North Wales Coast Railway Notice Board 19 February 2024


Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

19 February 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.

February 2024

Saturday 24 February Chester Society for Landscape History Annual General Meeting followed by:  “The Chester to Holyhead Railway” Dr Philip Lloyd. 2 pm at  St. Columba’s Church Hall Plas Newton Lane / Newhall Road Chester CH2 1SA Admission: Members Free, Visitors £4, Student Visitors £2

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 - Aviemore

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

Saturday 22 June  North West Rail and Transport Collector's Fair, Crewe Alexandra Football Club 10:00 - 3:30

Thursday 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

Sunday 15 September Steam Dreams 'Welsh Dragon' steam-hauled London Paddington - Shrewsbury, then diesel through to Pwllheli.  For more on this and this and the next two entries see the Steam Dreams website.
Wednesday 18 September  Steam Dreams 'Welsh Dragon' steam hauled Bangor - Crewe, then diesel to Cardiff via the Heart of Wales line
Thursday 19 September - Steam Dreams 'Welsh Dragon'  steam hauled Cardiff to London Paddington via Gloucester and the Golden Valley line

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

67s meet at Nantwich 19 February. Picture by Greg Mape.

If you missed late-running second part of last week's, you can read it here.

That 175 move - report by Jack Bowley

The move of a Class 175 from Holyhead (last issue) was definitely headed for Barton under Needwood.

I happened to be in the area for Monday's ROG move to Holyhead, so wish to share my efforts of the train with 37 510 and 37 800 heading to Holyhead as 5B99 from Derby RTC at Gwrych Castle (above) ...

...  then later as 5Q60 to Barton-under-Needwood (Central Rivers as it's more commonly known as) taken in Llandudno Junction with the view over The Cob over to Conwy. The headcode, and indeed destination, is correct for the train. Whilst Central Rivers is predominantly Voyagers, they do take up work on other trains including 170s and 222s. What the plan is for this 175 I do not know. Presumably fix whatever is wrong with it?

The train left Holyhead late due to coupling issues, and got looped at Bangor for a couple of trains, Llandudno Junction for another, and again at Mostyn. The train eventually got to Crewe bang on 3 hours late. It got to run via Lichfield Chord instead of via Walsall to make up an hour, but was still somewhat late!

Class 805 news - by Geoff Morris

A couple of shots taken on 19 February at Chester.  805 005, the first class 805 to carry Avanti vinyls, ran from Oxley to Holyhead and passed though Chester while a 10-car Voyager set was in platform 4 awaiting departure on the 09:20 to Euston.  It was a bit annoying that the Voyagers had stopped in a position that made it impossible to get an unobstructed view of their front end as their upcoming replacement passed by. 

RTT doesn't show any return run for the class 805 from Holyhead on the same day. However, it already shows one for Friday which suggests that maybe the set will be based at Holyhead for the week - perhaps for crew familiarisation.

Class 67s meet

Nantwich on 19 February: The 12:49 Cardiff Central to Manchester Piccadilly,  with 67 022 hauling, calls at Nantwich ...

... and is passed by the 14:30 Manchester Piccadilly - Cardiff with 67 008 propelling.

Severn Valley festival - pictures by Greg Mape

In action at the Severn Valley railway on 17 February was 7812 Erlestoke Manor, a one-time regular on Cambrian Coast trains.

Class 108 DMU at Highley station...

... assisted by 20 048.

Class 46 diesel 182 (46 045) - the class 46 are a version of the class 45 'Peaks[with a different make of generator.

Last days of the Peaks - pictures by Richard Snook

45 130 heads the 15:16 Llandudno - York passing Ffynongroyw along the Dee estuary on 20 April 1987.

45 143 passing Ffynongroyw with the 10:53 Scarborough - Holyhead, 24 April 1987.

45 103 on the 15:16 Llandudno - York passing Ffynongroyw  on 20 April 1987.

The final day of Class 45 passenger workings on the Coast was 10 May 87. The replacements were new class 150 DMUs with 3+2 seating which weren't at all suitable for long distance runs,  even more so the Class 142 Pachers which sometimes appeared.

There's an interesting article about the last of the 45s on the Derbysulzers website.

From Dave Sallery's archive: Class 45 on the Coast

The Class 45 Peaks were rarities in North Wales until 1980 when, as part of a reorganisation of Trans-Pennine services, they became frequent visitors on passenger services. Various Cross-Country services were introduced such as Holyhead - Newcastle and Scarborough - Llandudno.

This happy state of affairs lasted until 1987 when the introduction of Sprinters saw the loco-hauled workings replaced by the new units.

45 107 leaves Abergele behind on an up service, 4 May 1984.

45 114 has just arrived at Bangor. It will shortly run round the train to form an eastbound service. 4 July 1986.

45 140 passes the long demolished Aber signalbox, between Bangor and Llanfairfechan, on an up train, 23 October 1984.

45 129 leaves Rhyl on a Scarborough - Bangor service, 17 March 1986.

Turn of the century -  pictures by Tim Rogers

43 098 on the rear of 1D87 08:25 London Euston to Holyhead, 19 February 2000.

37 426 1K61 10:22 Bangor to Crewe.

Class 37/4s are in the news at the moment, as DRS is engaged in selling-off all its examples of the type.  401, 402 and 423 have already been sold, whilst 407, 419, 422, 424 and 425 are available. It will be interesting to see if they all find new homes, 422 and 425 are our favourites from Coast line days, but we don't have room for one in our garden! Meanwhile, LSL have treated 37 404 a Scottish look, while privately-owned 37 418 now sports a red livery for rail maintenance company Loram.

Looking back : 19th century steam - David Pool

George England is best remembered for the building of Ffestiniog Railway locomotives such as Prince and Palmerston, but he also built a few standard gauge locomotives.  In 1857 he built an 0-4-0 Well Tank for the Sandy and Potton Railway, which was then sold in1862 to the LNWR and later named Shannon.  It was sold  again to the Wantage Tramway in 1878, becoming No.5 and unofficially named Jane.  When the Tramway closed in 1946, No.5 was bought by the GWR and was displayed at Wantage Road station.  It was then stored and finally moved to Didcot for restoration.  On 20 August 1975 it was at Shildon for the Stockton and Darlington Railway celebrations, where it ran in steam. It is currently exhibited at Didcot. 

Neilson and Company Works No.2119 was a Great Eastern Railway Class 209 locomotive No.229, built in 1876.  In 1917 it was sold to the Admiralty, and subsequently worked in various shipyards.  It was sold in 1982 and after some restoration put on display at North Woolwich Station Museum, where it was photographed on 10 June 1986. 

In addition to having a narrow gauge railway, the 1988 Glasgow Garden Festival displayed a Glasgow built standard gauge locomotive.  Kelton Fell had been built by Neilson in 1876 (Works No.2203) for Gartsherrie Ironworks, then used at collieries until 1968, when it was donated by the NCB and restored by the Scottish Railway Preservation society at Falkirk.  It was photographed on a rather wet 28 July 1988.

Consett Iron Company A No.5 was built in 1883 by Kitson & Co. to the “long boiler” design of Robert Stephenson.  The Class A locomotives were the largest on the site, the long boiler providing the required power with a short wheelbase.  Consett became under the control of the NCB in 1947, and No.5 was in service until 1968.   It is now in the care of the Stephenson Steam Railway at Middle Engine Lane, North Shields, where it was photographed on 14 June 1988. 

Relatively few 0-4-0 locomotives with inside cylinders were built for railways in Britain, apart from a few dozen on the Midland and North Eastern Railways.  Two of the latter type have survived, LNER Class Y7 numbers 985 and 1310, built in 1923 and 1891 respectively.  On 23 August 1997 the Middleton Railway’s NER 1310 was heading past Belle Isle towards Moor Road.  It had worked in collieries since 1933, and was owned by the NCB between 1949 and 1965, when it was acquired for preservation. 

I first learned about Gazelle in “The ABC of Locomotives of the minor British railways”, published in 1945.  It was listed “now withdrawn”, but 35 years later on 13 November 1980 I was photographing it in York Museum.  Built by Alfred Dodman at Kings Lynn in 1893, it was at first privately owned by William Burkitt, who obtained permission in 1897 to run it on the main line from Kings Lynn to Chesterfield and back – a 14 hour day trip supposedly on business!  It was sold to Colonel Stephens in 1911 for use on the Shropshire and Montgomeryshire Railway, after being rebuilt by W G Bagnall from a 2-2-2 to an 0-4-2, the wheels being all the same size.  When the S & M closed in 1950, the stock was taken over by the Western Region, and Gazelle moved to the Longmoor Military railway for display.  Owned by the National Railway Museum since 1975, it is currently at Tenterden, on the Kent and East Sussex Railway. 

Boston Docks celebrated 150 years of rail traffic in 1998 with a display of locomotives.  There was D2112 and D3871, and rather surprisingly the first British “Atlantic” GNR 990 Henry Oakley.  Built in 1898 at Doncaster, it had come from York Museum.  The events were scheduled for 12 September, and I was able to photograph 990 before the official opening, with no other spectator in sight!  Unfortunately I had missed seeing it in steam on the KWVR in 1977.

Another GNR locomotive was 1247, built by Sharp, Stewart in 1899.  This was a J13 Class, later LNER Class J52, having been renumbered 4247 and then 8846.  Finally it received BR number 68846, and was photographed at Loughborough on the Great Central Railway on.15 May 1999.  Since then it has been renumbered back to 1247 in GNR green and is now displayed in York Museum. 

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