Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

02 September 2019

Contributions and comments are encouraged: see the Contributions Page

Forthcoming events

September 2019

Tuesday 3 September  North Wales Railway Circle  Well-known local historian and author Dr David Gwyn will present ‘1834: The first scenic model railway.’

Friday 6 September Clwyd Railway Circle meeting at the Jubilee Community Centre, Prestatyn commencing at 10.30 am.

Saturday 7 September Steam at Chester 'The Cheshireman' Railway Touring Company, Norwich - Chester

Monday 16 September RCTS Chester "Northern Rails – West Of The Pennines" Steve Armitage. Steve from Leeds will show a wide range of railway images from the LNWR/MR pre-grouping era to BR in North West of England and North Wales. 

in other

 October 2019

Wednesday 2 October RCTS Liverpool "To Hell And Back " Bevan Price. Bevan, a Branch member for 60 years, presents his photographs during his 50 years of rail travel throughout Britain and Europe.

 Saturday 5 October Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre. Bob Gwynne, Associate Curator, National Railway Museum ‘Snow White to Stephenson’. This is a story about the search for strategic minerals, climate change, religious conflict, immigration, integration and innovation. Overall a very modern story, although this one starts over 400 years ago and from it emerges the technology we call railways.

Saturday 12 October Steam at Chester. Vintage Trains 'Cheshire Venturer' Dorridge - Chester.

Saturday 12 October UK Railtours The Snowdon Panorama (diesel) London - Llandudno Junction

Monday 21 October RCTS Chester "South Wales Railways since the 1970s " Stuart Warr. Stuart from Cardiff will look back at the changing face of railways across South Wales since 1973, featuring steam and diesels working all manner of services with a few rare views.

 November 2019

Saturday 2 November Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre. Geoff Stocker ‘Rebuilding the Welsh Highland Railway’ An illustrated presentation of the stage-wise re-construction of the WHR (closed 1936) on the abandoned trackbed, from 1995 to completion in 2010 & subsequent developments - including locos and rolling stock.

Friday 8 November Steam on the Coast Railway Touring Company North Wales Coast Express  London - Holyhead, Flying Scotsman Crewe - Holyhead - Crewe

Monday 18 November RCTS Chester "Railway Safety" David Maidment. David Maidment will discuss the change in railway safety management systems and safety culture from his experience in South Wales in the 1960s, as Regional Operating Manager of the LMR in the 1980s.  Also as Head of Safety Policy at the BR Headquarters in the 1990s

 December 2019

Wednesday 4 December RCTS Liverpool "Liverpool And Its Railways " John Ryan. A look at the varied railways of Liverpool and its surrounding over many decades by former British Rail civil engineer.

 Saturday 7 December Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre. At Sale United Reformed Church lounge, Montague Road, Sale M33 3BU Including seasonal refreshments!

Owen Russell ‘Memories of the Woodhead Line’ The Woodhead line linked Lancashire, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and London. As there were shorter routes to London, express trains often comprised only 5 or 6 coaches. The line was a good place to see a variety of GC and, later, LNER engines, which had to work hard on the notorious gradients. Like many steam routes, Woodhead was a line of contrasts.

Saturday 14 December Steam at Chester UK Railtours 'The Christmas Chester Chuffer' London - Chester. Steam  Bescot - Chester - Crewe.

Monday 16 December RCTS Chester "1960s Southern  Branch Lines" David Miller. A 1960s archive of black and white photographs mainly of Southern branches but also from further north, with some interesting diversions.  Images never seen before.

Thursday 19 December Steam at Chester Railway Touring Company 'The Chester Christmas Express' Stevenage - Chester. Loco 6233.

January 2020

Monday 20 January RCTS Chester  AGM followed by "The Ffestiniog Railway" Geoff Coward. After 20.15 hrs Geoff will take a look at the steam loco’s of the Ffestiniog Railway, past present and future. Then a trip along the line from Porthmadog to Blaenau Ffestiniog, looking at each station, maintenance facility and scenery

 Saturday 25 January Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre. Centre AGM (brief) followed by: Christian Wyatt ‘21st Century signalling Control Centre – The Manchester Rail Operations Centre’ Christian Wyatt, a career railwayman with 38 years’ service, started as a signal box lad at Manchester Victoria and is now Project Operations Interface Manager for the London North Western route. One of his key responsibilities is the development of the Manchester Rail Operations Centre. Christian will describe the MROC from its build in 2012 to its present operational status.

February 2020

Wednesday 5 February RCTS Liverpool "The Black & White Collection Of Bill Ashcroft " John Sloane

Bill Ashcroft was a well-known name in Lancashire steam railway circles and John Sloane from Wigan will present some of his large collection of monochrome pictures from the steam era.

 Monday 17 February RCTS Chester "The Unknown Warrior – The Patriot Rebuild" John Hastings-Thomson. The LMS Patriot project are rebuilding a Patriot, ‘The Unknown Warrior’ and this presentation will describe the huge amount of work and money involved to build a new steam locomotive.

 Saturday 22 February Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre. Tony Wright:Aspects of the Origins & Development of Monorails including Behr, Lartigue and the Manchester to Liverpool Lightning Express Railway’ You may remember Tony’s excellent presentation on Mayfield Station. Don’t miss this intriguing meeting.

Tuesday, 25 February  18:30 Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre. Joint meeting with the Newcomen Society, Location to be confirmed. Bob Gwynne, Associate Curator, National Railway Museum ‘Sticking with steam – an examination of why Britain’s railways stuck with steam into the space age’ This talk examines some of the complex history behind moving on from the steam age on Britain’s railways and attempts an answer as to why the UK’s love affair with the steam hasn’t ended.

March 2020

Monday 16 March RCTS Chester "The Lever Brothers Railways Of Port Sunlight" Mike Lister Telling the story of Levers’ railways.  The soap factory was constructed in 1888 and its railways covered 54 track miles and the talk will describe the railway within the soap factory and other factories at Bromborough.

Saturday 21 March  Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre.  Melvyn Roberts:Indian Summer of the Somerset & Dorset Railway’ The S & D was (and still is) many enthusiasts’ favourite cross-country railway. We will hear about its unusual history, but the main feature will be a slide show of its operations in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

April 2020

Wednesday 1 April RCTS Liverpool "L&Y Engines At Work" Paul Shackcloth.  Paul Shackcloth is the photographic historian for the Manchester Locomotive Society who have a large collection.  This talk will show Lanky locomotives at work over the whole of the ex-L&Y network, including Liverpool Exchange.

Saturday 18 April Stephenson Locomotive Society. Manchester Centre.  Tim Owen ‘The activities of the Furness Railway Trust’ The Furness Railway Trust has a collection of six steam locomotives, including Furness Railway No. 20, plus historic carriages. The illustrated talk will cover the work of the Trust over the past 30 years.

Monday 20th April RCTS Chester "Another Colourail Journey" Paul Chancellor

A Ninth Colour-Rail Journey will again trawl this vast collection of images for both views from across the country and through time, so expect both steam and modern traction to appear with may be the odd bit of infrastructure thrown in for good measure.

A view from Lady Emily's Tower, Gwrych Castle, Abergele on 31 August. Picture by Greg Mape.

Penyffordd cement

The re-introduction of outbound cement traffic from the Padeswood cement works took a step nearer fruition on 28 August when 66 713 Forest City travelled from Gloucester New Yard to Penyffordd  with one JPA bogie cement wagon 81 70 9316 054-4 and six two-axle PCA vehicles
10600, 10631, 10615, 10634, 10605 and 10618; the intention being to test the new loading facility and establish the loading procedure. Tim Rogers was at Penyffordd station to record the event.

The following day, 29 August, the locomotive and the bogie wagon departed at 16:25 for the Hanson company's other works at Clitheroe in Lancashire, via a run-round at Dee Marsh, another at Croes Newydd,  Chester, Warrington, Farington Junction and Blackburn. Above, near Hawarden (Tim Rogers).

Shotton High Level station (Paul Shannon).  The PCA wagons were left at the works, presumably for a loading test.  The bogie wagon was there to ensure that both types of wagon could be accommodated..  According to press releases in 2017, the plan is for up to three trains per week to Hanson depots in London, Bristol and Scotland (Mossend), around 15 per cent of total cement production.

This link goes to a report on the event.

Coast freight revival

In appears that freight trains will run on the Coast line after the cessation of the flow of fuel elements from Valley. Andrew Macfarlane writes : 'Work to clear Llandudno Junction Yard and re-opening of Glan Conwy Goods Yard is due to commence in the next couple of weeks for slate traffic for Breedon Aggregates [who recently took over Penrhyn Quarry and work
is still ongoing at Penmaenmawr as they gear-up to re-start dispatching stone by rail.'

A 'Lanky' back on the North Wales Coast - report by Keith Jones

The new track at Llandudno of the  North Wales Model Engineering Society now has a new loco new locomotive, built by Keith Jones and running on another five-inch gauge.  It  is a Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway 'A' class, modelled in 1895 condition and lined-out.  It is seen above at  our station, West Shore Halt.

Penmaenmawr and the Quarry in the background;  these locos did haul stone from that quarry; the real 1079, by then British Railways' 52119, was 'exiled' to North Wales after Nationalisation - at Bangor shed from 1948 to 1957, then from Rhyl until withdrawal in 1962. 

With the Great Orme in the back ground.  Public running of the railway, weather permitting,  is from Easter to October Saturdays  12.00 pm - 4.00 pm.  See the Society website for more details.

Loco-hauled - pictures by Tim Rogers

68 008 Avenger and  88 004 Pandora bring three more flasks past Beeches Farm, 28 August

Hawarden, with 66 111 on  6M86 10:29 Margam Dee Marsh loaded steel, 29 August.

Prestatyn on 30 August, with 67 010 heading 1D34 09:53 Manchester Piccadilly to Holyhead.

Multiple Unit variety - pictures by Greg Mape

A selection of views from a trip to Liverpool on 28 August to illustrate the changing scene. Above, at Chester, recent cast-off from London Northwestern to Northen,  150 109, working the Manchester - Chester service, and in Platform 5 Northern 153 352, possibly having worked the new service from Leeds.

Liverpool Lime Street, with (left) London Northwestern 'Desiro' EMU  350 373, one of the 20 units built in 2013, ten of which were numbered in the 350/4 series and allocated to Transpennine Express but are due to be added to the London Northwestern fleet soon. On the right, Northern 195 115, one of the new CAF-built units for the Liverpool - Manchester Airport service.  In the distance, a Transport for Wales 150/2 unit on a new service,  Liverpool to Chester via the Halton Curve.

Llangollen Railway views - by Martin Evans

On 31 August I travelled down the road to Llangollen and had a run up to Carrog and back and took these pictures. Above - 'Prairie' tank  5199 arrives at Glyndyfrdwy with the 10:45 service from Llangollen to Carrog.

GWR Pannier tank 6430 waits to depart Llangollen with the 10:00 service to Carrog.

6430 runs around at Llangollen in order to depart with the 12:15  service to Carrog.

[In other news, 28-29 September sees the Llangollen Railway diesel gala. In addition to the resident locos and longer-term visitor 31 271,  Class 25 D7535 from the Dartmouth Steam Railway will be in action all weekend.]

TransPennine loco-hauled  - report by Chris Jones - Bridger

A colleague and I were able to head over to Leeds today to sample the new 'Nova 3' stock on the
10:41 Scarborough to Liverpool Lime Street, where the photographs were taken.

On this day the driving trailer was leading with 68 027 Splendid doing the honours at the rear.
While the service was on time from Leeds late running of previous services heading west did mean a leisurely run to Dewsbury until the 'stopper' immediately in front was slow-lined at Thornhill LNW Junction. It was clear from the acceleration that the power-to-weight combination is pretty impressive.

The seating design and  decor bear a similarity to the refurbished 18rs. There were clearly some niggling issues with the on-board systems. The Passenger Information system wasn't 100% accurate, especially the clock which was an hour ahead. Hopefully this small start ushers in the arrival of further diagrams and  the introduction of the 'Nova 1 and  2' fleets leading to the step change in capacity required by TPE.

Bala Lake Mini-Gala - report by Jim Ikin

The Bala Lake Railway held a 'mini gala' with a full timetable on 23 August including different double-headed combinations of the four locos in steam – Maid Marion,Winifred,George B and Alice – slate wagon shunting and 'driver for a fiver'. Holy War was seen in the amidst its overhaul – its new boiler is out a picture to the left.

Maid Marian.

At Bala just as Winifred was approaching a Spitfire made several low level passes mid-afternoon

George B.


Slate trains.

The railway has launched the Red Dragon Appeal for £2.5 million to fund what will be a fantastic station area in Bala - see the railway website.

North Wales Coast home page | Archive | Previous Notice Board