NORTH WALES COAST RAILWAY:NOTICE BOARD
Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd
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30 June 2020
66 127 manoeuvres its train of steel carriers at Mostyn, 16 June 2005. The steel was exported to Ireland. Picture by Tim Rogers.
There are some timetables on a number of railway companies from Monday - Friday from 6 July. Transport for Wales will run in North Wales as follows (thanks to Mike Stone for information):
Services revert to being weekday-based rather than Sunday. Daytime off-peak services do not run between Shrewsbury and Birmingham International. North Wales services are basically Holyhead - Shrewsbury (with some variation), Shuttles operated between Crewe - Chester and on the Llandudno branch. The Conwy Valley service continues to be a bus service. The Central Wales remains two daily trains each way.
Bala Lake Virtual Gala
The Bala Lake Railway held a 'Virtual Gala' recently on Facebook to help raise money for the Covid-19 appeal. It was a great success with lots of people watching and donating, along with many positive comments throughout the day. The Gala can still be watched on YouTube at bit.ly/BalaGala and all of the 'Virtual items' in the online shop that were created for the event are still available for purchase. 100% of the money raised from these items goes directly to the railway's appeal.
There are also plenty of non-virtual products to take a look at in the shop, from DVDs to books to magazines and other BLR branded merchandise, another great way to support the railway in these tough times.
June 2005 - images by Tim Rogers
13 Jun 2005, Flint
A Class 221 calls at Flint with 1D00 05:20 Birmingham New St to Holyhead.
57 314 Firefly hauls a Pendolino forming 1R18 05:38 Holyhead to Euston
13 Jun 2005 Shotton High Level
60 065 Jaguar on 6V75 09:29 Dee Marsh to Margam empty steel carriers.
13 Jun 2005 Hawarden
60 071 Ribblehead Viaduct, 6M86 13:24 Llanwern to Dee Marsh. Loaded steel.
67 020 with Mk1, Translator vehicle ADB 975978, 507 014, and Mk1, Translator vehicle ADB 975974, form 5X47 FO Q 08:42 Eastleigh Works to Birkenhead, returning a refurbished unit.
13 Jun 2005 Shotton
57 304 Gordon Tracy dragging 390 039 Virgin Quest, 17:21 London Euston to Holyhead
14 Jun 2005 Hoole Road, Chester
57 304 returns with the 1R18 05:32 Holyhead to Euston.
14 Jun 2005 Shotton
66 118 6V75 09:29 Dee Marsh to Margam. Empty steel carriers.
Liverpool Road, Chester - pictures by Peter Neve
Having just passed through Liverpool Road station on 1 June 1967, Stanier 8F 2-8-0 48648 is stopped at Chester East Junction with a train from the steelworks at Shotton. The driver is anticipating a long delay as he is seated with his back to the cab window and chatting to his fireman. The reason for the signal check is an evening departure from Chester Northgate station to Manchester, which will take some time to clear the section between Chester East and Mickle Trafford signal boxes. (Apologies for the image quality, the colour negatives have begun to degrade.)
With the signalman looking out from the porch of Chester East signal box, the driver of 48648 makes an exemplary start on a steep gradient with a heavy train loaded with steel coils. 48648 was withdrawn from Speke MPD a few weeks later and cut up in November 1967 at Cashmores in Newport. It had previously been based at Birkenhead (Mollington Road) and Llandudno Junction.
The following evening at the same location Stanier 8F 2-8-0 48271 lifts a mixed freight train up the steep gradient from Liverpool Road station with the driver again exhibiting superb engine control. 48271 was based at Northwich steam depot at the time and was withdrawn from traffic in August 1967 and cut up in May 1968.
Cambrian Summer 1990 - by Ken Robinson
In these troubled times, of no trains on the Conwy Valley line and just a basic timetable on the Cambrian, I have searched out some photos from 30 years ago when we had 'real' traction on the Cambrian every summer Saturday. Above: 37 429 Eisteddfod Genedlaethol near Afonwen on 14 July 1990 with the 09:32 Pwllheli-Euston, which it would haul as far as Wolverhampton.
37 427 Bont Y Bermo crossing Bont Briwet on 9 June 1990 with the aforementioned train.
37 428 David Lloyd George passing Llandanwg on 2 June 1990 with the 09:03 Euston-Pwllheli.
1990s DMUs - pictures by Greg Mape
A Class 101 departs from Harlech, still fully signalled in the traditional way.
A Class 108 108 on the Conwy Valley at Betws-y-Coed with its railway museum.
Looking back with David Pool - Warrington area
Water troughs are now just a memory, but on 2 July 1966 Britannia 70025 Western Star was picking up water at Moore on the 08:20 from Barrow to Birmingham New Street. The footbridge I used is today still a good vantage point for Northbound trains, although the overhead wires and trees make Southbound views difficult.
The line between Skelton Junction and Arpley was being used for passenger train diversions on 12 April 1985, in addition to the freight paths. On that day 47 275 was heading for ICI’s Castner Kellner Works at Runcorn with empty Caustic Soda tanks, crossing the Manchester Ship Canal at Latchford. In the distance under the bridge are the Latchford Locks and the Thelwall (motorway) Viaduct.
Later in the day I went to Winwick Junction, and was fortunate to see the Advanced Passenger Train 370 003 demonstrating its tilt capability. Earlier that month I had sampled the APT on a scheduled service between Preston and Euston, and I had not been convinced by the effectiveness of the tilting to give a pleasant riding experience.
The line from Arpley to Skelton Junction via Lymm was closed in 1985, so this view of the sidings at Latchford taken on 6 January 1991 is rather misleading. 20 010 and 20 082 are in the low level sidings, having run round an Merry-Go-Round train from Fiddlers Ferry. The higher level twin tracks on the left would previously have continued across the Manchester Ship Canal towards Lymm, but are now being used as another reversing siding.
Many people will have heard of the Widnes to Runcorn Transporter Bridge, but the smaller version in the former Crosfields Chemical Works in Warrington is not particularly well known. I was determined to get a photograph with this Transporter in the background, and at Sankey Bridges on the line to Fiddlers Ferry I found a suitable location. On 29 June 1991 47 249 is returning BOC tanks to the depot at Widnes. This area is now built up, and the shot is no longer possible.
In 1997 Direct Rail Services explored the feasibility of conveying milk by rail from Cumbria to the London area. The 'Milkliner' ran from a siding at Penrith to Cricklewood, from where it went by road to a dairy at Chadwell Heath. On 11 July 20 305 and 20 301 are passing Winwick with an appropriate headboard. There was insufficient interest in the scheme, which was discontinued after only four weeks.
Timber trains to Chirk in 1999 were held overnight in Arpley Yard, and continued to Chirk as 6J70, departing at 09:15. The Celebrity locomotive 37 116 “Sister Dora” in the unusual blue livery with Transrail branding is approaching Moore on 21 January 1999.
Photographs of the DRS Class 33s with Minimodal branding are rare. The Minimodal concept involved lightweight containers which would have no height restrictions, but this was another project which never progressed beyond some brief trials in Cumbria. The Class 33s were not generally used on flask trains, but in 2003 they found some use on trains between Sellafield and Runcorn (Weston Point). On 7 January 33 025 and 33 030 were passing Winwick with empty Caustic tanks for Weston Point. Both these locomotives were eventually sold to West Coast Railways, and are now frequently used on railtours.
An interesting development regarding the abandoned Lindow Moss railway (15 June issue). First of all, our identification of the locos was incorrect. The working loco was Lister 50888; the two abandoned in the shed were Lister 53238 and an Alan Keef built loco, worrks no.4.
Meanwhile, a press release from the Moseley Railway Trust, who care for narrow-gauge industrial locos at their site at Apedale in Staffordshire, comes to hand:
The Moseley Railway Trust has recovered all of the remaining locomotives, wagons and track from Great Britain’s last peat works railway. The railway served workings on Lindow Moss, near Wilmslow. This location made national headlines in 1984 when the well-preserved remains of an Iron Age male were discovered. Lindow Man, as he was named, is now an exhibit at the British Museum. The works used a 2’0” gauge line ran from the peat fields to the works, where the peat was tipped from the wooden wagons, processed, and then taken from site to be used for (amongst other uses) mushroom cultivation.
At one time, such railways were used on many sites where peat was dug, but increasing environmental concerns have effected a cessation of such activities. Following an agreement with the site owners, Croghan Peat, Moseley Railway Trust members recovered three locomotives, four wagons and a quantity of track. The recovery took place on June 24 and 25, in an operation further complicated by the need to comply with COVID-19 guidance.
All of the equipment has been removed to the Trust’s centre of operations at Apedale, Staffordshire. Two of the locomotives (a Lister and a Keef) are complete, and indeed both were returned to operation within a few hours of their arrival at Apedale. The third locomotive, another Lister, is missing many of its major components. Phil Robinson, Chairman of the Moseley Railway Trust, said “I would like to thank Croghan Peat for their support with this project, and also the Trust members who negotiated and planned this operation. I would also like to recognise all the Trust members who turned out, in baking heat, to recover the equipment from Lindow Moss”.
The Moseley Railway Trust’s Apedale site remains closed to the public at present. However, the Trust hopes to be able to announce plans for the remainder of the 2020 season in the near future.
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