April 9th 2011
One new panel was laid. This may not sound like much compared to the previous week's four, but we had so many other tasks to undertake as well. We had to move and lay out all the sleepers for the new panel and also key up all one side of the four panels laid last week, both which took quite a lot of time and effort. We also had to move some of the ballast bed to support the new panel as the track is moving slightly off centre to where the ballast was laid. This is because since the ballast bed was laid in November 2009, we have been able to achieve a better track line to ensure that we have a constant radius for the full length of this long curve.
The head of steel (HOS) is also becoming some considerable distance from the rail stack, so the opportunity was taken to use two rail trolleys to move the rails. The trolleys would become a great asset to us over the coming weeks.
The Tuesday group had taken on the challenge of cutting and drilling rails ready for Saturday's laying sessions.
April 16th 2011
A further panel of track was laid this week leaving only four more to go during our current track laying phase. The Tuesday group spent the day laying out sleepers for the next panel.
April 23rd 2011
It was Easter weekend with many volunteers away making the best of the good weather. Our numbers weren't high enough this week to move rail but the GCR had brought a wagon to the branch with 40 more sleepers. The opportunity was taken to unload the wagon and construct a new sleeper stack near to the HOS.
April 30th 2011
With volunteer numbers restored a further panel was laid, plated up, slewed into position and keyed up. The GCR was almost out of sight in the distance behind us.
Third and final part of this diary to follow later this week.