Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

11 May 2020


Forthcoming events

(see also our Calendar page for venues)

Note:  we have removed all entries up to the end of May as the events are cancelled.

June 2020

Saturday 27 June Steam at Chester The Cheshireman (Railway Touring Company).    60163 London Euston - Chester and return.

July 2020

Sunday 19 July Steam on the Coast North Wales Coast Express (Railway Touring Company)  Liverpool - Manchester - Holyhead (15:05 - 17:40).

Tuesday 21 July Steam on the Coast The Welsh Mountaineer (Railway Touring Company) Preston - Blaenau Ffestiniog and return

August 2020

September 2020

Saturday 5 September Steam at Chester 'The Cheshireman' (Railway Touring Company). Norwich to Chester. Loco 6233 for part of the journey.


On 11 May 2002,  47 635 passes Gwrych Castle with train 1A63, 13:35 Holyhead to London Euston. Picture by Tim Rogers.

Thanks for all the contributions; we'll need an extra issue on Friday morning yet again! - Charlie

May 2009 - pictures by Tim Rogers

A portrait of Penyfford signalbox, 6 May 2009.  This is a post-nationalisation London Midland Region 'Type 15' box; it was built in 1972, reportedly using parts from a redundant similar box elsewhere, and has 25 levers.   The colour scheme appears to be based on thst used by the former LMS railway.

Still in use today and controlling the nearby cement sidings, it is one of a declining number of this type, although the large version at Llandudno Junction, the last one to be built, appears to have a long future ahead of it.

On the same day, 67 029 Royal Diamond approaches Penyffordd  with 5X68 08:06 Warrington Arpley to Birkenhead working: barrier coach ADB975978, Merseyside EMU Class 507, 507 020 returning from overhaul, barrier coach ADB975974.

150 253 calls with 2F70 11:32 Wrexham Central to Bidston.

The footbridge on the approach to Shotton Low Level is under repair on 6 May 2009 as  66 418 and  66 429 pass Shotton Level with two flask wagons for Crewe: 550042
and 550028. Today, 66 418 works for Freightliner and is that company's 'Remembrance' loco, named Patriot - In Memory of Fallen Railway Employees.

From Dave Sallery's archive

37 515 on the acetic acid tanks from Mostyn to Hull Saltend, 25 April 1996.

37 605 and 37 609 on the Three Peaks Challenge, 15 June 2017.

Newly-rebuilt 37 698 on test, with a 33 as 'insurance',  12 February 1986.

47 007 on ballast from Penmaenmawr,  20 March 1990., formed of a mixture of 'catfish' and 'dogfish' wagons in the coding system used by the engineers. On the skyline, Connah's Quay power station, built in 1953-57, closed in 1984 and demolished in 1992, and replaced by the present gas-fired station.  Coal supplies came by train by a short trip from the nearby Point of Ayr colliery.

The Storm of 1990 - by Peter Hanahoe

This is a very wet Mostyn taken just after the storm and flood that hit North Wales on the morning of 26 February 1990.  Towyn and Kinmel Bay were particularly badly hit and were a disaster area.  Other places were affected and as you can see here, most of the sea wall was taken out between here and Point of Ayr.  It would seem that "Catfish", "Dogfish" and a "Shark" were well suited to this stretch of line on this day.  It wasn't moving when I took this but there is someone waving from the 'Shark brake van trying to get the driver's attention.  I am fairly certain that at this time there was a 2-car DMU shuttle working between Chester and Rhyl.  I would love to know if anyone can confirm that.

Class 31s galore part 1 - Pictures by Ken Robinson

Two Class 31 double-headers from the period when bogie ballast hoppers rather than the old four-wheeled ones were taking over the Penmaenmawr quarry trains.  Taken on a very warm 2 August 1995, 31 200 (in the livery intended for locos in nuclear flask traffic) and 31 328 get going from Penmaenmawr past Dwygyfylchi with a ballast working.

31 307 and 31 327 enter the yard at Llandudno Junction with a well-loaded ballast working from Penmaenmawr on 2 September 1994.

The Manchester Navigator

Something out of the ordinary. Elaine Ashdown has sent us these images taken by her lare father Roy Ashdown who travelled on the Manchester Navigator railtour which took place on 22nd June 1974, organised by the Manchester University Transport Society.  They started and ended at Trafford Wharf and covered a fair amount of the ship canal railway's network on both sides of the canal and as far west as Partington.

The information sheet states that the Manchester Ship Canal had 24 engines of various types at this time, but at least three of them lived at Ellesmere Port. The ones shown above are at 'Mode Wheel Shops' where there was a visit and lunch break.

Passengers were carried standing in open wagons hauled by loco D.11.

The swing bridge over the canal, which as part of the Salford Quays re-development was removed to form a foot crossing across the former No.9 dock.

Class 31s galore, pt. 2 - by Trefor Thompson

31 432 on an Up passenger, August 1993.

31 270 (another 'flask' loco) brings at train of long-welded rail  through Chester, September 1993.

A Class 31/4 (which?) in Regional Railways livery on an Up passenger, formed mostly on ex-Network South East coaches, running into Prestatyn station, September 1993.

'No-heat' 31 142 in engineers' livery on a Bangor to Crewe service passes Holywell Junction, 4 July 1995.

31 159 and 31 235 head ballast empties at Holywell Junction, 4 July 1995.

Some more steam specials - by David Pool

My previous Steam Specials images referred to 35028 Clan Line sharing Railtour duties with 6000 King George V on 26 April 1975.  The Northbound Merchant Navy Locomotive Preservation Society’s train is about to leave Ruabon after a photo stop.

Not in North Wales, but at least this is on the main line from North Wales to Manchester.  There can never have been a train quite like this at Eccles.  On 14 September 1980 the Liverpool and Manchester Railway’s Lion was permitted to work between Eccles and Manchester Liverpool Road, with three contemporary coaches for invited guests, in conjunction with the BR Anniversary Special on the same date.

It was always difficult to get a photo at Saltney Junction, since the sun would be in the wrong place or everything was in shadow.  On 2 July 1989 34027 Taw Valley was working the returning North Wales Coast Express, and the evening sun gives just enough light on the train.

60532 Blue Peter was not often seen in the North West.  On 29 March 1997 it was substituting for 70000 Britannia on 'The Overlander' Railtour from Cleethorpes to Chester, with a Centenary Special headboard, and having no difficulty with the gradient at Hargrave.

The Mighty Mogul LMS 2968 is storming through Abergele and Pensarn with the Ynys Mon Express from Euston to Holyhead on19 October 1997, having come on at Crewe.  The spectators on the platform are suitably impressed.


I remember seeing some locomotives in BR blue in the 1950s, but never a Merchant Navy, so the repainted 35005 Canadian Pacific had to be photographed.  I doubt it was ever in blue in BR days, and certainly not after it was rebuilt. 35005 is getting away from Holyhead on 20 June 1999 with the Ynys Mon Express.

The footbridge beyond Rhyl station is a brilliant vantage point, although it tends to bounce if overweight pedestrians are using it.  Jubilee 5690 Leander in maroon is acceptable for the Irish Mail headboard, if not authentic, on 3 September 2005, but the chocolate and cream Mk1 coaches from Tyseley are a little out of place in LMS territory.

 When I photographed 44871 on the '15 Guinea Special'  at Ribblehead in 1968, I could not have imagined that I would see it again on the Briwet Bridge forty-two years later! 44871 is on 1J77, the 10:05 from Machynlleth to Pwllheli, on 28 July 2010, being overtaken by the cars on the bridge.

The view from Station Cottage (part 1) - by Graham Breakwell

Some photos from my days when I lived at Station Cottage, alongside the level crossing at Baschurch. Above, 31 289 and  12 coaches form a Liverpool to Poole train on 5 May 1988 during diversions for engineering work at Crewe.

20 224 and another on  Tunnel Cement wagons for Penyffordd on 15 July 1988.

20s on the Tunnel Cement, 31 187 and  37 430 Cwmbran (we think) on engineers trains in the loop, March 1988.

Sunshine on the Cambrian Coast - pictures by Ben Bucki

Ben writes: 'I was having a look back through some old photographs, and came across some folders of Cambrian Coast shots. I know the coast line hasn't changed much in the last decade beyond the colours of the endless procession of 158's, but at least the sky is blue and the sun was out ...  a nice reminder of happier times.  Above, 158 841 departs from Barmouth ...

... and heads through the sand towards Barmouth bridge.  1 June 2016.

Class 158 and Criccieth castle.  28 July 2015. [Yes, we know these are' post-2010' but we like them.]

158 818 near the site of Black Rock Halt between Porthmadog and Criccieth. 28 July 2015.

97 303 pauses at Porthmadog, 19 August 2014.  Is the painting of Forth William still there?

7 August 2007: 76079 crosses the Glaslyn bridge near Porthmadog.

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