NORTH WALES COAST (etc) RAILWAY:NOTICE BOARD

Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

31 July 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This list may be out of date if you are reading an archived page.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.


August 2015

Sunday 2 August Steam on the Coast. Railway Touring Company North Wales Coast Express. Liverpool - Holyhead and return

Tuesday 4 August Steam on the Coast. Railway Touring Company. Welsh Mountaineer. Preston - Blaenau Ffestiniog.

Sunday 16 August Stockport Railshow, Stockport station.


Sunday 16 August Excursion West Coast Railways Holyhead, Llanfairpwll, Bangor, Llandudno Junction, Colwyn Bay, Rhyl, Flint, Chester, Frodsham, Warrington, Preston, Lancaster & Oxenholme to Edinburgh.

Tuesday 25 August Steam on the Coast. Railway Touring Company. Welsh Mountaineer. Preston - Blaenau Ffestiniog.

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

September 2015

Wednesday 9 September Excursion West Coast Railways   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 West Coast Railways 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.

Monday 21 September RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch. LNER an appreciation by John Feild. Local member and keen follower of anything LNER John takes a look back at locomotives of that company and of its predecessors including some of them at Chester Northgate station

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

October 2015

Saturday 10 October  Excursion West Coast Railways  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.

Monday 19 October  RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch. Aspects of the Chester & Birkenhead Line by John Ryan To mark the 175th Anniversary of Railways across Cheshire former BR Civil Engineer and local rail historian John looks at the more recent rail aspects of this line

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

November 2015

Monday 16 November  RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch. Northern Delights by Steve Batty. Steve our RO Branch News Editor and railway author from Selby reviews modern traction in Northern England 2002  2009.

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

December 2015

Monday 21 December  RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch. Arriva Trains Wales. Last 10 years going forward with Ben Davies. This is an opportunity to hear about more about one of our local Train Operating Companies from one of its locally based officers.

January 2016

Monday 18 January  RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch.  BRANCH A.G.M  followed by Back to The 60s with Geoff Coward. Geoff highlights photographs in various locations of the last few years of steam (1964-1968), including early diesels, mostly in the North West of England.

February 2016

Monday 15 February   RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch."American Wanderings - Heading East" by Gordon Davies. Gordon, our RCTS National Chairman gives a digital presentation showing the American railroad scene in the eastern states depicting diesel locomotives working passenger and freight trains as well as electric locomotives, light rail and preserved steam in operation on preservation lines.

March 2016

Monday 21 March   RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch. "20 Years Of The Privatised Railway - What Does The Future Hold?" by Bob Casselden. Bob, a retired former B.R. manager looks at the changes to Britain's privatised railway over the last twenty years and reflects on what the future might bring.

April 2016

Monday 18 April  RCTS: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society, Merseyside, Chester and North Wales Branch. One Mans Rubbish is Another's Treasure by Russell Hatt. Russell presents a selection of historic railway photographs that whilst too poor for publication are of interest to the railway historian.

May 2016

June 2016








37 401 Mary Queen of Scots on driver training duties returns to Carlisle from Carnforth on 23 July with driving trailer 9707, seen near Bootle.  Picture by Ian Pilkington.


A special issue with some non-North-Wales contributions for our regulars. We hope you enjoy them. Next update will be on 4 August. - Charlie

Cumbrian Coast delights: pictures by Ian Pilkington

A long way from North Wales, perhaps, but Ian's superb views of the Cumbrian scenery, plus the memories of the Class 37s in North Wales, are too good to miss.



Four views from 15 July: 37 218 heads the 05:15 Carlisle - Barrow near Nethertown with 37 409 Lord Hinton at rear.



37 604 heads the 05:46 Barrow - Carlisle near Nethertown with 37 423 Spirit of the Lakes at rear.



37 409 approaches St Bees: the 14:37 Barrow-Carlisle with 37 218 at rear.



37 603 approaches Harrington with the 17:31 Barrow-Carlisle with 37 423 at rear. (37 604 had failed earlier).



From 23 July: Newly refurbished 37 401 Mary Queen of Scots propels DBSO 9707 near Nethertown on a Carlisle - Carnforth driver training turn on Thursday 23rd July. Introduction of Driving Brake Standard Open vehicles on service trains, avoiding the use of two locos, is expected imminently.



37 604 leads the 1138 Barrow-Carlisle over Ravenglass Viaduct with 37 402 Stephen Middlemore at the rear.



Black Combe dominates the background as 37 218 heads the 14:37 Barrow-Carlisle towards Bootle with 37 409 at the rear.



The 14:35 Carlisle-Barrow with 37 402 in charge and 37 604 at the rear, seen soon after leaving Bootle.



37 604 approaches Nethertown with the 17:31 Carlisle-Barrow including 37 402 at the rear.


Cambrian news



The new road bridge - available to pedestrians and cyclists, unlike its wooden predecessor -  alongside the new rail bridge at Pont Briwet, Penrhydeudraeth, was finally opened at a ceremony on 13 July, a dat of rain and gale force winds. Many children rode to the bridge on their bikes, despite the awful weather, and Sion Owen Lloyd-Morris from Ysgol Cefn Coch in Penrhyndeudraeth and Sioned Evans from Ysgol Talsarnau won the ballots to cut the ribbon.  Picture by Richard W. Jones (More on Richard's website).



Ken Robinson climbed the adjacent hill on 15 July to bring us this view of 158 840 crossing the rail bridge with train 2G35, the 09:34 Pwllheli-Birmingham International.  The rebuilt Llandecwyn halt can be seen on the far side of the River Dwyryd. Gwynedd Council have dismissed rumours that traffic lights would be required on the road bridge due to issues with its width. A spokesman said: 'The width of the road bridge has been designed in accordance with national regulations and takes into account a number of factors, including traffic flow that will travel on the bridge.'

Less welcome (to say the least) Cambrian bridge news is that the council is condidering including in their response to Government financial cuts the cancellation of the maintenance payments to Network Rail for the foot/cycle way across Barmouth bridge. If enacted this would result in closure of the path and the effective isolation of Barmouth from the Mawddach trail which follows the old Dolgellau line trackbed. This would save 30,000 out of the 9,000,000 of cuts required. Our suggestion is that more could be saved by dismission the peron who came up with this infuriating idea, with accompanies further plans to cut back on the maintenance of public footpaths.

Two diesel-hauled excursions made it to Aberystwyth on 19 and 20 June, with the required Class 97/3 pilot: both were filmed in the Aberystwyth area by Carl Grocott and uploaded to YouTube: 19 June (with 97 304 working very hard) and 20 June.


In the Severn Valley - with Peter Dickinson



A handful of photographs from a walk from Hampton Loade to Bridgnorth on 19 July.  Above, former Cambrian line loco 7812 Erlestoke Manor is seen at Bridgnorth celebrating the 50th anniversary of the preservation of the Severn Valley line.



Great Wester 2-6-2T 4566 at Bridgnorth.



Above, 2-6-2T 4566 crosses the viaduct at Daniels Mill, Bridgnorth.



A leafy scene at Eardington, with 2-8-0 2859.


Out and About - a selection



'Crab' 2-6-0 13065 crosses the Irwell at Summerseat, East Lancashire Railway, 10 July (Richard Putley)



George Jones writes: 'A visit to Weymouth on 9 July found local railfans agog at the prospect of the B1 61306 arriving with a 'Cathedrals Express' excursion from London - this the 48th anniversary of the end of steam on the Southern.' Disappointment however when the excursion arrived with WCRC's 47 760 in charge and word that the B1 had failed - perhaps this would have been the first time a B1 ever made it to Weymouth.



The Pathfinder Tours 'Nofolk Coast Explorer' at Worcester Shrub Hill on 8 July (Richard Putley).  The tour had been advertised as being hauled by a pair of DRS class 20s but on the day it was a pair of their class 37s, 37 607 and 37 612. Apparently both the Class 20s had failed the day before.



Limerick station, Ireland, on 29 June. Greg Mape writes: 'I flew from Manchester to Shannon, and
flew back from Dublin, with a train from Limerick to ...



...  Dublin Heuston. Also used buses to & from airport/Station all for around 65.'



The bridge connecting Deansgate station with Deansgate-Castlefield Metrolink station has been refurbished and is now open to the air, offering a fine view of the Rochdale Canal, the cast-iron arches which carry the Manchester South Junction line, and beyond to the viaducts which carry Metrolink and the Cheshire Lines route from Liverpool. In the distance, 66 714 Cromer Lifeboat approaches with the 14:18 Trafford Park Euroterminal - Felixstowe intermodal service on 30 June which will soon pass through Castlefield Junction and across the bridges in the foreground.  (Charlie Hulme).


Cumbrian Coast adventure - by Charlie Hulme



Semaphore signals dominate the scene as 37 423 brings the stock for the 14:37 to Carlisle from the sidings into Barrow-in-Furness station on 20 July.



37 604 will lead the train out of Barrow.



Carriage adornments. The window bars, which vary in configuration, to allow passengers to keep their heads north of Maryport where clearances are tight, but still reach out and open the door at stations. The logos of Northern Rail and the Department of Transport; the orange 'Operated by Northern Rail; sticker which in some cases is at the bottom of the window, blocking the view of the scenery.



We alighted at Corkickle, the nearest station to our accommodation at the Glenfield House guest house. 37 423 on the rear as the train enters the tunnel under the town of Whitehaven; note the 'Loco Stop Here' sign amid the foliage. Many stations, including this one, have short platforms, so the guard must announce which carriages will be at the platform, and the driver must stop the train in the corresponding place.



The Georgian town of Whitehaven was given a makeover in the 1990s to attract visitors as the heavy industry faded away, and is very much worth a visit.



Next morning, and we are back at Corkickle to see 37 423 emerge from the tunnel, and travel with it to the next station south, St. Bees.



Token exchange at St Bees.



The walk back to Whitehaven over the cliffs is spectacular, enhanced by views of guillemot and kittiwake colonies. The last couple of miles, still on the cliff tops, are through the site of the collieries and the Marchon chemical factory, which once occupied many acres and employed many people, now just empty land with a mining museum and a few concrete roadways and foundations.



22 July, and we boarded at what is now the small station of Whitehaven to continue to Carlisle behind 37 218.



Carlisle, and a photo-opportunity for 37 409 alongside a workhorse of the steam era, 45231. We returned home via the Settle-Carlisle line - dramatic as ever, even from a Class 158 -  and Leeds.


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