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A Record Breaking Winter Track Bash!

A Record Breaking Winter Track Bash!

Published: 4th March 2015

B&WR winter work programme breaks records:-

510 concrete sleepers installed.

150 timber sleepers installed.

100 tonnes ballast removed and re-placed with 100 tonnes of new granite ballast.

50 tonnes of existing ballast removed and returned.

13 miles of lineside vegetation cut back and machine flailed.

One masonry underline bridge repaired and smoke hoods replaced.

One steel overline bridge painted.


No Road/Rail machines (other than the Flying Flail) were used in undertaking any of this work, and approximately 75% of the total work was undertaken by volunteers - an impressive statistic for a line with some substantial railway infrastructure. Much of the manual work methods would be recognised by the Victorian navvies who originally built the line. The B&WR's famous Track Bash weekends (four in all) achieved much of the work, but were supplemented by midweek working parties. Consumption during the weekend events to fuel the inner man and maintain the production rate included:-

480 mugs of tea.

120 pasties.

120 bacon butties.

10 home baked cakes.


Chief Civil Engineer, Tony Phillips, has confirmed that this is the most intensive winter work programme ever carried out on the B&WR. It has been achieved by the sheer hard graft of a small and dedicated volunteer group working alongside some of the Railway's full time staff. 17 x 60' rails await replacement on the Fowey viaduct at Bodmin Parkway.

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