North Wales Coast Railway Notice Board 18 September 2023


Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

18 September 2023


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 advice and 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.

October 2023

Friday 6 October  Clwyd Railway Circle A History of The Internal Railway at Shotton Steelworks and its Links with the Main Line. Glyn Jones

11 October   Statesman Rail The Snowdonia Statesman    Stevenage - Nuneaton - Betws-y-coed /Blaenau Ffestiniog       LSL Pullman

November 2023

Friday 3 November Clwyd Railway Circle The Railway in Conway.  Larry Davies

December 2023

Friday 1 December Clwyd Railway Circle Members Night Presentations.  Members are invited to give a 15-minute presentation of their choice.

(see  our Calendar page for meeting venues)

North Wales Coast Railway website created and compiled by Charlie Hulme

230 007 meets 230 009 at Penyffordd, 12 September. Picture by Tim Rogers.

Catching the 805

Avanti’s new units on the Coast Line:  above, on 13 September 805 001, on test to Holyhead from Oxley, passed Llandudno Junction running about 90 minutes early against the Real Time Trains times, running directly behind the Statesman tour.  Picture by Garry Stroud.

Geoff Morris captured  805 001  on its return leg.

Geoff writes: 'On 14 September I went to the nearby Northgate Arena car park for a photo of the 805s, this time 851 001 was paired with 805 003.'

Passing Conwy station on the return run (Geraint Williams).

Passing Rhyl Marine Lake (Garin Jones).

In other news ...

Geoff Morris writes:  A few minutes prior to the appearance of the return 805s at (see above) there was the unusual sight of two trains heading west both formed of class 158s. This was due to late running of 158 823 on  07:30 Holyhead – Birmingham International (which was c.30 minutes late and was  eventually terminated at New St)  that was given precedence over the on-time  08:25 Manchester Airport – Llandudno, worked by 158 830,  which can be seen waiting in the distance to follow the pair of 158s as far as Saltney Junction.

A 'Statesman' excursion, 1Z70 05:45 High Wycombe to Blaenau Ffestiniog with 47 810 (D1924) Crewe Diesel Depot and 47 805 (D1935) Roger Hosking MA arrives at Llandudno Junction ...

... having run round, the pair with D1936 leading heads for the Conwy Valley line, amid some rather untidy ballasting (Garry Stroud).

Another train of EMUs for the scrap man:  37 884 with 508 128 and 508 111 passing through Penyffordd on 11 September. It's reported that 111 will be stored at Crewe south yard, due to lack of room at Sims's sidings in Newport (Bob Greenhalgh).

Crossing the Dee (Tim Rogers).

The Marches line is currently closed between Shrewsbury amd Hereford from 12 to 21 September with buses running between Hereford and Shrewsbury, the main work taking place at Dinmore tunnel, with bus replacements .  Trackwork is also being renewed near the Shrewsbury golf course, just south of Sutton Bridge Junction. Graham Breakwell's picture shows the scene alongside the golf course, with 66 848 ticking over at the Hereford end.  This work also affects the 'Heart of Wales'  line: a bus service is in operation between Shrewsbury and Llanwrtyd.

Real Time Trains shows the Margam-Shotton steel trains being rerouted between Newport and Shrewsbury via Gloucester, the Lickey, Camp Hill, Sutton Park, Walsall and Wolverhampton.

The blockade does not affect the aggregate operation at Coton Hill sidings.  Tuesday 12 September brought 66 775 HMS Argyll  on 4M54 the 11:15 from Purfleet.  After loading the next day with aggregate from the local Haughmond Quarry it departed with 6F05, the 19:59 to Wellingborough (Graham Breakwell).  (The reason for the name can be read here. )

The Aberystwyth - Chirk logs on Saturday 16 September ran Shrewsbury, Crewe, Chester instead of Shrewsbury, Chester reverse. Bob Greenhalgh waiting at Balderton was surprise to find 97 303 and 37 405 in charge instead of the usual 56.

66 745 (Ex-66 406, 66 844) passes Penyffordd on 12 September with
6V75 11:16 Dee Marsh to Margam empty steel carriers (Tim Rogers).

40 012 Aureol in action at the East Lancashire Railway diesel gala, 16 September (Greg Mape).


We described the Network Rail HST-worked train on 7 September as a  'Plain Line Pattern Recognition, train. Andrew Royle, expert on such matters, tells us this is an error:

'To clarify, that was the New Measurement Train that ran along the North Wales Coast on 7 September. If it's a rake of mark 3s, then it's the NMT as a rule.

'The NMT certainly uses Plain Line Pattern Recognition equipment but there are four specific PLPR sets that carry out this kind of monitoring, as well as the NMT. They generally work over the parts of the system not covered by the NMT. Since the regular NMT power cars have been put aside for testing the GSMR system for communication between driver and signaller (43013/14/62), the NMT has been powered by the multicoloured class 43s from Colas; which also see use on the PLPR sets, just to make it confusing. '

A Dull Sunday at Holyhead - report by Eryl Crump

A visit to Holyhead on a dull September Sunday showed there to be five Class 175s at rest. Four three-car units were stabled in the sidings alongside the dock road. These are believed to be 175 103, 175 104, 175 106 and 175 112 and are not thought to be in service.

Two-car 175 003 was in a siding close to platform one. I'm not sure if this one is in active service with TfW.

Also present was 67 013  ... and an unidentified Voyager (possibly 221 115), another type soon to be withdrawn from the North Wales line.

[Recently a Freedom of Information request from someone asked TfW which 175s are still in service. The reply as of 4 September was 175 009, 175 101, 175 102, 175 103, 175 105, 175 108, 175 109, 175 110, 175 111, 175 112, 175 113, 175 114, 117 115.]

From Dave Sallery's archive

43 022 and 43 128 on a Euston service near Abergele, 16 May 1992.

45 142 on a Trans Pennine service passes through the Courtaulds Greenfield complex, 19 June 1985.

55966 and 55967, former Class 127 ex-Bedford-St. Pancras ('Bed Pan') diesel-hydraulic cars, converted for parcels use at Stafford, 31 May 1988.

56 042 passes Prestatyn while on route learning duties, 16 October 1984. This was the one with Class 58 bogies and the first one to be withdrawn.

Looking back: North East Steam part 1 - By David Pool

In 1954 the trains at Scarborough were still steam hauled, although some classes would soon be withdrawn.  The D49 locomotives were often to be seen on local services, and basically comprised the D49/1 “Shire” and the D49/2 “Hunt” classes.  The D49/1 locomotives had Walschaerts valve gear on the outer cylinders and Gresley on the inner cylinder, while the D49/2 had Lentz rotary cam valves with a Caprotti valve gear arrangement.  D49/2 62774 The Staintondale was photographed at Scarborough on 5 September 1954 and was withdrawn two years later.  The only preserved D49 is Morayshire (62712, LNER 246 and 2712), shown on the Llangollen Railway in the Notice Board of 15 March 2021. 

On 9 September 1954 I was at Whitby, where 67302, one of the G5 class 0-4-4T locomotives of the North Eastern Railway, was outside the shed (50G).  This locomotive would have been used particularly between Malton and Whitby on the line now operated by the North Yorkshire Moors Railway.  All of the G5 locomotives had been withdrawn by 1958, with none preserved, but a replica G5 is being built by the G5 Locomotive Company Ltd at an industrial park in Shildon.

Back in Scarborough on 11 September 1954, I was intrigued to see the arrival of a train from Whitby via the coast line, which was setting back into the bay platform after having reversed beyond the junction.  The locomotive was 77014, newly built that year at Swindon and with a 50G shedplate.  The 77000 series comprised only 20 locomotives, similar to the 76000 series but with a lower boiler pressure and classed as 3MT rather than the 4MT of the 76000 series. 

Many parts were interchangeable with those on the 3MT tank locomotives of the 82000 series. 77014 is perhaps the best known of the class in view of its final workings.  Having spent most of its short life in the North East, it was based at Northwich in 1965, then in March 1966 was transferred to Guildford on the Southern Region, where it participated in several railtours, and is credited as having worked the last scheduled train on the Southern Region – a parcels from Bournemouth to Weymouth on 9 July 1967 - after which it was withdrawn.  There is a group intending to build a replica locomotive (77021), but the last update posted was in 2019.

By 1961 the diesel multiple units had taken over many of the services, but there was still some steam to be found. On 5 July at Skegness the 18:35 departure to Derby (Friargate) was hauled by B1 class 61177.  I think this was a Colwick (40E) locomotive, but the shedplate had been removed, and two years later 61177 was withdrawn.  Derby (Friargate) closed in 1964.  The coaching stock in the adjacent platform shows a Butlins Holiday Camp destination board, but the Holiday Camp is about three miles away from the station, so passengers would need to take a bus or taxi to complete their journey. 

My photograph taken on 13 July 1962 at York will bring back some memories for those who were trainspotting in those days.  60138 Boswell was a Class A1, and was based at York throughout its working life.  Boswell was the winner of the St Leger in 1936.  I did not identify the train on this occasion. 

The 16:45 departure from York to Scarborough at that time was regularly double headed (presumably a positioning move for one of the locomotives) and on 17 July 1962 it arrived at Scarborough with a B16/2 61438 and a V2 60878, both York (50A) locomotives.  

Two days later I was pleased to find a Raven Class Q6 at Whitby.  63447 was a Thornaby (51L) locomotive, and would normally have been seen on freights in County Durham.  It was withdrawn the following year.  I would never have believed that ten years later I would be photographing a Q6 a few miles away on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway! 

The 17:58 Whitby to York on 19 July 1962 was headed by B1 61062, yet another York locomotive in need of a good clean!  It was a sunny evening at Ruswarp, and I wanted to get the station name in the shot, but as usual the telegraph poles could not be hidden or obscured by steam.

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