Farewell to the CVR

5199 has made even more history at CVR recently. Following the completion of the run-round loop at Cauldon Lowe trains are now able to be operated by a single loco instead of the Top & Tail mode we have become accustomed to. With this new loop though, 5199 performed a trial run in the dark during the evening of February 22nd, becoming the first steam locomotive to work solo up the bank since the early 60s. Frank Richards braved the cold and was able to catch the following video of her crossing Bridge 4 across the A520. Its more a sound clip more than anything, but still of significance non the less.


Crossing Bridge 4 over the A520. Video, Frank Richards.

3 days later on February 25th, she set even more history by working the first solo booked Passenger service since 1935 during the Churnet Valley's winter Steam Weekend! Rostered Fireman for this trip was 5199's very own volunteer Jon Kerr. Local photographer Frank Richards was out and about again, and caught sight of her climbing through Apesford giving off a volcanic exhaust! On the regulator was Chris Meadowcroft, with Chris Simcock joining the crew as well. Later in the day Frank caught her in action nearing the summit, again doing her best volcanic impression.

5199 climbing at Apesford. Photo Frank Richards.
5199 climbing at Apesford. Photo Frank Richards.

5199 nearing the summit. Photo Frank Richards.
5199 nearing the summit. Photo Frank Richards.

On the Sunday she was again rostered to do it all again, however it was a little more poignant for 5199 as these were to be her last services in BR Green, and of more importance, on CVR metals before returning to Llangollen. The rostered crew in the morning included 5199's other volunteer at CVR Will Naylor, though he was not onboard for her final trip Sunday evening. Frank Richards again was out and about and got two shots from either side of the embankment at Apesford Crossing where the gradient eases from 1in45 to a 1in59 climb.

n the embankment at Apesford Crossing. Photo Frank Richards.
On the embankment at Apesford Crossing. Photo Frank Richards.

n the embankment at Apesford Crossing. Photo Frank Richards.
On the embankment at Apesford Crossing. Photo Frank Richards.

It's been an enjoyable 2 and a half years at CVR, one which has seen 5199 beak new ground not only for herself but the Churnet Valley as well. She is going to be sorely missed by the volunteers at the CVR who have all taken a shine to our tank engine, but she has now returned to Llangollen where she is being repainted into Early Unlined BR Black which is the livery that she carried for most of her working life. Hopefully though this is not the last we have seen of 5199 in the Staffordshire Moorlands, as she has put in some sterling service to the line and been a huge credit.

Jon Kerr 23/04/12

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