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The Industrial Heritage Group

Leader:  Mike Stow - indhist@ashbyu3a.co.uk - phone 01530 469152

The Industrial Heritage Group is for members who have an interest in our industrial heritage of trains, cars, planes, bikes, early manufacturing etc. to visit museums, railways, factories and other places related to our industrial past. We occasionally take a quite broad view of what constitutes "Industrial Heritage" if it is of interest to us!

Travel arrangements vary depending on how far we have to travel, but generally we meet in Ashby to car-share.

Our trips are normally on Wednesdays unless otherwise stated

Future programme

Fri 17th AugTBAGreat Western Railway awaydayColin EllisFriday & Saturday. An overnight trip to visit STEAM - the museum of the GWR at Swindon plus Crofton Pumping Engines, the oldest engines in the world still doing their original job (unfortunately not in steam the day we visit). After a night in Swindon Holiday Inn Express and dinner, hopefully at a decent nearby pub, we shall visit Didcot Railway Centre where the trains will be in steam and carrying passengers up and down the line, followed by a visit to Pendon Model Railway - one of the largest and most beautifully modelled railways in the country.
Total entrance fees approx £27 + £60 per car for fuel and parking + overnight lodging. Hotel rooms £45 inc. buffet breakfast
Wed 26th SepCadbury World and Bourneville villageAvril & Bill WilsonA visit to Bourneville Village and a guided tour around Cadbury World
Wed 17th OctTriumph Motorcycle museum and factory tourRay HarrimanA 90 min guided tour of the state of the art Triumph factory plus a visit to the Triumph Experience - the complete story of all things Triumph. The history, design, manufacturing, racing, record-breaking, the famous riders plus see the most famous Triumphs of the silver screen
Wed 28th NovMuseum of Timekeeping, Upton Hall, Notts Bob BaxendaleA 90 min private guided tour of the museum of the British Horological Institute plus free time to look around afterwards. Explore the history, science, art and craft of timekeeping! The Museum of Timekeeping looks after a fascinating collection of clocks, watches and other timepieces including the first speaking clock, exploring the story of timekeeping past, present and future. £10pp

Wednesday 25th July. Tattershall Castle and RAF Coningsby

A group of 13 travelled to south Lincolnshire for a double treat that combined a medieval castle and RAF heritage. Arriving at Tattershall early there was time for a drink with cake in the nearby Holy Trinity Collegiate Church, complete with bats flying around inside the church, before visiting Tattershall Castle. Built on a palatial scale, this fine example of medieval brickwork dates from the 15th century but looks much more recent. Climbing 149 steps brings you to the battlements, although this 'castle' was really a rich Baron's magnificent country house and had no military purpose. From the battlements, the identification plaques helped to identify Lincoln Cathedral (18 miles) and Boston Stump (11 miles) when not distracted by the WW11 Hurricane and Typhoons taking off from RAF Coningsby. Exploration of the remainder of the castle was limited by the appointment time at the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight but there were excellent information boards in all rooms that conveyed the lifestyle of a wealthy 15 century Baron. After a quick picnic lunch in the sunshine in view of the castle it was a short drive to RAF Coningsby. Our guide at the BBMF described details of the size, performance and history of each aircraft and vividly brought the aircrafts 'alive' with hair-raising tales from their days in action. Most memorable was that of 'Margaret' who was sitting on the tail of a Mk 5 Spitfire as it taxied for take off, normal practice on bumpy grass runways to stop it bouncing up-and over, only to miss her cue to leap off as the plane gathered speed! Clinging to the tail plane, she survived a short flight around the sky above the airstrip . Similar tales illuminated the talks on four other Spitfires, a Dakota, a Hurricane and finally...the star of the Flight, the Avro Lancaster, one of only two air-worthy ones in the World, from the 7400 built. Struggling sometimes to talk above the roar of Typhoons taking off, our guide also showed us the heavyweight bombs only the Lancaster was capable of delivering; the Tallboy and the Grand Slam bombs. Overall, a fascinating insight into the the development of these iconic aircraft and the dangers the crew faced when flying them.

Photos by Mike Stow

Previous trips