Beer festival cash to revive engine
A beer festival will raise money for the restoration of a steam engine used at the former Somerdale chocolate factory in Keynsham.
Bath Ales has produced a limited edition Somerdale Steamer bottled ale to raise money for the project and it will be on sale during Novemberfest at Avon Valley Railway's headquarters in Bitton.
The Real Ale Festival takes place on Friday and Saturday with more than 20 real ales and local ciders available over four sessions.
The Somerdale Engine was taken to Bitton after AVR volunteer Eric Miles tracked it down to an Anderson air raid shelter in an Essex garden.
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The engine had been used for shunting at the factory but was replaced by a diesel locomotive 50 years ago.
Railway development manager David Cole said: "The locomotive needs a lot of restoration and will cost overall tens of thousands of pounds.
"The next job is to take the boiler off and send it away for refurbishment. We have stripped the engine down and had the asbestos removed professionally.
"The Somerdale Engine is part of our local heritage and it is important that is restored to its former glory."
Also raising funds for the restoration project will be the sale of a 300-page book on Somerdale by Mr Miles.
Tickets for the festival range from £3 to £5 depending on the session attending.
Visit www.avonvalley railway.org or call 0117 932 5538.