Tag Archives: Machynlleth

Some Early Lines – The Corris Railway

Some Early Lines

Google Maps – Corris is at point A, the railway ran from north of that point to Machynlleth and originally to Derwenlas.

The Corris Railway is a narrow gauge preserved railway based in Corris on the border between Gwynedd and Powys in Mid-Wales. The line opened in 1859, and originally ran from Machynlleth north to Corris and on to Aberllefenni. Branches served the slate quarries at Corris Uchaf, Aberllefenni, the isolated quarries around Ratgoed and quarries along the length of the Dulas Valley

The railway closed in 1948, but a preservation society was formed in 1966, initially opening a museum; a short section of line between Corris and Maespoeth was re-opened to passengers in 2002. The railway now operates as a tourist attraction.  A new steam locomotive was built for the railway, which was delivered in 2005. The two surviving locomotives, plus some of the original rolling stock, are preserved on the nearby Talyllyn Railway.

The gauge of the railway is 2 ft 3 in (686 mm).



The Corris Railway

I paid my only – to date – visit to this railway in around 1976/77, when I think there was only the museum open.  Although I spent a fair amount of time in Mid-Wales over the next 25 years or so my interest in heritage lines had not been ignited at that time, so another visit was just one of those things which did not happen.  Nowadays, in retirement, a great deal of my spare time is spent on museum stuff for our local heritage line, but I have always followed news about the Corris Railway with interest.

I came across a magazine with an article about the Cannock Chase Railway and found a paragraph about the Corris Railway – including a few photographs. I shall repeat the paragraph here:

From ‘The Railway Magazine’

November/December 1948

Price  2/-  (10p)

The Corris Railway

When we closed for press with our September-October issue, the fate of the Corris Railway was in some doubt, for, although the ‘Montgomery County Times’ of July 31 had definitely announced its closure to all traffic, the Western Region was unable to confirm this officially.  Actually, the statement appears to be premature, but on August 24, the Liverpool DailyPost’ stated that the line had been closed on the previous day.  Even this closure has not been confirmed officially, mainly, we understand, because of uncertainty as to what ‘closure’ means.  The last goods train ran on August 20, since when traffic has been suspended, and is unlikely to be resumed.  Part of the line has suffered from flood damage, and costly repairs would be necessary to restore traffic.  When the Corris Railway was opened in 1859 as a horse tramroad, it extended from the slate quarries to the shores of the River Dovey.  When the Cambrian Railways were built in the neighbourhood in 1863, trans-shipment arrangements were made at Machynlleth, and the portion of the Corris Railway thence to the river at Derwenlas was abandoned.