29/09/2000 – 01/10/2000 Severn Valley Railway

Originally it was 5580 which received the invitation for this event , however her air receivers were ‘ out of ticket ‘ so we offered 31108 as a replacement. The organisers being ‘ well happy ‘ with this amendment , it was decided to keep 31108 down at Old Oak Common and move her up a bit nearer the time. 31108 moved up from OC with 37906 & 56006 just before the event following a few days battery charging in ‘ The Factory ‘.

We arrived early on the Friday morning to prepare 108 and she was started with no problems.Our first train was piloted by 56006 from Kidderminster – Bewdley where 108 continued to Bridgnorth and back. Our next trip was piloted by the NRM’s D8000 from Kidderminster – Bridgnorth however the 20 failed with loss of power beyond Bewdley so in the event we pushed it to our destination…! 31108 sounded superb on the load 8 trains over this very scenic railway.That night 31108 + D8000 were berthed for the night in Bridgnorth ready for the next morning. During the evening we were told that some local residents had complained about the noise being emitted from 31108…? It turned out to be the Spirex ‘ popper valves ‘ !

At Bridgnorth , 31108 awaits departure with a train for Kidderminster…29/09/00 photo S Harvey

31108 & D8000 with their first turn of the day at Bridgnorth…30/09/00

Thankfully with some ‘ tinkering ‘ and a rest , D8000 was declared fit to return with 108 on the Saturday morning to Kidderminster. 31108 then acted as Brake Translator to visiting Freightliner 57012 for a round trip of the line , although it has to be said we did more than our fair share of work……!

The Sunday saw us work just one round trip with the ‘star’ of the event, 37906 .With 31108 leading on a very misty morning we decided to plug in the Jumpers and run in multi…! Bloody hellfire !……they worked a treat , and looked superb in their matching liveries.This was another ‘ top ‘ Gala and again thankfully no problems with 108. Nice to see 27059 out and about too….. 31108 returned to Butterley soon after .

A misty morning at Kidderminster sees 31108 in multi with 37906 on the first train of the day..01/10/00

The same train stands at Highley awaiting time with this ‘ fine pairing ‘ ….01/10/00 photo D Cross