NORTH WALES COAST RAILWAY:NOTICE BOARD
Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd
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16 October 2017
On Saturday 14 October 56 105, with 56 096 at the rear passing Conwy town walls and Castle with the return Holyhead to Shrewsbury Rail Head Treatment Train. Picture by Garry Stroud.
Cambrian Corner Barmouth 150 special
2017 marks the 150th anniversary of the opening of Barmouth Bridge, the longest wooden viaduct in the country. Pathfinder Tours celebrated this by organising a loco-hauled excursion with the traditional name 'The Cambrian Coast Express' from Bristol at Pwllheli and back on 10 October. 67 030 hauled the train to Shrewsbury where 97 304 John Tiley and 97 303 took over for the run over the ERTMS-signalled Cambrian line where only specially equipped traction is allowed. We pick up the train approaching Morfa Mawddach, as seen from Ian Wright's hillside workplace.
On the causeway approaching Barmouth bridge (Ian Wright).
Crossing the bridge (Kate Jones).
The classic shot of the train leaving the bridge with the Cader Idris Massif behind (Richard Jones).
John Rawlings scaled the heights of Moel y Gest to capture the train approaching Porthmadog, with the new by-pass road in view.
Approaching Porthmadog (John Rawlings).
The view from the Welsh Highland Heritage Railway car park. Picture by George Jones who writes: ' Reported in section from Harlech at 13:50 it could be seen stopped way down the line towards Minffordd whilst the Up service train worked by 158 820 ran into the station and was held in the loop. It came forward at 14:00, reported 2 minutes late on Real Time Trains. Overcast weather didn't do much for the pictures but at least the rain held off. The last coach just cleared the crossing and the length of the train caused a sizeable road traffic tail back.'
Portrait of the locomotives (George Jones). Some might have expected the two West Coast Railway Class 37s that have been fitted for ERTMS to be in action, but Pathfinder Tours use DB Cargo as traction provider rather than West Coast, whose two locos have yet to work any revenue-earning trains over the Cambrian as far as we know.
Porthmadog station (John Rawlings).
The last coach, still carrying the roof-boards for the more usual working with this set of carriages, the Torbay Express. The chocolate-and cream coaches are quite authentic for the Cambrian, as the British Railways version of the 'CCE' from Paddington did sport this heritage livery for a while, although generally only a portion of the the 1950s version served the Pwllheli line, another portion running to Aberystwyth.
Passing the site of the former Black Rock Halt (Ken Robinson).
The return train, now with 97 303 leading, approaching Talsarnau station, having accelerated hard to around 50mph (Ken Robinson).
Emerging from the short tunnel between Barmouth station and the bridge (Kate Jones). Above the locos can be seen the steep path which forms the link for pedestrians and cyclists to and from the pathway on the bridge. This emerges on to the busy road at a point where there is no pavement on that side, and very restricted view of approaching traffic, especially when approaching from Barmouth town centre. Since 2013 the Barmouth Viaduct Action Group has been campaigning for a new level, safe path which would cross under the railway using the existing bridge seen in the picture, and run around the foreshore to pass under the concrete viaduct opposite the 'Last Inn.' Anyone having watch the Group's video might wonder why this wasn't done years ago.
Approaching Morfa Mawddach (Kate Jones).
Newtown at 20:11 (Richard Jones).
Back at Barmouth on Saturday 14 October, with pictures by Richard Jones, who writes 'For the anniversary weekend Network Rail had installed LEDs on the inside of the two arched spans. It didn't show the outline of the bridge; It would've been better if they'd have been run across the top of both, to show the arched nature of those structures. Instead, it just looked like fairy lights on the inside of it. It was also spotlit from the headland, but that light was very dim, barely brighter than torchlight.
'It's a pity it wasn't lit from Penrhyn Point. I'm sure the Fairbourne Railway would have obliged. They ran shuttle trains to the point, and had two locos in steam. When the 158 crossed on the 2J23 16:09 Birmingham International to Pwllheli, its driver gave the horn plenty of use, and was answered back by one of the Fairbourne steam locos. It must have been a spectacle for that unit's passengers.
'A laser was projecting scrolling text and graphics on a rock face above the harbour, with details about the bridge, and in both Welsh and English. It also projected outline images of a steam locos, 158s, an EMU with pantograph up, the Network Rail logo, and the Arriva Trains Wales logo. That was particularly well-designed. Later in the evening it displayed an animated journey as it filmed from the front of a train as it ran down the tracks, including entering and exiting a tunnel. I imagine that these are standard sequences that can be downloaded and run on any projecting laser display.'
The Firework Display. Many more of Richard's pictures on his Flickr site.
Peter Basterfield's view
9 October's 6D43 Crewe - Valley flasks at LLanfairfechan with 68 032 and 68 017 Hornet.
The Rail Head Treatment Train in action at Glan-y-Mor Elias crossing on 9 October - with temporary sign warning to drivers.
Wednesday 11 October, and flasks in the rain at Bangor with 68001 and 68 017.
Llangollen's 'Along SW Lines' Gala
Friday 13 October
Bulleid Light Pacific 34053 Sir Keith Park waits to depart Llangollen with the 9.30am service to Corwen (Martin Evans).
GW 2-8-0 2807 departs from Llangollen with the 1.15pm service for Corwen (Martin Evans).
Pannier tank 6430 arriving at Glyndyfrdwy with the auto coach (Martin Evans).
The two visiting locomotives 34053 and 2807 are captured at Carrog (Martin Evans).
6430 & auto trailer at Carrog working 10:55 Llangollen to Corwen (Chris Jones-Bridger).
34053 approaching Berwyn with the 12:15 Llangollen to Corwen (Chris Jones-Bridger).
80072 wasting departure from Glyndyfrdwy with the 14:30 Llangollen to Corwen (Chris Jones-Bridger).
Saturday 14 October
6430 at Corwen (Alan Crawshaw).
34053 at Carrog (Alan Crawshaw).
2807 and token-changing equipment at Carrog (Alan Crawshaw).
34053 near Berwyn (Alan Crawshaw).
5199 at Carrog (Alan Crawshaw).
Sunday 15 October
34053 heads the 09:30 Llangollen - Corwen towards Carrog with 2807 at the rear. (Ian Pilkington).
34053 heads the 12:15 Llangollen-Corwen near Glyndyfrdwy (Ian Pilkington).
2807 heads away from Glyndyfrdwy with the 13:15 Llangollen - Corwen (Ian Pilkington).
34053 heads the 15:15 Llangollen - Corwen near Glyndyfrdwy (Ian Pilkington).
80072 at Carrog (Peter Dickinson).
2807 at Bonwm, with 5199 on the rear (Peter Dickinson).
2807 seen from the crossing west of Carrog station (Peter Dickinson).
George Jones writes: 'The gates at Bonwm provide for a close encounter with passing trains. Above: 5199 on the suburban set with 80072 on the end - the 1150 ex Llangollen 8685 - 80072 brings the train back as the 1255 from Corwen ...
... 80072 brings the train back as the 1255 from Corwen ...
... and 34053 passes with the 12:15 from Llangollen - 5199 on the rear. After two late starts from Llangollen with the first trains of each day, on Sunday the Bulleid was banked out of Llangollen by 2807. The challenge of damp rail and the departure curve at Llangollen proved too much for the light-footed pacific which doubtless made a steamy impression for photo-ers watching the early departures.'
2807, visiting from the Gloucestershire & Warwickshire Railway, reverses to prepare to go on the rear of the 11.15 to Corwen East, the train engine being 80072 (Jim Ikin).
34053 and 80072. Picture by Jim Ikin.
And finally ...
Our thanks to Private Eye artist Mr Tim Cordell for this fine impression of the North Wales Coast Railway website office.
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