2019

Summing up our participation in Here I live, here I change programme

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On 19th November 2018 the Foundation of Santander Bank Polska anounced the results of the grant competition Here I live, here I change and supported us with a grant of 5000 PLN for the project Volunteers helping in renovation of the historic Engine Shed in Skierniewice. First activities of this project started in spring 2019 when the weather conditions become more favourable. The activities could be divided into two groups – the upkeep of the Shed’s surroundings and securing the facilities against vandalism.

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Most of the clean-up jobs was completed during the Volunteers Camps taking place over the summer vacations. The clean-up required removing the residue left after the roof repairs inside the roundhouse in the vicinity of stands № 13 to № 15. Volunteers also continued the clean-up of the cola storage started last year.

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Every second weekend we worked on extending the fence dividing the tracks of line leading to Łowicz from the tacks of the Shed. Thanks to the project we managed to build a section of 40 meters of the most vulnerable area close to the turntable. As a result the area is secured against unauthorized access, and prevents both intruders and the visitors of the Shed from crossing the busy station tracks, also it improved the access to the broad-gauge engine class Ty23-273 standing on display in this area.

We would like to express our gratitude to the Foundation of Santander Bank Polska for supporting our activities.

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Rolling stock repairs

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Throughout 2019 along the major building projects in the shed we continued two significant repair of the rolling stock. The first one was regarding the flat car from 1912. Originally the car was build by Ringhofferove zavody in Prague as an open car for Košice – Bohumín Railway. Over the years the car was re-purposed several times and significantly altered in its construction. Fro some time we planned to bring the car back to the running condition. The first stage of repair planned for 2019 required sand-blasting and painting with anti-corrosive paint. Next was a thorough inspection of the running parts and small repairs of the chassis. The undercarriage has been painted in the final coat of black paint. Last stage was the preparation of the planks to cover the floor of the car and its sides. The works will be continued in spring.

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Another vehicle undergoing repairs is shunting diesel engine class Ls60-143. It is one of the few shunting engines in our collection in a running condition. Despite this fact the external state of the paint job was rapidly deteriorating due to the neglect by previous owner. After partial disassembly of the engine cowl and securing all of the moving parts, the whole bodywork was sandblasted, painted with anti-corrosive primer and covered with the first layer of the target livery. The next stage planned for spring 2020 will be final painting and the necessary repair to the undercarriage.

Next year we also plan to resume the reconstruction of the beer refrigerator car.


Lectures in club KEN54

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Many years ago, our association was engaged in organizing the lectures regarding the history of railways in the Warsaw’s Museum of Technology. We hope to get back to this tradition thanks to the club KEN54 from Ursynów, famous of its railway fan-friendly atmosphere. On the occasion of the Railwaymen Day, our colleague dr Ariel Ciechański prepared two separate lectures. The first one was more related to the history and the latter to the current practices of taking care of railway heritage.

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The first lecture took place on 19th November at 7PM. Ariel presented the results of transporting beer by rail and the history of special cars used for this purpose. The lecture How beer travelled by rail was very popular not only among the railway enthusiasts. During the lecture, participants could learn why transporting beer by rail was more profitable, what logistical challenges had to be faced, what type of cars had to be used for this purpose and what developments were required. The author underlined the importance of political influence on the way the beer was distributed. Most of the examples were based on the neighbouring Czechia, where rail transport of beer was the most common.

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26th November was the date of the second lecture. This time it was Authenticity versus Modernity in Railway Museums – potential future of railway museum in Warsaw. During the lecture, Ariel presented different approaches to the presentation of railway exhibits. He started with the conventional static outdoor exhibitions on example of the museum in Sybin, Romania, Bulgarian Museum of Transport in Russe and Museum Of Railway Technology at the Main Station in Riga. Another examples were engine sheds adapted for museum like Lužné u Rakovníka in Czechia or Strasshof in Austria. The opposite side of the approach are modern buildings prepared specifically for the purpose of the museum like newly build roundhouse of Lokpark in Ampflwang or modern edifice of museum in Brussels. Last was the example of a perfect compromise between different approaches on the example of Museum of Russian Railways in Sankt Petersburg. A separate topic was devoted to specialistic museums dealing with a very narrow domains eg. railway traffic control on the example of Muzejní expozice sdělovací a zabezpečovací techniky. The lecture was finalized with a heated discussion on what path should the Warsaw’s museum follow.

On behalf of club KEN54 we would like to thank all participants of both events. We would also like to thank Jonasz Przybyszewski (Wolne Tory Photo) for allowing us to use his photos from the events.


Last track works this year

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Still in November we managed to complete the last track works. The scope of this year’s repair was replacement of ties under track № 14 and № 15 in front of the roundhouse. We already reported the progress of works on track № 14. Since then we finished the fastening and ballasting of both tracks. Next thanks to a selfless help of the FAC Rail all tracks leading to the roundhouse repaired for the last two years were properly tamped and regulated. The last activity was to move the concrete crossing blocks back on their place.

We would would like to express our gratitude to FAC Rail. We are happy that another company from Skierniewice representing the railway maintenance branch is supporting us. We would also like to thank the City of Skierniewice for the financial support of the track works in the amount of 16 800 PLN.

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Celebrations of 25th November

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The definite end to the tourist season in the shed coincides with the Railwaymen Day. This year during the short Open Day on 23rd November, the Shed was visited by 101 guests. The facility was open for an independent sightseeing, yet there was still a possibility to participate in a guided tour of our collection of rolling stock. The next opportunity to visit us will be in 2020, the year of the 175th anniversary of opening of  the Warsaw-Vienna Railway, when trains reached Skierniewice for the first time. You can already check our schedule in the updated events calendar.

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The day is close to the 25th November, the date celebrating the work of railwaymen, but also other people related to railways, including the volunteers taking care of the railway heritage. On this occasion we are always visited by the pupils and teachers from the Elementary School № 4 who took the opportunity to wish us all the best and recite the ‘Locomotive’ by Julian Tuwim. The school was established thanks to the initiative of the workers of Warsaw-Vienna Railway, so we are glad that it remembers of its history.

We also remember of the religious aspects of the 25th November celebrations. The church of St. Jacob the Apostle in Skierniewice was always the heart of the religious life of the railwaymen from this town. Therefore each year we take part in the mass for the railwaymen, members and volunteers of PARE which takes place on Sundey closest to 25th November.

This year the mass took place on 24th November. Representatives of PARE dressed in historic uniforms took part in the mass bearing the original banner founded by the WVR workesrs in 1907.

 


Traffic control joins the nations

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During the visit of three of PARE members in Czechia, we took the opportunity to visit our colleagues from Chornický železniční klub. We followed their activities since learning that similarly to our association they maintain a large collection of railway signalling and traffic control devices. We were especially impressed by their large scale actions of saving a whole signal box equipment. We were eager to met them closer and the opportunity arose on 2nd November.

We met in one of their storages and temporary exhibitions in Skalice nad Svitavou. It would be a shame to visit empty-handed so we prepared a small present. We donated to Marek Řihy parts for the lever frame – route lock levers with associated small parts. The ChŽK has in its collection a lever frame of German type Einheit (Standard) which is quite common in Poland but quite rare in Czechia. Our present will allow to replace the missing parts in this exhibit. Even in its current state, we were impressed by the state of the frame and the quality of the renovation. We hope that this short visit will be a beginning of a longer and fruitful cooperation.

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November holidays

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The collection for the renovation of the historic graves at the Old Powązki Cemetery has a 45-year old tradition. For 10 years now PARE is also taking part in this event. Representatives of the association can be find in the vicinity of the grave of Stanisław Wysocki (1805-1868), the designer and main engineer of the Warsaw-Vienna Railway and can be easily recognized by their historical uniforms. This year’s collection ended with a record-breaking amount of 280 000 PLN to which our colleagues (Maria Balicka, Judyta Kurowska-Ciechańska, Paweł Mierosławski, Marek Moczulski, Andrzej Paszke, Wiesław Sitkiewicz) contributed with the amount of 7503 PLN.

During the All Souls Day, together with the PKP Group’s Foundation we organized a walk along the graves of the famous railwaymen. The walk was guided by Marek Moczulski and Maria Balicka. As this year was established as the year of Stanisław Moniuszko, we also took the opportunity to pay our respects by the grave of the composer and his family.

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Support us with FaniMani

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Owning an engine shed is a big responsibility and a major financial challenge. This is why we are in a constant search for new means of financing of repairs of the buildings and renovations of the exhibits documenting the 175 years-old heritage of railways in Poland.

Therefore, we decided to have a go on a new solution suggested to us by our friends from another railway association and prepared by the FaniMani foundation. Thanks to the cooperation with 1072 online shops including giants like Booking.com, Pyszne.pl and Allegro.pl you can support us during your everyday shopping. All you need to do is go to the website

https://fanimani.pl/psmk/

and select a shop. A part of the price of the bought goods will go to us without any additional costs from your side!

Thank you for your support.

 


Skylight repairs completed

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On 29th October an inspection of the skylight repairs above stands 4, 5 and 6 was conducted by the representatives of Voivodeship Conservationist. The repairs were completed by the company ‘Marbudex’ at the total cost of 129 000 PLN and were financed from the following sources:

  • Ministry of Culture and National Heritage (60 000 PLN),
  • Marshal’s Office of Łódź Voivodeship (45 000 PLN),
  • own assets of PARE (1%) and crowd-funding (24 000 PLN).
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The scope of the repairs was expanded thanks to the donation of construction glass by the Skierniewice branch of company Piklington. The additional cost of installation was covered form the 1% of income tax.

 

We are still before the next building activity which is the first stage of renovations of the old water tower. It is still possible to support us via the crowd-funding website:

https://zrzutka.pl/7ek6z5

or with a direct transfer to our bank account:

52 1240 6218 1111 0000 4617 3535

After 3rd November we plan to present the initial report from the crowd-funding and start sending the souvenirs to our supporters.

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Invitation to the October Photo Day

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For the last time this year we would like to invite the enthusiast of photography to our Shed. The shed will be open to all those who would like to immortalize the shed in photography without the crowds of tourists in the background are welcome on Saturday, 19th October from 12PM to 3PM.

The registration of participants starts before the event at the entrance to the Engine Shed. Free admission.