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Irish Narrow Gauge Railways

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by lynbarn, May 27, 2016.

  1. ghost

    ghost Well-Known Member

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    The emigrant ship 'Jeanie Johnston' is a replica - the caption infers it's the real McCoy

    'St Patrick's Town' is Downpatrick (although St Patrick is believed to be buried there, no-one refers to it as 'St Patrick's Town')

    The 'maroon diesel loco with the yellow flash' (NIR 102 'Falcon) was not built by Brush - it was built by Hunslet/EE/BREL


    Keith
     
  2. dingletrain

    dingletrain New Member

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    FYI their main loco at Kilmeaden is a simplex loco with perkins engine (hydraulic drive), I believe it was in Yorkshire previously but had moved to Keefs and sold on to the WSVR, I personally found the loco incredibally responsive but the throttle is at an awkward angle! They also have approx 2 other "serviceable" engines. One is a former Ruston from BNM (heavily rebuilt by HUNSLET), I quite liked this engine superb power. They also have another Simplex with Lister engine, again from BNM, I believe there is an art to driving this! There are also two deutz locos for PW trains, but I believe they are not regulars.

    As most of you will be aware the active preservation scene in Ireland is quite small and is worked by a handful of volunteers. I have helped out on a number of these, including the C&L, WSVR and most active at Stradbally, which seems to have missed out on your visit. Stradbally is Ireland's oldest "heritage railway" it was founded in 1969 and operates a former BNM Andrew Barclay number 2, built in 1949. We have several diesels on site, including most noted "Rusty" built by Ruston for use at the ESB power station at Portarlington. We also operate the oldest serviceable diesel loco on the Island of Ireland "Nippy" built by Planet/Hibberd. Lately we have also gathered three examples of BNM loco including; Gardner engined LM167, and Simplex LM317 both formerly based at Coolnamona, and a further Ruston (Lister engined) from ESB, from Edenderry (I think!). We operate using the chassis of a C&L coach, 7L i think, and our brake van is a former Lochaber chassis. We have a selection of PW wagons including a ballast wagon, two tool wagons, a sleeper wagon, and a bogie hudson bogied wagon.

    We have recently finished the construction of our new shed, and as we speak have a large number of our vehicles under store there including number 2. All volunteers assisted in constructing the sidings and pointwork, a very challenging task in some appaling weather, but it is now connected to the line! I'll post pics and videos later.

    But all active lines such as our own, the C&L, the WSVR etc. need to be commended on saving Irish industrial heritage for future generations
     
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  3. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    the new shed is magnificent.
     
  4. Avonside2

    Avonside2 New Member

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    -Philip Bedford Photo DSCI1016A.jpg Michael Portillo visited Dromod on 1-7-16 with a BBC film crew to film a piece on the Cavan & Leitrim Railway, it also marked the first public outing of the replica 3ft gauge rail inspection bicycle built in secret by Cavan & Leitrim volunteers specially for Michael Portillo's visit.

    This is a replica of the original C&L inspection bicycle which sadly was scrapped in 1959 when the railway closed, the wheels are originals acquired by michael Kennedy over the years from different sources, most of the construction work was carried out by Lawrence Breslan and Paul Gunning, it performed perfectly on the day, Michael Portillo clearly enjoyed it and thought it was great fun
     
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  5. dingletrain

    dingletrain New Member

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    A wonderful re-creation, look forward to seeing it (and lose a few pounds!), and the actual documentary which I believe will be on air in January. Such publicity is much needed.

    For those interested please see attached link:



    Based on a 1916 re-enactment at Stradbally, it is based on true events about the first shot of 1916 that occured on the portlaoise - abbeyleix GSWR railway line, again much local heritage here.

    Enjoy :)
     
  6. Felix Holt

    Felix Holt Active Member

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    Does anyone know if there is a current contact person for the Tralee and Dingle/Blennerville Railway? The website doesn't have a 'contact' tab, and I don't use Facebook so can't tell if there are any details there as it's a closed group.

    I shall be moving to Cork next summer permanently, and am looking for an NG railway near at hand to get involved in...
     
  7. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    contact details

    Eddie Barrett , Chairman

    33 Denny St.
    Co. Kerry , Ireland Tralee

    086 256 8265

    be warned though that the Council have decided to go ahead themselves if they can get the government to cough up a million, so the involvement of the T&DRPS may well be nil. I'm no longer involved personally and there is very little enthusiast input likely here.

    You might have to travel a way, Stradbally in Laois being probably your best bet (if you contact dingletain on here, he'll be able to advise you on that one
     
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  8. lynbarn

    lynbarn Active Member

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    Hi Felix, sadly all is not well at the Tralee and Dingle/Blennerville Railway, the local council appear to want to retain control but do not know how to build or operate a narrow gauge railway, then there is also from what I can make out, a small local group who don't have a clue as to what to do and will not accept help from anyone who knows what to do.

    The only way I can see this working is if someone new goes in with a lot of cash and a fresh business plan, also Ireland does not have that many volunteers so any work to rebuild the railway will have to be paid for.

    Personally I think it is a shame as it could bring in a lot of tourists to the area, Loco No5 will require a full rebuild by now and may be even a new boiler, there has been a lot of waste in the project, but that said it is not beyond saving in the long term, a revamp at the Blennerville site will be required if you want to rebuild much more of the T&DR on the other side of Blennerville, But I think it could be done in stages with the right team in place.

    As for a contact I don't think there is one at the moment.

    Regards

    Colin Rainsbury
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2016
  9. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    No5 does not need a new boiler, it was professionally inspected and needs a patch to the firebox wrapper costed at (from memory) €27,000 and the rest of the boiler is in good condition. KCC had a quote for a quarter of a million to repair/replace the boiler, which speaks volumes.

    The local team had a full business plan and costed re-opening at about a third of a million. They have a professional ex BR Civil Engineer on the team who knows what he's at even if others maybe don't know a lot about railways. They represent the best chance that the T&D had.

    There is no chance of the line ever going further than Blennervlle, there is nowhere for it to go anymore.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2016
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  10. lynbarn

    lynbarn Active Member

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    Thanks RG As you can guess I am some what out of touch with the current situation on the ground out there, I can only speak about the contacts I have had in the past and those via Facebook and a few personal emails.

    Like I said I think it is do able but the first thing to do is to organise a fresh new support group and then to attract the skills required to rebuild and run the railway, if you can do that, then it has to be a good thing but it will be a lot of hard work not only on the ground but in the management of the project as well.
     
  11. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    whereabouts in Cork, Felix?
     
  12. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    what another one? The first thing to be done was to persuade KCC to hand over management of the line to a Volunteer committee . An awful lot of work was put into this, and KCC have ruled it out.

    It's unfortunate in the extreme that certain disaffected people have put the knife into the current Committee effectively denying them the Enthusiast help they desperately needed, not that it matters anymore since they have been denied the lease they sought,
     
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  13. lynbarn

    lynbarn Active Member

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    The one problem I think we can all agree on is that Ireland does not have the size of population or the number of those interested in its railway history like we do here in the UK. If it did, then projects like the County Donegal, the Cavan and Leitrim and the West Clare railways would all be fully up and running.
     
  14. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    indeed, it isn't like the UK here at all.

    I visited the West Clare recently and chatted to the Owner. Very interesting plans for a visitor centre, will it happen? I don't know, planning has been granted.. He did confirm he has bought Lady Edith and her three coaches from America though
     
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  15. lynbarn

    lynbarn Active Member

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    That's great news, I for one will be looking to see her back in Ireland.
     
  16. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    she's destined for the Museum building though, once it's built.
     
  17. lynbarn

    lynbarn Active Member

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    Thats good I have five 00n3 Backwoods Brass kits that I need to check for some clarity of detail.
     
  18. Felix Holt

    Felix Holt Active Member

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    Cork city and suburbs, possibly out as far as Blarney or Cobh. House hunting starts in earnest from February onwards, when my wife takes up a professorship at UCC. I'm staying in Sweden till June to see out my time here, and look after the cats until we have a new house in Cork to move them to!
     
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  19. Reading General

    Reading General Part of the furniture

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    best of luck to you. If you don't know Ireland, I'd say you'll love it. pretty crap for railways though.
     
  20. Felix Holt

    Felix Holt Active Member

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    Yes, lived near Belfast for 9 years, and visited Galway many times. New to Cork though!
     
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