27/28 January 2023
The Trust attended the Great Central Railway Winter Steam Gala at Loughborough Central station. We had a stand on the platform to raise awareness of the Duke’s imminent return later in the year. Our stand was supported by a number of the Trust’s members and raised over £1,400 from donations and sales of memorabilia.
Significant progress was reported on the driving wheels having been returned from South Devon Engineering, enabling the Trust’s Working Parties to work on cleaning them (and removing old paint) ready for primer to be applied and the tyres being profiled. Work on the pistons has also progressed with the core plugs fitted to the piston heads and the slide bars connected to the new rear cylinder covers. Good progress was also noted on the overhaul of the Support Coach at Rampart Engineering, Barrow Hill.
3 April 2022
All members of the Trust were invited to a Members’ Day at Tyseley. Around 70 members attended and were updated on the loco’s overhaul. The members attending were escorted through the Loco Workshop to enable them to witness first-hand the progress that had been made on the Duke’s overhaul.
18 May 2022
The Trust’s support coach was returned to Tyseley from Rampart Engineering, Barrow Hill, fully overhauled and freshly painted (with the Trust’s logo on its side). The support coach is now almost ready for mainline use.
17 August 2022
The Duke’s crank axle was returned to Tyseley from South Devon. Work will now continue at Tyseley to profile the axle’s tyres after which our Support Crew will remove all the old paintwork before repainting them. We can now look forward to the remaining driving wheels being reunited with the loco and the motion being reattached.
11 October 2022
The remaining driving wheels have now been reunited with the loco’s frames, pending the refitting of the motion to reconnect the pistons to the driving wheels.
19 November 2022
The Trust held its second Members’ Day of the year, when attendees were able to see the loco with all driving wheels and cab reattached. The fully overhauled support coach was also on display and major progress on the overhauled and refitted tender could be seen.
Looking forward to the steaming of the Duke in 2023 with new souvenir items available (Overhaul Scrapbook/DVD and Members Day DVD), plus half page adverts place in three railway magazines highlighting the forthcoming return of the Duke.
Towards the end of 2020 articles about The Duke appeared in numerous magazines and when coupled with an enhanced social media presence the Trust attracted some new members as well as some old ones back. Total Trust membership passed 400 reaching a record level.
To capitalise on the excellent media coverage The Duke has received and is receiving the Trust launches a membership recruitment campaign in Railway Magazine, Steam Railway and Heritage Railway magazines. A half-page advertisement has been placed in each of these magazines running for 3 consecutive issues and in the case of Steam Railway next to the Ian Murray articles when possible.
The Trust announces that the Duke will be available for hire to Train Operating Companies, railway tour operators and mainline connected heritage railways from Q1 2022.
Membership recruitment campaign is bearing fruit with the number of new members in the first two months of 2021 exceeding the total for the whole of 2020.
The Trust Management Committee, having been made aware that a dual-braked Corridor Brake First support coach was on the market, unanimously decided to put in an offer which was accepted. BFK W17015 requires some work to bring it up to The Duke’s specifications. This purchase coincided with the relaunch of the Support Coach (Renovation) Appeal. Funds raised will go towards the new Support Coach whilst BFK W17041 will be put up for sale.
Membership recruitment campaign coupled with the printed media coverage The Duke is currently receiving is most certainly bearing fruit with 37 new members joining the Trust in the first quarter of 2021.
As the lockdown restrictions begin to be lifted along the roadmap to normality Working Parties recommenced at Tyseley Locomotive Works on Wednesdays and Saturdays with 4 and 6 Trust members maximum allowed respectively.
South Devon Railway Engineering begin to put together The Duke’s unique crank axle.
After responding to a posting in the National Preservation Forum about where to acquire a coach the Trust successfully negotiated the sale of the original Mk2 support coach BFK 17041. As the sale was taking place the Support Coach Appeal first launched in 2018 was re-launched to assist with the refurbishment of the ‘new’ Mk1 BFK 17015.
With one member stepping down the Management Committee was restructured as shown on the Trust Officers webpage.
As not all Trust members pay much attention to the internet and social media it was decided that a postal reminder of the appeals currently running would be sent out along with a history of the Trust’s ‘new’ Support Coach research by the Trust’s Archivist, Michael Hughes.
The 5th of Ian Murry’s ‘The Duke Story’ articles was published in Steam Railway magazine (issue 519) and entitled Mission Complete at the end of this month.
After an inspection and testing at Tyseley Locomotive Works the driving wheels were returned to South Devon Railway Engineering and preliminary work began to assemble wheel sets.
The response to the mailed out Member’s Appeal brought in approximately a further £10k of sponsorship. This total was far in excess of the Management Committee’s expectations – a wonderful result.
The Trust Chairman, Trevor Tuckley made it known through a number of channels but firstly through the members Duke News that when The Duke returns to service he will step down from his current position. He announced his decision now to allow the Trust to go through a smooth and well thought out transition.
The 6th and last of Ian Murry’s ‘The Duke Story’ articles was published in Steam Railway magazine (issue 520) and entitled All in the Family at the end of this month.
South Devon Railway Engineering have put together the 3 driving wheel sets including the new crank axle.
The number of days Trust volunteers have put into the Working Parties at Tyseley since they started in March 2016 now totals 1,491. This is equivalent to £149,100 saved by the Trust on The Duke’s overhaul. Thanks are due to all those Trust members who have willingly given their time and effort in this regard.
At a meeting of the Trustees, and after having taken legal advice, it was decided that it was unnecessary to form an operating company to manage The Duke when in service as it can be done by the Trust itself.
The Trust will be led by a Strategic Board of Directors numbering 5 or 6 who will meet on a regular basis with the Management Committee taking its direction from this Board. It is intended to recruit specific skills such as good business, compliance, finance, industry knowledge and communications to mention a few. This new structure will be implemented over a period of time.
The Support Crew are taking the opportunity to work on the new Support Coach prior to it moving to Rampart Rail for refurbishment in September. They are concentrating on emptying the Guard’s compartment, refurbishing the dividing wall for electrical equipment to be mounted and installing a well-provisioned kitchen.
An Overhaul News page has been added to the member’s area of The Duke website which is being updated regularly.
Tyseley staff have provided the Trust with a copy of an original list of all British Railways Class 8 Locomotive drawings. This will be most useful in the weeks and months ahead during The Duke’s second heavy overhaul in preservation.
The new Trackside magazine publishes a major five-page article about the future of the Duke.
The Duke’s MK1 Support Coach is transported to Rampart Engineering, Barrow Hill for its overhaul to commence.
At a meeting between the Trust, Vintage Trains and Tyseley Loco Works, all parties commit to ensuring that the overhaul of the Duke will be completed in 2022.
All members of the Trust receive the traditional Duke Christmas card, which also provided a summary of the progress on the loco’s overhaul.
12 February 2019
Target date of September 2020 set as the completion date for the Duke’s overhaul.
10 April 2019
Dave Oliver appointed Engineering Manager in additional to Team Leader responsibilities.
8 June 2019
Members and Support Crew open meeting at the Tyseley Working Mens’ Club.
23 June 2019
Andrew Bailey appointed a Team Leader.
The Duke’s tender is lifted off its wheelsets, to enable a thorough assessment of the wheels and bearings to commence. TLW express an opinion that the crank axle for leading driving wheel needs to be rebuilt.
A crack was found in the centre cylinder, which needed to be thoroughly investigating. The treatment was found to be metal-stitching, which was completed later in the year.
Different fundraising initiatives commenced, to fill the funding gap that was clearly required to complete the overhaul by September 2020.
The tender bearings were inspected and were found to require replacing. The CAD design work for adjustments to the pistons and slidebars was completed.
At the end of October, the audited financial statements and annual report were submitted, on time, to the Charity Commission.
The Trust’s membership numbers were approaching 400 individuals. However, we had also had 44 members that had upgraded their membership contributions at various stages. The total ‘effective’ membership therefore stood at 435 members, with an annualised income of almost £79,000.
8 December 2019
The chairman’s end of year review was circulated to all members, of which 323 were sent by e-mail and 62 by post.
16th January 2014
An EGM was held by the original Trust at which the members present were asked to approve two motions. Firstly to approve the transfer of the residual assets of 71000 (Duke of Gloucester) Steam Locomotive Trust Ltd over to the new trust, B R Class 8 Steam Locomotive Trust. This was carried unanimously.
Secondly the members were asked to approve the formal dissolution of the original Trust. This too was carried unanimously.
29th January 2014
Inaugural meeting of the new CIO at which the following Trustees were formally appointed:
A R Mitchell
T R Tuckley
The following officers were appointed:
T R Tuckley – Chairman of Trustees
A R Mitchell – Secretary
I Murray – Commercial Principal
D Martin – Treasurer
S Wright – Sales Principal
J Bennett was asked to focus, in the short term, on the work necessary to execute the decisions taken at the original Trust’s EGM.
The Trustees also agreed to delegate the day to day management of the new Trust to a working party which would have additional members.
This working party was charged with setting up the basics required to manage the day to day business of the Trust. This committee carried out an enormous amount of work in a short period of time setting up membership, website, structure etc.
During this period some members of the original Trust began to show dissatisfaction with the style of management of the new CIO and working party, finding its robust style very different from the one that existed in the old Trust. Despite explanation that there needed to be clear focus on functioning in a totally business like manner, with clear lines of responsibility and accountability, some individuals from the original Trust decided that they did not wish to remain part of the working party. This was shortly followed by John Bennett and Stuart Wright resigning as Trustees.
The new Trust and Management Committee continue to work hard to ensure that they have in place all of functions that are required in order to professionally manage the Duke through its pending overhaul and on into the future. This requires the help of committed, skilled and qualified people in all areas of business and the Trust is encouraged by the stature of the people who have committed to the cause and are only too happy to talk to anyone who feels they may be able to assist in whatever way possible.
The journey towards getting the Duke back onto the main line in a reliable and dependable condition has started and we are greatly encouraged by the professional help already in place to achieve this.
17th July 2014
Ian Murray resigned from his role as Commercial Principal as a result of pressures on his time from other areas but he continues as a Trust member.
Nicola Warwick was appointed as Media Principal with responsibility for the day to day running of the website and online activities.
2nd October 2014
Nicola Warwick resigned due to the increasing work load involved in her full time job
29th October 2014
Steve Wakeland appointed Media Principal