FULL STEAM AHEAD ON THE BLUEBELL RAILWAY
with Derek Forss
A quintessentially English summer’s day on Tuesday 4th August saw 30 lucky attendees arriving at Sheffield Park station in East Sussex for an afternoon of photography at one of the country’s premier heritage railways! In the company of photographer and event organiser Derek Forss, Toby Jennings from Steam Railway Magazine and the Olympus team, the attendees were treated to a great day out.
Image credit: Tim Swaysland
After an initial briefing, which provided the welcome opportunity to get hands-on with the latest Olympus gear, the group travelled up the line to Horsted Keynes station. This beautiful location is much featured in period dramas; recently it was transformed into ‘Downton’ station in the popular drama series Downton Abbey. Period signage, advertising, original station fixtures and the suitably attired volunteer station staff all added to the experience.
Image credit: Ian Wright
Aside from using the Olympus cameras, the highlight of the event for steam enthusiasts was undoubtedly the point where two trains departed the station in clouds of atmospheric steam. There then followed an exclusive off-platform tour by Tim Parkin, which took in the railway sidings to enable those in attendance to discover yet more rolling stock, plus decommissioned engines in varying states of repair. This setting again provided some fantastic photographic opportunities.
Image credit: Wendy Ellis
After a return journey back to our Sheffield Park base, enjoying more photography on route, we reconvened for tea and cakes; providing the opportunity for further talk on photography and steam trains. Shots from the day will feature in a special 8-page gallery feature in the forthcoming Steam Railway magazine. And one special shot from the day will not only win an Olympus OM-D camera, but also get featured in the 2017 Steam Railway calendar. So watch this space!