NORTH WALES COAST RAILWAY:NOTICE BOARD
Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd
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24 September 2022
Welsh Highland Garratt 130 arriving at Beddgelert on the return Gelert Explorer, 22 September. Picture by Martin Evans.
This is an extra issue: next update Tuesday 27 September
Locos at Galas with a North Wales history - report by Jim Ikin
Amongst the locos at a curtailed Amerton Railway gala on Saturday 17 September was a loco with a some North Wales history. Diana (albeit not in steam on the day) was an ex-tramway loco that came to Oakley quarries at Blaenau in 1925 and on to Pen-yr-Orsedd in 1945. It also spent time at the Bala Lake Railway in 2015 and in 2018 was at the Llanberis Lake Railway.
Among the many locos at the Apedale Light Railway Gala on 17 September were three with North Wales Connections- and they have a lovely café. Above, ex Penrhyn Railway Ogwen.
Currently 'out of ticket' is Joffe, a Kerr Stuart built to a Decauville design which was bought to North Wales for a potential museum at Pen-yr-Orsedd but spent a few years on a plinth next to the A470 coming out of Blaenau Ffestiniog.
Kerr Stuart-built Stanhope another Penrhyn Railway loco which was bought second hand from the Durham Water Board.
We also went to the Severn Valley Railway gala on 16 September, but the only loco with a North Wales connection at the gala, albeit for just one month at Wrexham depot in December 1958, was pannier tank 7714, pictured at Highley
Sir Nigel on test
On 19 September, In weather as sombre as the day 4498 Sir Nigel Gresley passes Beeston Castle on the first of two scheduled test runs between Crewe and Chester. The hazy grey exhaust suggests an adverse signal at Beeston and Tarporley, not uncommon when steam follows another train.
The second of the two runs was announced on RTT as cancelled (Scott McGahey).
Arrival at Chester from Crewe on a test run. A moving touch was a wreath and 'Elizabethan' headboard on the day of our Queen's funeral (Bob Greenhalgh). The tests, following 10-year overhaul, were in preparation for a trip to the North York Moors Railway's Steam Gala on 22-25 September.
A first glimpse of 231 001, the first of a fleet of Stadler 'Flirt' trains for Transport for Wales in the bay at Gloucester on 19 September. The Maesteg - Cheltenham service is to be one of their duties (Charlie Hulme).
Spotted at Chester station by David Harrison at approximately 14:10 on 21 September were 67 029 Royal Diamond a with rake of TfW's de-branded Grand Central coaches and Grand Central liveried driving van trailer 82227. The train appears to have come from Holyhead: does anyone know the reason for the move? Possibly a trial run of the loco which has recently been converted to work with the Mk 4s?
Parked on Rhos-on-Sea front on Sunday afternoon 18 September was JFM 990, a preserved Crossville Mobile ticket office, converted from a Beadle/Bedford 'chassisless' bus ...
... housing a model tramway (Greg Mape).
Seen at Stockport on 19 September, 90 002 Wolf of Badenoch propelling a set of Mk3 coaches, propelling a Manchester - London Avanti service all hired from Locomotive Services to add extra capacity while their own fleet are suffering from a staff shortage (Charlie Hulme). The name, previously on 87 027, refers to Alexander Stewart, Earl of Buchan, Robert II of Scotland's son, said by some to have been 'Scotland's vilest man'.
A London - Manchester run on 17 September eschewed the Stockport route in favour of the Styal line (Greg Mape).
From Dave Sallery's Archive
31 469 passing Holywell Junction signalbox on an up train, 28 August 1989.
37 422 Robert F Fairlie on a Crewe - Bangor service passing Shotton, 1 May 1997.
DR 98910 at Llandovery while making its annual visit to the Central Wales line with the weedkiller, 17 August 2017.
37 431 County of Powys / Sir Powys near Sandbach on a Cardiff - Crewe service, 10 May 1990.
Anglesey Aluminium site sold (again)
There's some news about the former Anglesey Aluminium site. When the aluminium plant closed, it had been bought by a company called 'Orthios' which had verious plans for developing it as an 'eco park'; sadly the firm went into Administration early this year with the loss of 140 jobs. Now we hear that the site had been bought by Anglesey Land Holding Limited, a subsidiary of Stena Line UK Limited, operator of ferry services across the Irish Sea.
Stena say that the 213-acre site will allow it to extend and develop the port which it has owned for 27 years. There's little detail available of the plans, but one possibility might make use of the railway sidings as an intermodal freight terminal, perhaps using the train path from the sidings at Wembley which appeared on Real Time Trains recently.
The deal also includes the jetty at Holyhead which was used to deliver the aluminium ore for the smelter. Stena visualise this as a berth for visiting cruise ships.
The Snowdonian Statesman 14 September - another selection
Outbound at Pensarn with 47 614 leading (Gary Thomas).
Llandudno Junction (Garry Stroud).
With 47 828 leading through Dolgarrog after the reversal at Llandudno Junction (Gary Thomas).
North Llanrwst (Gary Thomas).
Dolwyddelan (Gary Thomas).
Network Rail has let the Blaenau Ffestiniog headshunt become overgrown and it appears to be out of use (Barrie Hughes).
The method of working now involved 47 828 uncoupling (above) and 47 614 propelling the train back ...
... then hauling the empty stock into the siding to allow local services access to the station. Later 47 828 would have coupled to the other end to lead the train top and tail back to Llandudno Junction. (Barrie Hughes).
The return train, now top-n-tail, at Glan Conwy (Gary Thomas).
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