Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

25 June 2015

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Forthcoming events

This list may be out of date if you are reading an archived page. For the current list visit our Calendar.

July 2015

Friday 3 July Excursion Compass Tours by West Coast  The Conway Valley Explorer Via the Scenic Conway line (with Ffestiniog Railway option). From Grantham, Peterborough, Stamford, Oakham, Melton Mowbray, Leicester, South Wigston, Hinckley, Nuneaton, Tamworth, Lichfield TV, Rugeley TV & Stafford to Betws-y-Coed & Blaenau Ffestiniog.

Saturday 4 July Excursion Compass Tours by West Coast  The Conway Valley Explorer From Lincoln, Newark NG, Grantham, Bottesford, Bingham, Radcliffe, Netherfield, Nottingham, Tutbury & Hatton, Uttoxeter, Blythe Bridge & Stoke to Betws-y-Coed & Blaenau Ffestiniog. (with Ffestiniog Railway option).

August 2015

28-30 August. Bala Lake Railway: 'Winifred' gala.

September 2015

Wednesday 9 September Excursion Compass Tours by West Coast  The Conway Valley Explorer
Via the Scenic Conway line (with Ffestiniog Railway option) Sheffield to Betws-Y-Coed and Blaenau Ffestiniog. From Sheffield, Rotherham Central, Swinton, Moorthorpe, Normanton, Shipley, Keighley, Skipton, Hellifield, Carnforth & Lancaster.

12 September  Excursion Compass Tours by West Coast  The Conway Valley Explorer Via the Scenic Conway line (with Ffestiniog Railway option) Scarborough to Betws-Y-Coed & Blaenau Ffestiniog. From Scarborough, Seamer, Malton, York, Wakefield, Brighouse, Sowerby Bridge, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden & Rochdale.

Friday 25 September. Great Western Society NW Branch. P. Spilsbury. Steam Miscellaneous.

October 2015

Saturday 10 October  Excursion Compass Tours by West Coast  The Conway Valley Explorer
Via the Scenic Conway line (with Ffestiniog Railway option) Hereford to Betws-Y-Coed
Departs From Hereford, Ledbury, Gt Malvern, Worcester FS, Droitwich, Barnt Green, Walsall & Wolverhampton.

Friday 30 October. Great Western Society NW Branch. Mike Kenwright. Cutting of the Manchester Ship Canal.

November 2015

Friday 27 November. Great Western Society NW Branch. John Hobbs. A Black & White presentation, North Wales Circular  1963  - 66  (Steam)

150 284 was out on the Manchester - Llandudno circuit on 20 June, substituting for a 175. It is seen from the beach at Deganwy with the 15:30 Llandudno Junction - Llandudno. Picture by Chris Morrison.

Back from holiday to find a quite remarkable number of contributions and events to record. This is an extra issue with just a selection from some of them. Thanks to all.- Charlie

Halton Curve day, 4 July - by John Hobbs

The usual summer timetable trip over the Curve has been confirmed by Northern Rail as operating on Saturday 4 July. The train will depart Chester at 07:53 and call at Helsby (dep 08:02),  Frodsham (dep 08:07), Runcorn main line (dep 08:19), and arrive Liverpool South Parkway at 08:29.  

[This special arrangement applies on 4 July only. The one-way train runs at 07:53 from Chester every Saturday until 5 September, but normally terminates at Runcorn main line and does not call at Frodsham or Helsby.]
We have been unable to charter road transport for the return journey and Northern advise normal fares are available. Helsby & Frodsham passengers can purchase a ticket to Liverpool if they wish and return via Birkenhead or Chester or alternatively via Huyton & Warrington (Bank Quay).  Passengers may also, if they wish, purchase a return ticket to Widnes from Chester and travel to Liverpool South Parkway and return via Warrington (Central), walking to Bank Quay and return to Chester for 8.60. (No need to alight at Widnes as long as the train calls there).  
An alternative suggestion is to make a day of it and purchase a Cheshire Day Ranger. The adult price is 22.50 or 14.85 with a railcard; the area of validity is West Kirby, New Brighton, Newton le Willows, Manchester ( Victoria & Piccadilly), Glossop/Hadfield, New Mills (Central) , Buxton, Stoke, Whitchurch, Chester,& Shotton. You can then spend a whole day spinning around!  

We also hope to make a video of the occasion, watch out for our filming team.

'The Welsh Dragon'

5043 Earl of Mount Edgcumbe heads the Vintage Trains Tyseley - Llandudno 'Welsh Dragon' excursion west of Beeston Castle on Saturday 20 June. Picture by Ian Pilkington.

Chester, as 175 104 arrives with the 08:50 Manchester Piccadilly - Llandudno (Chris Morrison).

As on previous occasions, the whole train was turned round using the triangle of lines at Chester, and hauled to Llandudno by accompanying diesel loco D1755 (47 773) ...

... with the steam loco and its water-carrier van on the rear, as photographed at Beeches Farm bridge by Bob Greenhalgh, with the 'Beluga' aircraft coming into land at Hawarden airport. This specially-designed A300-600 ST version of the Airbus is used to carry wings built here to the Airbus Indiustrie plant at Toulouse where they are united with their fuselage. Wings for all but the giant A380 can be carried by air in this way.

Taking the Llandudno branch at 'The Junction' (Tim Rogers).

Llandudno (Tim Rogers).

Approaching Deganwy (Terry Hickmott).

Deganwy (Tim Rogers).

Llandudno Junction (Greg Mape).

Llandulas (Greg Mape)

Class 67 doings

67 012 on the rear of train 1W96, 17:16 Cardiff - Holyhead  on arrival at Llandudno Junction from Cardiff two minutes late at 20:54. Picture by Peter Lloyd.

On 10 June, 67 012 propels the evening Cardiff - Holyhead express through Abergele (Tim Rogers).

67 022, currently the regular power on the Manchester - North Wales diagram,  departs from Helsby at 17:52 on 11 June, with the 16:50 Manchester - Llandudno (Stavros Lainas).

67 022 brings train 1D34, 09:50 Manchester Piccadilly to Holyhead, over the crossover into Llandudno Junction on 12 June (Tim Rogers).

The 13:01 Holyhead - Manchester calls at Abergele, 12 June (Roly High).

On 12 June, 67 022 departs, dispatched by Peter Lloyd, from Llandudno Junction with the 16.50 Manchester to Llandudno service. Picture by Dave Trains.

Train 1K96, 19:34 Llandudno - Crewe,  photographed on Tuesday 16 June at Deganwy by Jonathan Wilkins as the train is re-started, being propelled by 67 022. Jonathan writes: 'I remember well the last workings of the class 37 in the early evening, when the appearance of locomotive-hauled trains in Deganwy was similarly rare. It was a family outing after the evening meal to observe the passage of the down train, now it is my grandson who enjoys the spectacle!'

Chester on 17 June, with the 16:50 Manchester Piccadilly - Llandudno at Platform 3 (Ian Henderson).

Passenger miscellany

The midday Euston-Holyhead service passes Abergele on Saturday 13 June. Picture by Greg Mape.

221 109 Marco Polo crosses Malltreath arches on 20 June with train 1D88 14:10 London Euston to Holyhead (Tim Rogers).

On the Welshpool and Llanfair  - with Martin Evans

On Tuesday 16 June I visited the Welshpool and Llanfair Railway and found loco 823 Countess in traffic. Above: after arriving with the 10.0am service from Llanfair Caereinion, the loco has just been oiled and watered at Welshpool before departing with the 11.15am return to Llanfair Caereinion.

Above, Countess runs round at Llanfair Caereinion after arrival. Sister machine 822 The Earl was noted in the main engine shed; these two, built in Manchester by Beyer Peacock, made up the original loco fleet for the opening of the line by the Cambrian Railways in 1903.

Baguely-Drewry diesel no 7 Chattenden was noted on shed at Llanfair Caereinion. This loco was built in 1947 for the Chattenden and Upnor military railway in Kent, one of the few British lines that shared the W & L's two feet six-inch track gauge.

Also on view at Llanfair was Diema-built diesel no 175, which spent its first working life in service of the Taiwan Sugar Company.   Apparently Franco-Belge steam loco no 10 Sir Drefaldwyn, imported from Austria,  is continuing its restoration, hidden away in the engineering shop.

Cumbrian Coast Corner - pictures by Ian Pilkington

37609 (with 37402 at rear) approaches St Bees with the 1437 Barrow-Carlisle on Monday 8 June.

37 402 Stephen Middlemore (ex-Bont y Bermo, ex-Oor Wullie) approaches Parton on 8 June, with Crifell in Dumfriesshire in the distance ...

... and arrives at the station with the 17:37 Carlisle-Barrow. 37 609 on the rear.

37 419 Carl Haviland leads the 14:35 Carlisle Barrow (with 37 423 Spirit of the Lakes on the rear) over Eskmeals Viaduct on Thursday 11 June.

37 402 (with 37 609 at rear) seen approaching...

...  and leaving Harrington...

...  then heading away towards Parton with the 17:37 Carlisle-Barrow on Thursday, 11 June.

Harrington station has achieved a curious sort of fame in recent years by becoming the first station to have a fibreglass 'hump' fitted on its platform to enable easier access to the train, at least through one door. These devices, which have become known as 'Harrington Humps', were said to cost 'only' 25,000 to build and fit, compared to 250,000 to raise a whole platform, and do not require the line to be closed during the work.  Although it seems that the examples installed at Aberdyfi and Valley in 2009-10 came in at 70,000 each.

The East Lancashire Railway - a visit by Martin Evans

On 19 June I visited the East Lancashire Railway. An early start from Ruabon enabled a picture of  DVT 82307 leading the Holyhead to Cardiff loco hauled service through Ruabon with 67 012 on the rear at 07:40.

On arrival at Bury Bolton Street I found ex-War Department 0-6-0ST 75008 (Hunslet works no. 2857 of 1943)  preparing to depart for Rawtenstall with the 11.05am service.

After returning to Bury at 12.30pm, four dining coaches were attached to the rear of the train to form the 1.0 pm service; after this manoeuvre Class 14 D9537 remained attached to the train in order to assist the Hunslet with this train to Rawtenstall.

Llandudno aesthetics

This sign at Llandudno really does jar against the art-deco ironwork. (Picture by Tim Rogers)

How about a replica old-style sign, perhaps  complete with a nice manicule (pointing hand) like these at Birmingham Moor Street? (Picture from Wikipedia, Creative Commons Licence).

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