Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

17 July 2017

Contributions and comments are encouraged: see the Contributions Page

Forthcoming events

[Details of events during the summer of 2017 are welcome for this space]

July 2017

22-23 July Llangollen Railway 1960s weekend

22-24 July Penrhyn Quarry Railway Celebration of five years of running  Cancelled.

Sunday 23 July Steam on the Coast Railway Touring Company North Wales Coast Express Liverpool - Holyhead

Tuesday 25 July Steam on the Coast Railway Touring Company The Welsh Mountaineer
Preston - Blaenau Ffestiniog

August 2017

25-28 August Bala Lake Railway Steam Gala

September 2017

Friday 1 September Clwyd Railway Circle Dave Walters 'Railway Memories' The first half of the programme will feature images from John Dickinson, sadly no longer with us taken from 1970’s to 1989 in North Wales and other areas. The second half features images from Pat Webb taken from 1949/50 to the 80’s and 90’s mostly in black and white.

1-3 September Welshpool and Llanfair Railway Gala Weekend

15-17 September Welsh Highland Railway Super Power Weekend

16-17 September Penrhyn Quarry Railway Special event

Saturday 23 September Welshpool and Llanfair Railway Diesel day

23-24 September Llangollen Railway Diesel Weekend

October 2017

Friday 6 October Clwyd Railway Circle Les Nixon '55 Years of Railway Photography - Part 3' A selection of railway pictures which include genuine BR steam, a wide variety of mainly older modern traction along with industrials, some preservation and brief visits, worldwide, to nearly 20 countries.

6-8 October Ffestiniog Railway Victorian Weekend

13-15 October Llangollen Railway Autumn Steam Gala

November 2017

Friday 3 November Clwyd Railway Circle 'Snowdon Mountain Railway' A presentation given by Mike Robertshaw Msc IEng MIED, Senior Engineering Manager of the railway.

Saturday 18 November Steam on the Coast Steam Dreams Cathedrals Express London Euston - Llandudno for the Christmas Market.  46233 Duchess of Sutherland: Crewe  - Llandudno and return

December 2017

Friday 1 December  Clwyd Railway Circle 'Members Night & Christmas Celebrations' Members are invited  to give a 15 minute presentation of their choice (any format). FREE tea/coffee & festive treats during the interval. Contact David Jones 01244 537440 to book a slot.

January 2018

Friday 5 January  Clwyd Railway Circle Mike Blackburn 'The Welsh Highland Railway (NWNGR)' A history of the North Wales narrow gauge and Croesor Tramway and the linking to form the Welsh Highland Railway, restoration and building of the new.

February 2018

Friday 2 February Clwyd Railway Circle John Sloane 'From Vulcan Foundry to the Khyber' British built steam at work in Pakistan, It includes pictures taken on the spectacular line up the Khyber Pass to the Afghan border.

March 2018

Friday 2 March Clwyd Railway Circle Annual General Meeting followed by “Film Shows - Railways Past and Present”.

April 2018

Friday 6 April Clwyd Railway Circle John Cashen 'North West & North Wales Reminiscences In The 1960s' The presentation will cover from Liverpool to Liverpool within an area bounded by Southport, Burscough, Standish, Warrington, Crewe, Whitchurch, Chester, Holyhead, Barmouth, Aberystwyth, Shrewsbury, Wrexham, the Wirral, Chester, Northwich and Speke

The Retro Railtours 'Welsh Dragon 2' ran from Huddersfield to Cardiff and Swansea via the Marches line on 15 July, hauled by two Direct Rail Services (DRS) Class locomotives 37 602 and 37 606. The charter was photographed by Robert Meredith on a wet morning passing the foot crossing off Queen's Drive, Nantwich heading south; 57 306 Her Majesty's Railway Inspectorate 175 was attached to the rear of the train.

Penrhyn Quarry Railway Closes

We are sorry to hear that the Penrhyn Quarry Railway heritage operation at Felin Fawr near Bethesda, revived over a short length of the original Penrhyn line in 2012, has been closed down , and the locos and equipment are being moved elsewhere, possibly to other sites including the Welsh Highland Heritage Railway. The gala planned for 22-23 July is cancelled along with all future events.

In a statement to the Daily Post Penrhyn Rail Ltd director Ellis Griffith Morey said: It is true the Penrhyn team are moving from Felin Fawr, the railway is not being evicted. Over the past few weeks it has become clear the railway could not continue at Felin Fawr due to circumstances beyond our control.'

Mr Morey did not elaborate on the reasons but enthusiasts, expressing their disappointments at the news on social media, suggested there had been a number of break-in at the premises which had forced their hand.

An evening outing - with Mark Youdan

I had a wander out on Monday evening, 10 July, as the flasks had run to Valley and the Royal Scotsman was paying its annual visit to North Wales. Firstly I went to Hargrave to get (above) 68 016 Fearless and 68 028 on the returning flasks ...

... then a bimble to Dunham-on-the-Hill for the evening loco-hauled train from Manchester to Llandudno which was 67 022.

Then back to Hargrave for 66 746 and 66 744 Crossrail heading for Gloucester from Bangor. [Is the name Belmond Royal Scotsman painted on the side a loco name or a branding?]

Last shot of the day was 221 107 Sir Martin Frobisher and 221 102 John Cabot on a London Euston to Chester train.

Crewe and Chester, 11 July - with Martin Evans

67 020 stabled in Platform 8 at Crewe, 13:545, 11 July.

13:45, and Class 40 D345 waiting to return to Castleton from Crewe after returning 47 712 and 47 192 to the Heritage Centre from Bury(East Lancs Rly)

DRS locos 37 059, 57 308 and 57 306 waiting the road at Chester with a Gresty Bridge - Gresty Bridge working. The departure was delayed by flooding at Christleton

57 308, now carrying the name Jamie Ferguson, in memoriam to a recently-deceased DRS staff member.

DRS are holding their Charity Open Day at their Carlisle depot on Saturday 22 July.

Cambrian Rumours

Recently, we have been hearing that Arriva crews and others have been spreading the word that there is going to be a two-year complete closure of Barmouth Bridge.

However, conversations with insiders at Network Rail suggest that there is no such plan. What is definitely happening is that work on the River Artro timber bridge at Pensarn between 27 October and 6 November will require bus replacement north of Barmouth, and during both weekends in this period the block will be extended for work on the longitudinal timber work of Barmouth Viaduct.

It is true that there is further maintenance work planned on the viaduct (if funds are allocated) in the next five-year 'control period' from 2019 to 2024, including grit-blasting and painting of the metal spans, but we are assured that there will be no 'huge blockades.'

Loco-hauled assortment

Gobowen station on 14 July. Colas 67 027 on the rear of Network Rail track recording train 1Q55 Tyseley - Derby RTC, with 67 023 leading, await the road to Wrexham, where the train was to reverse and head back towards Shrewsbury ...

... and John Mathers captured it again passing southbound at Vauxhall foot crossing near Ruabon, with 67 023 now on the rear.

Freightliner have taken over (how long for we are not sure) the Margam - Dee Marsh steel trains, starting with the 6M30 Margam - Dee Marsh on 16 July,  pictured by John Mathers passing Yew Tree Farm foot crossing between Penyffordd and Hope with 66 517 in charge.

68 016 Fearless  (a song by Taylor Swift, apparently) and 68 027 with the 6K41 Valley to Crewe flasks on 17 July  (Rowan Crawshaw)

Greg Mape's picture from 12 July shows a Liverpool - Drax biomass train at Brooks Drive on the Baguley - Timperley border, hauled by GBRf 66 711 Sence. The loco appears to be in a matching livery to the wagons, but this is a coincidence: the loco colours are those of Aggregate Industries, and the river Sence flows near their Bardon Hill stone quarry.

Class 86 50+ years on - by Phil Clarke

As I stepped off the train at Hartford on 15 July, I saw preserved class 86 electric loco, 86 259 Les Ross (above) approaching with the regular 'Cumbrian Mountain Express' excursion which it will have taken over from a steam loco for the run back to London; I just managed to get my camera out in time.

The class 86s are over 50 years old now, but a few are still in use on the West Coast Main Line nearly every day. On 12 July 86 639 and an unidentified 86 head the Crewe Basford Hall to Coatbridge intermodal through Acton Bridge.

All the stations visits North Wales

Readers may have heard of the 'All the Stations' project in which Geoff Marshall and Vicki Pipe are spending the summer visiting every station on the National Rail network and making mini documentary videos. Thir edited adventure in North Wales is now available on YouTube and worth a watch in our opinion, as is the whole series.

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