The wait was over. On 17 and 18 September we were finally able to celebrate the popular steam locomotive festival again. The weather forecast kept us on tenterhooks beforehand – continuous rain over the weekend. Fortunately, the forecast improved and we actually received our visitors in mostly dry and partly even sunny weather.
To the delight of all guests and staff, we were able to show two steam locomotives in operation again for a long time. The project team responsible for the overhaul pulled out all the stops to complete the work by the time of the event. After our ELNA had made its first rounds, the locomotive shed doors finally opened at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday and 23 042 was able to present itself to the public in its new splendour. Those who wanted to had the opportunity to take a closer look at the “new” old driver’s cab during a ride. This was very well received.
On Saturday afternoon, we welcomed two guests of honour on the occasion of the official rollout.
In his speech from the driver’s cab of the 23, Jochen Partsch, Lord Mayor of Darmstadt, emphasised the importance of the railway for the change in transport. He also thanked our association for its voluntary work in making the history of the railway “tangible” and praised our youth work. He also had some great news with him. Funding of €100,000 has been approved for the construction of the new locomotive shed. This brings us a big step closer to our goal of rebuilding the first three stands of the demolished locomotive shed section. Many thanks for this. It shows great appreciation for our work, also that Mr Partsch paid a visit to the Railway Museum for the third time in three years, following the laying of the foundation stone for the engine shed and the opening of the uniform exhibition.
We also had the pleasure of welcoming Mr Hörster from the “Route of Industrial Culture”. In his speech, he emphasised our contribution to the preservation of historical industrial monuments. We have been participating in the regular “Days of Industrial Culture” for several years now. This year, at the beginning of September, we had the opportunity to get impressions from the driver’s cabs of different vehicles and to learn how the work as a locomotive driver has changed. Be curious to see what we will be putting on next year and find out about what the Frankfurt Rhine Main Cultural Region has to offer.
Another special event was the cooperation with the Day of the Rail 2022. As you could already see from some press releases, Deutsche Bahn is planning to revive the site of the former marshalling yard in Kranichstein. An ICE treatment and storage facility is to be built, which on the one hand will be a great change for the museum, but on the other hand also offers many opportunities. Interested visitors were able to find out more about the plans and take a ride on the rail bus to get a first-hand impression. More information on the planned DB construction measures is available at https://www.boxenstopp-darmstadt.de/.
There was a lot going on at many other stations and exhibitions such as the shuttle trains or the Culemeyer demonstration. As always, the museum courtyard belonged to the children, who had a great time, especially in the bouncy castle. All in all, we were very pleased with the great response. We would like to thank all our guests for their visit and hope to see you again at future events!