Sunday, 4 September 2016

Bressingham Steam and Gardens - Part 2 Steam and Museum

We recently visited Bressingham Steam and Gardens just outside of Diss in Norfolk.  The collection of steam engines was started in the early 1960's and has grown over the years.  We arrived just before its opening at 10am and was greeted by 3 coaches also waiting for it to open so we decided to pop into the Garden Centre next door for a coffee to allow the coaches to get booked in.

Once in we took a ride on The Nursery Railway, which is a 2ft narrow gauge railway, first opened in 1968, with a track length of 2.5 miles.  The engine named George Sholto was built in 1909 and originally operated at Penrhyn Quarry in North Wales.

My husband and myself on the train, word of warning it is very noisy and very bumpy as you clatter along the tracks.

Looking along the carriages towards the engine.

The ride takes you on a circular route around the meadows and disused nursery belonging to Bressingham.

We are now in the main part of the museum.  This Steam Roller 'Boxer' is part of the national Dad's Army collection of vintage vehicles housed here, located in the reconstructed High Street of Walmington-On-Sea the home of the Dad's Army brigade.  All of the vehicles were used in the television series.

Here we are looking at the impressive carriage of the L&NRW 9520 Post Office Sorting Van built in Wolverhampton in 1909.  During its working life it operated between Euston and Holyhead until around 1940.

The Traction Engine Bertha another one of the Dad's Army Vehicles.

This steam powered printing press is a Wharfedale Crown Press currently on loan from Cupiss Letterpress.

Frazer Funerals Director, complete with coffin carriage.  We actually came across one of these last year in All Saints Church in Hilgay, Norfolk.

Coffin Hearse in All Saints Church, Hilgay.  There is a sheet of paper inside the hearse which reads "Hilgay Hearse - This was purchased by public subscription to mark Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee in 1897.  Note that it is not horse drawn but pushed by hand.  One of the last men to push it the late Harry Mann was paid 'half a crown' to bring a body from Ten Mile Bank to Hilgay (note a distance of 3.9 miles or 6.2 km).

A Penny Farthing or Ordinary Bicycle, invented in France in 1869.

I think most people remember Corporal Jones's butchers van complete with its set of guns!

An air raid shelter.

Captain Mainwaring and Private Pike's uniforms.

Captain Mainwaring's Staff Car from the episode 'The Captains Car'.

Here from right to left is 'Boxer' built in 1923, the steam roller from Dad's Army, along side, 'Beryl' a Foster traction engine built in 1903 and lastly 'Bertha' a Burrell traction engine built in 1909.

The Leyland Fire Engine from the Dad's Army episode 'Brain versus Brawn' broadcast in 1972.

Corporal Jones's Butchers shop.

The Swallow Bank where Captain Mainwaring was Manager and one of his employees Sergeant Arthur Wilson.

Here we have the 5 ton Garrett Steam Tractor 'Bunty' built in 1924.

The plaque of the Great Eastern Railway Co Standard Gauge Steam Locomotive built in 1894.

The LT&SR 80 'Thundersley' Standard Gauge Steam Locomotive built in 1909.

The Garden Line runs on a 10 1/4 inch line and runs along the perimeter of the gardens.

The lines Locomotive 'Alan Bloom' was designed and built by Bressingham's own engineers.

The garden line has a loop at the garden end but at the station end the engine has to be turned by hand.

It is quite an experience riding on this train as it is much quieter than the last one and you are much lower to the ground.

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