We have a very small secret at the Kent County Show, in fact it is miniature… a small gauge railway that can be found next to the woodland area.
The passenger carrying portable miniature railway, its official title, will be back for the fifth year in a row and has absolutely delighted our visitors in the past. The Claude Jessett Trust, who own the engines, have laid approximately 200m of portable railway track, including point work and curves all built to a gauge of seven and one quarter inches. The motive power is in the form of “JAMES” an 040 tender engine built to the Romulus design of Roger Marsh. The engine was built as a batch of six locos in 1976 by TMA Engineering of Birmingham. ‘James’ went from new to a large private estate railway where he saw regular use and proved a reliable locomotive. ‘James’ was then returned to TMA in 1988 for a thorough mechanical overhaul including the fitment of a new steel boiler. The engine saw light use until 2004 when the owner passed away. ‘James’ changed hands several times seeing little if any use until the Trust acquired it in the spring of 2014.
‘James’ will be delighted to welcome visitors both big and small for a short but exciting trip on his track. This activity is an absolute must for anyone coming to the Show this year.