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26 December 2011
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Sunny Christmas Eve at Bagillt - with Tim Rogers
Friday 6 January Clwyd Railway Circle Brian Roberts: Reflections of the 1990s, Brian’s presentation will visit many different locations across the national network, with some emphasis on the Merseyside area, in an attempt to portray a decade of considerable change. Passenger operating companies will be reviewed, largely via their ever changing liveries, and there will be glimpses of some of our preserved lines. The freight scene will be recalled, too, not least by showing images taken on freight only lines, at industrial plants and at several collieries prior to closure.
Monday 9 January. Wrexham Railway Society The Many Varied Railways of Australia . Geoff Morris will show the great variety of rail action Down Under.
Tuesday 10 January 8E Railway Association Karl Jauncey & Dave Richards from PSOV present Mainline Steam 2011
Thursday 12 January Llandudno and Conwy Valley Railway Society Society Tribute - the late Bill Rear
Friday 13 January Altrincham Electric Railway Preservation Society "Steam Across Java in 1980" by John Sloane
Monday 16 January RCTS Chester Barry Shore: Terminus Part 3
Barry continues his Terminus series, this time off the Network, The Preservation Scene and offshore including the Isle of Man and Ireland.
Saturday 21 January Stephenson Locomotive Society Area A G M followed by: Professor Colin Divall - Down the American Road? Industrial Research on the LMS, 1923-1947 The Big Four are often criticised for an over-reliance on traditional forms of engineering. However by the late 1930s the LMS had developed a sizeable Research Department dealing with a wide range of technical problems. This talk examines the Department's origins and activities, and asks how successful it was.
Wednesday 25 January Ffestiniog Railway Society Dee & Mersey Group. Narrow Gauge Rlys in Central & Eastern Europe. Geoff Morris
Thursday 26 January Merseyside Railway History Group Allan Moore : Lost Stations of St. Helens
Friday 3 February Clwyd Railway Circle Geoff Morris: Australian Railways Today. A digital presentation of Geoff's visits to Australia in 2009 and 2010 featuring main line and preserved steam in South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland and also a look at the some of the modern scene.
Thursday 9 February Llandudno and Conwy Valley Railway Society Ron Watson Jones"Irish Mail Crash Penmaenmawr - Aug 50"/"A Ron Miscellany"
Friday 10 February Altrincham Electric Railway Preservation Society "Great Western Railway Lines in South and Mid-Wales" by Tony Icke
Monday 13 February. Wrexham Railway Society Sixties Steam on Steam - Barry Shore will give a digital presentation based on his b&w negatives from the 60s with shed visits around the UK and the final days of steam at Lostock Hall.
Tuesday 14 February 8E Railway Association Colin White from B&R Video presents Archive Cine Film from 50's & 60's
Saturday 18 February Stephenson Locomotive Society Bob Barnard The Lynton & Barnstaple Railway – Then & Now. From 1898 this well-equipped 2 foot gauge line climbed into the foothills of Exmoor, initially independent but later under the Southern Railway, until its sudden closure in 1935. Since 2004, trains have run on a section again. Bob Barnard, a local L&B enthusiast and North West group organiser, will tell the line's story in pictures old and new.
Monday 20 February RCTS Chester Stephen Gay: Walking the line, discovering lost railways. Stephen travels from Sheffield with a slide
show on walking old railways with his faithful German Shepherd dog Wrawby. The show includes the S&D, Scarborough to Whitby, rambling in Scotland to glorious Devon plus a very varied local selection
Thursday 23 February Merseyside Railway History Group Graham Briggs: Steaming Through Britain
Wednesday 29 February Ffestiniog Railway Society Dee & Mersey Group. Operating a 40 mile railway. Phil Brown.
Friday 2 March Clwyd Railway Circle AGM followed by Photo Competition and Members Night. Members are invited to give a 15 minute presentation of their choice, any format welcomed. Please book your slot no later than 17th February by contacting David Jones.
Thursday 8 March Llandudno and Conwy Valley Railway Society Geoff Morris "30 years west of Swansea"
Friday 9 March Altrincham Electric Railway Preservation Society "The Railways of the Peak District" by Dr Les Nixon
Monday 12 March. Wrexham Railway Society Vintage Steam Film Show - Colin White presents a selection of 8mm cine films with his unique commentary about the abilities of the loco crews in the 1860s.
Tuesday 13 March 8E Railway Association Geoff Coward presents Back To The 60's
Saturday 17 March Stephenson Locomotive Society Ken Grainger Rhapsody in Blue – The Great Northern Railway of Ireland. A whistle-stop tour, in colour, of the Great Northern network, mainly by steam but also including not unattractive diesel railcars and delightful half-cab railbuses, as well as the Hill of Howth open-top electric trams and not forgetting the immortal horse-drawn Fintona tram.
Monday 19 March RCTS Chester Gordon Davies: American Wanderings in 2010/11/ A digital presentation of Gordon’s two visits to the USA. Featuring commuter trains, extremely long freight and coal trains, preserved steam, a monorail, trams plus his visit to the dentist!
Thursday 29 March Merseyside Railway History Group AGM Members Slides.
37 229 Jonty Jarvis and 20 309 pass Bangor with the Valley to Crewe flasks on 22 December 2011. Picture by Rowan Crawshaw.
Walk the line from Corwen - Llangollen Railway notice
There will be a final opportunity to walk the old trackbed between
Corwen and Bonwm before this stretch is closed as a construction site.
The picture above, taken on 14 December by George Jones, shows the route of the walk looking west of Bonwm past the site of the halt, with the A5 road close by on the left.
Starting from the Corwen Pavilion car park at 11am on Sunday, 1 January, participants will be guided by Steve Layt to the Phase 1 station site and thence along the trackbed, taking in overbridge No.28 through to the site of the former Bonwm Halt where there is access to the A5 road. The length of the walk is just over 2 miles, around 3km; expected duration is one hour.
Explanations will be given of the work to be undertaken along the way.
The section between Bonwm and Carrog is closed due to work in progress. The options are to return to Corwen back via the trackbed or along the pavement of the A5 which presents a different aspect of the trackbed and structures within the landscape.
Strong footwear and appropriate outdoor clothing must be worn by participants. Due to clearance work on parts of the trackbed the route is no longer a grass-covered swathe and may be quite rough in parts. Arrangements are being made in conjunction with The Corwen Business
Association, The Corwen Partnership and Tourism and Leisure, Corwen.
The occasion is, of course, subject to the weather on the day. Note that there is no public transport on the A5 on this date. The Llangollen Railway will however, be running services to Carrog.
A donation from those participating in the walk will be appreciated.
Above is the view looking east at Bonwm looking east into what is now a construction site (George Jones).
Push me Pull You - the Arriva DVT
In our previous items on the subject of the 'WAG express' and Class 67s we mentioned that although Class 67 driver training has begun, nothing seemed to have happened with regard to push-pull working of this train using a Driving Van Trailer. No sooner had this appeared, than pictures began to appear on the web showing ex-Virgin Trains DVT 82306 in smart new Arriva Trains Wales livery ... we hear that drivers will be given a two-day course on driving from the other end.
82306, if Wikipedia is to be believed, is Virgin Trains 82144, renumbered in the 823xx series used for vehicles fitted with modified controls for working with Class 67s, and a second one, 82307 (ex-82131) is to be done. These vehicles are, of course, no strangers to the North Wales Coast line, having seen a lot of use on London - Holyhead trains before the Pendolino era, although the diesel loco which was attached at Crewe would pull the train to and from Holyhead.
Incidentally, DB Regio, owners of Arriva, recently bought most of the Mk3 coaches from the fleet of Cargo-D, which recently went into administration, so now have quite significant fleet.
With the Devon log train
The new timber service from the revived Heathfield branch in Devon ran on 20-22 December, and thanks to David Hughes we can bring you some views of the train near the southern end of its journey. Above, 66 847 approaches Platform 3 at Newton Abbot on 20 December with a load of 14 empty log carriers.
Departing Newton Abbot for Heathfield after the loco had run round (David Hughes).
The train enters the Heathfield Branch, which curves away to the left (David Hughes). We understand that the train runs to the end of the line at Heathfield for the loco to run round, but the actual loading of the logs takes place on the running line, part way up the branch.
The loaded train took some time to reach its final destination. George Jones writes: I was curious about the log train, so I went to Wrexham General station for 18:50 on 21 December. The empty Class 150 moved over into the bay, which isn't always a good indicator for action, but the Up signal went to green at 18:58 and in due course 66 850 powered through at 19:02 ... with the log train from Carlisle - the Devonian came south at 23:09 - and wasn't seen by me but others did see it.
The train ran to Chester from where it would reverse again and head south to reach the siding at Chirk. It was still at Chester 22 December, and train provided the station with a delightful seasonal pine fragrance (Chris Coxon). The on-time 10:35 Virgin Trains departure to Euston can be seen in the background.
'Train of Hope' raised 40 thousand