The Branch Line Society


2017 AGM - Ciné Film Presentation
Saturday 18th November 2017

Report by Chris Totty and Paul Stewart

Following our 2016 East Kent AGM where Ian Mortimer presented some of his photographs, our member Chris Totty was, shall we say, 'persuaded' to present some of his 8mm ciné colour films at this year's meeting. Having, perhaps surprisingly, managed to find someone in Jersey to transfer the films to DVD (apparently just in time as the emulsion was degrading and soon the films would have been lost) Kev Adlam kindly downloaded these on to his laptop and arrangements were made with the AGM venue hotel for a projector and screen to be made available.


Chris travelled extensively in the late 1960s and early 1970s until his emigration to Jersey in Aug 1973. He was only meant to be going for 12 months but he is still there 44 years later, it must be something in the water! Although not shown in strict chronological order, 54 members were treated to films of: • Northern Ireland Railways in 1970. • IOM Railways in 1968 - every line except the Foxdale branch was operational for the last time. UK preserved and private lines included early film of: • The Keighley & Worth Valley. • Severn Valley. • Quainton Road on opening day. • Longmoor Military Railway. • Dinting (these last two did not survive). • Romney Hythe & Dymchurch and • Long Sutton on the M&GN, a day expedition to rescue some signal posts for the fledgling North Norfolk Railway.

A good quality buffet and natter was enjoyed during the break. Moving on to British Rail, Chris told us, accompanied by the film of the trip, of how his Great Scottish Bash of 1970 came about; the challenge being on a Scottish Rover to cover all passenger track in Scotland in a week. Just the 6½ miles Georgemas Jn to Thurso branch was not covered due to the late running of the West Coast Postal and so they missed the bus connection from Thurso to Wick. BR steam followed, on the Southern leading up to last day in July 1967 with the Channel Islands Boat Train and the LMR leading up to the 15 Guinea Special on 11 August 1968. Our FS had parental duties to perform so had to leave for home and needed to take his PC with him! This left much film not seen so Chris was invited to return to complete the show at the 2018 AGM. We look forward to it!

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