated train. Sorry for any disappointment caused. 

 

On a more positive note, preparations for Warley are proceeding and we look forward to seeing many of you there. And after Warley, the autocar will be off to the GCR for some engineering work and advanced fettling and may run there, possibly during their winter gala - now this does depend on various things, so we're stressing the may at the moment. Other visits are planned for 2020, including a visit to Didcot at Easter. (More hires to be announced and/or more details given when we're not going to pre-empt hosts' gala announcements).

 

There's a newsletter due to go to the printers next week and a DVD in advanced stages of production. 

 

As ever, if you can help, especially in volunteering your time and skills, do get in touch. As well as 'dirty fingernail' roles, we'd like to hear from people willing to act as explainers/stewards and/or act as a fund-raiser, researcher, professional consultant (especially re civil engineering, as we are looking at the possibility of building a museum/workshop). 

 

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The autocar at Embsay attracting plenty of interest. With platform 2 clear of carriages, the photographers can get a good view. (Courtesy M Clark)

 

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3170 seen in the landscape. Heading towards the photographer, 3170 has just passed through Stoneacre Loop which was 'switched out' on that day. The view from the saloon [towards the photographer] is as good as any first generation DMU. (Courtesy Alan Chandler)

 

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Looking forward to seeing 3170 at Warley [a reason for going] & hopefully running on the GCR this winter!

 

Dava

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Oh, it'll run this winter, the only uncertainty is whether just testing/proving runs or whether we're able to offer passengers rides. 

 

I've posted some photos on the Warley thread in the Exhibitions section, short version: it's there and looking good. Thanks Dava, that sort of thing is music to the ears, especially of the organisers! 

 

 

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And the autocar is due to run this weekend at the Great Central's Winter Gala - http://www.gcrailway.co.uk/special-events/winter-steam-gala/  - in the 'railcar' slot, three round trips on both Saturday & Sunday. I know we have some fans in that part of the world, so I hope you get chance to visit over the weekend. Sorry it's short notice but it's only just been confirmed after this afternoon's test. 

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Certainly will!!

Does it run in multiple with a 101 unit?

May well be busy.

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On 24/01/2020 at 18:13, Dava said:

Certainly will!!

Does it run in multiple with a 101 unit?

May well be busy.

 

Busy? Ran today packed in like sardines....

 

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Managed a round trip from Loughboro' to Rothley and back yesterday and was very impressed with it. Rather better ride/noise level than a GA 755.......

 

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Thanks to the Autocar Trust for agreeing to run the Autocar during the GCR Winter Gala , a very popular experience for all those able to ride on it, even during the wet weather on Sunday.

 

Hoping it may be able to take a trip up the Mountsorrel Branch before it departs.

 

Dava

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Autocar Lboro loco yard 26-1-20.jpg

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Yes, I couldn't make it to the GCR myself but everything I've heard so far suggests it's been popular. Perhaps a bit too popular, judging by some photos. We're working on the autocoach as fast as possible! 

 

A few more photos, courtesy Paul Abell and Sean Croshaw. My thanks to them.

 

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NER Autocar 3170 plus 62005 Rothley 25 Jan 2020 Sean Croshaw photo IMG_7843 R.jpg

NER Autocar Loughborough Central 25 Jan 2020 Paul Abell photo IMG_1663.JPG

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Thanks to all those who've been complimentary about the GCR Gala and posted stills and videos online. The autocar's been very popular for a non-steam vehicle. It worked well for us and we hope to do it again. The AGM's been and gone. In between other things, I'm trying to get the winter newsletter out asap. Unfortunately I've a lot to deal with at the moment and could do with some help. Not just personally, but we could really use some assistance as an organisation. As with most volunteer groups, we're very keen to hear from people who are interested in practical work. (https://electricautocar.co.uk/volunteer-vacancies/) A donation, whether a few pounds via PayPal or a substantial cheque is always going to be welcome. However, to keep the autocar running and to do the things we'd like to do and make full use of this remarkable vehicle and the trailer autocoach, we need people to volunteer their time. For instance, just before Warley, I announced our new guide. It's had good feedback and we sold a good number at the Warley show. But we also need people to sell this on the autocar, whether at Embsay or when the autocar's 'on tour'. As well as volunteer stewards, we need someone to deal with online sales, setting up a 'shop' and fulfilling orders. We have quite a few products for sale but no-one to sell them.

How about yourself you may ask? Well, I chose my user name on a day I'd been rushing around fixing problems and despite my best efforts and some short-term gains, right now it's worse than ever. Due to the family illness that resulted in me missing Warley and serious ongoing care issues, I've had to take a step back from most of my activites, including the publicity and project work for the autocar. (Thanks to those who have expressed good wishes; I don't think 'Fate' was listening). Our secretary has advised of his retirement come November. Like me, he has increasing demands on him and we can't do it all. Other volunteers have put a lot of effort into the project for up to ten years and would like to reduce their workload. Knowing how much time and commitment they have put in, I fully understand why. 

 

The Secretary, Sales/Fundraising and Publicity roles are the well-defined roles we'd like to fill. We would also like to investigate building a museum come workshop for the autocar - we need someone to act as co-ordinator and manager for this and this is a rather more nebulous 'vacancy'. None of us have the necessary expertise or knowledge to work on this ourselves and depending on the early results, it could be set for 'an early bath' or develop into a very significant role, akin to the project engineer's role currently, though with a different subject.

We would like to build on what we've achieved so far and without suitable volunteers, it's not going to happen. I know many of you will have busy lives already and I know that feeling all too well - but if you can help, even if it is just a few hours a month, do please speak to us. Do not rely on 'the other fella' doing it. If you can't help, do you know a friend or neighbour who is/may be interested and might be able to? Thanks to technology, some roles can be done literally anywhere in the world, so whilst we don't expect a Thursday working party commute from our overseas members in Australia, or Texas, or British Columbia, or even the Isle of Colonsay to Embsay, if you can help with any 'back-room' or off-site tasks, don't be shy. Please help us with the most precious asset of all - your time. (Don't tell our Treasurer I said that ...) 

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The Autocar is down to be used at the GCR Goods Galore event on the last weekend in March, in case of interest to anyone who wants to see/ride on it.

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