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Magnettes & Steam, 16th April 2022

Considering how long our traditional annual Magnette season-opener has been running, it's surprising we haven't already repeated more of the preserved railway venues. Apparently the Register was last at the Mid-Hants (Watercress) Line in 1999, before I was involved, so a return visit was probably due

 

The railway originally connected existing lines at Alton and Winchester and was famously used to transport watercress grown in the agricultural area around Alresford. The section now open between Alton and Aresford runs through beautiful open country, and we were fortunate to have reserved parking at Ropley station

Glorious sunny weather and temperatures well above the mid-April average almost certainly contributed to an excellent turnout. There were 16 Magnettes in total, together with 3 other MGs - including an excellent MG 1300 brought by Jim and Judy Hills along with their 'barn-find' ex-racing Varitone. Furthest travelled were probably Barrie and Sheila Hope from Lincolnshire, while for some owners living much closer it was their first Register event

Most of us enjoyed a steam train ride to one or both ends of the line where plenty of pubs, cafes and shops are available. The rest of the time was spent as usual in chatting and admiring each others cars and of course the railway engineering on display

Photos by Stephen Tickell and Anthony White

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