Nick Simpson, MPD Manager, gives us an update from the Engine Sheds at Grosmont.

This year, so far, has been fairly unprecedented in terms of diesel mileage, heat and dryness (I for one wasn’t born in the summer of 1976). I have in my near 28 years on and around the railway never seen the shed full of serviceable steam engines all ready for the off with nowhere to go. It has also been unique so far in terms of staffing…

This year we have had two retirements and a member of staff moving which has changed how the pool of talent has had to be managed and distributed here at Grosmont Motive Power Department.

That in mind, we have made and filled a number of roles, the first of which is a Yorkshire's Magnificent Journey (YMJ) apprentice, Finn Allen, who next month should have his apprenticeship successfully signed off and in so become time served. He will become a Diesel Fitter, training to be a FTR examiner to Network standards joining #TeamDiesel looking after and rebuilding our increasingly important diesel fleet. Congratulations to Finn on his completion of apprenticeship and I look forward to him developing in his role as diesel fitter and then becoming, in time, multi traction taking on duty fitter shifts on the steam fleet.

Looking into the boilershop, this year we have taken on 2 boiler assistants - Sam Dickinson and Ben Conley join us working for the boiler department undertaking all our washouts in the running season and assisting the boilersmiths in overhauling our 10 year rebuilds such as No. 34101 Hartland and No. 75029 The Green Knight.

Alan Gibbard has also joined the team, as fire raiser, working mostly out of Newbridge during the summer, lighting, prepping and making sure that the locomotives leave the shed on time. In the non-running time Alan will come to Grosmont Shed to work on the rebuilds, winter maintenance and servicing of the engines for the next year's traffic.


In the machine shop its been all change too, David Walker has come in to machine for us, leading the outfits requirements to turn, mill, grind and drill anything and everything that the M.P.D. and railway may need.


And finally,

we are delighted to announce that Cameron Ross and Jacob Swinburn have been successful in gaining an apprenticeship here at the shed through the YMJ Scheme. Cameron will begin his career working with David in the machine shop learning to be a machinist and Jacob will be on the steam fitting side working on the final stages of No. 926 Repton’s repair work, getting the loco ready for traffic when the weather allows and a great Annual Steam Gala. Both apprentices will follow last year's applicant, Tom Lee, and go to T.T.E. college to gain their qualifications. I am pleased to sign up the next intake and work with T.T.E. once more.

This year has seen our core paid staff pool deployed in ways we have never worked before. We are becoming more flexible in our approach to multiskilled departmental working and training, with investment and assessment we are opening up to all to keep the big wheels turning. All of which is supported and assisted by our engineering volunteers. Credit to all who come and help out in a multitude of tasks that keep the department going by painting, cleaning, keeping engines running, machining, fitting, working with our plant and machinery or working in our office.

In loco news, while we are taking this break from steam running, we have used the opportunity to undertake various engineering tasks, for example No. 5428 Eric Treacy has had its wheel sets removed and sent for tyre turning, No. 92134 has had ashpan repairs and we have brought forward some washouts so that when running and the gala come round we are as ready as possible.

Nick Simpson, MPD Manager.

Read the Previous Entry and as ever, if you are looking to join #TeamShed and help them in their work, please consider submitting a Volunteer Expression of Interest to start your volunteer journey at the NYMR.