‘Manor’ and ‘8F’ lined up for Great Central winter gala

THE sound of a GWR ‘Manor’ will echo again over the Great Central Railway for the first time in four years when No. 7802 Bradley Manor visits for the January 25-27 Winter Steam Gala.

The Erlestoke Manor Fund 4-6-0 has been confirmed as the star guest at the GCR’s curtain raiser, making the short journey across the Midlands from its Severn Valley Railway home.

No. 7802 Bradley Manor crosses Oldbury Viaduct at the Severn Valley Railway on April 24 last year, having swapped tenders with under-overhaul classmate Erlestoke Manor. The loco will take a starring role at the Great Central Railway’s January 25-27 winter gala. PETER ZABEK

No. 7802 will be the first of its class to visit the line since No. 7820 Dinmore Manor starred at the same event in 2015, and only the third ‘Manor’ to operate on the GCR this century, the other being No. 7821 Ditcheat Manor in 2002/2003.

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The event will see the ‘Manor’ reunited with ‘Modified Hall’ No. 6990 Witherslack Hall, which is expected to have returned from its festive hire spell at the Severn Valley line in time for the three-day gala.

In fact the GCR is hopeful it will be able to turn out up to 10 locomotives in steam, all of which will be drawn from the home fleet with the exception of Bradley Manor.

Read more in the January 2019 issue of The RM – on sale now!

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Sam Hewitt