News from 2017-june-peter-sams-party

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Christmas Quiz - the answers

I We hope that you found the Quiz somewhat diverting and took your mind away from the truly awful telly offering. Inevitably, there are some debatable answers – but here goes with the “official” version. You will recall that the task is determine if the place is real or fictitous; if real – where? If Fictitous – where does it appear?

 1.  North Pole – a real place. Formerly the depot for Eurostar, it has now been taken over by Hitachi for maintaining the new InterCity Express trains. The depot is located alongside the Great Western mainline just outside Paddington. The depot was built on the site of North Pole Jcn, which formerly linked the GW mainline with the West London Line via Kensington Olympia. The junction itself was originally named after a local pub.

2. Lake, The Lake and Lakeside Loop (three places) – all three real. Respectively, on the Isle of Wight, one the North Warwickshire Line (Birmingham to Stratford) and the Rudyard Lake Railway.

3. Crouch End. An interesting one! The intent of the question was that it was a fictional place, and was the tube station shown in “Shaun of the Dead”. However, there WAS a real station, on the line from Finsbury Park to Alexandria Palace. The platforms still exist, and the footpath is worth a visit!

4.    Hobbs End. Fictitious – this was the station used for Quatermass and the Pit (what ever happened to B&W telly??).

5.    West Ashfield   fictitious. This is a mock-up station used by LUL to train staff. It is located in Ashfield Houe in West London. It is astoundingly life-like.
Bonus question: 4 & 5 can be found in close proximity. Where? The answer is derived from the fact that Hobbs End is also one of the station names used on a model railway used by LUL to train staff, and is also located in Ashfield House.

6.    Junction Road Junction. How could that be anything other than Real? On the Gospel Oak – Barking line near Gospel Oak (north London), provides a link to the Midland Main Line.

7.    North Haverbrook (bit of a clue – not actually a railway as such….). This was the town in The Simpsons episode “Marge vs the Monorail”. An object lesson in urban transport planning for us all. It was a documentary – right?

8.    Westbourne Oak. Fictitious – a tube station used in the film version of Paddington.

9.    Mobil Avenue. Also fictitious – an american transit station used in The Matrix Revolutions. The name is an anagram of Limbo, and hence will be familiar to any commuters on the Brighton main line.

10. Bungalow – real, on the Snaefell Mountain Railway. Frequently seen in videos of the TT races just before the crash and the subsequent air ambulance bit.

11. Gorsafawddacha’idraigodanheddogleddollônpenrhynareurdraethceredigion. Real – sort of. A commercially-inspired re-name of a station on the Fairbourne railway. Wikipedia tell us that it translates to the Mawddach station and its dragon under the northern peace of the Penrhyn Road on the golden beach of Cardigan Bay. 

Bonus question: What would this score in Scrabble? This question caused some head scratching. There are several versions of the correct answer.

Nil – because the word is far too long. Good answer to a daft question.

Nil – because the word has too many “D” letters to be played. Also true.

108 – a good answer in the spirit of the question.

But it was then pointed out that as this is a Welsh place name, the Welsh scrabble set should be used. The word is still far too long, and cannot be played (but this time because you run out of the letter G). The score would, I believe, be 103, but that is open to some debate depending on how the various digraphs are counted. However, this news story would seem to suggest that not many Welsh scrabble sets have been sold. 

12. Milford. The intent was Fiction, it’s the station in Brief Encounter (filmed, as everyone knows, at Carnforth). However, it was overlooked that it’s also a station on the Portsmouth Direct line near Guildford. I wonder if that station is also in black and white and populated by people with smuts in their eyes?

13. Hatley. Fiction – the station used in “Oh Mr Porter”, shot on the Severn Valley Railway.

14. Hollerton Junction (which is also served by which heritage railway?). Fiction – The Archers, and it’s served by the Blackberry Line. Young Henry has been taken for a trip on the Blackberry line and sadly was not pushed under the wheels of the train.

15. Grumbly – Fiction. The headquarters of the  Merioneth and Llantisilly Rail Traction Company Limited, who operated Ivor the Engine. 

16. Pen Cob. Real – a short lived station on the Ffestiniog Railway near Boston Lodge.

17. Decoy. Real – a still extant set of sidings just south of Doncaster. Allegedly got its name because it was intended as a “decoy” to attract enemy bombers from the main marshalling yards. Since it was very close to the main yards, and WW2 bombers counted “in the same county” as a direct hit, it is unclear how much of a decoy it really was.

18. Arlesburgh West. Fiction – the terminus of the Arlesdale Railway on the Isle of Sodor (where Thomas lives).

19. Vauxhall Cross. Fiction – seen in the Bond film “Die Another Day”.

20. Mornington Crescent. Obviously fictional, unless one is in Nip, in which case…...I will offer a relatively safe Gants Hill.

So, a winner? Not an easy one. Mr Alan Fryer, the Trust PWay Engineer was the first person with a nearly full set of answers. But Mr Geoffrey Ingram raised the issue of Welsh Scrabble. So I’m going to call them Joint Winners. Well done, chaps and a (serious) thank you to those who also entered. Sadly, I do not have a picture of Mr Ingram, but Alan can be seen in characteristic pose explaining reality to a buffer stop.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 6 January 2017


The Moseley Railway Trust is delighted to announce that they are the recipients of a PRISM grant from Arts Council England.
The grant, for more than £13,000, will be used to fund the restoration of a historic diesel locomotive in the Moseley Railway Trust collection. The locomotive was built by the Motor Rail & Tramcar Company Ltd of Bedford in 1918 as their number 1320. It was built as a 40hp locomotive intended for operation by the British military light railways which served the front lines of the First World War. No.1320 was a “protected” locomotive – that is, the bodywork was intended to give some protection to the crew from enemy fire. However, No.1320 did not leave Bedford until September 1918, and hence was too late to see any active service in the First World War (which ended in November 1918).
As with so many such locomotives, it was sold second-hand (having probably never been used by the military!) to a Hertfordshire gravel quarry, where it had a hard (but productive) life in industry until it was preserved in 1978. It is now owned outright by the MRT following a bequest by its late owner in 2012.
When new, this locomotive would have been fitted with a Dorman 4J0 petrol engine. However, when at the quarry, it was heavily rebuilt with the current Dorman 4DWD diesel engine. At, or around this time, the bodywork was changed to give the loco its current appearance.
The locomotive will be sympathetically restored to the condition in which it worked at the gravel quarries. The history of the locomotive that is the subject of this appeal typifies the whole history of narrow gauge railways in industry; it was built for military use, but spent its working life in civilian hands. The quarry company rebuilt and adapted the locomotive to meet their own needs.
When complete, loco 1320 will form an interesting contract with another 40HP Motor Rail locomotive in the Moseley Railway Trust collection – no.1369, which is still in “military specification” condition.
It is planned to complete the restoration of No.1320 during 2017, which will allow the locomotive to be demonstrated at the Moseley Railway Trust’s 2018 Tracks to the Trenches event, which will take place in July 2018.

Phil Robinson, Chairman of the Moseley Railway Trust, said We are really grateful to Arts Council England for their support. This restoration project will be delivered by our volunteer members, so not only will the loco be restored, but our members will be able to learn new skills and pass experience to our younger members.

Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 9 January 2017


Plenty going on at Apedale at the moment; the closed season is when the rate of working needs to increase – if nothing else, it stops us freezing solid. The steam locos all had a ride around the yard today in order to get the Joffre ready for its boiler exam. It also took the opportunity to test a modification to a set of points which had caused that loco some issues in the past – all seems to be well now. Road 3 of the Red Shed is being re-configured to form a dedicated charging bay for the battery locos. In the past, we have had the chargers on a rail wagon. However, due to the linear nature of railways, getting the right loco near the charger wagon has proven to be nearly impossible. Battery locos are easy to drive and economical, and hence it makes sense to use them whenever possible for yard shunting. The Red Shed has been re-roofed recently (indeed, it now has a souble skinned roof), and hence is pretty dry, but a “tertiary roof” has been added over the site cleared for the chargers just to make sure that water and electricity don’t meet. There’s still more to be done – like actually installing most of the chargers – but it’s looking good so far.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 21 January 2017

Let there be light

Another busy weekend at Apedale. A major shunt on Sunday was needed to extract the Howard petrol loco; this left the yard looking as though a diesel gala was in progress. The Diesel Gala isn’t until 7 & 8 October, and hopefully will be rather better attended. The Howard needed to go onto the inspection pit for attention to its sanding gear. Meanwhile, in the shed, the Ffestiniog Coach has gained its first working light fitting (the previous lights were recovered by the FR for their own vehicles). We are using 12v LED fittings, which will run off an on-board battery. As you will note, electrical lighting caued some wonderment to one of our members. He comes from Manchester, so not too surprising. Very much a prototype fit, we will now proceed to fit all six such lights. As part of the testing/development phase, a non-battery 12v supply was needed, so hence the writer’s ancient train set controller was extracted from the loft and pressed back into use. This controller is, in fact, older than the coach itself (or the coach body at least – the underframe dates back to 1926).

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 29 January 2017

2017 January - Long Weekend Working Party Progress Report

20-23 January 2017



The morning was spent completing the fitting of the motion to William Finlay and placing in its final position. We also tidied up around ‘William’ and removed the surplus packing material from the museum and stacked it appropriately. We carried out a line inspection between Wharf and Pendre as well as removing a large quantity of grass and weeds growing in the ballast. An audit of the sleepers at Wharf was also carried out.


Saturday was ‘Line inspection day’. We made a start at Abergynolwyn, first we went to Nant Gwernol, then to Quarry Siding. The hedging gang who were carrying out some prep work with a train kindly gave us a ride back to Abergynolwyn for lunch. After lunch we drove to Brynglas and inspected the line between there and Quarry Siding. While the line inspections were being carried out others used the pole saw to remove overhanging branches on the same sections.


On Sunday we split the available gang between leaf removal with the leaf blowers and future work planning linked to further line inspection work. We also took a quantity of scrap to Wharf and obtained additional fuel for the leaf blowing gang. The leaf blowing gang started at Quarry Siding and headed west. We remove the leaves for several reasons including fouling the drainage and making line inspections very difficult. The leaves in places along the line collect in huge drifts nearly a foot deep. Line inspections were carried out between Pendre and Hendy Bridge and Rhydyronen and Brynglas.


The day was spent continuing with the leaf removal west of Dolgoch and clearing the drains. They made excellent progress and by the close of play they were about 100metres west of 4 ½ milepost.

Very many thanks to everyone who came along to enjoy three days of sunshine and help with tasks outlined above. The weather was a little chilly at times but it did not stop the good work. Many thanks again, your assistance is much appreciated.

Forthcoming opportunities to help your railway:

  • Long Weekend 10-13 February 2017

  • Spring Outdoor Week 25 Feb -5 March 2017

Advance notice is always very helpful!

Report by Keith Theobald

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 30 January 2017

2017 January - Hedgelaying

28th and 29th January


Volunteering on a heritage railway does mean opportunities to learn some unique skills – usually related to engines, carriages or track. One new skill a large gang decided to learn last weekend was hedgelaying. Properly managed native hedges provide us with a good sheep-proof fence, look more traditional than wire fencing, create wildlife habitats and help prevent soil erosion.

A couple of regular volunteers had taken part in hedgelaying courses and they offered to teach others their skills. A good cross section of volunteers came along - drivers, guards, firemen, various committee members, outdoor gang members and people who just fancied trying something new. The majority of the gang were women, possibly something unique in the heritage railway world! Although it did mean we had plenty of tea, coffee, biscuits and cake.

The aim of the weekend was to continue the hedgelaying already achieved along Doldeheuwydd Bank, between Brynglas and Dolgoch Stations. The exisitng blackthorn bushes had grown high, blocking the views from the train up towards Cader Idris. The bushes were cut back and selected branches were ‘pleached’ – laid down horizontally and interwoven with upright stakes to form a framework for new growth. Over the next couple of years the new shoots will be cut and trained to form thick hedges. New bushes will be planted in the gaps.

The gang worked in two teams – one to work on trimming back the bushes and one to take the accumulated ‘boscage’ by train to the dumping site near Dolgoch. Volunteers rotated between teams to get a break - it’s hard work sawing branches, pleaching and bashing in stakes! Everyone had a great time and we’re looking forward to the next hedgelaying weekend.

Many thanks to Becky, Dave, Keith and Chris for organising a brilliant weekend.

Article by Karen Willans. Photos by Sarah Freeman, Keith Hayes, Martin Lester, Karen Willans and Andrew Young




The hedgelayers and train with plenty of boscage to collect
Laying branches
Pleaching a branch ready to lay
Saturday hedgelaying progress
Geting rid of the boscage from the hedgelaying by the lineside
Halfway there - Saturday progress
Sunday's section before work begins
Pleached branches
Pleaching with an axe
Loading up the boscage train
The Hedgelaying Gang and their work in progress
Hedgelaying - newly improved views up Doldeheuwydd Bank
Final view of the weekend's work as the last of the boscage is loaded up

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 30 January 2017

Driver Experience Dates

We have released the dates for the “Tracks to the Trenches Driver Experience” days for 2017 – they are Friday 24th March, Sunday 26th March, Monday 3rd April, Monday 24th April, Friday 8th June, Monday 26th June, Friday 7th July. We may add further dates later in the year depending on enquiries received. Full details are here

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 2 February 2017

Training on the Trains

We have had a Training and Assessment day at Apedale. This has focussed on re-assessing a group of mainline passenger drivers and Guards. We are required by law to have a training and assessment regime which is every bit as rigorous as a mainline operator. The days of “if the face fits, you can be a Guard” are long gone. Whilst this regime can be quite onerous, it does mean that both our volunteers and the management team know exactly who is authorised to do what job, and everyone is trained and assessed against a common set of standards – no favouritism and none of “clique problem” which afflicts some organisations. It also means that any of the volunteers can become part of the training process – but acheiving the necessary standard takes some time and commitment. A spin-off benefit is that we have documentation demonstrating the competence of our people, which is useful when Apedale locos visit other railways – we can demonstrate the competence of the crews which may accompany the loco. We are always looking for new volunteers, please get in touch here.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 5 February 2017

Diana at May Gala

The Moseley Railway Trust is pleased to confirm arrangements for the 2017 railway gala at the Apedale Valley Light Railway. This year’s gala, to be held on May 13 and 14, will mark the centenary of the Kerr, Stuart locomotive “Stanhope”. Kerr, Stuart were a Stoke-on-Trent based locomotive manufacturer – so “Stanhope” is now preserved less than five miles from where it was built. However, the intervening century saw it work in England, Scotland and Wales!
The gala will be themed around Kerr, Stuart products, and the visiting locomotive line-up will reflect this. The Trust looks forward to welcoming Phil Mason and his locomotive “Diana” to the railway. “Diana” will also mark its centenary in 2017, and is the only “Sirdar” class Kerr, Stuart loco in Europe; there is one other preserved in Namibia. “Diana” was used on the long-closed Kerry Tramway in Wales, and now operates on the Bala Lake Railway. The locomotive steamed again in 2015, 65 years after being taken out of traffic.
Further visiting locomotives are under negotiation and will be announced in due course; suffice to say that the Trust is aiming to have the largest-ever gathering of Kerr, Stuart locomotives in preservation at Apedale in May! There will be the usual supporting cast of model railways and trade stands, plus military re-enactors in the recreated World War One trench system.
The Trust will also be launching a new book telling the story of “Stanhope” and its’ astonishing survival – the loco owes its survival to an argument between two well-known personalities from the early years of narrow gauge preservation!
Phil Robison, Moseley Railway Trust Chairman said “We are all looking forward to bringing Diana home to Stoke-on-Trent; the Stanhope Steam Gala looks like being another really good weekend at Apedale. The MRT has developed a reputation for top-notch railway galas, and we are expecting this to be no exception!”
The “Stanhope Steam Gala” will be held on May 13 and 14. Admission will be £6 adults, £3 children.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 7 February 2017

Press Release - Talyllyn Railway is 'Loving It Local' over Half Term

We’re ‘Loving It Local’ during the half term week between 18 and 26 February 2017.


Twice as many trains will run, at half the usual fares, as part of the Railway’s annual thank you to the local community. Called ‘Love It Local’ there will also be children’s activities at Tywyn Wharf station during the week including a colouring competition.

Trains will depart for Nant Gwernol from Tywyn Wharf station at 10.30 am, 11.40 am, 2 pm and 3.10 pm and all fares are half price. In addition, Kings Café at Wharf station will be open all week serving hot and cold meals, and the Quarryman’s Caban at Abergynolwyn station will be open for snacks and light refreshments.

Chairman of the Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society Ian Drummond comments:

‘We deeply appreciate all the support given to the Railway by the local community during the past year, and one of our aims is to build more links into the future. This Railway has served the local community for 150 years, and we hope it will continue for many more. Therefore, this is our way of saying thank you and this year we’ve made it bigger and better than ever. We hope that many people will come along and join us during the week whether it’s to ride the train, have a meal or simply say ‘hello’, you will be more than welcome’.

On Saturday 25 February there will also be an opportunity for those interested in getting involved in volunteering on the Railway with their ‘Try Your Hand’ day.

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk or phone 01654 710472.

Photo by Ian Drummond.


No 2 Dolgoch at Tywyn Wharf station, complete with Welsh daffs

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 11 February 2017

2017 February - Loco Working Party Update

Update from 4/5 Feb working party at Pendre


No 2 Dolgoch was the main focus of the working party. The plugs, blast pipe and blower ring were refitted. New gauge glasses were fitted, the ashpan overhauled and refitted, firebars replaced and new brake blocks put on. The smokebox and firebox got a fresh coat of paint. The loco was hydraulic tested to check the plugs don’t leak.

No 4 Edward Thomas has had the inside cab, buffer beams and running plates painted.

No 7 Tom Rolt’s safety valves were lapped, and the dome cover refitted.

Thanks all for your hard work.

Photos by Mike Morris.

Painting inside No 4 Edward Thomas' cab
Brake block replacement work on No 2 Dolgoch - why they need replacing!
Brake block replacement work on No 2 Dolgoch - new block

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 13 February 2017

Talyllyn Railway Press Release - More Historic Milestones

 On 19th February 1867, two months after the first public passenger trains ran on the Talyllyn Railway a new timetable was issued.


This was significant because it makes the first mention of Rhydyronen station, two miles from Tywyn and the original intermediate station on the line.

The timetable also shows that now all trains originated from Tywyn and returned back from Abergynolwyn. Previously trains had started from Abergynolwyn and returned from Tywyn. It is believed that the reason for this was that work on the construction of the locomotive shed at Tywyn Pendre station had now been completed. This makes this probably the oldest continuously used narrow gauge locomotive shed in the world.

To mark this 150th anniversary a photo was organised at Tywyn Pendre station featuring the railway’s original locomotive No.1 Talyllyn, itself 152 years old, and the Railway’s current General Manager, Tracey Parkinson, who was dressed in suitable Victorian garb for the occasion.

In the photo Talyllyn Railway General Manager, Tracey Parkinson, is seen in conversation with Andy Crookell, the fireman of locomotive No.1 Talyllyn on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the completion of the locomotive shed at Tywyn Pendre seen in the background.

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk (subject: Website%20query) or phone 01654 710472.

Photos by Barbara Fuller





Tracey Parkinson chats to the fireman of No 1 Talyllyn outside Pendre Shed
No 1 Talyllyn at Rhydyronen - marking 150 years since the station opened

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 20 February 2017

Press Release - Talyllyn Railway Has Record Week Despite Doris

The Talyllyn Railway had a record February half-term week carrying nearly 33% more passengers than the same period last year.


Even Storm Doris failed to reduce the passenger numbers with trains able to keep running through the bad weather.

Under the branding ‘Love It Local’ the Railway encouraged residents in the area to come and take a ride on the train and discover the facilities on offer. In anticipation of additional passengers the Railway ran more trains than it had previously run during the February half term week. There was also a range of children’s activities at Tywyn Wharf station.

Saturday 25 February saw a ‘Try Your Hand’ day for those interested in volunteering for the many tasks that need to be done to keep the Railway running.

The following week a band of intrepid volunteers were involved in a week of outdoor maintenance carrying out jobs on the track and elsewhere. They too kept going in the face of what were often appalling weather conditions to get the work done.

General Manager, Tracey Parkinson, commented:

‘This is a tremendous start to the new season. We were worried when we saw the weather forecast for the week that passenger numbers might suffer, but thanks to our dedicated operating volunteers and those who maintain the infrastructure we kept the wheels turning. Our café was also busy serving food from breakfast time until the last train returned. It was great to see so many people enjoying themselves. We also signed up many new members for the Preservation Society and had several new volunteers, so we count the week as a huge success’.

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk or phone 01654 710472.


Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 9 March 2017

An anniversary

So, everyone, 17th March – what’s special about that? Apparently it some sort of Saints Day, popular in Bord Na Mona land. But the real significance of 17th March 2017 is that it is 10 years to the day since the first piece of track of the Apedale Valley Light Railway was laid. Looking back at the photos, it is remarkable how the site has changed in the intervening years. I could make a comment about changes to the people, but best not. What is encouraging is that, of the people in the photos, all are still Trust members and almost all are still regular volunteers at Apedale. You know who you are, chaps!

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 17 March 2017

2017 February - Talyllyn's Spring Outdoor Week 2017 progress report

Tasks completed during Spring Outdoor Week


Nant Gwernol


Quarry Siding


Milepost 4-4 1/4



Investigating an issue with a joint in the crossing, this involved dismantling part of it.

Milepost 2 1/2

Digging out the blocked and choked drain east of milepost 2 1/2 (3 days of very muddy digging)


Resetting 3 platform edging slabs

Hendy Bridge

Ty Mawr Bridge

Rail Stacks


Wharf Cutting

Tree inspection


Keith would like to take this opportunity to say thank you very much to everyone who took part in Spring Outdoor Week 2017. The weather was less than ideal at times and it was suggested that there might be a trades description issue with the word “Spring” however there were plenty of daffodils, snowdrops and primroses to cheer the Gang up.

Thanks are also due to the support teams who facilitated the making and delivery of the gang’s sandwiches, produced an excellent meal for the gang on the Tuesday evening, the evening entertainment providers, and digger drivers.

Update by Keith Theobald.

Photos by Tony McIlwrick and Keith Theobald.


Brynglas re-laying - removing old track
Brynglas re-laying - down to the mud ready for new ballast, sleepers and rail
Brynglas re-laying - nearly done!
Abergynolwyn west end - turnout work
Rhydyronen platform edging
Hendy Bridge repointing work

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 19 March 2017

FR117 has an outing

It’s been a Big Weekend for the FR117 coach project. The bogies were fitted last weekend and the air connected up. The new electrical system has been tidied up to the extent that the coach could move; this involved the usual wrestling match with flexible conduits which seemed to take their inspiration from irate boa constrictors. With that done, it was time to summon an air-brake fitted diesel loco and Give It a Go. It’s fair to say that this was a bit of a nervy moment; however much measuring takes place, it’s always good to see things work in reality. The first step was to make sure that it would fit through the shed door – remember, it has changed a LOT since it was put in the shed. Then, careful checks were made as the coach traversed the sharper points in the yard, and onto the station. Measurements of stepping distances were made, and this needed a run down the mainline to Apedale Road platform. This also allowed a test of the new passenger emergency valve, which was found to be very effective. All seemed to go quite well, so the coach has now been returned to the shed. The electrical work is well advanced. Key stages now are the repaint and cleaning/refitting all the interior. However, we’re pretty confident that FR117 will now carry passengers at Apedale during the forthcoming operating season.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 19 March 2017

Two Wrens for the Gala

The Moseley Railway Trust is pleased to confirm two more visiting locomotives for the 2017 railway gala at the Apedale Valley Light Railway.
Continuing the theme of the event – which is the Kerr, Stuart locomotive company of Stoke-on-Trent – is Kerr, Stuart 3128. This is one of the iconic “Wren” class locomotives. This locomotive has had a particularly interesting career, including crossing the Atlantic four times! It was built in 1918 for a factory at Avonmouth which supplied Mustard Gas to the British forces fighting in the First World War; after the end of hostilities, the factory became the National Smelting Company producing zinc products. In 1959, the loco was exported for preservation to Canada. The loco was returned to the UK in 2013 and was restored at the Statfold Barn Railway to full operating condition. It was returned to its owner in Canada; tragically, problems in Canada prevented its operation, and it returned to Statfold in 2016.
The visit to Apedale will be the first time that this locomotive has operated away from its Statfold base; the Trust wishes to thank Graham Lee, Henry Noon and the Statfold team for allowing the locomotive to attend the event.
The second locomotive is also a Wren – but a much more recent incarnation. The modern successor to the old Kerr, Stuart company is the Hunslet Engine Company, based at Statfold Barn Their number 3905 of 2005 is named “Jennie” and is now based at the Amerton Railway, near Stafford. Owned by the Gully family, the locomotive has previously visited a number of UK narrow gauge railways, but will be a first-time visitor to Apedale. The Trust is grateful to the Gully family for facilitating the loan of this fascinating locomotive.
Phil Robinson, Moseley Railway Trust Chairman said “Having two Wren class locomotives on site at Apedale will be really exciting. This is the design of locomotive which most people associate with Kerr, Stuart. We think that having five Kerr, Stuart designed locomotives in operation is a record in preservation. It will be fascinating to compare two locos which are very similar in design, yet are 87 years apart in age. This must surely be another record – the longest production run of a product design!”
The “Stanhope Steam Gala” will be held on May 13 and 14. Admission will be £6 adults, £3 children.

More details of the Trust and the Apedale valley Light Railway can be found on Facebook or on the website here.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 21 March 2017

2017 season starts HERE

This Saturday is the first day of the 2017 operating season – the first train is at 1130, and then every half hour until 4pm. It’s looking to be a great year; we’re celebrating the centenary of our favourite steam loco – “Stanhope” – at the May Gala, and we have the first-ever Diesel Gala in October. We’re running every Saturday now until October, plus Bank Holiday Mondays and some Sundays. Visit here for the full timetable. Fares are unchanged at just £2.50 adults, £1.50 kids – what’s not to like? Come on down and enjoy a train ride down the Valley.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 28 March 2017

A Sunny weekend

A glorious sunny weekend has seen our first Steam Trains of the season, with the Hudswell Carke doing the honours. We hosted a 70th Birthday – happy Birthday, Mr Birch – and the birthday boy enjoyed taking the controls of the loco (under supervision, of course) for a couple of hours. Wearing a white shirt was a gutsy move, but he seemed to get away with it.
Meanwhile, various projects have pushed on. The FR coach now has completed drawgear at both ends, and just to prove it, we used the Hudswell to shunt it round the yard – the first time it’s moved with steam traction since leaving North Wales (Wot? No Double Fairlie? – the coach was heard to mutter). In the workshop, work has started in earnest on Motor Rail 1320 – this is the 1918 loco which was rebuilt to quarry condition, and will be restored, with the support of a PRISM grant, to the condition in which it worked in industry. It is fair to say that some of the bolts haven’t been out since 1918, and seem quite determined to stay that way, thank you.
Next Weekend, it’s Easter Egg Hunt with steam trains on Saturday, Sunday and Monday – what could be better?

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 9 April 2017

Easter Approaches

Just a quick reminder that we’re running trains Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday. The Easter Egg Hunt is on – can you spot the eggs from the train? We’re also hoping to have some donkeys on site giving rides. Trains will run from 1130 to 4pm each day, and it’s just £2.50 for adults, £1.50 for kids 3-16.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 11 April 2017

Tickets for the Stanhope Gala

An important announcement regarding tickets for the Stanhope Gala – 13 & 14 May. We aren’t doing advance tickets by post for this event – BUT you will be able to buy tickets from the shop at Apedale for the event from this weekend. It’s a great way to beat the queue on the day. Tickets are just £6 for adults, £3 for children 3-16 and there’s a family ticket at £15 (2+2). We’ve also re-vamped the Access All Areas passes aimed at serious enthusiast photographers – £20 buys you access to the whole site for both days of the event plus the Friday set-up day – including access outside the public hours PLUS unlimited train rides and footplate rides on the locos. Only a limited number of passes are made available, and again these can be bought in the shop beforehand or from the gate on the day.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 13 April 2017

Easter 2017

Well, folks, that was Easter 2017. The weather was distinctly mixed (can we have a refund, Met Office), but lots of interesting stuff happening at Apedale. We have received the first visiting loco for the May Gala. This is a rather splendid Kerr, Stuart Wren which lives at Statfold, but arrived at Apedale after an outing to Beamish. If you think that makes it a well-travelled loco – that’s nowt. It’s also been across the Atlantic ocean twice! ISC on the tank is Imperial Smelting Company, a firm near Bristol which began in the First World War making mustard gas. We have therefore issued rubber gloves and NBC suits to the crews allocated to the Wren. The Wren arrived alightly before the new loading arrangements at Apedale were completed – this is a concrete pad, which will make loading and unloading locos to road transport much quicker and – most importantly – safer. The pad is in place, and just need connecting to the main railway system. This sounds simple, but it involves crossing the main site access road, and the levels are, to put it mildly, all over the place. In between all of this, we ran a lot of passenger trains, and entertained many passengers – the Easter Bunny even made an appearance. Finally, the Wren has now been put into store in the sheds – but it will be in steam for a photo charter on May 7th – look up 30742 charters on Facebook for more details.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 17 April 2017

Crossing the road

The days to the May Gala are ticking down fast (May 13 & 14) and hence the rate of working has also picked up tempo. A Must Do job was to finish the new loading pad and the trackwork connecting it to the rest of the railway system. Not as straightforward as it sounds, because the tracks have to cross the main site access road. This road is also used by our neighbours with regular HGVs – so it not only had to be done in a day, it also had to be done right. Fortunately, everyone worked really hard, and we were rewarded to the site of the ever-faithful Ruston No.29 exploring yet another new bit of railway. No.29 is a real workhorse, and has probably been the first loco on most of the railway system at Apedale. At the opposite end of the spectrum is LBU class Ruston number 497542 of 1963; this one is very much a “back of shed” loco, but we had a party who had come all the way from Argentina to see it (apparently). So, it was extracted and given a run. At least one regular member had never even seen it outside before – so he was happy! Steam trains on three days next weekend – it’s a Bank Holiday. Likely to be the Joffre’s first outing of the year – the wood pile will therefore shrink dramatically over the weekend.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 22 April 2017

Talyllyn Railway Press Release - Local Rotarians Honoured for ‘Race The Train’

Tywyn Rotary Club were recently honoured with an award for organising ‘Race the Train’


There was a special gathering at Tywyn Wharf station on Thursday 20 April 2017, when past and present members of the Rotary Club of Tywyn were honoured by the awarding of the Wallasey Cup, presented by District 1180 of Rotary International Britain and Ireland for the best club project for organising the ‘Race the Train’ event for the last 33 years. Godfrey Worsley, for many years the Race Director, originally came up with the idea for the main race, which has become internationally famous, and features runners ‘racing’ a Talyllyn Railway train between Tywyn and Abergynolwyn and return, a total distance of some 14 miles.

Since it started in 1984 the event has grown hugely and now attracts runners from all over the world eager to take part in this gruelling challenge. Runners wanting to beat the train have to complete the course in under 1 hour 47 minutes. Over the years the race has raised over a quarter of a million pounds for charity.

The event now features a variety of different races over a number of distances to suit different abilities, which has added to its popularity. This year’s event is scheduled to take place on Saturday 19 August 2017, and the Tywyn Rotary Club is looking for volunteers to help assist with the event.

For more information about the race please visit their website at

The photo shows local Rotarians past and present gathered at Tywyn Wharf station to be presented with the Wallasey Cup for their organisation of the ‘Race The Train’ event.

Left to Right: Maciek Wood-Kaczmar, John Derry, Lawrence Garvey, Ritchie Owens, Graham Clarke, John Lloyd Jones, Anthony Pearson (President), Elwyn Price, Tracey Parkinson (General Manager Talyllyn Railway), Godfrey Worsey (Former Race Director), George Watson (Current Race Director), John Sidebotham, Nancy Clarke (Senior Vice President), Elfyn James, Paul Cartwright, Peter Saunders, Stephanie Purcell.

(Photo: Darren Turner)

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk or phone 01654 710472.



Local Rotarians past and present gathered at Tywyn Wharf station

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 30 April 2017

Talyllyn Railway Press Release - Passing of David Woodhouse MBE

On Friday 21 April 2017 the funeral was held at St Cadvan’s church in Tywyn for the Talyllyn Railway’s former Traffic and General Manager, David Woodhouse MBE.

The service was led by Talyllyn volunteers Rev Nigel Adams assisted by Sue Whitehouse, and was attended by family and friends including a sizeable contingent from the Talyllyn Railway both staff and volunteers, as well as representatives of the Heritage Railway Association.

At the start of the service the current Talyllyn Railway General Manager, Tracey Parkinson, laid a special key token on the coffin marked for the journey between Earth and Heaven. The service also included a tribute from David’s son Tim, who spoke of his father’s love for railways and the Talyllyn in particular.

David was an early volunteer on the Railway when he was employed by the Midland Red Bus Company, and was the guard on the original Coronation specials which were run in June 1953 for the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth. He became increasing involved in the operational side of the Railway and was appointed Traffic Manager in 1966. With Bill Faulkner as Managing Director and John Bate as Chief Engineer this was to be the management team which oversaw the Railway during one of its greatest periods of expansion, including the extension to Nant Gwernol which opened in May 1976.

In his role as Traffic Manager David became one of the most recognised figures on the Talyllyn, universally known as ‘Traffman’. He did much to improve the operational standards on the line, and for his inspection trips along the Railway the blockmen even had a special bell code to warn each other of his whereabouts. However, at least one blockman was caught out having sent the ‘Traffman leaving section’ code through to have a voice behind him saying “No he hasn’t!”.

In 1982 David was appointed the Railway’s General Manager until his resignation in December 1992. However, he then went on to work with the Heritage Railway Association for many years, but remained resident in Tywyn.

Among his other achievements was the establishment in 1969 of the Great Little Trains of Wales marketing panel, which still promotes and represents the narrow gauge railways of Wales today. In recognition of his services to the Welsh tourist industry David was awarded the MBE in 1989. He died after a short illness on 11 April 2017 aged 84, leaving his widow Margaret and children Richard John, Tim and Sam.

Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society chairman, Ian Drummond, commented:

“David’s passing marks the breaking of another link with our past. For those of us who came to the line in the 1960s, 70s and 80s David was very much part of the fabric of the Railway, and indeed in many ways was the Talyllyn. Under his influence the Railway very much became what we know it today, particularly in terms of its operational professionalism.

We have been delighted to have David back on the Railway in an official capacity in recent times. These included the re-enactment of the Coronation Specials for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2013 when he was interviewed by the BBC, although unfortunately that segment was not broadcast. He was also present for our ‘Road to Adventure’ gala in May last year when we celebrated forty years since the opening of the line to Nant Gwernol. He will be much missed, and the turnout at his funeral marked the respect with which he was held. Our thoughts are very much with his family at this time.”


The photo shows David Woodhouse (left) with Gareth Jones on the occasion of the re-enactment of the original 1953 Coronation trains in 2013. David was the guard on the original trains and Gareth the fireman. Photo: Ian Drummond.

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk or phone 01654 710472.

David Woodhouse (left) with Gareth Jones in 2013

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 30 April 2017

Talyllyn Railway Press Release - Come and ‘Give It A Go’

The Talyllyn Railway is inviting people to ‘Give It A Go’ over the weekend of 3rd and 4th June 2017.


There will be the chance to find out what it is like to volunteer on the World’s First Preserved Railway. But the weekend isn’t just for railway enthusiasts, because many of the Talyllyn’s volunteers aren’t enthusiasts either, just people who have fallen in love with the Railway and its community and decided to get involved.

Whatever people’s interests there are plenty of opportunities to be had, including working:

•On the locomotives

•As Guard or Blockman

•On the track

•In the workshops



•Working in the shops and cafes

•As a Museum attendant

During the two days there will be the chance to find out what is involved in all these roles including what training is required, as well as look behind the scenes, meet with other volunteers and find out what it’s like to work on Railway. What brings many of our volunteers back is the sense of community that they find with those working on the Railway, with many commenting it is just like a big family.

In addition, many younger volunteers have found that being able to write about what they do on the Railway on job applications has helped them to find employment in their chosen field. Several Talyllyn volunteers now occupy senior positions in the rail and associated industries.

To take part all people have to do is to contact our Volunteer Co-ordinator stating which day they are thinking of coming on and what roles they would be interested in finding out about. This will enable us to tailor a programme suitable for them. Our volunteer co-ordinator can be contacted at volcoordinator [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk (subject: TR%20website%20enquiry) , alternatively you can leave a message at Tywyn Wharf station on 01654 710472 and someone will get back to you.

Photo by Darren Turner.

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk or phone 01654 710472.


Driving and blocking are two of the roles volunteers undertake on the Talyllyn

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 30 April 2017

Talyllyn Railway Press Release - Tracey Parkinson to become General Manager of East Lancashire Railway

The Talyllyn Railway today announced that their General Manager, Tracey Parkinson, will be leaving on 7 July 2017 to take up the position of General Manager of the East Lancashire Railway.


During her time on the Talyllyn Tracey has spearheaded many developments and innovations on the Railway. News of her impending departure has been greeted with regret on the Railway, but also wishing her well for the future.

Commenting on Tracey’s appointment to her new role David Ventry, Chairman of the Talyllyn Railway Company, said:

‘We are sad to see Tracey leave after her time with us. She has brought a fresh perspective on many aspects of the work here and will leave the Railway in a much improved situation. However, more than that, Tracey has won a place in people’s hearts and we will miss her as a person, for her warmth and enthusiasm, her willingness to get stuck in to even the most menial chore and her ability to listen and make people feel valued. These are qualities I have no doubt will serve her well at the East Lancashire Railway and I am sure she will be a great success there.’

Tracey herself says:

‘I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at the Talyllyn and we have made positive steps to strengthen the sustainability of the Railway, with growth in passenger numbers and revenue. I am confident that the team here will continue in this way and deliver the very best for the Railway.’

Mike Kelly, Chairman of the East Lancashire Railway, said:

‘The appointment of our General Manager comes at a crucial juncture in sustaining the East Lancashire Railway’s recent upward growth in visitor numbers and revenue along with managing a number of exciting and important station developments which it is hoped will culminate in securing a cross platform connection to the mainline station at Castleton, Rochdale. Achievement of these challenges will consolidate the ELR as a premier North West leisure destination offering a unique heritage experience for our many hundreds of thousands of visitors.

Tracey was an outstanding candidate and comes to the ELR with an abundance of heritage, mainline and customer care experience along with an impressive portfolio of organisational improvements wherever Tracey has worked.

Tracey is rooted in heritage and is a key part of the heritage family nationally and we are very pleased to welcome Tracey as our new general manager to the ELR later this year’.

Also commenting on her departure, Ian Drummond, Chairman of the Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society, stated:

‘Tracey has made a great impact during her time with us and we are very sorry to see her go. However, now we are going to be looking forward and seeking to find the right person to continue the work here. Tracey has helped us put in place many new strategies, and has also kick-started a number of initiatives which we wish to see continue and bear fruit. In recent months we have been working to develop a future vision for the Railway, and this will help guide us in our future decisions. It is our firm desire to see the Railway continue to move forwards and be at the forefront of the Heritage Railway movement.’

Following Tracey’s departure David Ventry will be standing in as Interim Managing Director until a new General Manager is in post.

The photo shows Tracey Parkinson on the footplate of ‘Captain Baxter’ with fireman Will Smith during Talyllyn Railway’s Grand Finale Gala in July 2016. Photo by Darren Turner.

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk


Tracey Parkinson on the footplate of ‘Captain Baxter’ in July 2016

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 2 May 2017

Stanhope Steam Gala

Just to confirm a few key bits of information about the Gala weekend – May 13 & 14. Opening times are 1100 to 1700 both days, with last admission at 1600. Ticket prices are Adults £6, children (3-15) £3 and a family (2+2) £15. The ticket includes one round trip on the railway – further train tickets can be bought if so desired. There are still a few Access All Areas tickets available at £20. Tickets can be bought in advance from the shop at Apedale this Saturday 6th May – or just turn up on the day! We will have six locos in steam – the three residents plus visiting engines from Amerton, Bala and Statfold, model railways, sales stands, the ever-popular Titanic Brewery, living history people in the WW1 Trench – and more.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 2 May 2017

412 years of history

A busy weekend at Apedale preparing for the Stanhope Steam Gala. All three visiting steam locos are now on site, which inevitably means a mega-shunt to get them all safely into the shed. Also part of the mega-shunt is clearing the main shed out to allow the floor to be cleaned so that it is safe to allow visitors in to view trade stands and model railways. In between all of this, normal project works have continued. The large Motor Rail no.1320 is rapidly shrinking as it is stripped down for its restoration – this is not terribly photogenic. On the other hand, the FR coach has been painted and looks rather splendid. Sunday has seen us hosting a photo charter for 30742 Charters – the sun shown and everyone seems to have had a jolly good time. The opportunity was taken to line up all the Kerr, Stuart locos. Simple maths tells us that there is 412 years of history in the photo. Wikipedia tells us that 1605 was the year of Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder plot. Draw your own conclusions!


Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 7 May 2017

MR1320 and the Coach

In between running a steam service, and hosting “Diana” having a last running day before she heads off to Amerton, various other projects have been moving forward at Apedale. The engine of MR1320 has now been stripped back to “block” stage, using the loco frame as a very convenient mobile workstation. It’s fair to say that the condition of many components is as bad as was feared. In particular, the radiator elements are very poorly and also very non-standard compared to other Motor Rails. It looks like someone will have the job of assembling some 22,000 fins onto new radiator tubes. The cylinder liners are also in bad condition, which would largely account for the poor running of the engine. If anyone has any Dorman 4DWD liners down the back of the sofa, do get in touch. Meanwhile, the FR117 coach project is rapidly approaching completion. The coach was taken for a comprehensive test run on Saturday, followed by the slightly scary brake testing process. This all went extremely well, to the point where the project manager was seen to smile slightly at one point.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 29 May 2017

Gala Success

Moseley Railway Trust celebrates successful Stanhope Gala – and looks to the future
The Moseley Railway Trust held the annual railway gala at the Apedale Valley Light Railway on May 13 & 14. The theme for the 2017 event was to mark the centenary of the Kerr, Stuart locomotive “Stanhope”. Kerr, Stuart were a firm of locomotive builders based in Stoke-on-Trent – just a few miles from Apedale.
Three visiting engines attended, two built by Kerr, Stuart, and the third built to a Kerr, Stuart design. With the home-based fleet of Stanhope and a further 1916-built Kerr, Stuart loco, it is believed that this was the largest gathering of Stoke built locomotives in preservation.
The Gala attracted over 1000 visitors. Phil Robinson, the Trust Chairman said “We are very pleased with how the Stanhope Gala went. On behalf of the Trust, I’d like to express my thanks to the visiting loco owners and also to all our volunteers who worked tirelessly to make the weekend a success”.
The centenary of Stanhope was marked with various cakes – edible by humans and edible by engines. The owner of Stanhope – or the “current custodian”, as he described himself – Dr John Rowlands made a speech describing the remarkable story of how the loco survived into preservation. It was a close-run thing! This story has been put into print in a new book written by Phil Robinson and published by the Trust.
Looking to the future, there will be a new enthusiast-focussed event in October. The Diesel Delights weekend – 7 & 8 October 2017 – will see many of the Trust’s collection of internal combustion locos in action. Some will haul passenger trains – in some cases, these will be the first-ever passenger working for locos over fifty years old!
In 2018, the Trust will hold the third of the popular Tracks to the Trenches events, themed around the First World War. The site will be transformed into the Western Front for the weekend – July 13, 14 & 15 2018. The Trust would be pleased to hear from potential exhibitors of WW1-appropriate items, particularly road vehicles.

More details of the Trust and the Apedale valley Light Railway can be found on Facebook or here.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 1 June 2017

Working in the sun

The dismantling of Motor Rail 1320 has taken a major step forward with the main components being craned out of the frame. The frame is now elsewhere for shotblasting, and the engine is in a cradle for further work. The photo of the wheels serves to remind of a key reason for undertaking this project. We have received an offer for the old wheels from Gillette, as the flanges are sharper than any of their razors. This is not, by a long way, the only project happening at Apedale. For example, the large Pechot wagon featured large in these notes a while back, at a time when it was using up weld consumables at a formidable rate. After a bit of a hiatus, the wagon has now been finally assembled and finish painted. We are reminded that it dates from 1888, which makes it one of the oldest – if not THE oldest – vehicle on site.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 4 June 2017

2017 June - Peter Sam's Party

Peter Sam and friends joined us for his party at Abergynolwyn Station on Thursday 1 June.


It was an early start for Peter Sam and Duncan as they set off in the morning sunshine with their special double headed train from Wharf. Rusty’s engineering train followed up soon after. Ivo Hugh and Rheneas joined in, with the engines whistling madly at each other as their trains passed through. The platform and sidings at Abergynolwyn were very full at some points with all the trains going in and out. Great fun to watch and try and work out what was happening next! Luckily the Thin Controller was on duty to make sure everyone behaved.


There was plenty for everyone to do. For the craft lovers there were all sorts of painting, badge making and drawing activities.  Quite a few brightly painted pebbles were added to the new Fairy Glen down the Discovery Path our Tracksiders have created. See if you can find it next time you explore Abergynolwyn Station – it’s well hidden! The legends of the Skarloey Railway were read out for the younger (and young at heart) visitors. You could also get your face painted or try and win the ‘Spot Peter Sam’ competition.


As well as the visiting Skarloey engines, we had miniature railway rides along the platform and Peter Sam’s free station shuttles. Rusty’s shuttles between Abergynolwyn and Nant Gwernol kept the Nant Gwernol Station Master busier than usual.


Down at Wharf the Llechfan Garden Railway was running plus our young Tracksiders were manning activity stalls.  All in all, a busy, fun day out in lovely sunshine for visitors and volunteers alike.


Join us on Thursday 24 August for the next Peter Sam’s Party! Many thanks as always to the volunteers who go to a lot of effort to organise this fantastic event.

Photos by Barbara Fuller, Darren Turner and Karen Willans.

The Talyllyn Railway is the owner of locomotives Talyllyn, Dolgoch, Sir Haydn, Edward Thomas, Douglas, Midlander and Tom Rolt which were written into the Rev. W. Awdry’s stories as Skarloey, Rheneas, Sir Handel, Peter Sam, Duncan, Rusty and Ivo Hugh.


Peter Sam and Duncan's train going through Pendre
Peter Sam and Duncan's train on Dolgoch Viaduct
Rusty's train at Abergynolwyn
Craft activities at Abergynolwyn Station
Miniature train rides along Abergynolwyn platform
Ivo Hugh running round at Nant Gwernol
Peter Sam and Rheneas pass each other at Abergynolwyn
Duncan pases through Abergynolwyn watched by a few admirers
Rusty's shuttle gets the 'Right Away!'
Ivo Hugh approaching Brynglas Station during the afternoon
Peter Sam back in the shed at Pendre at the end of a busy, but fun day

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 5 June 2017

Turtle Tricks

A bit warm down the Valley this weekend – more suited to eating ice cream than working on railways! Nonetheless, progress was made on several fronts. We are providing a temporary railway for the North Norfolk Railway’s World War One event next weekend – called Tracks and Trenches, which is a strangely familiar title. We’re providing two locos – the Tin Turtle and and 20hp open tractor – plus a number of wagons. The locos have been extracted, tested and cleaned ready for the voyage East. Meanwhile, work has continued on MR1320 - which is a close cousin of the Turtle. The engine has reached the “gory oily bits stage”, allowing a view of the big ends, mains and camshaft not seen for many, many years.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 18 June 2017

Snakes on a Train

One could reasonably wonder what is going on here? Have we decided to simplify AVLR operations by fitting some form of remote control, thereby saving all the faffing with running the loco round the train at each of the train? Tempting, but wrong. This is testing the Portable Air Brake Panel (better names are doubtless available). The PABP is intended to allow some of the locos which are not fitted with a permanent air brake installation to be used with the passenger train. Supported by all the necessary risk assessments and the like, this new piece of kit will be the centrepiece of the Diesel Delights event on October 7 & 8. The event will see some of the Trust’s vast collection of historic diesels being given a chance to haul passenger trains, for the first timer ever. So, if you want to see an interesting piece of railway brake technology, plus maybe some trains, put the date in your diary today!

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 2 July 2017


We have been honoured to host a visit from Dr Ailsa, and his glamorous assistant, who should have been called Craig but wasn’t. They cam to lay hands on the Hunslet “Twusk”, and more specifically its rather troublesome Ailsa-Craig two cylinder engine. The problem with this one is that the big end bearings were shot. The engine would run but wouldn’t generate oil pressure, and would then try to seize. The Good Doctor got to work; after an epic day’s efforts, the loco has been restored to health. Well done, chaps! Elsewhere on site, it’s been a steam train weekend with the Joffre doing its level best to broil the crew. A new “temporary” building has also been erected – the objective being to give covered accomodation for the increasing population of restored wagons on site.

Source: Moseley Railway Trust – Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 9 July 2017

Talyllyn Railway Press Release - Chris Smith Appointed Engineering Manager

The Talyllyn Railway is delighted to announce the appointment of Chris Smith as its new Engineering Manager.


Chris comes to his new role with a wealth of experience in the rail engineering industry, both in the mainline and heritage sectors, he has also been a regular volunteer for the past twenty years on the Talyllyn, being a qualified fireman on the Railway.

Having served his apprenticeship as a mechanical fitter he has worked on mainline diesel locomotives, and was the lead engineer on the overhaul of over 600 wagons for Freightliner, as well as a spell with Metronet in London. In addition, Chris has been employed as a contract fitter for the new-build A1 class steam locomotive Tornado. More recently he has been employed at Arriva’s Eastleigh maintenance depot.

In the heritage railway sector as well as his work with Tornado Chris has also led the team restoring the National Railway Museum owned Schools class steam locomotive, Cheltenham, on the Mid Hants Railway, where he is also a volunteer driver. In addition to this he has undertaken many engineering roles on the Mid Hants Railway and so brings a wealth of experience to his role on the Talyllyn.

Speaking of the appointment Chairman of the Talyllyn Railway Company, David Ventry, said:

“We are delighted to welcome Chris to this important position on the Railway. There was a strong field of candidates but we felt Chris offered us what we were looking for in a new Engineering Manager. Of course he is already familiar with the Railway and is aware of the challenges that the job brings. I look forward to working with Chris in the days ahead.”

Chris Smith commented:

“I am very much looking forward to working on the Talyllyn Railway following 20 years involvement as a volunteer, and also having the opportunity to bring skills and experiences from the heritage and mainline railway industries. My family and I are also very excited about having the chance to come and live in Tywyn.”

For further information about this press release please e-mail: pressoffice [at] talyllyn [dot] co [dot] uk.


Chris Smith driving ex-British Railways class T9 No.30120 on the Mid Hants

Source: Latest News

Posted by Peter Bowyer on 17 July 2017

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Nantle Station.


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