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Mid-Suffolk Light Railway in Wetheringsett give top award for restoration



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A Wetheringsett historic railway site has been presented with an award for fully restoring a locomotive built for the Shredded Wheat Company in 1934.

Mid-Suffolk Light Railway (MSLR) in Hall Lane, also known as the Middy, has been presented with a Morgan Preservation Award by the Heritage Railway Association (HRA).

Steve Oates, chief executive of the association, visited the popular tourist attraction in Suffolk to present the award to John Stark, chairman of the Mid-Suffolk Light Railway.

Chief executive of the Heritage Railway Association Steve Oates , left, with chairman of the Middy John Stark and volunteers of the railway. Picture by Mark Bullimore.
Chief executive of the Heritage Railway Association Steve Oates , left, with chairman of the Middy John Stark and volunteers of the railway. Picture by Mark Bullimore.

Mr Stark said: "The MSLR was delighted to welcome Steve Oakes, in person, to present last year's HRA Morgan Preservation Award to the MSLR and in particular to its Shredded Wheat Fowler diesel restoration team.

"It was an important celebration of our volunteers and the excellence of their work. This award is one of the highest annual HRA awards and our victory demonstrates that excellence in heritage railway projects, both large and small, will be rewarded.

"I'm sure that our team's success is an inspiration to many other small heritage railway projects around the country.

The Fowler diesel mechanical locomotive built for the Shredded Wheat Company in 1934. Pictures by Mark Bullimore.
The Fowler diesel mechanical locomotive built for the Shredded Wheat Company in 1934. Pictures by Mark Bullimore.

"The fact that their restoration of "Shreddie" was of such an exceptionally high standard that it won this award is truly remarkable. It is testament to the team's skills, knowledge, determination, and hours of hard work."

The Fowler diesel mechanical locomotive, which the award was given for, was rescued in a very dilapidated state by current owner Tony Goff.

In November 2018, it was delivered to brothers Neal and Nigel Davis, who are both members and volunteers at the Middy and who have also worked on maintaining the site’s two Ruston and Hornsby locomotives.

It took just six months to turn the rusting machine into a fully working train again.

Nigel Pulham, Nigel Davis and Neal Davis with the Fowler Locomotive. Pictures by Mark Bullimore.
Nigel Pulham, Nigel Davis and Neal Davis with the Fowler Locomotive. Pictures by Mark Bullimore.


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