Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby MOD » Sun Oct 28, 2012 7:41 pm

Well done Ray and all your mates from SLL. ;)

BTW have you seen the new plans for the development of the Bridgnorth facilities. They didn't dare mess with The Railwayman's Arms though!! :D

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby RLN » Sun Oct 28, 2012 9:39 pm

Great stuff, PW. You look like a dog with two tails on her footplate. :ymapplause:
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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:56 am

MOD wrote:Well done Ray and all your mates from SLL. ;)

BTW have you seen the new plans for the development of the Bridgnorth facilities. They didn't dare mess with The Railwayman's Arms though!! :D

ibw


Thank you Ian.

Yes, I have read about the plans. It seems that Bridgnorth has been somewhat 'left behind' on the redevelopment front over the years. Glad to see that this is now going to be addressed.

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Tue Nov 06, 2012 8:46 pm

On 26th October 'Sir Keith Park' had a 'Top Gear' style 'Rail and Road Race' with a Morgan Car, between Kidderminster and Bridgnorth (16 miles). This was a Charity Event, to raise money for this year's 'Children In Need' Appeal. Click on the link below for more details of this event:

http://www.shropshirestar.com/news/2012 ... -a-morgan/

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:58 am

I was extremely pleased to see that the front cover of the latest issue of 'STEAM Railway' magazine is dominated by a stunning photograph of 34053 'Sir Keith Park', at the Severn Valley Railway. Have a look in W H Smith's ('other retailers are available') within the next 4 weeks (after which, the next issue takes over).

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Thu Jan 31, 2013 6:03 pm

Just to keep you all 'up to date', here are some more great pics of 'Sir Keith Park' in Service on the Severn Valley Railway (Pics 71 to 141 incl):

https://picasaweb.google.com/1168391414 ... 1302178354

Enjoy!

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Mackrick » Thu Jan 31, 2013 6:28 pm

Another nice update thank you.
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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby MOD » Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:20 pm

Thanks for those photos Ray. SKP is a credit to SLL and a great asset to the SVR.

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 6:20 pm

MOD wrote:Thanks for those photos Ray. SKP is a credit to SLL and a great asset to the SVR.

ibw


Thank you for that Ian. Most appreciated.

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 4:51 pm

I was reliving my experience of the 'Driving & Firing' Day on 19th October 2012 on 'Sir Keith Park' and watching my Complilation Video (see my Post of 28th October) again, when I came across another YouTube clip (by 'TheMartBan'). This was filmed a week earlier, on 13th October, during a 'Members and Shareholders Weekend' at the Severn Valley Railway. This is a great video and includes, amongst other Locomotives, several shots of 'Sir Keith Park' in action. I hope that you will enjoy it. Here is the link:



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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:48 pm

Here is a Reminder of (part of) the Post made here on 9th October 2008 (at the very beginning of my involvement with this Locomotive):

Keith Park served in the Royal Air Force between 1911(when it was the Royal Flying Corps) and 1946.

Lord Tedder (Chief of the Royal Air Force) stated in 1947 about Keith Park:
‘If any one man won the Battle of Britain, he did. I do not believe it is realised how much this one man, with his leadership, his calm judgement and his skill, did to save, not only this country, but the world’.

Despite this, there is still (at the time of writing) no widespread recognition or memorial to Sir Keith Park – apart from ‘Keith Park Crescent’, a residential road near the former RAF Biggin Hill and a Southern Railway ‘Battle of Britain’ Class Locomotive (21C153/34053) ‘Sir Keith Park’ which was named, by Sir Keith Park, at Brighton Station, in 1948. This locomotive was withdrawn from service in October 1965 and was left to languish in a South Wales scrap yard (together with some 200 plus other locomotives) from 1966 until 1984. Fortunately, ‘Sir Keith Park’ (and most of the other locomotives) escaped the cutters torch and was moved to various locations where, ultimately it became a ‘donor’ of spare parts for similar locomotives undergoing restoration. Ultimately, ‘Sir Keith Park’ (by now a rusting ‘hulk’, devoid of most components) was rescued by Southern Locomotives Ltd (who own, restore maintain and operate steam locomotives) in December 2000 for ‘future’ restoration. However, following an article about Sir Keith Park in the ‘Financial Times’ on 15th September 2007 (‘Battle of Britain Day’), interest was awakened and sufficient initial funds were made available to ‘jump the queue’ and begin restoration.


In the years since, things have certainly improved in the recognition of Sir Keith Park. The Locomotive is now fully Restored and running very well on the Severn Valley Railway, since August 2012. There is also the permanent Statue of Sir Keith Park, in Waterloo Place, London (Unveiled on 15th September 2010). However, the one thing that I have never shown you is a picture of the Road Sign in Biggin Hill (opposite the Airport) that carries his name. I was in the area in December last year, so I took the opportunity to remedy this:

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Unfortunately, not a very impressive road sign. However, in a nearby new Housing Development, all the roads are named after (mainly) Spitfire Pilots who lost their lives in WW2. Each road name also incorporates brief details of the Pilot concerned. A very fitting tribute to 'The Few'

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Mackrick » Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:02 pm

Thanks for the reminder it's an interesting read....
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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Minty4371 » Fri Mar 22, 2013 8:47 pm

Something you may be interested in. (from Southern Locomotives Ltd Facebook Page)

And now for something completely different: the Bewdley Brewery has just released a new bottled beer, Sir Keith Park. The label features a photo of the loco and a resume of its history. Available in SVR territory soon. http://www.bewdleybrewery.co.uk/ourbeers.asp

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Thu Mar 28, 2013 2:03 pm

I very much look forward to sampling a bottle (or two)!! :) ;)

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Fri Mar 29, 2013 5:27 pm

Following his success in winning the Battle of Britain, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Keith Park initially went to Cairo as Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Egypt in January 1942. However, the situation in North Africa was becoming critical. Between Gibraltar and El Alemein, Malta was the only British Base along that 2000 miles of coastline. Occupied Sicily also being a mere 60 miles away. The decision was therefore made, in July 1942, to transfer AVM Keith Park to Malta, replacing AVM Hugh Lloyd as AOC in Malta. Park arrived on 14 July 1942 by flying boat, landing in the midst of an air raid. Unlike Park, Lloyd was not liked by his men and had been criticised for his defensive tactics and for the aircraft losses suffered on the ground. Park changed all this to an offensive operation. With plenty of Spitfires at his disposal, Park sought to intercept the enemy and break up the formations before the bombers reached the island.
Now, with improved radar and quicker take off times (two to three minutes) and improved air-sea rescue, this became possible. Using three Squadrons, Park asked the first to engage the escorting fighters, 'up sun'. The second would strike at the close escort, or, if unescorted, the bombers themselves. The third was to attack the bombers head-on, some ten miles north of the coast and force them to jettison thir bombs. If a fourth Squadron was available, that one would tackle any bombers that broke through the forward fighter screen
The impact of Park's methods resulted in instant success. Malta went on to develop from a beseiged Island to become, in 1943, a powerful offensive base for the Allied invasion of Sicily in July that year.
AVM Keith Park left Malta, to return to Cairo, on 6th February 1944. An article in the 'Times of Malta' on 4th February stated 'Park left Malta carrying with him the good wishes and gratitude of the people..............He was a born fighter and commander of men, a fearless leader and a man of courage and vision............'.

Should you wish to read more about 'Malta Beseiged'; 'Malta Offensive' and the other parts of Keith Park's life and carreer (including, of course, the Battle of Britain), I can highly recommend the following book:

'Park'.The Biography of Air Chief Marshal Sir Keith Park by Vincent Orange. (ISBN 978 1 902304 61 8).

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Mackrick » Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:49 pm

Comprehensive post interesting read.
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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:07 am

Had a fantastic day on Saturday (22nd June) when, as part of an invited Group from Southern Locomotives Ltd, we were shown around the 'work in progress' inside the 'Sir Keith Park Building' at RAF Northolt. We also 'handed over' a replica 'Sir Keith Park' Locomotive Nameplate and Crest, for eventual mounting within this Building. Use the link below for some info' on the 'Sir Keith Park Building':

http://www.raf.mod.uk/battleofbritainbu ... ilding.cfm

We then went to the 'Battle of Britain Bunker' at (what remains of) RAF Uxbridge. The link above will also take you to a 'Virtual Tour' of the various areas of the 'Bunker', which is really good. (Click on 'Visitor Information' and scroll down to the bottom of the page). Please Note: For Weekend visits, the Bunker will now be open until the end of August and not the end of June (as stated). It is open on weekdays, as described.

A really fascinating and interesting day. I plan to visit the Bunker again myself as, unfortunately, there was not enough time to see everything and also to 'take it all in', as it most certainly deserves.

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Minty4371 » Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:19 pm

Just spotted this.
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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:29 pm

Thank you Robert. I am very pleased that you have posted this video here, as it makes a really appropriate 'Postscript' to the 'Restoration' Topic.

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Minty4371 » Tue Feb 11, 2014 9:25 pm

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:59 pm

Thank you Minty, for posting that video clip. Most appreciated.

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Dougs » Thu Feb 13, 2014 2:01 pm

is it me or is it going backwards :p looks a bit square on the backend.
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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Thu Feb 13, 2014 4:14 pm

Dougs wrote:is it me or is it going backwards :p looks a bit square on the backend.


Unfortunately, 'Smokebox First' is only possible from Bridgnorth to Kidderminster (the direction in which, I'm pleased to say, I had my 'Drive & Fire' on 'Sir Keith Park' in October 2012). The return journey, of necessity, has to be 'Tender First'.

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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby Minty4371 » Fri Jun 06, 2014 5:36 pm

Posted on Facebook today. Very fitting.
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Re: Restoration of Locomotive 34053 'Sir Keith Park'

Postby 34053 » Sat Jun 07, 2014 12:04 pm

Thank you Robert. Really appreciated,

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