Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

05 September 2022



Contributions to the Notice Board are welcome, although they may not always be used, due to time constraints, especially if they don't follow the file name convention given on the  Contributions Page.

Forthcoming events

Charter trains, and meetings, may be subject to cancellation or postponement. See our Calendar Page for Club and Society details.

September 2022

Friday 9 September  Pathfinder Tours Cambrian Coast Express.  Oxford - Pwllheli

24 September  Trailffest Half Marathon : An Event Train will be provided by the Ffestiniog Railway to take the competitors from the event centre at Porthmadog to the start of the race in Tanygrisiau, the cost of which is included in the entry fee.

24-25 September  Bala Model Railway Show (organised by the Bala Lake Railway).
Venue: Ysgol Godre'r Berwyn, Ffrydan Rd, Bala. Open 10.00 – 16.00 both days.  At least twenty layouts will be on display in a range of standard and narrow gauges. There will also be at least nine trade stands. A vintage bus will be running between the show venue and the Bala Lake Railway.

October 2022

Friday 7 October
Clwyd Railway Circle: Fond Memories.  A look back over 70 years of Railway interest by Larry Davies

7-9 October: Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways: Vintage weekend.

8-9 October
Llangollen Railway  DMU railcar weekend

November 2022

Friday 4 November Clwyd Railway Circle: A trip by Norwegian Railways to Hell (and back). Geoff Morris

Saturday 5 November
Llangollen Railway Ride the Rocket Firework Train

December 2022

Friday 2 December Clwyd Railway Circle: Members Selections & Christmas Celebrations Members are invited to give a 15-minute presentation of their choice (Any format). Contact David Jones 01244 537440 to book a slot.

(see  our Calendar page for meeting venues)

North Wales Coast Railway website created and compiled by Charlie Hulme

A rare visitor: 37 901 Mirrlees Pioneer passes Beeches Farm on 1 September. The working was by Rail Operations Group who lease the loco from Europhoenix; could it be route leaning for delivery of the ex-Great Central coaches for the Cardiff - South Wales service? See the 25 June 2020 issue for a short history of this loco and its 37/9 brothers. Picture by Bob Greenhalgh.

Rather overwhelmed this week:  I'll save some items for next time, but I can't guarantee to use every image in the current 'bonanza'. - Charlie

Passenger locos in action

67 012 in Chiltern livery brings 1V96 the loco-hauled Holyhead to Cardiff Central past Beeches Farm, 30 August (Stephen Dennett ).

67 015 calls at Flint station with 1V96 loco-hauled Holyhead to Cardiff Central. 2 September (Stephen Dennett).

Flask visitor

68 016 Fearless leading 68 002 Intrepid through Rhosneigr with one flask wagon on 1 September. They formed 6K41 Valley Nuclear Electric to Crewe Coal Sidings (Gary Thomas).

Passing Flint (Stephen Dennett). These trains run infrequently for staff to retain the path and the routine. Wylfa power station has been close down for some time now, but trains may be needed when dismantling begins.

Mirrlees Pioneer

37 901 Mirrlees Pioneer passes light engine through Beeches Farm with OB23 Holyhead to Crewe South Yard. Taken at Beeches Farm on 2 September  (Stephen Dennett).

Resting at Llandudno Junction, 2 September (Garry Stroud).

Continuing to Holyhead, passing Conwy station (Gary Thomas).

This loco has had a varied career: it spent some time in preservation after being withdrawn by EWS in 1998.   Garry Stroud photographed it at Carrog station as a visiting loco for the Llangollen Railway diesel day on 7 October 2007.

Resting between duties (Garry Stroud). The livery is 'railfreight grey' - before the scheme was modified to have a red band along the bottom of the body.

37 901 at  Godfrey Rd sidings at Newport, 24 February 1987 (Garry Stroud). Iy had previously been 37 150 before fitting with a Mirrlees MB275T engine to test its suitability for railway use, perhaps in a new class of locos to replaced the 37s. There's a tale of its chequered career on Adrian Nicholls' Flickr site.

The Cheshireman - pictures by Roland High

6233 Duchess of Sutherland arriving in Chester ...

... from Norwich via Crewe on the 'Cheshireman excursion', 3 September.

Not only the Red Arrows can get a bird strike.

Pen Stone

66 769 League Managers Association with special livery featuring Prostate Cancer UK passes Llandulas early on 2 September with empties from Hunslet to Penmaemawr.

The train returned loaded as 6F22 Penmaenmawr Quarry to Tuebrook Sidings loaded aggregate seen passing Llandudno Junction on 2 September (Garry Stroud).

 The same train passing Flint (Stephen Dennett).

On the slate

66 777 Annette  worked the 4Z58 02:45 Wellingborough yard to Llandudno Junction  slate waste service on 2 September, seen above on arrival (Greg Mape)

The train  arrived with 18 wagons, 4 short from previous runs and having split the wagons in Llandudno Jcn yard in two sets of nine, Above, 66 777 departs the compound at Llandudno Junction  with the first load of nine full wagons ...

 ... before returning with the remaining  empties (Garry Stroud).

Annette passes the foot crossing west of Flint with 6Z59 Llandudno Junction to Wellingborough. Taken at Flint on 2 September (Stephen Dennett). The 'Z' headcodes tell us that these trains are yet to have a regular path.

The train, still with 66 777 (slightly cleaned up), returned for more on 5 September (Gary Thomas).

Margam Coils

66 709 Sorrento works the empty Margam coils on 1 September through Rhosymedre between Ruabon and Chirk on the 'North and West' line (Martin Evans).

Llangollen diesel weekend - report by Ken Robinson

I went  to the first day of The Llangollen Railway's 'Diesel Weekend' on Saturday. The weather wasn't too good but it was great to see all the diesels out, including 08 195, working a driver-for-a-fiver experience at Llangollen - much hard work had gone into organizing the event. Here are four photos out of many I took that day:

Class 47 1566 departing Llangollen with the first train of the day, the 10:30 to Carrog. The stock comprised of Mk1 carriages.

31 271, with the 'suburbans' and the GWR Observation Saloon just out of view at the back, gets ready to depart Llangollen with the 11:08 to Carrog.

3. An interesting working was the class 26, 5310, with a fully loaded ballast train and a brake van at each end. A passenger carrying vehicle was also in the consist, where passengers could travel, at no extra cost, on a 'first come, first served' basis. The ensemble is seen after arrival at Carrog, with the 11:50 from Llangollen, on which I had travelled.

The train is seen again, nearing Glyndyfrdwy, this time on the 14:10 from Llangollen.

Report from the North York Moors - by Kevin Melia

Following a handful of quite decent days out at the North Yorkshire Moors
, here are pictures of both 47 077 (also known as former Cross Country  Celebrity 47 840 North Star (with its electric heating isolated currently) plus the former "Daisy" the DMU 101 685 - both old regulars in North Wales, the North West and beyond.

It's worth noting that for most of the summer the line between Pickering and Grosmont, plus the extension onto the Network Rail through to Whitby has been  predominantly awash with diesel power in lieu of the normal 75% or so peak time steam service. With their own diesel locomotives in short supply (just the  somewhat worn out looking and sounding 37 264) three have been hired in over this  season.

There's the 47 from the West Somerset (for a couple of years  reportedly), 37 403 from the SRPS diesel group at the Bo’ness and Kinneil railway and 31 128 from Nemisis at Burton (the latter 2 locomotives are cleared for use
to Whitby).

The 37s and 31 are intensively used, and although the 47 was in regular use for  about three weeks it now only comes out more sparingly and will often be only be  used "as required" and swapped to be left spare with the use of a repaired DMU on internal steam services reducing traction requirements. It's like a daily  diesel gala with frequent loco swaps at Grosmont and the need to take the late  notice daily rosters with a pinch of salt. Despite its issues recently the line is still worth a visit for the hill climbs and scenery alone.

The railway has  certainly suffered financially from various events, as with all heritage railways in recent years, and the loss of steam most of the summer has potentially wiped out its usually very healthy loadings on many trains. Sources  suggest by early September steam is to be phased back in prior to the bumper 4 day steam gala at the end of September.

From Dave Sallery's archive

31  119 at Mold Junction after depositing wagons of used ballast for tipping, 15 April 1991.

47 145 on Frodsham viaduct hauling a diverted West Coast service, 26 August 1989.  Some years later the loco was smartened up and given the name "Myrddin Emrys".  Built as D1738 it was cut up in Stockton in August 2009.

31 159 passes the long demolished Sandycroft box with a short engineers train, 21 February 1992

47 479 arrives at Llandudno Junction past the freight terminal -  Today's slate waste loading terminal. 13 August 1984 .

Looking back:  Diesels  2007  part 1 - by David Pool

“Thunderbird” 57 311 Parker is hauling Pendolino 390 050 past Abergele and Pensarn box on 21 March 2007, with the 0900 Euston to Holyhead.    This locomotive was originally D 1611, then 47 023, 47 662 and finally 47 817 before it was modified to a Class 57/3.

In 1994 47 817 was in InterCity livery, being used for cross country trains.  On 14 August it was on the 10:25 Derby to York, and was photographed at Templeborough, near Rotherham.  The M1 on Tinsley viaduct is in the distance. This line is now used by the Sheffield Tram Trains, but since 1994 the area has undergone massive changes, with overhead electrification and the growth of trees making photography here almost impossible. 

Two green Class 47s were rostered for the North Wales leg of the Carlisle to Holyhead excursion run by Compass Trains on 24 March 2007.  From Crewe the train was hauled by D 1916 and D 1748 Great Western, photographed on the return journey at Bagillt. 

The leading locomotive had been built as D 1916, then renumbered 47 240, 47 657 and finally 47 812, before regaining its original number and colour as a “celebrity”.  When it was 47 812 in InterCity livery it was also used on cross country trains, and was working the 1544 Plymouth to Derby on 11 August 1993, being photographed at Narroways Junction in Bristol.  The line to Severn Beach is visible on the right.

D 1748 had been renumbered 47 155, 47 760 and 47 815, and in 2000 was in First Great Western green livery.  At that time it carried the name Abertawe Landore – the Welsh name for Swansea and the English name for the Glandwr locomotive depot!  It was photographed at Dawlish Warren on 23 September 2000 with a Motorail service, the 0933 Paddington to Penzance.  Note the two Motorail NVA vans. Today in 2022 47 815 is now carrying its Great Western name. in the maroon livery of West Coast Railways, together with 47 812. 

The Chirk logs were sometimes hauled by “Thunderbirds” in 2007.  On 26 March 2007 the 6Z59 1329 Carlisle to Chirk was seen at Helsby with 57 306 Jeff Tracy.

The history of 57 306 before it became a 57/3 is not unlike that of the other “Thunderbirds”, in that it started as D 1919, then became 47 242, 47 659 and finally 47 814.   On 27 October 1994 it was in InterCity livery as 47 814, working the 11:44 Plymouth to Lime Street.  It was photographed at Cam and Dursley station, which had been opened in May 1994, a short distance from the site of Coaley Junction station, which had closed in 1965.  This was on a line operated by the London Midland Region up to 1958, then becoming part of the Western Region.

Coaley Junction was the start of the branch to Dursley, which closed in 1962.   When I first visited Coaley Junction in 1958, the branch train was being worked by an elderly ex Midland Railway 0-6-0T 58165.  By 1959 the GWR locomotives had taken over, and on 2 September 1960 the 4.40pm Coaley Junction to Dursley was a single coach and a van, hauled by one of the short-lived Hawksworth panniers, 1630

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