Lea Bailey gold mine – see the work of the society at its open days from 11am-4pm this weekend:
“Historic mining machinery can be seen in action this weekend at the Lea Bailey Light
Railway Society open weekend.
The society, based at Lea Bailey gold mine, operates on a short section of two foot gauge track incorporating a small section of the bed of the former Mitcheldean Road & Forest of Dean Junction Railway.
Members volunteer each weekend to restore heritage mining locomotives and equipment and work on track improvements.
This Saturday and Sunday May 14 and 15, from 11am-4pm, a battery powered Wingrove & Rogers loco, a diesel Simplex loco and an Eimco rockershovel will be giving displays.
The society is also hoping to run a Hunslet loco at Clearwell Caves.
And later on Sunday, a unique air powered Eimco 401 loco will be arriving from Sussex on a two year loan to the railway. The American loco, built in Salt Late City, Utah, is believed to be the only one of its kind in the country. It is hoped to showcase this machine at a further open day in July.
The society is developing an increasing following, particularly on social media, with 24,000 people viewing its activities on Youtube alone. It is hoped the weekend will attract new members.
“There is much work to be done at Lea Bailey,” said spokesman Rob Needham. “It’s not all hard physical labour, although there is plenty of that. The Simplex loco needs repainting,old rail spikes need straightening. Vegetation needs clearing, cups of tea need making,and visitors need talking to.