© Geoff’s Rail Diaries 2011 Shackerstone is the headquarters terminus of the "Battlefield Line" which runs via Market Bosworth to Shenton, close by Bosworth Field. I'd visited Shackerstone once or twice in the early days, before anything was running, but never travelled on the line. We actually paid a visit four years ago, intending to travel. But services on that day were in the hands of a scruffy ex-main line (and still in its recent main line livery) class 31 diesel. So instead, we paid a visit to John Jacques's excellent and amazing little museum in the station buildings - well worth an hour or so of anyone's time. On this occasion I took the precaution of phoning first... Services were in the capable hands of "Sir Gomer", Peckett 0-6-0ST 1859 of 1932. Sir Gomer worked for the NCB in South Wales - a resident of Mountain Ash, though I never managed to see him there. We joined the 1.20pm service for the pleasant run to Shenton. Trains are currently passing straight through Market Bosworth's fine station. I'm not sure why, although it looks like the signal box has had some attention from the local vandals. A line like this is ideal for these ex- industrial locos. It's not really long enough for a run at reasonable speed (25mph...) behind a main line locomotive, but fine for a slowly chugging industrial. Apart, that is, from the rather insistent fore-and-aft motion of the train - I think Sir G's valves could do with some adjustment. Come to think of it, the exhaust was somewhat "one - TWO - three - four"... We detrained at Shenton to watch the loco run round its train, before the return run to Shackerstone, revisiting the many rabbit holes and badger setts evident along the lineside. The weather had been kind to us so far; however a sharp shower at Shackerstone send us scuttling to the station shop. It cleared for the departure of the 2.40 train - and then it was time for our departure too. An enjoyable little outing, in the company of a fine locomotive. Link: Battlefield Line website Coaling at Shackerstone Decoupling at Shenton A good fire in the box Running round at Shenton How many railwaymen does it take...? Sir Gomer and Shackerstone box Peckett posing Time for a drink A smoky start at Shackerstone Steam in the fields - a last look at the line Other things - 03 170 and 33 053 47 640 at Shackerstone John Jacques and his museum