Programme of Meetings

Members are requested to inform the contact for the visits, of their
intention to attend at LEAST SEVEN DAYS beforehand.
Events may be cancelled or changed at short notice
Please supply  contact details so that you may be updated 

Forthcoming SIAS Members Events
compiled by Malcolm Dawes

Winter events at West Blatchington Windmill, Hove  BN3 7LF

Non-members welcome £1.00


Saturday 17th February, 2pm
Martin Snow and his famous Film Nite (matinee)
Back by popular demand. Martin Snow will be showing an informative and entertaining series of film clips from many obscure sources.
All material not shown to us before on too many subjects to mention here.

Saturday 16th March, 2pm
A history of the Southern Region Diesel-Electric Multiple
Units - their introduction, use in service and preservation.
Presentation by Jim Gibbons a member of the voluntary group who are renovating the units.

The line between Tunbridge Wells and St. Leonards was constructed during one of the ‘Railway Manias’ in the mid-19th Century. The newly constructed tunnels were in danger of collapsing due to insufficient courses of lining brickwork. The issuewas resolved by providing the additional required brick courses inside the existing structures resulting in a reduced clearance and trains having to be of lesser width than the rest of the then system.

The 1955 ‘Modernisation Plan’ sought to eliminate steam traction from the UK’s railway system by electrification, and where not justified, by dieselisation. The then Southern Region opted for a Diesel-Electric multiple unit option for the route and introduced them in 1957. The trains soldiered on until the line was electrified and re-signalled in 1987 when the lines through the restricted tunnels were singled permitting standard width vehicles to be used.

The Hastings Diesels Group was formed in 1986 aimed at preserving one or more of the unique vehicles. It is now Hastings Diesels Ltd. and owns 16 vehicles including 5 motor coaches of which 9 are currently operational.

Jim Gibbons was for 32 years in British Railways operations management ultimately becoming Network South East’s Professional Head of Operations.
He is currently an independent consultant working across the railway industry and is the voluntary operations consultant for Hastings Diesels.

When visits can be organised details will be posted on this website and forwarded to members on our e-mailing list


Please see the Mills Newsletter for details of Mills Group activities

Selected Meetings of Other Groups

Please Always Check details and that event is going ahead Before Traveling  
In case of bad weather, travel, sickness or other problems.

Other Activities
Amberley Industrial Museum
have a full program of events during the season 
(March to October and Christmas Santa Weekends)

Weald and Downland Open Air Museum
Also run a range of courses

These meetings are covered fully in the newsletter and other publications of the society, their appearance here is intended purely as a guide.
Please make your own checks before traveling.

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Last modified: February 05, 2024