Poppy Line and Sheringham: D800E and 28mm/50mm F1.8

The North Norfolk Railway which is also known as the “Poppy Line” – is a heritage (tourist) steam railway in Norfolk, England, running between Sheringham and Holt. It passes through the countryside to the east of Weybourne with views of its windmill. Each time we’ve been to Norfolk we’ve taken a ride on it.

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The last time I took my M9 along and took some very memorable shots that ended up on Steve Huff’s website. This time I took my D800E and my 28mm and 50mm F1.8 G lenses.

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It would be wrong not to stop for a second and praise how good these lenses are. The 50mm in particular costs about £150, but is up there with some of the best primes I’ve used. It isn’t a leica or a Zeiss, but it doesn’t half perform on the D800E.

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The 28mm is a little more expensive, but it is a cracker. Very sharp, lovely bokeh, very little to dislike in image quality. The 28mm is small and light too. Because of that it finds itself into my bag more often than the Sigma 35mm, which is great but a weighty lens.I also think 28 and 50 are a better combination than 35 and 50.

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This time we had the blessing of much nicer weather, so the landscapes and views were spectacular. We went to Sheringham and had a picnic on the pebbly beach there. At least that was the idea – our son had different ideas…

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Sheringham deserves a mention, it’s a lovely place, what I remember the seaside being like from my childhood (in a good way). It’s a little coastal town that hasn’t forgotten its roots as a fishing station that increased in size and importance with the arrival of the railways.

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Despite a palaver on the way back caused by a lineside fire and thus an unscheduled visit to Weybourne followed by a switch to the guard’s compartment of a diesel back to Holt, we had great fun and I would recommend the trip to anyone who (like me is a big kid) enjoys steam trains…

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