Sunday 8 May 2022

Sunday Variety

Puzzle Picture 1

Sadly, for the enjoyment of collectors, the L N E R Dynamometer Car did not last long enough to be repainted in BR maroon. So it is part of the craze for creating OO models of stuff that never existed - of which more tomorrow. At least the manufacturers admit its falsehood.
The LMS railway had its own dynamometer car, delivered to BR after nationalisation. It was maroon and is still extant. After a massive refurb/rebuild ...
... it is now restored to its former maroon glory!
But is is very different from the L N E R one.
The model will cost you £140! In case you wondered, it is "just" an unpowered coach - but with astounding interior and external detail.
A dynamometer car used the top technology of the day to monitor and record train performance. It was all mechanical - in the case of the L N E R vehicle with an extra wheel (painted white) to drive some of the gubbins.

Puzzle Picture 2
Snailbeach District Railways was a British narrow gauge railway in Shropshire. It was built to carry lead ore from mines in the Stiperstones area to Pontesbury where the ore was transshipped to the Great Western Railway's Minsterley branch line. 
Coal from the Pontesford coal mines travelled in the opposite direction. The line ended at Snailbeach, the location of Shropshire's largest and richest lead mine.

Lets be geographical!
There is Snailbeach bottom left
 with Pontesbury above on the A488 from Shrewsbury. The photo below illustrates the often unusual working methods!
The line of undergrowth on a modern Streetview view marks the location of the long-gone overbridge above.
And here is the location on an old map.
At the southern end of the line, there is a substantial village called Snailbeach ...
... and the lead mine, served by the railway ...
... is open on selected days. There are remnants of this narrow gauge line here and there - well worth looking for as part of a railway "detective" activity.
The above was the end of the line!

Minsterley Motors 552 service ...
... offers a number of journeys to Snailbeach and on to Stiperstones ...
... Monday Saturday (with no Sunday buses) should you wish to explore the former line.

fbb had never heard of Snailbeach or its railway, but it has come into prominence as Peco are now manufacturing a model of their distinctive little wagons ...
... to OO scale but running on 9mm (N gauge) track.

A village was built for workers at the local lead mine - Snailbeach Mine, which reputedly dates back to Roman times. Snailbeach Mine was the biggest lead mine in Shropshire and it is reputed to have yielded the greatest volume of lead per acre of any mine in Europe. Although the miners mainly extracted lead ore (galena) from the mine, smaller quantities of Barytes, Calcite, Fluorspar, Silver and Zinc were also obtained. Underground mining ceased in Snailbeach in 1955.

There is no beach!

But you would guess there were plenty of snails?

Talking of Contravision!
This bus has been cleverly painted (if you don't mind obscured windows!) to advertise Copenhagen Zoo. The clever roofline artwork could easily convince you that a huge snake was crushing your bus!

This may not be the most comfortable advertising scheme for those suffering from ophidophobia (look it up!) but there is also a metro train treated with a similar coach-constrictor artwork.
And ferocious animals are ready to tear your flesh to shreds even after you are brave enough to actually board the train!

Brand Awareness
The prestigious Scottish Citylink service 900 between Glasgow and Edinburgh runs every 15 minutes, 7 days a week.
It even runs hourly all night.
The brand is strong with distinctive high-spec three axle luxury coaches.
You can't miss 'em!

Well you might miss 'em if you are unfortunate enough to get a Stagecoach vehicle like this.
Brand awareness? What brand awareness?

Don't Use Your Phones ...
Don't consume beefburgers, drinks or ice cream - but saurkraut sandwiches are, presumably, fine. But, above all, don't disturb other passengers by using your phone!

Here's the password for our wifi!

More bits and pieces tomorrow.

 Next Variety blog : Monday 9th May 

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