Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

25 July 2022



Contributions to the Notice Board are welcome, although they may not always be used, due to time constraints, especially if they don't follow the file name convention given on the  Contributions Page.

Forthcoming events

Charter trains, and meetings, may be subject to cancellation or postponement. See our Calendar Page for Club and Society details.

July 2022

30-31 July :  Welsh Highland Railway Centenary and Celebrations:
A weekend of heritage trains operating between Dinas and Rhyd Ddu (as South Snowdon is now known) to celebrate the reopening of this section of line.

August 2022

Friday 12 August   Pathfinder Tours  Cambrian Coast Express Cardiff - Pwllheli

September 2022

Friday 2 September Clwyd Railway Circle: “The Greatest Railway Builder in the World” A 60 Minute Talk on the Life and Times of Thomas Brassey by Peter Bolt

3-4 September Llangollen Railway   Diesel Weekend

Saturday 3 September The Cheshireman  steam  (6233) Norwich  - Chester and return (diesel Peterborough - Norwich)

Friday 9 September  Pathfinder Tours Cambrian Coast Express.  Oxford - Pwllheli

24 September  Trailffest Half Marathon : An Event Train will be provided to take the competitors from the event centre at Porthmadog to the start of the race in Tanygrisiau, the cost of which is included in the entry fee.

Friday 7 October
“Fond Memories” A look back over 70 years of Railway interest by Larry Davies

7-9 October: Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways: Vintage weekend.

8-9 October
Llangollen Railway  DMU railcar weekend

November 2022

Friday 4 November Clwyd Railway Circle: “A trip by Norwegian Railways to Hell (and back).” Geoff Morris

Saturday 5 November
Llangollen Railway Ride the Rocket Firework Train

December 2022

Friday 2 December Clwyd Railway Circle: “Members Selections & Christmas Celebrations” Members are invited to give a 15-minute presentation of their choice (Any format). Contact David Jones 01244 537440 to book a slot.

(see  our Calendar page for meeting venues)

North Wales Coast Railway website created and compiled by Charlie Hulme

197 004 makes yet another test run from Llandudno Junction to Chester, 25 July (Greg Mape). There's been a 'launch' but when will they actually carry passengers?

Clwydian Railways

Out of the blue (thanks to Eryl Crump for spotting it) comes a new open-access railway company, based in Rhyl: Clwydian Railways,  proposing  to lease Class 175 units and run between Bangor and London Marylebone, calling via Llandudno Junction, Colwyn Bay, Rhyl, Prestatyn, Flint, Shotton, Chester, Shrewsbury, Telford, Wolverhampton & Banbury . It will, they day, start with a service four times a day in both directions.   The sole officer of the company is a Jeremy Robert Jasper, born 1992, who is known as a designer of rolling stock for train simulators.

Their website is at - comments welcome ...

Caroline : this week's celebrity

20 and 21 July saw 37 418 An Comunn Gaidhealach and saloon 'Caroline'  engage in a two-way route-learning tour, starting with a journey from Derby to Holyhead, with the coach leading, thanks to its versatile control circuits. Above, the combo pass Cadnant cutting, Conwy on the outward leg....

... the 37 pushing (Stuart Broome).

Holyhead, 20 July (Stuart Broome). The train was stabled here overnight.

At Llandudno Junction, 21 July, on route from Holyhead to Cardiff Central via the Borderlands line. (Ryan Lloyd)

Pensarn on 21 July (Gary Thomas). The headboard reads 'Loram Rail Operations' so the trainees are from the infrastructure company.

Beeches Farm (Bob Greenhalgh).

Arriving at Wrexham General.  37 418 pushes Inspection Saloon "Caroline" towards  Croes Newydd before reversing for the Borderlands line and Bidston. It would then head back south for Shrewsbury and Cardiff later in the afternoon.  Picture  by Mark Riley, who notes: 'After  conversion to an Inspection Saloon, "Caroline" had a new lease of life on the rail network! In 1981, it was used by Diana and Charles on the first leg of their Honeymoon from Waterloo to Romsey, and in 1992 it hauled Pope John Paul II from Gatwick-Victoria. I am sure it was well blessed!'


Passing Sutton Bridge Junction signalbox, Shrewsbury on 21 July, 37 401 Mary Queen of Scots runs light engine from  Newport heading home to the DRS depot Crewe Gresty Bridge (Graham Breakwell).

Off the beaten track: Northern  156 463 on the once-a-day service to Heysham Harbour from and to Lancaster via reversal at Morecambe on 16 July (Greg Mape).

221 116  and 221 107 leave Holyhead on the delayed 14:50 to Euston, 14 July (Stuart Broome).

DRS loco 68 006 Pride of the North at Crewe on 12 July with 68 025 at the rear. Nuclear Transport Solutions  launched this  new design of livery for their Class 68 at the Low Carbon Logistics event in Mossend, in November 2021 (Martin Evans).

197 010  at Crewe on a Training run, 12 July (Martin Evans).

On 13 July 175 102 is seen on one of the two early morning TfW services, the 03:34  and 04:46 Chester to Manchester Airport, routed via the Mid Cheshire Line, and a reversal at Manchester Piccadilly,  not stopping at any Mid-Cheshire stations. The reason is to maintain train crew knowledge of this route in case of a diversion. This picture was taken on the Timperley/Baguley border by Greg Mape.

The Fellsman - report by Stephen Dennett

Some images of Saphos Trains “The Fellsman” taken at Helsby (above)  in the morning...

... and Frodsham on the evening return. The Crewe-Chester-Settle-and-Carlisle circuit was due to be steam hauled, but the continuing ban due to fire risk meant an unexpected surprise of double headed BR Green Class 20s. 20 107 carries the original number D8107 and the name . Jocelyn Feilding  “a distiguished art critic and bon viveur”. , and 20 096 has D8096.

47828, which seems to have stayed on the rear for the trip, was looking good in BR InterCity colours. I was amazed I made it to Helsby for 7.45 am!

Cambrian Corner

Two scenes from 22 July by Greg Mape. Above, 158 837 approaching Morfa Mawddach amid  parched weeds, while heading from Pwllheli to Machynlleth and onto Birmingham International.

158 839 leaving Llanbedr for Machynlleth.

From Dave Sallery's archive

37 422 Robert F Fairlie about to pass under the city walls while approaching Chester, 28 August 1993.

37 425 Concrete Bob passing Penmaenmawr on a Crewe service as a 31 is having its ballast train loaded under the hopper, 18 August 1997.

37 420 The Scottish Hosteller entering Prestatyn station on a Crewe - Bangor train, 14 July 1996.

37 408 Loch Rannoch waits to Leave Bangor on a Crewe train, 13 June 1995.

Looking back:  Steam, Diesels and Electrics  2005  Part 5 - David Pool

On 17 September 2005 I visited a railway in Derbyshire which is well known but a challenge to photograph.  The occasion was an Open day at the Blue Circle Cement Works at Hope, which displayed some visiting locomotives and offered a steam or diesel hauled shuttle service to the Earle’s exchange sidings.  My first shot was of 48151 arriving from the exchange sidings and entering the Works. 

I was more interested in the diesel locomotives which normally worked all the trains on the branch, but these were not on display, and were not easily photographed.   I managed to get a reasonable shot of the Class 20 Sir George Earle, previously in BR service as 20 168, together with a Sentinel which I understand carried the name Derwent.

The other Cement Works locomotive was Blue John, a diesel hydraulic built by Hunslet-Barclay (Works No.773 of 1990).  This proved even more difficult to photograph, with a steel column in the middle of the view of the locomotive, so a telephoto lens was necessary to get a rather poor shot. 

It had been the intention to use 20 905 (one of the visiting locomotives) for the shuttle service, but the coaching stock provided by West Coast Railways was not compatible with the air brake system on 20 905, so another locomotive 20 096 (with dual brake systems) had to be used.  The branch runs mostly through a tunnel of trees, breaking cover to cross Castleton Road on a massive concrete bridge, and later running on a viaduct over Edale Road and the River Noe, on the approach to Earle’s sidings.  The view from Edale Road is probably the best on the branch.

The Railhead Treatment Trains in 2005 (generally described as Water Cannon Trains) were being worked by DRS locomotives.  Many of these trains ran overnight, but there was a daylight working on Saturdays on the Wrexham to Bidston line.  On 15 October 2005 20 301 Max Joule 1958-1999 was top and tailing the train with 37 602, and is approaching the footbridge at Noctorum, having just left Upton station. 

Light locomotive movements are not my favourite photo subjects, but on 31 October at Casey Lane, Basford Hall, 0Z49 11:47 Willesden to Shieldmuir was out of the ordinary.  The late afternoon sun lit only the upper part of the locomotives, but the combination of 87 012, 73 204 and 73 205 was particularly interesting.  The headboard on 87 012 The Olympian reads “Electric Blue Bird”, whatever that signified.  My understanding is that all three locomotives were at that time owned by GBRf.  After a short period being available for hauling mail trains, 87 012 was exported to Bulgaria, where its successful operation there led to many more Class 87s being exported.

Pacer 142 047 in Merseyrail yellow makes an attractive picture at Winwick on 12 November 2005, while it was working between Lime Street and Bank Quay.

The sun was low in the sky on 11 December 2005, when 153 310 arrived at Bidston with the 13:43 departure from Wrexham.  A pair of 3-car units 507 026 plus 507 006 is heading for West Kirby.  The interesting feature is that the single unit had arrived on Platform 1, and was going forward to the reversing siding before leaving later from Platform 2.  The arrangement today is that trains from Wrexham arrive at, and depart from, Platform 2.   If the timetable requires a lay-over, such as in Sundays, the unit will move on to the branch to clear the line for the Merseyrail service, and return before departure.

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