The narrow gauge Golden Valley Light Railway at the Midland Railway – Butterley will see the last steaming of its locomotive “Joan” for some time on 1st, 2nd and 9th April.
The locomotive was built in 1997 by Allen Civil as a replica of a Bagnall machine. It arrived at the Golden Valley light Railway in 2003 and was originally named “Pearl 2” after the builders wife. It was named “Joan” after a change of ownership and has been the only resident steam locomotive on the narrow gauge line.
The boiler falls ready for overhaul in April and it has been decided that rather than carry this work out immediately the volunteers will concentrate on completing the line’s other steam locomotive, an Orenstein and Koppel 0-4-0 well tank. This fascinating machine was built in Germany in 1914 and was used in a quarry near Paris until 1967 when it was rescued by a British enthusiast, finally arriving at the Golden Valley Light Railway in 1995. It has not steamed in preservation but an extensive rebuild has been taking place over several years. The intention is now to concentrate on completing this machine before looking at the boiler on “Joan”.
The steaming dates of 1st, 2nd and 9th April will be the last chance for visitors to travel behind “Joan” for some time and are likely to be the last steam hauled trains on the Golden Valley Light Railway until the Orenstein and Koppel locomotive is brought into service.
Alan Calladine the Midland Railway Trust, Development Officer said, “This will be a great opportunity to travel behind
Joan” before she takes a back seat. We are looking forward to seeing the historic Orenstein and Koppel locomotive in action and it would be great in the future to see both locomotives in use on the Golden Valley Light Railway.”