Maid Marian Locomotive Fund Progress Reports.

Progress Report February 2018


There are still a few 2018 calendars left for sale; these have been reduced from their original price of £7.50 including P & P to £5.00, so take the opportunity to buy yourself one for the pictorial content, even if you may have a 2018 calendar from another railway organisation. We are also investigating the possibility of purchasing new Christmas cards to supplement the existing sales stock; watch this space for further details.

Other postal sales items include:

All quoted prices include post and packaging; the name plates and works plates are both brass castings and are relatively expensive to post, so they are £15 cheaper to buy from the stall. Please make your cheque payable to the Maid Marian Locomotive Fund and send it to the Honorary Secretary at 139, Stoops Lane, DONCASTER, South Yorkshire, DN4 7RG.


There are a number of events this year during which the Fund is hoping to provide a sales stall; this is your opportunity for seeing what is available for sale and for meeting with other subscribers, as well as seeing Maid Marian with her cab back on again.

Bala Model Railway Exhibition (26 - 28 May inclusive)

The emphasis this year will be on narrow gauge exhibits, so it is hoped that there will be an increased interest in our sales items. As in previous years there will be the Bala Festival of Transport at the field next to Llanuwchllyn Station with an intensive timetable involving all the steam locos on the line. We are seeking help from subscribers to man the stall from 10.00 am to 5 pm on Saturday and Sunday, and 10.00 to 3.30 pm on Monday. There will be plenty of opportunities to look around the exhibition as well as visiting the Festival of Transport.

BLR Steam Gala (16 - 18 June inclusive)

This as been brought forward from the end of August with the theme around the Penrhyn Quarry. There will be visiting locos and an intensive timetable; the Fund hopes to provide a stall on the platform for the 3 days. Subscribers will be welcome to help to man the stall and take part in the Gala activities between stall duties.

Ffestiniog Railway Hunslet Gala (22 - 25 June inclusive)

Maid Marian, along with most of the other Bala Lake Railway locos, will be visiting this Gala event at the expense of the host railway. This has the attraction of seeing Maid Marian on a different railway, as well as being beside the sea, so this should be an event worth attending. The Fund is hoping to provide a sales stall, though details of this are not yet finalised. Once again we may be looking for support with the stall, though it will not necessarily involve staying for the full 4 days. At the same weekend one of the Ffestiniog locos will be visiting Llanuwchllyn so there will be different photo opportunities available there.

BLR Mini Steam Gala (25 - 27 August inclusive)

This will be an in-house event using all the Railway's locos, where the Fund will be providing a stall for the 3 days.

MMLF AGM (15 September)

The AGM will be held at the usual venue at 2.00 pm and subscribers will be able to visit the stall and drive Maid Marian on the loop line in the station, as on previous years. If there is sufficient support the stall may be extended to the following day. Take the opportunity of meeting other subscribers and to ride behind Maid Marian, as well as helping to add to the Fund's account.

All offers of help with manning any of the stalls, for one day or more, should be made to the Honorary Secretary by email at , by telephone at 01302 539897 or by post to 139 Stoops Lane, DONCASTER DN4 7RG. The stalls provide the Fund with vital opportunities to raise money still needed to repay the loans originally made in 2006 to purchase the new boiler for the loco and for any other expenses that might be involved in the longer-term maintenance of the loco. Whilst the Fund has an operating agreement with the Railway which covers normal operational expenses, this does not include special items such as the new tank which will be ready for this 2018 season.


As reported in earlier Progress Reports, the Fund's DVD has been extremely successful since it was launched in May 2017 at the 50th anniversary of the handover of the loco to the Fund. It has sold well and has also been bought by other railway organisations, with profits going towards repayment of the loans for the boiler. We are now considering producing a second DVD, this time using materials that have not been included on the first one, particularly those relating to her post-Quarry operational life.

Have you any footage of Maid Marian since the Quarry days (still photographs, video or film)? As a reminder, the loco has previously been at the Bressingham Steam Museum (1968 - 1971 and more recently for a weekend in May 2017) and the Llanberis Lake Railway (1971 - 1975). Since early 1975 the loco has been based at Llanuwchllyn and has had many modifications since her arrival there. For example she arrived with a full cab but ran with her original chimney from the Quarry days; this was replaced with one that was longer and matched the cab in height. The cab itself was subsequently given brass spectacle plates. On another occasion she ran in Penrhyn livery for a couple of years and in early days on the line she hauled the original style of coaches; all these changes have added to the variety of images that could be included in the second DVD.

Any material from the LLR days would be particularly appreciated as the loco rarely made an appearance on the line. At the other end of the time line, the recent Santa's train (December 2017) provided a unique opportunity to video and photograph Maid Marian in the snow (apart from a couple of views of the loco in the snow at Hafod Owen Pit in 1966, the Fund has no images of the loco in snowy conditions). If you have any materials that might be of interest please contact Roger Hine ( or by telephone at 01341 250071) as he will be collating the materials for the new DVD. Roger had co- ordinated the production of the current DVD to its high standard and will be organising the production of the new one. All materials included in the new DVD will be acknowledged in the credits.


Maid Marian has now completed her year as a loco with a side cab, in as near to the condition as when she was running in the Dinorwic Quarry / Chwarel Dinorwig; she has steamed well and has not caused any concerns during the 2017 operating season. Her last appearance was in February 2018 prior to undergoing the winter overhaul. As noted in a previous Progress Report, her water tank will be replaced as it was beginning to leak. The full cab will be restored as the half cab was fitted for the 2017 season only, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the handover of the loco to the Fund. The back plate was in two sections and was beginning to corrode so a new one comprising a single piece has been ordered and will be fitted. The injectors will be replaced and chopper couplings will be provided as these are to be changed on all the locos in the fleet. Once the cab and tank have been replaced and lined out, Maid Marian will take her place as the other cabbed loco on the line (Holy War was the only loco with a full cab for the 2017 season). Although there was a lot of favourable comment about Maid Marian's appearance with the half cab, it was necessary to return her to a full-cabbed loco so that Holy War could have some attention during the 2018 season. Rob Houghton, the Chief Mechanical Engineer, will be overseeing the overhaul; as he is a Committee Member he is well-placed to ensure that the work carried out will be to the highest standard!


As noted in the previous Progress Report our current Chairman, Ray Brooks, has indicated that he will not be standing again for the post. Ray has been the Chairman since the 1991 AGM and has been a subscriber since the earliest days of the Fund. Anyone wishing to learn more about the role of the Chairman should contact the Honorary Secretary for further information.

Hugh Jones Honorary Secretary 27.02.18

Progress Report November 2017

Christmas shopping list:

I would like to draw your attention to the Fund’s Christmas shopping list; please buy some of these items for yourself or for someone you know would like a souvenir connected with Maid Marian. It is with this kind of support that the Management Committee can continue with its task of ensuring that the Maid remains in good working order.