Monthly Archives: September 2012

Canal News – Trent & Mersey Canal Breach Appeal

Waterway Watch

 Trent & Mersey Canal breach Appeal

The Canal & River Trust have launched an appeal to raise funds to help repair the breach on the Trent & Mersey canal caused by the extraordinary recent weather.

The 240-year-old Trent & Mersey Canal is a bustling artery of our canal network and key part of the Cheshire Ring providing jobs in the local area, habitats for a huge range of waterway wildlife and a much-valued nationally recognised route for walkers and cyclists.

Picture of the Breach

 When launching the appeal, The Canal & River Trust (CRT) made the following statement:

“As a result of the recent breach we’ve had to close a 12-mile stretch to navigation while we carry out the massive repairs necessary to secure the canal. Canal breaches are exceptionally rare, although they are extremely expensive to fix and the repair bill for the damage on the Trent & Mersey Canal is estimated at £1.5 million.”

“We’re asking you to make a donation to this emergency appeal to help us rebuild the canal embankment and complete other flood repairs. While we hold a contingency fund that can be used to deal with this kind of emergency situation, this is money that we urgently need to spend on essential maintenance and repairs right across the network.

Using this money to repair this breach will inevitably prevent other important work being carried out this winter – unless we are able to raise additional income now.”

“By making a donation today you will be contributing directly towards the labour and materials needed to complete this work.”

David Baldacchino, waterway manager explains: “The money that you donate will help fund the repair of the breached canal bank and complete a significant repair to a bank near Middlewich which has also been damaged by the flooding.

£1.5m is equivalent to 30 sets of lock gates replaced, a third of our current annual dredging programme or three years worth of the money that we expect to spend painting bridges.”

Donate by text

To donate £5 by SMS, text BREACH to 70800.

You will be charged £5 plus one message at your standard network rate. The Canal & River Trust will recieve a donation of at least £4.97 from all major networks of your £5.

By using this service you agree that we may contact you in the future. If you would rather we didn’t text DECLINE to 70007.

Amended Stoppage: Trent & Mersey Canal

Between Middlewich Big Lock 75 and Lodge Lane, Bridge 213 Preston Brook

Tuesday 25 September 2012 until further notice

Amended Stoppage: Trent & Mersey Canal

Between Middlewich Big Lock 75 and Lodge Lane, Bridge 213 Preston Brook

Tuesday 25 September 2012 until further notice

UPDATE (11 October 2012): Trent & Mersey Canal Breach – Manchester Ship Canal Passages

We have now been able to finalise the approach that we want to take in enabling people to complete their journeys where these have been interrupted by the breach on the Trent & Mersey Canal which, for most, will involve the use of the Manchester Ship Canal and Weaver.

There are some significant constraints that we need to consider, not least of which is the commencement of stoppage works around the network on the 5th November as well as the need for boats to be surveyed for seaworthiness and paperwork completed for the Manchester Ship Canal Company.

To enable people to get back to their home moorings/ journey end in the wider network, we are going to prioritise those boats currently within the isolated section on the Trent & Mersey Canal, and with the furthest to travel or most stoppages to pass first of all. There are no stoppages planned on the Cheshire Ring before Christmas, but the stoppages planned for the Shropshire Union Canal south of Barbridge will need to commence on time as will the stoppage at Northgate Locks. Provided that people wishing to travel into the isolated section are below Northgate Locks by the 5th November, their final return will not be affected by stoppages – although it is our intention to facilitate movements earlier than this.

We are going to focus on moving people to/ from the network via Ellesmere Port. A number of people that we have talked with have expressed concern about using the ship canal and we acknowledge that this can be an intimidating environment, especially for first time users. The trip to Ellesmere Port from Marsh Lock can be completed in less than 3 hours; travel to Manchester via Pomona Docks involves the transit of a number of locks and takes much longer. There is the potential for groups to become separated too all of which makes that a far more daunting proposition. It is our belief that by prioritising movement in the way that is outlined here people will have time to complete their journeys, and the reverse route around the Cheshire Ring. Of course, if people want to take the route via Pomona Docks they are free to do so and can arrange this privately with the Manchester Ship Canal organisation. The Trust has agreed to fund the cost of the seaworthiness survey and admission at Ellesmere Port.

Our expectation will be to undertake surveys each Monday for boats in the next group to travel with a view to passage on the Wednesday or Thursday. This will start on Monday 15th October. If you are one of the people who’s craft needs surveying we may ask you to move your boat to a central point so that we can maximise the numbers of boats surveyed at once. The survey will require you to demonstrate that you have the minimum safety equipment required for the journey – anchor, ropes, life jackets. You will be given some documentation that is required for your journey and asked to sign for receipt of this too. If you do not hold the minimum equipment we would ask you to try and obtain this before the survey takes place. We will have access to some equipment that can be loaned, but that stock is limited. Manchester Ship Canal Company will also need to see a copy of your third party insurance certificate and we will collect that at the time of the survey, this is a requirement of the passage. We will also need confirmation that you have a current Boat Safety Scheme certificate at the time of the survey, however we will not need to take away a copy of this. The certification that you receive will be restricted in its use to daylight hours, and passage between Ellesmere Port and Marsh Lock.

We know that it has been frustrating for people waiting for these arrangements to come together and we thank people for their patience during this time. If you have any concerns about the information outlined above please contact us. We are starting to contact those that have been in touch with us in the last couple of weeks today.

Please contact the Red Bull Office on 01782 785703 for any queries.

UPDATE (09 October 2012): Trent& Mersey Canal – Update 9th October 2012.

Engineering work at both of the affected sites has made good progress in the last week. At Croxton, our contractor has completed a temporary access road and constructed a temporary dam close to the damaged embankment. This has allowed us to start reducing the water levels in the affected area. Tree clearance has been completed and we are now able complete the design for the site repairs. At Dutton, our geotechnical team have completed a review of the site and ground investigation will be undertaken shortly to assist the design of the repairs there. Our outline programme for completing the repairs at Croxton remains Christmas. The programme for Dutton is more vague but a spring completion is a realistic target. We expect to be able to provide more detail on this in the coming week. The canal and towpath will remain closed at both sites until repairs are completed.

In the week we have also been able to establish an independent water supply to the isolated section between bridges 179 and 210. This has been essential to ensure that this section of the canal remains navigable. This week we will be able to re-water the canal section up to bridge 211 and re-float the boats caught there. This will re-water the winding hole here too making for improved access along the canal.

We have now been contacted by 20 boat owners expressing the desire to move away from the area using the Manchester Ship Canal route. We will be contacting these to discuss arrangements for, surveys, equipment, costs and other essential matters for this; and would expect that this can be resolved within the next 2 weeks. Our target is to ensure that people wishing to leave the area are able to do so with sufficient time not to be caught in stoppages remote from the area. If people wish to make their own arrangements to use the Weaver and Ship Canal in advance of this, of course they are able to do so.

If you are considering using this route or are affected by the situation and have not already contacted us, we would encourage you to do so as soon as possible. Please phone our Red Bull offices on 01782 785 703.

Finally, we are hugely indebted to all the people who have donated to the breach appeal which, at the time of writing, stands at £11,000. This includes an enormously generous donation of £1000 from the Trent and Mersey Canal Society, and Birkenhead YMCA donating £250 following sponsored car washing and other activities. Thanks.

Severn Valley Railway Autumn Gala

The Severn Valley Railway Autumn Gala, 2012

We certainly chose the best day to visit the Gala, the  Saturday, with autumnal sunshine all day long, even if it was a little cool at times.

It was good to see, and ride behind, the visiting locos, especially, with a Chasewater  background, the Webb coal tank numbered 7799, which started its life in preservation at the Hednesford headquarters of the Railway Preservation Society (West Midland Branch), while waiting to move on to Penrhyn Castle.

Canal news – Forthcoming Events – Sept 21-2-3 2012

River Sow at Shugborough, Staffordshire

Weighbridge pub beer festival

21 – 22 Sep 2012

09:00 am – 20:00 pm

Try a wide range of beers at the Weighbridge, a traditional pub by the Worcester & Birmingham Canal.

Call the pub on 0121 445 5111.


The Weighbridge

Scarfield Wharf



B48 7SQ

 Worcester and Birmingham Canal at Alvechurch, Worcestershire

The Alvechurch Boat Centre and marina are on the right (and behind) at Scarfield Wharf.

 The Worcester and Birmingham Canal was built in stages between 1791 and 1815 to connect the River Severn in Worcester to the Birmingham Canal System using a quicker route than the earlier Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal.

 Grain, timber and agricultural produce were carried to the Midlands. Industrial goods and coal were carried down towards Worcester, often for onward transport to Bristol. Later, salt carrying was added as a regular cargo. Pairs of donkeys were often used in preference to horses, maybe because they could easily be put onto the boats which had to be legged (or pulled by tug) through the four tunnels near Birmingham.  © Copyright Roger Kidd and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Roses and Castles for Beginners

23 Sep 2012

10:00 am – 16:00 pm

Learn to paint the traditional roses associated with decorated canalware

Join our canal art expert and learn the basics of how to paint roses associated with the decorated canalware seen on our canals

10am – 4pm

£25 per person (includes starter materials and lunch)

Standedge Visitor Centre,

Waters Road,




Standedge Tunnel Visitor Centre, Huddersfield Narrow Canal  © Copyright David Dixon and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era 1898 Ivatt 4-4-2T Great Northern Railway

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era

1898 Ivatt 4-4-2T

Great Northern Railway 

No.1529 as running in 1920 in war-time grey livery.

H.A.Ivatt’s first design of tank engines for the GNR suburban services.  Nos.1009,1010,1013-20 and 1501-20 were turned out in 1898-9, Nos.1521-30 in 1901, Nos1531-40 in 1903 and finally Nos.1541-50 in 1907.  Nos.1502 onwards were fitted with condensing apparatus and shorter chimneys for working over the Metropolitan lines, and spent most of their earlier lives in the London area.  From 1921 onwards, however, they were displaced by larger Ns Class 0-6-2Ts and sent to country branches, the condensing apparatus being in most cases removed, and some being fitted for pull-and-push working.

Their numbers were increased by 3000 at the grouping (the first engine had become No.1009A owing to the construction of a new No.1009 in 1920, and duly became No.4009A).  A few were scrapped in 1937-9, and those that remained were renumbered 7350-99 in 1946.  Most of these survived to become BR 67350-99, and the last of the class did not disappear until 1958.

Driving wheels – 5’ 8”,  Cylinders – 18”x 26”,  Pressure – 175 lb., Tractive effort – 18424 lb.,  Weight – 62 tons 6 cwt., LNER classification – C12,  BR classification – 2P

1505 –

Some Early Lines & Museum – Lytham St. Annes Corporation Tramways

Some Early Lines & Museum

 Lytham St. Annes Corporation Tramways

The Chasewater Railway Museum has been given a small wooden box with a copper lid, inscribed ‘Lytham St.Annes Corporation Tramways   1896 – 1037’

Inside the lid is the inscription ‘British Insulated Cables Ltd. Prescot, Lancs’  and ‘Manufactured from Empire Copper’

The handle is made from a piece of the tramway cable.

    Map of the Lytham St Annes Corporation Tramways

The Lytham St. Annes Corporation Tramways and its predecessor companies operated an electric tramway service in Lytham St Annes between 1903 and 1937.


Tramway schemes in Lytham St. Annes had been proposed since 1878, but no progress was made until The Blackpool, St. Annes and Lytham Tramway Order of 1896. Under this order, a tramway was constructed from the terminus of the Blackpool tramway at South Shore Railway Station. The new line opened on 11 July 1896, operated by the British Gas Traction Company. The extension to Lytham opened in February 1897, and the fleet of compressed coal gas trams eventually reached 20. The gas powered trams were not successful, and horse cars were also obtained. The scheme was eventually unsuccessful and the company sold out.

The Blackpool, St. Annes and Lytham Tramways Company purchased the assets of the former company for £115,000 (£9,227,226 as of 2012), and in 1900 an act authorised an electric tramway to rebuild the route. The newly electrified tramway was opened on 28 May 1903.

On 28 October 1920 St. Annes Council purchased the assets of the company for £132,279 (£3,939,484 as of 2012). The trams were rebranded with the inscription “St Annes Council Tramways”.

In 1922 the borough of Lytham St. Annes was incorporated. The trams were re-branded with “Lytham St. Annes” and later “Lytham St. Annes Corporation”


The last tram between Lytham and St Annes ran in 1936. The remainder of the system closed on 28 April 1937.

192 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces From Chasewater News – Summer 1996 – Part 3

192 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces

From Chasewater News – Summer 1996 – Part 3

P Way News – Arthur Edwards

Since the last article was published the P Way gang has had a number of new members join us and the extra manpower has enabled us to carry on a number of tasks at a greater speed than originally planned.  This has enabled us to fence in an area next to the lower compound entrance gates, so we now have a fenced in area for the storage of rail and other heavy items of P Way material.

Also the fence from the foot-crossing between the two compounds to the bottom compound has been realigned to allow the relaying of the sidings alongside the shed road.  Work is also in progress to design the layout of a head shunt behind the current shed therefore allowing access to the shed from both ends.

Further down the line a number of fence posts have been replaced where they were broken down by trespassers onto the running line and along with bits of hedge growing up alongside is starting to make things much harder for the local idiots.  The only bit of bad news about this fencing is that we can no longer use barbed wire where the public footpaths or public areas come up to our fence.  I have mixed feelings about this as I know one or two of the members would like to use razor wire backed up with land mines!!

With the first decent spell of dry weather the perennial job of weed killing was carried out, and not before time as the track was starting to disappear beneath the undergrowth again.  It has been proposed that a further application of the poisonous stuff be applied sometime later in the summer – weather permitting.

The P Way gang meet every Sunday at Brownhills West Station from 10.00am onward.  Come and join us!!

Neilson Saddle Tank No.11 – Paget’s Progress – by Paul Whittaker

Neilson 2937/1882

Alfred Paget at Chasewater – June 1978

On the 13th January 1996, a freezing cold morning of -5ºC, I started the hard slog of removing the boiler tubes from No.11.  After many a bruised finger and some colourful language, not to mention seven weekends at it, the final tube fell free from the boiler tube plate at 4.00pm on Saturday 6th April.

After long deliberation and much discussion I and several co-workers concluded that the next move would be to remove the water tank, thus allowing access to the boiler for closer inspection.  As the cost of a crane was as yet out of our reach, we proceeded to jack up the tank until such time as it would be possible to slide it safely down two lengths of rail to its resting place on the platform in the engine shed compound.

The next job was to remove the boiler cladding and insulation, a dirty job but it had to be done.  Meanwhile amongst the organised chaos that is generated when stripping a steam locomotive down, we removed the dome plate.  This was in order to provide access to the interior of the boiler for a very slim young man, otherwise known as Christian Hatton to get inside and remove the remaining collapsed tubes, and around 3cwt of rust.  While all this was going on, the washout and fusible plugs were removed from the firebox.  The steam cleaner proved to be invaluable in removing the rust and crud from the water jacket around the firebox.  As a result of all this, the boiler is now ready for the boiler inspector to cast a cursory eye over it a prelude to a proper test inspection.

As work progressed on No.11 that magic word ‘money’ reared its ugly head again, and after some serious consideration my very good friend and colleague David Borthwick and I decided to start a fund to raise the necessary cash to renovate Alfred Paget, and entitled the fund ‘Neilson Steam Aid’, to which my good wife Janet will administer and collect donations.  In addition to this, Dave has put together a Stock Book, which documents basic information on most of Chasewater Railway’s rolling stock and locomotives.  This booklet is on sale in the station buffet at 75p per copy.

On a more personal note, I would like to say that I am overwhelmed by the help and support, to say the least, and of the amount of technical information that I’ve received from fellow members at Chasewater, without which I would have been like a beached whale.  And so I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank all of those involved with the on-going renovation of Neilson Saddle Tank No.2937, otherwise known as ‘Alfred Paget No.11.

Alfred Paget last steamed in 1982, and is still a way off yet – in 2012.


Canal News – Events Sunday September 16th

Anglesey Branch,  Wyrley & Essington  Canal

Community bike ride along the Grand Union Canal

16 Sep 2012
10:00 am – 11:45 am

Join a Sky Ride local ride along the Chocolate Trail.

Covers the Grand Union Canal starting and finishing at Rowheath Pavillion, Bournville.

Sky Ride Local rides are fun, friendly and free community bike rides that help you get out and explore your local area. They’re led by a British Cycling trained ride leader who can provide support and give you a few tips, whatever your age or ability. To find a ride and book a place go to

Saul Junction cream tea cruise – Gloucester

Queen Boadicea

16 Sep 2012
14:00 pm – 17:30 pm

Relax and enjoy scones and cake on the Gloucester & Sharpness Canal

This longer afternoon cruise to Saul Junction on the Gloucester & Sharpness Canal provides an opportunity for you to enjoy scones and cake onboard while you look out for the abundance of wildlife on the canalside and spot beautiful narrowboats moored along the way. There will also be a short stop at Saul Junction for you to stretch your legs and explore on foot, all for £16 per person. To reserve a place on the cruise telephone 01452 318200.

Gloucester and Sharpness Canal at Saul Junction, Gloucestershire

Saul Junction Bridge has been swung aside and the light is green, allowing Uncle Albert passage towards Gloucester. This telephoto assisted image foreshortens the boat considerably compared to the other image which reveals the boat to be about 60 feet or more long. The Stroudwater Canal, not navigable at present, is off to the right by the house.  © Copyright Roger Kidd and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Chasewater Railway Gala Day 2, Sunday 9-9-2012

Chasewater Railway Gala Day 2,

Sunday 9-9-2012

Videos & stills from day 2, unfortunately again from Brownhills West – need more variety!

Next time I shall have to try and get out more!

A quick though on the G Scale  – there are some very nice models but it would be nice to see more than one running at a time.

Chasewater Railway Industrial Gala – Day 1, Saturday 8-9-2012

Chasewater Industrial Gala – 8-9-2012

Video clips and a few stills from the Chasewater Railway Industrial Gala, taken at Brownhills West Station on the first day of what seemed to be a very successful Gala


Some Early Lines Conwy Valley Line Llandudno Junction- Blaenau Festiniog Line

Some Early Lines

Conwy Valley Line

(Llandudno Junction- Blaenau Festiniog Line)

Manchester – Llandudno express approaching Llandudno Junction

View eastward, towards Colwyn Bay and Chester: ex-LNW Chester – Holyhead main line, with the branch to Blaenau Ffestiniog curving away to the right up the Conwy Valley. This is the 13.40 from Manchester Exchange via Chester, with No. 44687, one of the two later Ivatt-modified Stanier 5MT 4-6-0s with double-chimney, Caprotti valve gear and roller-bearings (built 6/51, withdrawn 1/66).  © Copyright Ben Brooksbank and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

  Conwy Valley Line

Bala and Festiniog Railway

The Conwy Valley Line (Welsh: Llinell Dyffryn Conwy) is a railway line in north Wales. It runs from Llandudno via Llandudno Junction (Welsh: Cyffordd Llandudno) to Blaenau Ffestiniog, and was originally part of the London and North Western Railway, being opened in stages to 1879. The primary purpose of the line was to carry slate from the Ffestiniog quarries to a specially built quay at Deganwy for export by sea. The line also provided goods facilities for the market town of Llanrwst, and via the extensive facilities at Betws-y-Coed on the London to Holyhead A5 turnpike road it served many isolated communities in Snowdonia and also the developing tourist industry. Although a little over 27 miles (43 km) between Llandudno and Blaenau Ffestiniog the journey takes over one hour. Most of the stations along the route are treated as a request stop.


The first section from Llandudno Junction to Llanrwst (now called North Llanrwst) was built as the Conway and Llanrwst Railway and opened in 1863. The LNWR took over in 1863 and opened the extension to Betws-y-Coed in 1868.

Goods train coming off the Conwy Valley branch at Llandudno Junction

View eastward, towards Colwyn Bay and Chester on the ex-LNW North Wales main line, Blaenau Ffestiniog on the branch. The locomotive (running bunker-first) is LMS Ivatt 2MT 2-6-2T No. 41235 (built 9/49, withdrawn 11/62). A DMU recedes eastward on the main line.  © Copyright Ben Brooksbank and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

 The next extension was to Blaenau Ffestiniog to access the output of the large slate quarries there. The LNWR first proposed a narrow gauge railway via the steeply graded Lledr Valley to Blaenau Ffestiniog. After construction began, it was decided that the extension would be built to standard gauge, allowing through running of trains. Between 1874 and 1879 the railway tunnel underneath Moel Dyrnogydd was bored, allowing the extension to open in 1881.

Steam has now virtually disappeared from the old LNWR branch from Llandudno Junction to Blaenau Festiniog.  The last Surviving regular steam train is the daily goods, usually hauled by an ‘Ivatt’ Class 2  2-6-2 tank.  No.41228 approaches Llanrwst on 10th August, 1960. – Derek Cross

Blaenau Ffestiniog’s other standard gauge railway, the Bala and Festiniog Railway, was closed to all traffic in 1961, and a portion was flooded in the creation of the Llyn Celyn reservoir. A rail connection was desired for the nuclear power station under construction at Trawsfynydd, and a connecting line was built from Blaenau Ffestiniog North to the site of the demolished Blaenau Ffestiniog Central station for freight use. With the reconstruction of the Ffestiniog Railway, passenger services were relocated to a new joint station on the site of the old Central station in 1982. Regular freight traffic to Trawsfynydd ceased in the 1990s, and the power station is being decommissioned.

A railcar set from Llandudno to Blaenau Festiniog leaves Bettws-y-Coed on 10th August, 1960.  This branch was originally projected as a narrow gauge line to link up with the Festiniog Railway. – Derek Cross

Modern services

Blaenau Ffestiniog Railway Station

 On the left of the picture, Arriva Trains Wales British Rail Class 153 DMU 153327 stands at the standard gage platform for a Conwy Valley Line service. While on the right of the picture the narrow gage Ffestiniog Railway locomotive Linda is about to run-round the train in preparation for the journey to Porthmadog. Note also the different platform heights for the different gauges.

Date 18 June 2006  Source Own work  Author Chris McKenna (Thryduulf)

Chris McKenna (en:User:Thryduulf), the copyright holder of this work, hereby publishes it under the following license:   This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported, 2.5 Generic, 2.0 Generic and 1.0 Generic license.

 The line from Llandudno Junction to Blaenau is single track, and includes the longest single track railway tunnel in the United Kingdom (over 2.5 miles / 4.02 kilometres). Between Llandudno Junction and Llandudno the service uses the double track branch line from the North Wales Coast Line. The fully signalled passing loop at North Llanrwst is the last remaining between Llandudno Junction and Blaenau Ffestiniog and trains on the branch must stop at the signal box there to exchange tokens for the single line sections on either side.

North Llanrwst station platforms – railcar leaving for Blaenau Ffestiniog

Photo taken by  Noel Walley  Date 9 June 2006 (original upload date)

 Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts.

The train service is operated by Arriva Trains Wales and is being marketed as the Conwy Valley Railway (Welsh: Rheilffordd Dyffryn Conwy). A feature of the service is the availability on Conwy Valley trains as well as on local buses in Snowdonia of the new “Tocyn Taith” day ticket. The services run every three hours on weekdays and Saturdays, with six departures per day each way in total. There is also a limited (three each way) summer Sunday service in operation from the beginning of the summer timetable in May until early September

From 20 May 2007, Concessionary Travel Pass holders resident in Conwy and Gwynedd have been able to travel free of charge on the Conwy Valley Railway line between Llandudno and Blaenau Ffestiniog, as well as between Llandudno Junction and Llandudno on all Arriva Trains Wales services, as a result of funding provided by the Welsh Assembly Government. Also, there are plans to upgrade the line to take slate from Blaenau Ffestiniog to the coast, sponsored by the Welsh Assembly Government

150253 heading into the Lledr Valley in the Summer of 2007. This unit has now been repainted into Arriva’s standard livery.

Author Elganthomas

 Licensing:  I, the copyright holder of this work, hereby publish it under the following licenses: Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled GNU Free Documentation License.

  The original line terminated at the North Western station (where there were extensive slate yards) to the west of Blaenau Ffestiniog town centre. However, following the closure and removal of a section of the former Great Western Railway line from Bala, a short section of new railway was built alongside the Ffestiniog Railway Company’s narrow gauge line in order to connect the Conwy Valley Line with the isolated section of the GWR line, which had been retained to serve the nuclear power station at Trawsfynydd. Years later a new Blaenau Ffestiniog station was constructed in the centre of the town. Beyond the new station, the line was used only for goods traffic connected with Trawsfynydd, although occasional special passenger trains have been run at times. In recent years, the traffic from Trawsfynydd has ceased completely and the line has been disconnected from the Conwy Valley Line just outside Blaenau Ffestiniog station.

There are connections at Llandudno Junction with the North Wales Coast Line (the main line between London and Holyhead) and at Blaenau Ffestiniog with the Ffestiniog Railway to Porthmadog.

For her last few years ex LNWR superheated ‘Precursor’ class 4-4-0 No.25297 was stationed at Chester, often working over the branch to Denbigh and Corwen.  Prior to that, in 1947, she was at Llandudno Junction working the North Wales coast trains, sometimes loaded up to ten bogies.  An unusual duty was this turn on the Blaenau Festiniog branch, ‘Sirocco’ was the last of the LNWR 4-4-0s and at one time there was talk of preserving her, but she was withdrawn before the more enlightened era of locomotive preservation had begun. – C.F.H.Oldham