Now regular readers of this blog will know what I do at weekends, but as I have gained a few readers from across the pond due to my postings on other blogs I thought I would for their benefit explain what I spend most of my weekends doing.
Now now no mutterings from the regulars that I spend the weekends doing not a lot, shame on you!!!!
Anyway here we go…. Are you sitting comfortably? Good lets begin.
At weekends I work as a volunteer on a heritage railway where we run both old steam and diesel locomotives.
To be precise I am the Station Master at Orton Mere Station on the Nene Valley Railway and this is my eighth year on the railway.
We have five stations along the line. Mine is located next to the River Nene which can be see from the station platforms. So we can view passing pleasure and narrow boats as they travel up and down the river.
Here is a picture looking west along my platform 1 towards my station building at the other end of the platform.
As you can see we have a road bridge running over the top of the station, to the right of the picture but out of view is the River Nene, but more of that later.
Here are two more views, one from the west end of the platform looking west to the signal box and the foot crossing beyond.
The second is from the west end looking East along platform 1 with platform 2 on the left.
Above is a picture off the East end of platform 1 looking towards Peterborough.
The line on the left runs to our city centre station and the one on the right branches off and becomes what’s known as the Fletton Loop and links our railway to the national rail network.
Our line was the first built running into Peterborough and dates from the year 1845, although my station did not exist until we became a heritage railway just over 30 years ago.
As I said at the beginning we run both diesel and steam locomotives. Today we ran steam and here is our Standard Five locomotive named “City of Peterborough” arriving hauling the second service to Peterborough.
The locomotive is almost 60 years old and is very popular with both crews and visitors alike.
Some pictures of other locomotives and the other stations can be found on my site at www.nvrpics.org.uk
A video of one of our special event runs can be found here http://www.flickr.com/photos/robert_maskill/sets/72157629189052548/
So there you have it, the place I spend my weekends, first thing in the morning it can be very peaceful with rabbits and foxes plus other animals seen on a daily basis.
Now I mentioned the river. The River Nene runs from inland and eventually after passing through Peterborough ends up in The Wash and the sea.
Right by the station over the foot crossing I mentioned earlier is Orton Staunch. Over the top of it runs a footbridge.
Here is a picture taken first thing this morning looking West from the footbridge up the river and on the left you can see some riverside huts and boat moorings.
To the right and just out of shot is a lock enabling boats to navigate past the staunch in both ways.
The picture above shows the lock with the top gates open, they should be closed and the lock drained. To the right out of picture is a public golf course.
Next to the Staunch a local canoe club meets and this weekend there was an competition being held.
Above is the view East off the foot bridge and you can see the canoes in the early morning sun reflected off the water.
Under the foot bridge where the river flows over the Mere is white water, and great for canoe competitions.
Above is the view straight down off the bridge of the water rushing over the Mere, it is better click on and viewed slightly larger.
You can walk along the river both towards the city and also out into the countryside. A really peaceful place.
More pictures along the river that I have taken can be found here http://www.flickr.com/photos/robert_maskill/sets/72157629540762443/
So there you have it, the place I spend my weekends. The pictures above show it at it’s best, sometime I will post some pictures of it in the snow and frost and you will see how different it can be then.
If you have any comments or questions please put a comment and I will be pleased to answer them as best I can.