Down By Heniarth Mill

It has become something of a tradition that the November meeting of the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway’s Fence 2 Fence Team is a three day event and also incorporates a meal at The Dragon Hotel in Montgomery.

Not everybody can escape the clutches of employment on a Friday so on the first day a group of eight parked at Heniarth Station to unload the tools and equipment. The plan was to work back towards Llanfair Caereinion clearing unwanted vegetation and attending to the culverts and fences. The owners of Heniarth Mill had agreed that we could also cut down some of the vegetation on their side of the boundary. For the railway that meant improved views of the River Banwy and for them some firewood.

Heniarth Sketch Map

 

Light weight track trolley

As the Track Gang were out and about with a works train we had rely on our light weight trolley for moving tools and materials around the site.  The trolley is equipped with a spring brake that has to be held in the off position in order to move it. Let go of the brake handle and it stops. It is easily dismantled and the components fit in the back of a small estate car. Prior to use this season it was examined by Bruce Webber the lines Chief Mechanical Engineer ans signed off as fit for use.

Coppicing alongside the leat that used to feed Heniarth Mill

By the time it ready for use Bob had already got plenty of  small stuff cut down. The water on the other side of the fence is the old leat that used supply the water to the wheel at Heniarth Mill.

Loading the trolley with brash

Loading the trolley with brash. In the distance you can see the yellow ‘caution’ flag and the red ‘Stop’ board protecting the work site.

Heading for the bonfire

The trolley and its load are propelled over the bridge at Mile Post 7 3/4 towards Heniarth Station for unloading.

Blocked stream

Upstream of the bridge there is an old gate across the stream to prevent livestock escaping from their field and into the land belonging to the mill. It traps twigs and branches which then allow leaves and other debris to build up behind forming a dam.

Debris in the stream

As the water level was quite low it was a good day to clear it out.

Stream before clearing

Water trickles through the debris and under the bridge.

Clearing the debris

After fishing all the bigger bits of wood out of the water is was necessary to agitate the water and leaves so that they would flush away down the stream.

Cleared

So for now it is all clear but no doubt it will not be long before we have some heavy rain which will wash down more material to form a new dam.

Flowing culvert

About 70 yards towards Llanfair a drainage culvert benefited a bit of tender loving care.

At the close of work on Friday the landowner appeared and was so impressed with the work done that he asked if we could fell some more trees (willows) on his side of the boundary fence. Well, it would have be rude to have refused, and as they were leaning over onto our side it was agreed to take them down.

On Saturday the team swelled to 18, not including myself as I had planned to check over the Track Gang’s power tools and extension leads. I can report they were all in good condition and fit to use.

Attacking Ivy

Several  trees along this section have ivy growing up them. Whilst this will not directly kill the tree, if it is not in good health, the additional weight can affect the stability especially in windy conditions. Here Chris is cutting the ivy away.

Delivery of logs to Heniarth Mill

Taking down the additional trees down was a good move as at least one was hollow and could well have eventually fallen onto the railway line. The trunks were chopped into movable lengths then carried by train to Heniarth and left by the entrance of the mill.

On Sunday I was allotted the task of Works Train Driver and most of the gang travelled in the Mess Coach with a few joining us on site having taken their cars to Heniarth.

Well somebody had to do it

Jeremy volunteered to don the waders and deal with some branches that were overhanging the old mill leat.

In between driving duties, and with the help of Marguerite,  I checked and and where necessary repaired the fences on both sides of the work site. In all nine new fence posts were inserted. We had brought seven with us and cut a two more from suitable sections of silver birch. Additionally several ‘living’ fence posts were pressed into service. Almost a whole packet of staples was used up in the process.

Loading brash

Loading the dropside wagon with brash. This was taken the short distance to the bonfire and burnt.

View acrosss the River Banwy

As the day progressed the lineside was taking on a new form with views across to the river.

Dormant bluebells

There is going to be a wonderful display of bluebells here in the spring. Lets us hope that winter is not too harsh to cause damage to the plants.

Manicured lineside

The site is now looking neat and tidy. All that is required is some kind person to spend a day or so with a leaf blower clearing the track so that the sleepers can dry out a bit.

All aboard!

Getting ready to leave the site. All in all it was a productive weekend. The next Fence 2 Fence session is on the weekend of 26/27th January 2019 when we will be returning to Golfa Bank to work on the upper section of Quarry Cutting.

If you would like to become a volunteer on the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway please click on this LINK where you find further information. There are a range of opportunities including entry level activities that require no previous experience of railway operations through to the various training schemes for Guards, Station Masters, Footplate Crews, etc. Please note, however, that some roles require a reasonable level of physical fitness.

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Machine Shop Action

For several years 699.01, Sir Drefaldwyn, has been undergoing a protracted re-build at the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway. The locomotive was built in 1944 by Franco-Belge for the German army. After the war it worked in Austria for a while and came to Wales in 1969. It was taken out of service in the late 1990s.

699.01 Sir Drefaldwyn

The loco on display outside the carriage shed at Tanllan during the annual steam gala in September 2009.

Work is currently progressing on the axleboxes. New axlebox slippers were being machined over the weekend of 24/25th November. This work was being done on the XYZ SMX4000 CNC milling machine. The slippers are a  relatively easily replaceable component of the axlebox. As the suspension allows the axleboxes to move up and down the slippers slide against the horn blocks in the frames.

Milling Axlebox Slipper Jig

A block of steel has been clamped into the machine vice and the top is being machined flat. it will form a jig to which the axlebox slippers will be bolted to for the next stage of machining. The block will remain in the machine until the whole batch of components have been processed.

Milling Axlebox Slipper Jig

The same operation as above but seen from further away.

Drilling the fixing holes. NB it is the camera moving about; not the milling machine table wandering. (video length 35 seconds)

Tapping the holes (video length 22 seconds)

Test Fitting of Axlebox Slipper on Machining Jig

A trial fitting of an axlebox slipper on the jig.

Trimming the slippers to the correct length. (video length 80 seconds)

Coded Welder In Action

New horn blocks were welded on back in June. The frames were then sent away to a contractor for them to be machined so they were all straight and square.

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Posted in 699.01, Heritage, Llanfair Caereinion, locomotives, railroad, railway, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway, Workshops | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Rampant Growth

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This picture has got nothing to do with the ‘Rampant Growth’ title of this article. It shows a line of locomotives outside the engine shed at Llanfair Caereinion on the 26th of October. They had been pulled out so that that some work could be done on the The Earl which had been at the back of the shed.


Regular readers of this blog will be aware that back in September the Fence 2 Fence Team began to cut back the luxuriant vegetation in Quarry Cutting. By way of reminder this location is on the extremely steep section of the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway known as Golfa Bank. A member of the track gang, Richard Wiltshire, has unearthed some photos that were taken in March 2009 when this part of the line was being relaid.

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Quarry cutting on Golfa Bank in March 2009. A full fence to fence clearance had been carried out. Note the magnificent spread of snowdrops on the cutting side.

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A view from the same time period looking the other way. They team who cleared this lot did a magnificent job.

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(Photo by Tim Abbott)
A little over nine years later and mother nature has reclaimed the cutting sides. This demonstrates the need to regularly cut back the undergrowth.

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(Photo by Tim Abbott)
Late September 2018 and the Fence 2 Fence Team are getting ready to begin work. You may question why we have this desire to cut back all the greenery.  Here are a few reasons:

  • The gradient is very severe – 1 in 29 (3%). Leaves and sap falling on the rails impairs adhesion particularly when climbing up the hill but it can also make controlling the speed difficult when descending .
  • Fallen leaves carpet the track and trap moisture on the wooden sleepers – this can accelerate the rate at which they deteriorate.
  • The leaves also make it difficult for the track inspectors to see the rail fixings properly and identify any defects.
  • If the vegetation grows too close to the track it could injure passengers who might be leaning out of a carriage window and it most certainly scratches the paint work.

Autumn_leaves_small_copyright_Rosemary_Charman

This photo taken on 4th November 2018, by Rosemary Charman, shows another portion of the Golfa Bank covered in leaves.

Railhead

In this view, linked from Tim Abbott’s Flickr account, you can see that the rail fixings are covered by leaves.

Stop

When lineside work is taking place while trains are running the site has to be protected. The first warning is a yellow flag denoting ‘caution’ and if there is any possibility of the track being obstructed by either people, tools or vegetation then a Stop Board or red flag is also displayed.

Steady Progress

Cutting small hazel saplings. The tall trees to the right are in the Powys Estate woods which extend alongside the railway for about a mile. They are home to deer which sometimes stray onto the track and common buzzards that swoop down from the trees to chase rabbits that are disturbed by the passage of the trains.

Subsumed By The Vegetation

It looks here as if the brambles are about to engulf Phil

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(Photo by Tim Abbott)
Working on the steeper parts of the cutting was potentially hazardous. In this picture your author is putting his experience as a cave explorer to good use. With my feet on the ground and a rope and harness providing a good third point of contact both hands were free to cut down those ash saplings.

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(Photo by Tim Abbott)
The lower end of Quarry Cutting as work drew to close on the Sunday evening. The work has been done by a team of twenty one people using mainly loppers and hand saws although a few small trees were felled using chain saws. Some of the team have now been trained to use brush cutters and these have been useful for clearing away tangled masses of brambles. Thank you the Fence 2 Fence Team.

We plan to back at this site at the end of January 2019. For the November three day session (23/24/25), river levels permitting, the team will be working between Dolrhyd Mill and School Mistress’ Cottage.

Thanks to Richard, Tim & Rosemary for the use of their photographs.

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Posted in Golfa Bank, Heritage, Lineside maintenance, Photographs, railroad, railway, vegetation management, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway, winter | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photographic Charter Trains

So, you would like to visit a heritage railway and take lots of pictures from multiple places, but your chosen line, e.g. the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway, only runs a few trains each operating day? Additionally you think it would be great if they would run some demonstration goods trains and present the loco in an indescribably filthy condition! Hmm surely that is asking a bit much ?

Well no, it is all possible!! Periodically, usually in the autumn, David Williams/Timeline Events, book the railway for a few days. Provided they don’t ask us for the impossible we will endeavour to offer the trains they think that their clients would like to photograph.

Applying Grime

David Williams from Timeline Events is seen here applying ‘makeup’ to The Earl.
From a personal perspective I am happy with a an engine in work-a-day grubbiness condition. Let’s be honest I don’t suppose for one moment that in either GWR or BR ownership that the copper cap on the chimney or the safety valve bonnet got cleaned up more than once a week. Photographs taken in the 1950s show the W&LLR engines were at least given a bit of a wipe over on a regular basis. To my eye the level of weathering applied was over the top and from close up it was clearly painted on. But then again if that is what the clients are paying for ……

Longing For The 'Right Away'

A very grubby looking 822 at Welshpool Raven Square.

The departure time from Llanfair Caereinion on the Monday morning was 08:30 which meant an early start for the fireman and myself. Thankfully the goods train had been made up a few days previously and had been drawn up close to the station. The only shunting we had to do was to pull out a suitable carriage for the photographers to ride in.

So we eventually got under way, propelling the goods wagons and pulling the carriage. As ever with these jaunts the first stop was to be Heniarth for some run pasts over the Banwy Bridge and into the station; a grand word to describe a few old railway sleeper, some stone chippings and an open fronted corrugated iron shelter.

The passenger alighted and the carriage was then pushed along the line for a hundred yards and uncoupled. One of the two Guards, armed with a good book, remained with it.

Goods Train Approaching Heniarth

The Earl approaches Heniarth with a short goods train.

From there it was onwards to Cyfronydd. While the photographers walked along the line to access Phil Morgan’s fields we took the opportunity to top up the engines water tanks. In the photo above you will notice that the wagon immediately behind the loco is carrying a load protected by a tarpaulin. That load consist of a pair of one cubic metre Intermediate Bulk Containers or IBCs for short, some plumbing, a petrol engine driven pump and a long hose. Or put another way a reserve supply of 2000 litres/440 gallons of water.

The Earl near Sign Hut Curve

The Earl trundles around Sign Hut Curve and is approaching Morgan’s Crossing.

After a little over three hours we reached Welshpool Raven Square. The loco’s tanks and the water wagon were replenished and we had a break for lunch. This was also the time for a crew change. Relieved from my role as driver I now assumed the position of the liaison person to interface between the event organiser and the train crew.

The train plodded up Golfa Bank and disgorged the photographers near Hanged Man’s Tree. The coach was taken up above Quarry Cutting where the gradient eases. A number of run pasts were made between mileposts 2 and 2 1/4.

Approaching Hanged Man's Tree

With dappled sunlight filtering through the canopy The Earl approaches Hanged Man’s Tree.

And so it was onto Sylfaen.

Playing To The Gallery

The ‘gallery’ are lined up alongside the Sylfaen Brook as crew of The Earl obliges with yet another processional run.

Below Y Golfa

The Earl has departed from Sylfaen and in the background Y Golfa, clad in scrub and bracken, rises up to 1120 feet above sea level. The role of Liaison Person may seem like a poor way to spend all or part of a day compared to being on the engine but there is a significant benefit. Once the details of the run past have been agreed with the organiser and communicated to the train crew you are free to get out your camera and take a few pictures.

The Daily Goods Train

So with the wonders of digital picture manipulation we can produce and image that might be mistaken for a historic photo from those far off black and white days.
But a closer look will reveal some inconsistencies. There is an 89A shed plate on the loco’s smokebox door – a fitting from British Railways ownership. The second open wagon has got ‘G’ and ‘W’ in large letters – a style that was dropped in the 1930s.

But hey, everyone seemed to have a good day. If it really offends your it would easy enough use photograph tweaking software to re-arrange the lettering to suit.

Back at Llanfair The Earl had to be scrubbed clean to be ready for a series of ‘clean’ engine photos the next day.

Links

Timeline Events
My Photostream on Flickr

Mixed Train Heading To Raven Square


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Posted in Cyfronydd, Golfa Bank, Heniarth, Heritage, locomotives, railroad, railway, Sylfaen, The Earl, Welshpool, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Quarry Cutting

Over the last weekend of September the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway’s Fence 2 Fence Team in were in action. The vegetation in Quarry Cutting has been left unchecked for a long time. With this section of the line having a gradient of 1 in 29 (3.4%) a lack of light coupled with leaf fall can have a serious impact on adhesion and longer term lead to accelerated deterioration of the wooden sleepers.

Quarry Cutting Before 2

A view along quarry cutting – the vegetation is quite lush.

Quarry Cutting Before 1

Looking down the cutting. If this lot is left unchecked for much longer this section of the line will become a green tunnel.

The Lonely Lookout

Because trains were running the Fence 2 Fence team had to be protected and similarly the work had to be managed so as not to endanger the operation of the railway. In this view the lookout is awaiting the arrival of the 14:05 departure from Welshpool Raven Square.

Countess In Action

Work has been halted and the red flag removed. You may wish to turn up the volume and watch Countess haul her train up the Golfa Bank.

The Results Of A Busy Weekend

After nearly two days hard work a small team, using mainly loppers and bow saws, have made a significant impact on the bottom end of the cutting.

Should anyone be worried about the potential loss of habitat for wild life then; within our own boundaries this clearance area is but a small island in a sea of trees, scrub, brambles and briar, while to the south of the line there is a huge area of woodland which is part of the Powys Estate.

Autumn Glory

A couple of hundred yards to the east of our work site Countess plods up through
the woods with the last train of the day.

For many years young people from Llanfair Caereinion have surreptitiously made their way along the railway line to a spot on the banks of the River Banwy, close to the old water tower, where there is a deep pool. On a warm summer’s day this place is ideal for a swim. Reaching out over the water was the branch of a large tree and dangling from that was a thick rope – great for swinging out and plunging into the river.

Some of the Fence 2 Fence team travelled back by train and were shocked to discover that the trunk of this well loved tree had split near the bottom and it had collapsed into the water.

Collapsed Tree 1

Collapsed Tree 2

The Fence 2 Fence Team will be in action again on 27/28 October. If you are a member of the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway Preservation Society and would like to take part then please contact us at fence2fence@wllr.org.uk.


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Posted in Countess, Golfa Bank, Heritage, Lineside maintenance, railroad, railway, vegetation management, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gala 2018

Last weekend was the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway annual steam gala. Our line is normally a sleepy quiet backwater set in the rolling hills of rural mid Wales, but, at gala a intensive train service is operated.

Countess On Sign Hut Curve

Countess and the high capacity, wheelchair friendly, train near to Cyfronydd

This year the gala was over three days Friday 31st August to Sunday 2nd September. We were blessed with fine dry weather throughout the event. Unfortunately for those who remained behind on the Monday to clear up it poured with rain.

Blowing Off

For the second year running Superb an 0-6-2T tank engine, built by W G Bagnall of Stafford, was the guest engine; courtesy of the Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway in Kent. In the picture above it is seen at Welshpool  Raven Square Station on the Friday morning with two of the replica Pickering coaches.

Starting at the Welshpool end of the line in the bay platform there was the opportunity for visitors to have a go on a pump trolley (also loaned by the S&KLR)

Pump Trolley

Two W&LLR volunteers demonstrate how easy it is to operate the pump trolley

A little further along in the Display & Carriage sheds was a model railway exhibition and a number of traders selling secondhand models and other collectables.

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An 009 model of Castle Caereinion Station with Upnor Castle shunting freight stock.

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The same model from a different angle. The bodyshell of Upnor Castle and the underframe of the leading Chattenden & Upnor Railway ‘toast rack’ carriage make use of 3D prints available from Banwy Models via their Shapeways shop.

Another Arrival At Raven Square

The view from the signalbox towards the sheds at Welshpool as The Earl arrives with another passenger train.

Approaching Cyfronydd

On the Friday with my rostered duties finished by early afternoon I took a ride in one of the SLR carriages to Cyfronydd and spent an hour taking photos of passing trains.

At the Llanfair end of the line there were numerous attractions. Many visitors headed for the local High School where there was a Garden Railway exhibition taking place. On the station site there was an exhibition of model engineering and a 45mm gauge roundy roundy layout aka the ‘Biggles Bahn’ featuring both steam and electrically hauled trains. In the yard was a small collection of steam vehicles.

Time For A Brew

Early morning train departures mean early starts for the loco crews. Here we are having a short pause in activity for a tea break.

Departure

It is just after 07:20 and the first departure for Welshpool, consisting of the The Earl, 3 x replica Pickering carriages, the J Ll Peate private owner wagon and a brake van, pulls out of Llanfair Ceareinion. Countess waits for her first turn of duty at 08:45.

They Are Off

On Saturday afternoon your scribe went to Welshpool to assist the loco crews with their duties. This allowed the crews to have a  more relaxing turn round – especially as things were running a bit late.

On the Saturday evening we had the now traditional night time photography session. In past years my success rate has been rather poor but this time I did a lot better.

Three Little Engines

Left to right: Joan, Superb, Countess

Late Shift Signalman

The late shift signalman

Highlights 1

The Earl on the inspection pit

Barman 2

And the obligatory beer tent serving ales from Monty’s and Purple Moose breweries.

All too soon it was Sunday morning and for me a shift as Yard Supervisor. I wonder if this interest in railways thing is handed down in our genes. My maternal grandfather was a loco driver and then the Running Foreman at Dorman Long’s Clay Lane works on Teesside.

Lights On But No One Home

All went really well on Sunday morning. There were a few minor hiccups with people – one person was too late off duty on Saturday night to start at the required time on Sunday and a fireman reported in sick. These were quickly resolved and the shed was soon emptied of engines.

Joan & Superb On Dolarddyn Bank

Joan & Superb double head the last train towards Welshpool.

I spoke to a lot of visitors during the gala and all seemed to be enjoying the event.

In closing I would like to thank the event organiser, Robert Robinson, as this was the first time he had undertaken this task. I tried to show my appreciation to all the others who played a pivotal role in making the gala happen I would be bound to miss somebody out so I will simply offer my grateful thanks to ALL who contributed either in the planning, execution or aftermath.

Post Script
A selection of my photos taken over the three days can be viewed here

Posted in Castle Caereinion, Cyfronydd, gala, Heritage, Llanfair Caereinion, railroad, railway, Sylfaen, Uncategorized, Welshpool, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Wordless Wednesday

Mixed Train Heading To Raven Square

Posted in Cyfronydd, Heritage, railroad, railway, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boiler Repair

On 1st July the ‘Fifty Shades of Green‘ post on this blog included some photos of the first part of a repair on the boiler of 699.01

On 28th of June this was the situation with the boiler. A piece of plate had been cut away from the boiler backhead along with the firehole ring.

'Polo Mint'

The parts that had been removed.

Before any further work could take place the aperture in the boiler had to be examined by the insurance company’s Boiler Inspector and the final details of the remedial work required agreed.

Caulking Boiler Stays

Less than four weeks later, on Friday 20th July, the repair was coming to an end. A new piece of plate had been welded into place and the firehole ring rivetted into place.
In this short video John Varley of Varley Boiler Services Ltd is caulking some stay heads.

Immediately afterwards the boiler was hydraulically tested in the presence of the insurance company’s Boiler Inspector. The boiler smiths were then able to pack up their kit and return home.

View of Boiler Backhead

The finished job. Using the mk1 eyeball it is very difficult to see the join between the old and new sections of plate. The three studs to the right of the firehole are for mounting the the firehole door.

Repair Complete

A three quarters view of the boiler.

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Posted in 699.01, Heritage, Llanfair Caereinion, locomotives, Photographs, railroad, railway, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway, Workshops | 1 Comment

It Ain’t Arf Hot ‘Ere

The recent hot dry weather has been a cause of concern for the General Manager of the Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway. There have been two small line side fires which barely extending beyond narrow strips of grass that had been treated with weed killer, but with the countryside tinder dry, a decision was made to reduce steam operation and  employ diesel haulage on 3/4/5 July and subsequent mid week services.

Just to add insult to injury #17 the Diema diesel loco developed its second gearbox oil leak in as many weeks, leaving #7 Chattenden to shoulder the passenger haulage load. The workshop team put in a huge amount of work to replace the defective oil seal, and repair the Forward/Reverse gear selector and by Friday morning it was ready for a proving trip to Welshpool.

Arrived At Welshpool

The Diema has successfully arrived at Welshpool with a load comprising of four x 4 wheel carriages and Chattenden hanging on the back (adding a bit of weight and ready if a rescue was required). Richard is walking back to uncouple.

Stethoscope

Steve listens to the sounds within the gearbox using a stethoscope (not the flexible sort that medics use).

Ready For Departure

With the all important mugs of tea consumed and #17 now at the Llanfair end of the train it is nearly time for the return trip. The exercise was completed without incident and the loco was returned to traffic. It spent Friday afternoon shuffling about Llanfair yard re-arranging the carriages.

The weekend of 7th/8th July had been billed as a Vintage Train weekend. To reduce the fire risk this was cancelled and a less onerous steam hauled public train service planned. Additionally each steam hauled passenger train was followed by a firefighting train.

This consisted of diesel loco #17 and the ‘water wagon’ which is permanently equipped with 2 1000 litre IBC tanks and a petrol driven pump and hose. (This is normally used for supporting a steam loco when out with a photographic charter train). Additionally there were three fire beaters and a 20 litre firefighting water spray backpack. Having filled it and tried it on I can assure the reader that is is a heavy and cumbersome bit of equipment.

The method of train operation was that after a passenger train had departed Llanfair the firefighting train would be ready and waiting to depart. Once the passenger train had cleared the Cyfronydd to Castle Caereinion block section the firefighing train could proceed to Castle keeping a look out for any fires that may have been started. Only when the passenger train had arriaved to Welshpool could the Firefighting train then enter Castle to Welshpool block section.

Arrived at Welshpool

Our makeshift fire engine after arrived into the bay platform at Welshpool.

If the crew on the passenger train had become aware of a fire they would be responsible for stopping and attempting to extinguish it – assuming they could walk back in a reasonable time period. More importantly after the steam train had stopped the Guard of could have taken possession of the portion of the Divisible Train Staff that the engine was carrying. The Controller in agreement with the Duty Manager could have then issued an Emergency Working Order (EWO) to permit the firefighting train to enter the same block section. (There is more to an EWO than described above but that describes the basic process.)

Broken Branch

The first firefighting train of the day was also tasked with the removal of a broken branch at Rowland’s Crossing the was fouling the loading gauge. It was low enough to grab from the cab door of the diesel! After a couple of good tugs it came down and was deposited at the side of the line.

Calippo Delivery

From the shade of the signal box porch. Noel is observed bring us some cooling ice lollies (They are tucked in his top pocket so he doesn’t melt them with his hands.)

Other News

Drilling Brake Blocks

The elderly radial arm drill in the machine shop at Llanfair developed a number of defects and was deemed to be beyond economic repair and has been scrapped.

Radial Arm Drill

It has been replaced by a more modern, pre-owned, machine that was delivered on 6th July. It has yet to be fixed down and wired up.

Coupler Components

A batch of partially assembled screw couplings. The bright, turned and threaded parts were made at Llanfair using the CNC machine tools and the shackle parts supplied and fitted by external contractors.


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Posted in Castle Caereinion, Cyfronydd, diesel, Heritage, Llanfair Caereinion, locomotives, railroad, railway, Welshpool, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway, Workshops | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Wordless Wednesday

Shine Up Your Chimney Wiv Brasso

Posted in Countess, Heritage, Llanfair Caereinion, locomotives, railroad, railway, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway | Leave a comment