North Wales Coast Railway Notice Board 13 May 2024


Rheilffordd arfordir gogledd Cymru: Hysbysfwrdd

  13 May 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.

May 2024

Wednesday 15 May  Snowdonia Statesman, Chesterfield to Blaenau Ffestiniog and return.

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

1-2 June Llangollen Railway Diesel / Industrial Heritage Gala

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

Wednesday 19 June Statesman  Cardiff - Blaenau Ffestiniog

Friday 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

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

July 2014

Saturday 6 July Railway Touring Company North Wales Express London Euston  - Llandudno (Steam Crewe - Llandudno)

6-7 July Llangollen Railway Classic Transport Weekend

6-7 July Talyllyn Railway 'Anything Goes Gala'

Tuesday 16 July Midland Pullman  Holyhead - Paignton

Wednesday 17 July Statesman Chester-le-Street - Blaenau Ffestiniog

Saturday 20 July Northern Belle Hull to Llandudno Junction with off train options to Llandudno, Bodnant Gardens and the Penderryn Distillery.

20-21 July Talyllyn Railway Awdry Extravaganza

Saturday 27 July    Midland Pullman    Crewe -  Paignton      

August 2024

3-4 August Llangollen Railway 1960s Weekend

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

24-26 August Bala Lake Railway August Steam Gala

24-25 August   Model Railway Exhibition  in Machynlleth in support of the Corris Railway

30 August - 1 September - Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway -  Steam Gala with model railway exhibition

September 2024

Wednesday 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

14-15 September Welsh Highland Railway Super Power Weekend celebrating the successful restoration of the NG15 locomotive.

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

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

21-22 September Bala Model Railway Show Ysgol Godre’r Berwyn Secondary School, Ffrydan Road, Bala, Gwynedd LL23 7RU. 10:00 - 16:00 (Bus link to Bala Lake Railway station)

Opening times: 10.00-16.00 on both Saturday and Sunday.10.00-16.00 on both Saturday and Sunday.

Saturday 28 September UK Railtours London - Chester 'Our tour takes an interesting route from London to Chester and Llandudno Junction where we plan to access the Glan Conwy freight sidings.'

October 2024

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

4-6 October  Ffestiniog Railway Bygoneds weekend

5-6 October Llangollen Railway Heritage Railcar Weekend

November 2024

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

December 2024

Tuesday 10 December  Midland Pullman from Holyhead to Edinburgh Waverley - Edinburgh Christmas Pullman

14-15 December Manchester Model Railway Society -  The Christmas Model Railway Show. The Sugden Centre, Sidney Street, Manchester

North Wales Coast Railway website created and compiled by Charlie Hulme

8 May 2000 at  Holywell Junction with 37 702 Taff Merthyr heading
1G79 18:22 Holyhead to Birmingham International. Picture by Tim Rogers.

News Pictures

67 025, with 82200 on the rear, passes Llandudno Junction at 13:30 on 8 May with the 5T05 12:50 Holyhead to Cardiff Canton empty stock move (Garry Stroud).

Another empty stock move on 8 May was the unbranded 805 007 working the 5Q22 12:18 Holyhead to Chester empty stock run, seen departing Llandudno Junction (Garry Stroud).

On 6 May  70 817 leads 70 811 with the logs for Chirk over Balderton crossing (Bob Greenhalgh).

The Ultrasonic test train on 7 May (3Q15) ran with 37/97 power. Seen at  Penyffordd, 37 254 tails, 97 302 tops to Bidston (Bob Greenhalgh)

Sir Nigel again

197 047 on 1D06 from Liverpool arrives in parallel at Chester with 60007 Sir Nigel Gresley on a Steam Dreams charter, 11 May.

... Arriving at Platform 3 ...

... 47 828 on the tail ...

... returning to the station after turning on the triangle. After turning, and with the whistle on full blast 60007 headed through the Middle Yard and straight to Crewe. 47 828 would later drag  the train back from Crewe after SNG was replaced with 47 805 which would haul the train as  1Z73 to London Euston. Pictures by Roland High.

Daylight engineering trains - report by Geoff Morris

The afternoon of Saturday 11 May was notable for the scheduling of three  engineering trains from Crewe Basford Hall to Colwyn Bay in the middle of the afternoon.  These trains typically run during the hours of darkness, so this gave me the opportunity to record them photographically in sunny conditions.  The trains left Basford Hall at approximately 30 minute intervals  which also gave me a chance to vary my photo locations.
The first train (6Y43) was 66572 (above) hauling a long string of JNA wagons containing new ballast and was photographed passing through the City Walls.

The next train (6G70) was a GBRf working with 66 767 Kings Cross PSB 1971 - 2021  on a short train mainly carrying new sleepers and was photographed passing the Racecourse.

The final train (6Y46) was 66 587 As One  We Can on a mixed rake that included more new sleepers plus 2 sets of Autoballasters and was photographed passing the Locks.   This was my first opportunity to photograph this loco which carries the ONE (OceanNetworkExp) livery which is officially described as magenta (but looks pink to me).

Weekend at  Rhyl - report by Ivor Bufton

Over the weekend of 11 and 12 May all trains terminated at Rhyl, meaning the crossovers got a lot of use, here we see 197 107 and 197 046 crossing from the down (after departing platform 2) to the up just east of Rhyl station whilst forming 1V93 07:40 Rhyl to  Cardiff Central on 11 May.

There were quite a few loco-hauled engineering trains over the weekend, here is 66 504 taking the centre road through Rhyl as it heads to the worksite with 6Y42 06:47 Crewe Basford Hall to Colwyn Bay on 11 May.

On occasions all three roads at Rhyl station would be occupied, even if only for seconds, as the works trains passed centre road. Seen here are 197 008 waiting in Platform 2 with 1H83 08:12 Rhyl to Manchester Airport as 66 504 passes centre road at 08:12. Waiting in Platform 1 is 221 101 which will form 1A28 08:56 Rhyl to Crewe on 11 May.

The first returning train with spent ballast was 66 564 top and tailed with 66 546 working 6Y44 18:12 Colwyn Bay to Crewe Basford Hall, seen leaving Rhyl 64 minutes late at 19:25 on 11 May.

There were many Rail Replacement vehicles in use, but this one caught my eye, still proclaiming to be proud of having served Skye and Lochalsh for 50 years whilst parked at Llandudno Junction on 11 May.

In reality it is the company not the vehicle that has served Skye and Lochalsh for 50 years. To celebrate 50 years of bus services on Skye, local bus operator Stagecoach in 2021 has repainted one of their buses in the same paint scheme as the service had in 1970 when it was operated by Highland Omnibuses.

Naming note re last issue: the other Wrexham football named unit is 197 004.

An Hour at Shrewsbury - with Alan Crawshaw

I called into Shrewsbury station in good time for my train home on 7 May and soon after, 97 302 arrived with 3Q15 18:23 Coleham Lmd to Coleham via Wrexham and Bidston.

Next up was with the 16:49 Cardiff Central to Manchester Piccadilly,

The next departure from platform 4 being 67 008 hauling the 17:14 Cardiff Central to Holyhead.

There was just enough light for me to photograph it also at Bangor.

Seen at Northwich - by Richard Snook

Northwich 16 April 12:20: 66 780 The Cemex Express Hindlow - Small Heath loaded stone

26 April, 14:20: 66 708 Glory to Ukraine 4H61 Small Heath - Hindlow empty box wagons.

26 April, 12:00: 66 951 6J34 Runcorn - Bredbury empty 'Binliner'.

A new DVD

John Wilkinson writes: 'British Rail Motive Power 1981-1999 volume 13 ' has now been released.  There is one chapter featuring North Wales. Some interesting shots are:- 40 009 hauling failed DMU at Conwy, two 08s shunting at Holyhead, 40 167 on the Cob with containers, double headed 25s, 56 067 with MGR wagons for the road tunnel plus plenty of action with 37s and 47s. Another chapter features  Guide Bridge in 1981/82 with 25s, 40s and Pairs of 76s plus Manchester Victoria in 1982 and a ride behind 40184. The DVD is available from Videoscene for £14.95.

Visit to Llangollen - with Ken Robinson

The weather looked promising on Saturday 11 May, so I visited The Llangollen Railway where GWR 2-8-0 3802, and 47 449 were in action.

Glyndyfrdwy.   I travelled behind, and followed, the 47, which had recently been given its TOPS number 47 449. Here are a couple of photos I took in the beautiful sunshine.

From Dave Sallery's archive

A class 101 with some of its passengers on a stopping service at Abergele, 22 July 1985.


47 330 with the Birmingham - Holyhead Freightliner passing Prestatyn, 19 July 1989.

47 846 on an Inter-city service to Holyhead passes the remodelling works at Rhyl, 18 March 1990. These involved removal of the up fast line, the up bay platform and a new facing crossover.

47 853 at Llanfairfechan on a Holyhead - Manchester service in 2004. This  is now in the fleet of Locomotive Services Ltd.

Class 507 appeal  - text by Robert Hampton

On 25 October 1978 a new era dawned on Merseyside’s railways when Queen Elizabeth II travelled from Moorfields to Kirkby on a brand new class 507 electric train. 46 years later that very same train, once again resplendent in blue and grey livery, is heading for retirement after travelling over five million miles in service.   The picture shows 507 001 at Birkenhead Hamilton Square on 10 March 2024, working a West Kirby - West Kirby service via the Liverpool loop. Picture by Paul Knapton.

The Class 507 Preservation Society has reached an agreement with Angel Trains, the current owners of the fleet, to take possession of the former Royal Train when it is withdrawn from service.

The society plan to move the train to the Nant Mawr visitor centre at the Tanat Valley Light Railway just south of Llangollen. Nant Mawr is home to a wide variety of locomotives and rolling stock, as well the UK's largest collection of industrial monorail equipment (including some used in a James Bond film). There are also award-winning nature trails through the surrounding woodland with many parts of the site having step-free access.

However, the society needs £10,000 to move the train from the scrapyard to their safe location, and they need it in time for the train’s final withdrawal in July. They have launched a crowdfunding campaign which aims to cover their transport costs and keep the train secure for future generations.

Visit the society website at to donate to their Crowdfunder appeal and claim a range of rewards, from limited edition badges to being able to sponsor your very own seat. You can also send a cheque, payable to “Class 507 Preservation Society” to 54 Woodsorrel Road, Liverpool L15 6UD. The crowdfunding appeal closes on 29th June 2024.

The class 507 trains have served the Liverpool City Region well in their 46 years. We hope we can repay their service by raising the funds needed to give 507001 a well-earned retirement in the Shropshire countryside. Lots of people will have happy memories of travelling on these trains, from a day out at the beach to night out on the town.

But without the help of people who remember travelling on these trains they are now destined to be sent to South Wales where they will cut up and turned into razor blades. We don’t want to see that happen; we want to preserve this train and then tell the story of how the railways helped build the Liverpool City Region.

Many people travelling to and from work by train have a favourite seat where they prefer to sit. Now, the society is offering you the chance to have your name on your seat and help save this historic Scouse royal train from the scrapyard at the same time.

[Nine units, including 507 001, remain in service, mainly working on the West Southport service.]

Looking back: RH&DR Part 2 - by David Pool.

The tunnels under Littlestone Road at New Romney station were built when the line was extended to Dungeness a year after the RH&DR opened in 1927.  The original platforms at New Romney were at road level, so new low level platforms were constructed, becoming the main platforms used.  The road level platforms were eventually closed and the site was used for an extension to a station building.  No.5 Hercules was photographed with a Dungeness train on 29 August 1970. 

This was the first of the two 2-8-2 locomotives ordered when a proposed line from Hythe to Sandling Junction was being considered.  The line to Sandling Junction was never built, and the two 2-8-2 locomotives shared duties with the Pacifics.  No.5 was rebuilt in 1936 for use on ballast trains, then found fame as the locomotive used during the War to patrol the line with an armoured train carrying soldiers with Lewis machine guns and anti-tank rifles. 

No.11 Black Prince was a visitor to the International Garden Festival in Liverpool, as pictured in the Notice Board for 8 April 2024.  The name it was given when built by Krupp in 1937 was Fleissiges Lieschen, the name being incorrectly spelled as Leischen on various RH&DR web pages.   I believe the name is the German version of Busy Lizzie, which makes sense when it is claimed to mean Small Flower.  I prefer Black Prince!.  It was photographed at Hythe on 24 July 1979. 

A green locomotive with chocolate and cream coaches is particularly pleasing, as No.7 Typhoon is leaving Pilot Halt on 25 July 1979.  The RNLI building on the left houses the Dungeness Lifeboat, and was newly built in 1977.  The RNLI has provided Dungeness with the most modern Lifeboats, recognising the valuable service they have given in the English Channel. 

The arrival of No.14 in 1989 from TMA Engineering marked the change from “all steam” operations on regular services.  Designed by the RH&DR, it is powered by a Perkins diesel engine driving a gearbox and torque convertor, with worm drives to all axles.  I confess that I was not overjoyed to see a diesel arriving at Dymchurch from Hythe on 13 October 1990, but it was clearly a useful addition to the locomotive fleet. 

In 2001 it was named Captain Howey, in memory of the founder of the RH&DR.  The level crossing at the end of the platforms is well protected by traffic signals, but unfortunately this was not always the case on the RH&DR.  There were a number of serious level crossing incidents, most of which occurred when local residents disregarded the need for caution, and after several fatalities (including one engine driver) the safety requirements at crossings were addressed with urgency.

I was particularly pleased to see No.1 Green Goddess, the best known of the early RH&DR locomotives, on 13 October 1990 near Pilot Halt.  Today the line remains unfenced here, but the road crossings now have barriers and lights. 

Dungeness is claimed to be one of Europe’s largest expanse of vegetated shingle.  The view from the Old Lighthouse on 18 September 2001 shows No.6 Samson with an eleven coach train heading back to New Romney.  The RNLI station is in the top centre of the image, with the French coastline in the distance.  It has been suggested that during the War an aircraft pilot intending to attack a train was confused by the scale, and crashed when he was unable to pull out of a dive.  This seems to be a myth, but at least one aircraft was proven to have been shot down from the armoured train. 

The Canadian Pacific outline No. 9, now named Winston Churchill, was at Dungeness station on 18 September 2001.  The Lighthouse visible on the left is the latest of the five Lighthouses which have existed at Dungeness.  The Old Lighthouse (the fourth to be built) was nearer to the Nuclear Power Station, which then would have obstructed the view of its light from vessels in the Channel.  The new Lighthouse is nearer to the shore and automatic in its operation. 

No coverage of the RH&DR would be complete without reference to The Bug, now brought out only on special occasions.  I never saw it on the RH&DR, so I have included another shot from its visit to the Ravenglass and Eskdale Gala in 2019.

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