This weekend is the Apedale Heritage Centre’s Mining Gala – a celebration of all things underground and coal related. Although not underground, “Stanhope” is certainly coal related. As we explained to a number of curious small children, we help the Miners out by burning the coal for them. Otherwise they would have to dig a hole and bury the coal again. Sometimes the power we have over the your and impressionable is frightening. We’ve seen a good number of visitors, and run lots of trains with lots of passengers. Fortunately, the train was augmented up to four coaches, so we just about managed to clear the platform each time. But it was a close run thing at times! The Heritage Centre certainly mounted a good show, including live music and stage acts. I am told the septuagenarian belly dancers were a sight not to be missed, but I missed it. Demonstration freight trains also ran, including over the new trackwork, but unfortunately not all the way to the end. It seems the House of Fun was parked a little too close to the tracks. These trains were used to allow some of our younger members to practise their diesel driving skills. I think you get the idea – the Mining Gala is, without question, one of the most entertaining weekends of the year – and it’s all on Sunday as well. What’s stopping you? Get in touch with us here.