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Report - Salisbury Plain Training Area, Wiltshire - December 2014 - PART 2

Discussion in 'Military Sites' started by Bertie Bollockbrains, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. Bertie Bollockbrains

    Bertie Bollockbrains 28DL Regular User
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    Before visiting Salisbury Plain, you need to be familiar with all local bylaws and regulations.

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    Got all that? Understood? Good let’s carry on


    Not sure why there’s a train graveyard on Salisbury Plain and unable to determine any meaningful history. Almost certainly an artificial created training environment. But what I do know is that over a million men trained on Salisbury Plain during World War 1. The need to transport large numbers of men to the coast for disembarkation to the battlegrounds meant that a military railway was built from Amesbury station to Larkhill and other camps on Salisbury Plain. Known as the Larkhill Military Light Railway (LMLR), it was wound down in stages during the 1920s until final closure in 1928. A water tower for the military railway can still be seen at Druid’s Lodge on the A360 road south from Stonehenge to Salisbury. The building next to the water tower is allegedly an old engine shed. From experience I know that the tower is doable for climbing but stealth is needed as it’s in someone’s garden. This is all irrelevant anyways as the train graveyard I’m reporting on is in a completely different part of the Plain.

    The first batch of soldiers to be trained on the plain during WW1 was the Canadian Expeditionary Force. A big event just after their arrival was that the entire division was inspected by the King on Nov 4th 1914. This picture gives us a sense of the scale of 30000 men.

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    How times have changed. This is the A303 at Stonehenge which is now a perpetual traffic jam and those men are probably marching faster than the speed I drive past Stonehenge. Be assured that Stonehenge is no longer held up with planks of wood.

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    Anyways, the photos:

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    The Westland Lynx is a British multi-purpose military helicopter designed and built by Westland Helicopters at its factory in Yeovil. Originally intended as a utility craft for both civil and naval usage, military interest led to the development of both battlefield and naval variants. The Lynx went into operational usage in 1977 and was later adopted by the armed forces of over a dozen nations.

    The Lynx has the distinction of being the world's first fully aerobatic helicopter, capable of performing loops and rolls, and of attaining high speeds. In 1986, a specially modified Lynx set the current Fédération Aéronautique Internationale's official airspeed record for helicopters at 249 mph. As of 2014, this record remains unbroken.


    In service date: 1978
    Maximum all up mass: 4875kg (Mk 7), 5330 kg (Mk 9A)
    Engines: 2 x Rolls Royce GEM (Mk 7), 2 x T800 (Mk 9A)
    Crew: 2 (3 with Crewman) + 6 troops
    Length: 50ft 1inch
    Main rotor diameter: 42ft
    Height: 12ft 5inches
    Maximum speed: 160knots
    Range: 280NM
    Armament: 7.62mm general purpose machine gun or M3M 12.7mm machine gun

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    Funny face at the back... or is it only me that sees it
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    Security were excessively rough with us and really there was no need for them to deploy these against us.

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    Thanks for looking.
     

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  2. WildBoyz

    WildBoyz Is this the future?
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    Sorry mate, I couldn't quite read the bottom of that sign there, did it touch the floor? :eek: :laugh

    Looks interesting, I bet it was good venturing around all that gear!
     
  3. Ordnance

    Ordnance Moderator
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    Loco is Ruston Hornsby 0-6-0DH - 466621 - Ex MOD Coplow Down


    Airframe is that of Lynx AH7 XZ203 - The Lynx AH.7 could also be outfitted for the anti-armour role, with the attachment of 2 pylons, each carrying four, BGM-71 TOW, anti-tank guided missiles. Now replaced in front line service by the Apache AH1 armed with a 30mm Chain Gun & Hellfire Missles (AH = Attack Helicopter)
     
  4. Lavino

    Lavino 28ÐŁ ƦEGUŁλƦ U$EƦ
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    Good stuff Bertie nice pics..
     
  5. Oxygen Thief

    Oxygen Thief Admin
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    It's not, that's the water tower for RFC Airfield Lake Down.
     
  6. brewski

    brewski 28DL Full Member
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    nice work, i need to get onto some military stuff next
     
  7. Bertie Bollockbrains

    Bertie Bollockbrains 28DL Regular User
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    "Loco is Ruston Hornsby 0-6-0DH - 466621 - Ex MOD Coplow Down"

    Thanks Ordnance for identifying the loco for me and I have given you a thumbs up as I genuinely wanted that info, but the Coplow Down is confusing me as I can't find any reference anywhere (online or in books) that such a place exists. I think I have found online your source for identifying the loco and I see there that it says Coplow Down. I suspect it's a mistake and meant to have said Copehill Down which is where these photos were taken.

    As for the water tower, I have references saying that the Larkhill Miltary Railway had a terminus at Druid's Lodge and I also have references saying that the water tower is for RFC Lake Down and that the railway never got to here. So now I'm confused but there's slightly more evidence saying its not part of the railway. It's amazing how little info there is out there regarding this railway. Think I need to get out on the ground and have a look around.
     
  8. Ordnance

    Ordnance Moderator
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    You are right Bertie, as this loco has 'Royal Corps of Transport' Badge and 'working no' 430 it would have worked at an Army Depot and not an ROF, but so far unable to find any history.
     
  9. TallRich

    TallRich 28DL Regular User
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    I'm not sure if it will help in the search for the history of this loco, but i managed to snap this picture, that it looks like you may have missed!

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    Hope it helps!

    TallRich
     
  10. Bertie Bollockbrains

    Bertie Bollockbrains 28DL Regular User
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    Well that muddles the waters.. as Rushton had it's factory in Lincoln and that clearly says Darlington. Google search Ruston Hornsby 0-6-0DH and the returned images definitely look like the one on Copehill Down. Was this pic from the loco or one of the carriages? Is this plate actually an ID plate for an locomotive engine or just one of the parts.

    It's really the World War One era Larkhill Miltary Railway that I can't get any info for. It seems to have completely disappeared off the face of the Earth, and there's conflicting info out there from various sources as to where the tracks ran to never alone the finer details. As I said, a look on the ground is needed, and I'm close enough to do that one day.
     
  11. caiman

    caiman 28DL Full Member
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    The location is definitely Copehill Down; indeed it says so on one of the pics. The Darlington plate is presumably on one of the wagons.
     
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