A little animated gif of Henbury propelling the passenger train past Portbury, on ‘driver for a fiver’ duties, in the yard.
You still have the chance to drive Portbury on the next two operating weekends this year! After that, Henbury’s boiler ticket will expire and she will be withdrawn, with her stablemate taking over passenger duties.
In this photo found on the Bristol Railway Archive, ‘Henbury’ complete with full yellow end and bufferbeam, meets ‘Western Pride’ on Whapping wharf circa 1981. The diesel loco is standing on what is now the long siding in the yard. This photo also illustrates the industrial backdrop of the early days of the Harbour Railway, quite a contrast to the contemporary view.
The phrase ‘ship shape and Bristol fashion’ refers to the high tidal reach of the River Avon in Bristol, where ships would have to be strong to withstand being on the riverbed every 4 hours.
During the harsh tides this spring, the banks of the New Cut between Vauxhall Bridge and the Create Centre sagged a bit, requiring this section to be closed while repairs were carried out.
This photo shows the ‘sag’ in the track.
The rails in this section were duly lifted, and the sleepers repositioned to form a ramp for construction equipment to get in.
Within two weeks the operation was completed, allowing ‘Henbury’ to propel the first passenger trains across the repaired section. A speed limit of 5mph is currently in place here.