North Wales Coast Railway Notice Board 08 January 2024


Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

15 January 2024


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 advice and 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, society and tour operator details.

January 2024

Friday 12 January. Altrincham Electric Railway Preservation Society Simon Temple on "South Asian Steam in 1982" - features India, Pakistan and Nepal.

February 2024

Friday 2 February Clwyd Railway Circle Annual General Meeting followed by Chairman’s Choice. David Jones

Friday 9 February.  Altrincham Electric Railway Preservation Society  John Hooley. "Euston and Destinations: the Potteries and the North West". Steam in action on passengers and freight.

March 2024

Friday 1 March Clwyd Railway Circle The Dockers Umbrella  The History of The Liverpool Overhead Railway. - Ken Pye FLHU

Friday 1 March (note the first Friday of the month). Altrincham Electric Railway Preservation Society Dennis Flood. "Edge Hill Motive Power Depot". Dennis will entertain us with tales from his career on the footplate in the 1960s.

Saturday 2 March Railway Touring Company The Cheshireman loco 45596 London Euston - Chester

21 March  Statesman Chester - Windsor and Eton Central. Pickups in North Wales borders.

April 2024

Thursday 4 April Pathfinder Reading - Pwllheli via Crewe

Friday 5 April  Clwyd Railway Circle Fond Memories - featuring some of my favourite times on the railway over the last 60 years. - Larry Davies Cancelled

Friday 5 April  Midland Pullman Plymouth to Llandudno

Friday 12 April. Altrincham Electric Railway Preservation Society David Beilby. "Transport around the World by GEC and its predecessors". A joint meeting with the Irish Railway Record Society Manchester branch.

Thursday 18 April Pathfinder Tours The Cambrian Coast Express East Midlands Parkway - Shrewsbury - Pwllheli

Thursday 18 April Midland Pullman Wolverhampton - Chester - Carlisle

Tuesday 23 April Midland Pullman Chester - Lockerbie

May 2024

6 May  Statesman   Woking - Llandudno  via Bath Spa and Crewe for Llandudno Victorian Extravaganza

Thursday 16 May  Pathfinder Tours The Cambrian Coast Express Cardiff - Pwllheli

Saturday 25 May Railway Touring Company     Manchester Piccadilly  -  Llandudno and Holyhead Steam: 5596 Bahamas 

June 2024

8 June Vintage Trains     Dorridge - Blaenau Ffestiniog  Steam and 47 773  via Crewe. Diesel on Blaenau branch

21 June Northern Belle -  Crewe     Two tours - lunch and afternoon tea.  Round trip from Crewe via  pickups at Chester and Wrexham.

Saturday 22 June Midland Pullman Holyhead - Carlisle

Thurday 27 June Midland Pullman  Crewe - Chester - Wrexham - Paignton

July 2014

Tuesday 16 July Midland Pullman  Holyhead - Paignton

27 July    Midland Pullman    Crewe -  Paignton      

August 2024

14 August    Statesman    Telford Central - Carlisle
pickups Shrewsbury, Gobowen, Chirk, Wrexham General, Chester, Frodsham, Warrington BQ

September 2024

4 September  Statesman High Wycombe -     Blaenau Ffestiniog

Thursday 5 September Pathfinder Tours The Cambrian Coast Express Bristol - Pwllheli

Friday 6 September Clwyd Railway Circle The Denbigh, Ruthin and Corwen Railway in the Vale of Clwyd -  Fiona Gale

12 September   Pathfinder  Cambrian Coast Express Cardiff Central  - Pwllheli

21 September - Northern Belle    Telford - Carlisle pickups Shrewsbury,  Wrexham General, Chester.

October 2024

Friday 4 October Clwyd Railway Circle Wrexham’s Second Railway Mania -  David Parry

November 2024

Friday 1 November Clwyd Railway Circle  Chinese Steam in 2001 and 2003  - Phil Thomas

(see  our Calendar page for meeting venues)

North Wales Coast Railway website created and compiled by Charlie Hulme

Freight revival?  66 734 Platinum Jubilee passes Abergele, 15 January Picture by Tim Rogers.

More of 66 734

Closer look at Abergele (Tim Rogers). The name is not on a nameplate, just painted or vinyled on the loco side. Disappointment for future collectors.

Appraoching Llandudno Junction (Larry Davies). The train came from Wembley sidings in London; there has been a path for this for some time, never used until now.  The train was originally planned to start back from Tonbridge at 04:31, but instead started from Wembley at 07:33, arriving at 14:37. Note the rusty rails on the line into the terminal.

Llandudno Junction (Geraint Williams). The train returned at 20:07 headed back to Wembley, which suggests stone, brought by road to the terminal, is the traffic.

New trains for Holyhead

Brand new Hitachi 805 009 heading south through York on 5Q32 Merchants Park to Oxley depot on 15 January (Jack Bowley).

The February of Today's Railways magazine has a detailed article about these trains.  A point of interest is that they will be used on trains to London, which as things stand will be restricted to 110 miles per hour as they don't have the tilting system fitted to the Pendolinos - and the Voyagers currently plying the North Wales to Lodon route -  which are allowed 125mph.  The plan is to identifies parts of the route without relatively gentle curves,  and allow 125 on those.  This will, the article says, require 198 new lineside speed restriction boards. Also, on the electric part of the route south of Crewe they will accelerate faster than the diesel Voyagers.

They have a new style of seat, GPS-driven selective door opening for North Wales shorter platforms.   In addition to North Wales, the 13 805s will be used on London Birmingham trains with more stops some extended to Shrewsbury, and also (curiously), to Blackpool, a route which is fully electrified. 11 of the 13 will be needed each day.

Class 67s in action

67 014 at Stockport, 14 December on the 14:30 Manchester-Cardiff. On platform 2 is tongue-twisting 323 232 on a train from Stoke. In the near future Northern are taking over some of the 323 units from West Midlands to replace the old 319s which came from the London area: tleast two of these have their final journey to the Newport scrapyard.

67 022 at Manchester Piccadilly on 11 January, on the 16:30 train. Generally these trains run with the loco on the south end to keep the loco away from the buffer-stop end where the loco's engine can make it's noisy appearance.

67 025 in the sunshine at Cheadle Hulme on 4 January with the 14:30.

67 029 passing Alderley Edge on 12 January with the 12:30 from Piccadilly. The panels showing local scenes are the work of Eamonn Murphy, and can be found at many stations in the Northern area thanks to the efforts of the Community Rail teams.


197 112 passes Abergele on train 1D36 11:25 Manchester Airport to Llandudno (Tim Rogers)..

There are rumours that DB Cargo  are withdrawing their class 60 fleet, but  one was still in operation on 15 January with the Arpley to Tunstead empty stone hoppers (Greg Mape).

At Sutton Bridge Junction on 12 January 67 008, contrasting with its all-black coaches with 1W57, the 10:52 Cardiff Central to Manchester Piccadilly (Graham Breakwell).

18 January 2000, close to the end of the Class 37 era, 37 429 Eisteddfod Genedlaethol  passes Holywell Junction with 09:19 Holyhead - London as far as Crewe, substituting for a Virgin 47 (Tim Rogers).

From Dave Sallery's Archive

37 678
approaches St Blazey with a china clay train to Fowey, 6 October 1997. 37 678 was cut up at EMR Kingsbury on 4 May 2007.  The 4-wheel CDA wagons have now been replaced by bogie vehicles. The signal is due to be replaced in the Cornwall resignalling scheme and the photo is impossible to take now due to the the growth of lineside vegetation. Such is life as a railway photographer.

50 009 and 50 036 are working the "Hoover Dambuster" from Birmingham New Street to Glasgow Central, 14 May 1988.  Meanwhile the driver of 86 419 looks on, maybe wishing he had a camera?

507 010 on a Southport to Hunts Cross train dips down to access the link line underneath Liverpool city centre, 23 March 1993.  Above the building at the front of the train can be seen the former access to Liverpool Exchange station.

The local starlings take advantage of one of Britain's least used semaphore signal gantries at Stranraer in 2017.

Looking back: Railway ships part 3 - by David Pool

The passenger ferry between Harwich and Felixstowe was introduced in 1912, and provided a short river crossing compared with the 34 mile journey by rail.  In 1925 the LNER decided to take over the ferry service with the MV Brightlingsea, a 51 ton vessel built in Colchester and having a capacity of 152 passengers.  It passed into British Railways ownership, then had been sold to the Orwell and Harwich Navigation Company at the time of my photograph taken at Harwich on 21 May 1970.  It was eventually withdrawn in 1992, and is in the National Register of Historic Vessels.

The Invicta was always associated with the Golden Arrow, having been built by William Denny in 1939 for the Southern Railway’s cross Channel services.  Powered by four steam turbines, it was requisitioned for wartime use, returning to the SR in 1946.  It operated on the Dover to Calais route until 1972, when it was withdrawn and promptly scrapped.   My photograph dated 2 June 1970 illustrates the way it swiftly went astern into the berth on Admiralty Pier, adjacent to Dover Marine station.

A year earlier on 1 June 1969 I had been more anxious to photograph the Golden Arrow, and my shot of E5006 leaving Dover Marine station is particularly interesting in that it shows one of the Pullman cars in the “reversed” blue/grey livery, with the blue above the grey.  This was soon changed to the familiar grey above blue used for the normal coaching stock. 

The ferry passenger service from Tilbury to Gravesend was operated by the London Tilbury and Southend Railway from 1862, and their successors the LMS and British Railways.  In 1961 the Eastern Region of BR ordered three diesel ferries from White’s Shipyard in Southampton, the Catherine, Rose and Edith.  The opening of the Dartford Tunnel led to the ending of the vehicle ferries, but the passenger ferry is still in operation today.  On 29 June 1974 the Edith and Catherine were in service and the latter was photographed at Tilbury.  Catherine was eventually sold in 1989 and moved to the River Tyne, where for a time it was a floating restaurant with a rear paddle wheel, renamed the Catherine Wheel.  Owned by River Escapes, it became the Latis, but may now have been scrapped.  

The Saint Eloi had been ordered in 1969, but a succession of problems in the Italian shipyard resulted in it entering service for Angleterre-Alsace-Lorraine with Sealink branding in 1975.  On 18 June of that year it was leaving Dover on a Train Ferry service to Dunkerque. 

Until 1989 the Saint Eloi had been based at Dover, then it moved to Stranraer and later to Holyhead.  Its passenger accommodation was by then in a bad condition, and it went to Falmouth for a refit. Emerging as Channel Entente in May 1989 it returned to Dover for a few months, then in February 1990 it was sold, becoming one of the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company’s fleet.  Later in 1990 it received a major refit and the name King Orry, soon becoming a popular and reliable vessel.  It was photographed at Douglas on 2 May 1993.  In 1998 it was sold again, becoming Moby Love, and after several more changes of name and owner in 2022 it became Sporades Star, owned by Seajets, and is now operating in Greece. 

The Prinses Paola was the last conventional passenger ship for the Dover to Ostend route, built for Belgian Marine in 1966.  On 18 June 1995 it had the BMT logo on the funnel, together with Sealink branding on the hull.  After Sealink was purchased by Sea Containers in 1984, agreement was reached in 1985 with Townsend Thoresen to operate the Ostend route.  Prinses Paola briefly appeared in Townsend Thoresen colours, but was sold in 1988 to Sea Venture Cruises, being converted in Greece to a cruise ship the Tropicana. It then was used for cruising off the East coast of the USA, and had a number of owners and names until it was laid up in 1996 and eventually scrapped in India in 2007. 

The Anderida was a Sealink Train Ferry on the Dover to Dunkerque service, built in Norway in 1972.  My photograph at Dover was taken on 18 June 1975.  It later operated on Irish Sea routes, and was eventually sold in 1981, becoming the Armenistis.  There followed a remarkable life with different owners, taking it first to New Zealand and then to Canada.  In 2020 it returned to Europe and worked in Greece, but in November 2022 under the flag of Togo it was hijacked by pirates off the coast of Sierra Leone and ran aground. 

Home page | Archive | Previous Notice Board