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David Shepherd celebrates 40 years of steam at Cranmore

David Shepherd at the East Somerset Railway

David Shepherd at the East Somerset Railway

It is 40 years ago since renowned wildlife artist and steam locomotive owner, David Shepherd, reopened a section of a quiet Somerset branchline and started the vibrant heritage railway that exists at Cranmore today.

David, along with some of the railway’s very first volunteers came back to the East Somerset Railway on Saturday 26th July to celebrate this milestone in the railway’s history.

David has recently released a new book, ‘An Artist Among the Ashes 1966-68’ containing many of his photographs which he took to help him add authentic touches to his paintings. These have now become a fascinating record of the everyday sights and colours of steam before it finally disappeared from Britain’s national railway network.

In recent years, David has focussed his efforts on helping to save the world’s fast disappearing wildlife. As he says, “You can always build another steam engine, but once the last tiger has gone, it’s gone for ever!”

Many people who have visited the East Somerset Railway, especially in its early years, will have fond memories of meeting the charismatic artist  and hearing his captivating stories.

Steam services are running four days a week throughout the Summer at Cranmore. For more information, log on to the ESR’s website www.east or call 01749 880417. The East Somerset Railway is at Cranmore, three miles east of Shepton Mallet on the A361.