© Geoff’s Rail Diaries 2011 Last time I visited Amerton, the line was incomplete - an out-and-back arrangement to a loop away out in the fields. Work was progressing to complete the circle - it was finally commissioned in late 2001. The new arrangement - a sort-of L-shaped circle, with two passing loops, makes gala events potentially interesting - as proved to be the case on this occasion. The Amerton Railway is operated by the Staffordshire Narrow Gauge Railway Society. Its two resident operational steam locos are Isabel, built by Bagnalls in 1897 (no. 1491), and Pearl 2, built 100 years later by Allen Civil, an unusual inverted saddle tank design which was used by Bagnalls before they reverted to the more conventional design. This weekend, there would be three visiting locomotives - all built to the same design by the other well-known Staffordshire industrial locomotive builders, Kerr Stuart of Stoke-on-Trent. The visitors were no. 3114 of 1918 - this is the grey loco, restored to 1918 condition by Allen Civil. Peter Pan is no. 4256 of 1922 - the dark green loco in the photographs. Lastly, Pixie, 4260 of 1922, is the light green locomotive. 3114 would be returning to its base at the Vale of Rheidol Railway after the gala, Peter Pan to Leighton Buzzard, and Pixie to Maldegem in Belgium. The line through the fields is mostly unfenced, providing photographers with an excellent opportunity for some half- decent snaps (provided they could keep each other out of the pictures!). The "Souvenir Guide" rather quaintly requested visitors to "refrain from walking on the main line".... With three train sets in operation - one passenger and two freight - there seemed to be little trains bustling about everywhere. The passenger train ran clockwise, the other two ran anti-clockwise, using the two loops to pass. From time to time, locomotives were changed over, and a double-header ran later in the afternoon. There was talk of a triple header - but we'd gone by then, as the grass pollen on this warm afternoon was starting to get the better of me. But what a great afternoon it had been - never a dull moment! Put a note in your diary for next year's event, whatever it is! Link: The Amerton Railway Pixie and 3114 on shed Peter Pan Pixie on the passenger train Peter Pan on freight Double-header - 3114 and Peter Pan 3114 on freight 3114 on freight Pearl 2 Pixie out in the sticks Peter pan on freight Isabel on the passenger train Pearl 2 A portrait of Pixie