The RPSI has been running monthly meetings in Belfast, during the winter months, almost continually since February 1974.
Guest speakers from all corners of Ireland and beyond have enthralled our audiences with tales of all things railway - broad and narrow gauge - mostly steam, with many pictures from behind the scenes. Hundreds of slide shows and miles of movie film and video have revealed every corner of the island's railway network to consistently large audiences, reputedly the largest in these islands.
Because of the persistent risks in bringing 100 folk of (mostly) mature years together indoors for about 3 hours, our meetings will continue to be online-only for now. Any change will be posted here.
Next Meeting Details
|Date||14th December 2022|
A valid email address will be required to access the meeting. You are advised to register as soon as the meeting link is available. Please allow about 5 minutes to complete this task.
The meetings are open to non-members and admission is free, although donations towards running costs are always gratefully received. Donors giving £5/€6 or more will have their names put into a hat for a ballot. The prize will be up to £20/€22 worth of items from the online shop. The prize winner will be contacted by email.
|12-Oct-2022||Rails Through Pomeroy
Take a trip back to the days when Pomeroy was a busy railway town on the Derry Road with direct links to Belfast and Londonderry and easy access to places like Dublin and Bundoran. In this fully-illustrated talk, with many maps and several 'new' photographs, Charles Friel will recreate the railway line between Donaghmore and Carrickmore with its steep gradients, heavy goods traffic and busy excursion trains, its accidents and other incidents. The talk will include the period after closure on 15th February 1965 when Pomeroy was the scene of one notable derailment before nature quietly reclaimed the line.
John Friel recalls the life and times of Ireland's longest-lived named train with a huge selection of pictures, many of them being shared in public for the first time. Beginning with the earliest non-stop runs between Dublin and Belfast, John will trace how the Enterprise Express came to be launched in August 1947 and then grew from one Belfast-based train to two non-stop trains each way daily before extending its reach all the way to Cork for a while. See how the steam motive power and train compositions varied over time before diesel-worked trains took over - from four-car AEC sets to eight-piece BUTs, from 70 class railcars to NIR GMs and from CIE B121s through ARs and others to today's 201/DeDetreich push-pull operations. PLUS the Society's own Steam Enterprise trains, including our very successful 1987 recreation of the first Compound-hauled Enterprise Express.
Log-on happens from about 7:15pm. All talks start sharp at 7:30pm and are fully illustrated.
Apart from any domestics, each meeting includes a short 'Newsreel'. This gives a bite-sized look at some recent event or intriguing piece of engineering in which the RPSI has been involved. It is the natural appetiser to getting involved yourself and becoming one of the volunteers who do so much behind the scenes. There may also be a brief update on the wider Society from our General Manager and details too of what’s new in our online RPSI Shop. But maybe not always in that order!
After a short interval (for your own comfort and refreshment), we aim to finish around 10:00pm.