Steam Dreams 20th Anniversary

Steam Dreams 20th Anniversary follows a special steam train journey from London to Yeovil Junction on 17th December 2019. 350 passengers joined the train for the journey. The LMS locomotive the Duchess of Sutherland hauled the train. The route ran from Victoria Station to Yeovil Junction, stopping at Woking, Salisbury and Sherborne on the way.

The original train, on 16th December 1999, ran from Waterloo Station in London to Salisbury.

At Salisbury the passengers attended a ‘cake cutting’ ceremony on the platform. The Duchess of Sutherland took the opportunity to refill her tanks with water.

We then rejoined the train and continued our journey to Sherborne. Most of the passengers left the train in Sherborne so that they could visit the town. Many also attended a special Carol Service in Sherborne Abbey.

The rest of the passengers continued on the journey to Yeovil Junction. We were lucky that the earlier wet weather had cleared up. We were treated to a lovely sunset as our engine and train were serviced. The Duchess of Sutherland was turned on the turntable – a splendid sight.

The train then returned to London, stopping at Sherborne and Salisbury to pick up the returning passengers.

Please click on a thumbnail to open the photograph gallery:

Find out more about The Steam Dreams Rail Co.:

To visit the Steam Dreams website to find out more about the Day Trips and Holidays please click here.

Travel from Waterloo to Windsor on the Royal Windsor Steam Express:

The Royal Windsor Steam Express is a scheduled steam train service running from London to Windsor and Eton Riverside station. It runs on selected dates from June 2nd to September 8th 2020. It is a great introduction to steam train travel! Find out more at.

Travel on the Sunset Steam Express:

The Sunset Steam Express is an evening train. It runs on selected dates from June 2nd to September 8th 2020. It takes a circular route from London, through the Surrey Hills and then returns to London. A great opportunity for an enjoyable evening out. Find out more at.

About ‘Steam Dreams 20th Anniversary’

This podcast is available on Apple Podcasts/iTunes, Deezer, Spotify and Stitcher.

AKM Music has licensed Steam Railway for use as the theme and incidental music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and The Steam Dreams Rail Co. 2020

London Underground – Disused Stations

Season 2019 / 2020 – Talk 1 C – Disused Stations

Please note: Disused Stations was missed from the talk on the London Underground as we ran out of time. A number of members said they would like to hear it so I have recorded this podcast. This material will be to the other parts of the talk when they are posted.

Tim Davies tells us about the London Underground’s Disused Stations in this short talk. He tells us that the first to close was King William Street. This was the original ‘City’ terminus of the City and South London Railway. King William Street station lasted 9 years and 3 months before closing in 1900.

A total of twenty three stations have closed over the years. Some have gone on to have interesting lives after closure.

Down Street

Down Street station on the Piccadilly line was close to two other stations.  As a result of this, and because Mayfair is a wealthy area the station was very quiet.

During the Second World War the station housed the Railway  Executive. Winston Churchill stayed here during the Blitz.


Another quiet station was Aldwych, it probably should never have been built. Artefacts from London Museums were stored on the Eastern platform during the war. Londoners sheltered from the bombs on the western platform.

Charing Cross

The Jubilee line has disused platforms at Charing Cross. The platforms are often used for filming – the sequence in Skyfall is an example.


At Euston there are tunnels to connect the two original Underground stations. Competing companies built the stations. The rebuild of the station for the Victoria line resulted in closure of the tunnels in 1962.

Please click on one of the images as you listen to the talk to open the gallery.

Please click this link to visit the London Transport Museum website.

Click this link for details of the Hidden London tours.

The Farnham U3A site is at Farnham U3A Home Page.

AKM Music has licensed Media Magazine for use as the title music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio and Farnham U3A History Group 2019

The Dean Forest Railway

The Dean Forest Railway – the Friendly Forest Line – runs for four and a half miles between Lydney Junction and Parkend. It passes through beautiful woodland and countryside and reflects the relaxing pace of a country branch line in the early Twentieth Century.

The line covers part of the route of the Severn and Wye railway. It was originally a tramway established in 1810 to transport minerals to the River Severn. The Severn and Wye railway eventually extended to Lydbrook, Cinderford and Coleford.

The station at Lydbrook Junction gave a connection to the Ross and Monmouth railway enabling iron or to be transported to the iron works at Ebbw Vale and Dowlais.

Passenger services started on 23 September 1875 with two trains a day between Lydney and Lydbrook. By 1879 the service had reduced to one train a day. Passenger services north of Lydney Town were discontinued on 6th July 1929. Lower Lydbrook had closed earlier, in 1903.

Services continued south of Lydney Town until the night of 25th October 1960 when two barges collided,  in thick fog, with the bridge over the River Severn. One exploded and the other caught fire causing significant damage to the bridge – it never re-opened.

To find out more about this disaster click here.

The Prairie Tank locomotive used for our journey was built in 1928 at the Great Western works in Swindon. No. 5541 was withdrawn from service with British Railways in 1962 and sent to be scrapped. The Dean Forest Line rescued the locomotive and it was back in steam in 1975.

You can get more information about the Dean Forest Railway here.

Full size copies of the photographs are available from Flickr, Facebook and some through Instagram.

Click on a thumbnail to open the gallery.

You can also listen to the podcast using iTunes (Apple Podcasts), Spotify or Stitcher.

The theme music Steam Railway is used under licence from AKM Music and the incidental music, Chill Electronic-Sunrise Expedition, is used with permission of Joseph McDade who both created and performed the music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio 2018


The Grand Prix de Farnham – October 2018

The Grand Prix de Farnham took place in October 2018 to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Mike Hawthorn  winning the Formula 1 World Championship.

On 19 October 1958 the Moroccan Grand Prix was held on a circuit near Casablanca. This was the only time that Morocco has hosted a world championship Grand Prix.

Mike Hawthorn driving a Ferrari was in pole position but the race was won by Stirling Moss driving a Vanwall with Mike Hawthorn in second place. Mike’s second place secured him the world championship by one point making him the first British Formula One champion ever.

Having become Formula One world champion the Farnham Flyer, as he was known, retired from motor racing.

John Michael Hawthorn had come a long way since his birth on 10 April 1929 in Mexborough in what was then the West Riding of Yorkshire.

At the age of two his parents had moved to open the Tourist Trophy garage in Farnham, the town where Mike remained for the rest of his life.

The people of Farnham celebrated with cars from Mike Hawthorn’s era driving through the centre of town on a wet Sunday afternoon.

The event was organised by the Friends of Mike Hawthorn and the website for the event is at Mike Hawthorn GP de Farnham where you’ll find lots of information about the day.

The organisers would like to thank the the owners and drivers of the 86 cars that took part, the Jaguar Enthusiasts Club, the Jaguar Drivers Club, the Hedgehogs and the Hants and Berks Motor Club for providing marshalls. Thanks also go to the Unity Support Riders for their help and to Zara and the team at Farnham Maltings.

Full size copies of the photographs are available from Flickr, Facebook and some through Instagram.

Click on a thumbnail to open the gallery.

The music Fast Lanes is used under licence from AKM Music.

© The MrT Podcast Studio 2018


The Grand Prix de Farnham

Come back here during the afternoon of Friday 19th October (or later) to listen to the podcast on last Sunday’s event held in Farnham.

Celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Mike Hawthorn becoming Formula 1 World Champion.

Listen to the sounds of the many wonderful cars that braved the weather to entertain the crowd.

© The MrT Podcast Studio 2018