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Welsh Highland Railway opens to Beddgelert...

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by Roger Dimmick, Apr 7, 2009.

  1. The Saggin' Dragon

    The Saggin' Dragon Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    I am sure they will, but all those miles of tender first running in Welsh weather might not be quite so pleasant!
     
  2. Christopher125

    Christopher125 Member

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    Thats why 134 is likely to get a tender cab like the 'ladies' on the FR. If people arent aware, the restoration of 134 is now underway: more info here and on its own website here. The sound of an NG15 attacking the grade is going to be wonderful :)

    Chris
     
  3. odc

    odc New Member

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    Whilst you lot were moaningyesterday,I wasbusy being the fireman of 143, the black NGG16. Now several times during the day these things happened: 1:40 for over 5 miles, double S bends and a very full 9 car train. Regulator full open, 160psi in both steam chests, LOUD stack talk, clean exhaulst, 45-60% cut off and very big grins. They were big on the first run out of Cearnafon when not only did we have the 9 cars but a Dead funkie diesel on the back as well as through the Aberglaslyn and Beddgelert forest. Now who says these arn't working engines and why, if you are at all interested in steam, would you not come and experiance this.

    The glorious warm weather, friendly faces, river gorge and mountain scenery help of caurse.

    Stop moaning and being purists and come support us and then maybe we can sort out some of the problems, improve facilities, get Russell in the pass and a 15 steaming a bit more easily.
     
  4. SpudUk

    SpudUk Member

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    ...well I for one didn't moan at all and actually said I would love to come and see the NGG's going 'coz they look like beasties!

    Furthermore I didn't say 'preserve everything' either! All I said was that if the WHR hadn't of taken on the NGG's then goodness knows what would of happened to them. Then, further to this, I was implying that a preserved railway, where possible, should preserve as much AS THEY CAN, thus referencing not just preserving prototypical stock but all steam that comes their way, if possible. This means steam railways that preserve locomotives that never operated on the original line...which is pretty much every steam railway in the country. I don't appreciate being citicised for staying something that was quite clearly back up. I am not stating that EVERYONE should preserve EVERYTHING because that is completely unfesible, I was mearly crediting the WHR for saving the NGG's!

    GAH!
     
  5. pete2hogs

    pete2hogs Member

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    Before this descends into complete wibble, surely the main feature of the WHR that was left to 'preserve' was the course of the railway and the fabulous scenery it runs through? That has successfully been done, its not been turned into a cycleway or ploughed into farmer's fields or become an osprey viewing point - and all of those things could have happened, you know.

    If you haven't travelled on it yet , all I can say is do it - if you can't bear the sight of a Garratt (goodness knows why, but there are people who don't like A4's too) try looking at the scenery instead. And its not just the Aberglaslyn Pass either - the section from Waunfawr up to the summit takes some beating too, and lasts much longer. In fact, the whole journey is remarkable for the enormous variety of scenery encountered, from the gently bucolic to the dramatically mountainous. (And even the odd hint of industrial past and ancient history).
     
  6. Sheff

    Sheff Well-Known Member

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    Too right Mr 2hogs. I was lucky enough to travel behind the NGG16's in SA back in the 80's from Port Shepstone up into the hills. Tremendous piece of kit and exactly the right engine for the WHR, where the terrain is very similar to that in SA.

    I'm really not sure what the knockers on here hope to achieve - they hanker after a railway that was a failure back then, and likely as not would be now too, if it ran to the same formula.

    Anyway, I'll be there on Friday to ride the new extension. Having travelled over all the other stages as they've opened, and walked the rest numerous times, I can't wait!

    Iain
     
  7. SpudUk

    SpudUk Member

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    I would just like to say right now that if you read what i said i am by no means a "knocker"...i guess the days when you can have an honest opinion about something are over! I appreciate that the NGGs suit the WHR and thats fine and dandy! I just like the NG15s...thats all!
     
  8. 45669

    45669 Member

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    You're not alone! Although I love the Garratts, I, too, also like the NG15 2-8-2s. I just hope that it won't be too long before I can see, and hear, not to mention ride behind, 134 on the WHR. It's a lot cheaper to go to Wales than it is to go to South Africa!

    By the way, to whoever mentioned it, only one of the Penrhyn Ladies on the Festiniog has a tender cab. That's the Blanche. The Linda has a removable rear cab sheet for use in inclement weather. Her original driver, Allan Garraway, used to prefer to don oilskins in wet weather rather than be in an enclosed cab.
     
  9. Selsig

    Selsig New Member

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    Blanche has a fixed tender cab, Linda a removeable one, but still a tender cab. It was built around the same time as she was painted blue, so that would be c.1991. Prior to this they used to use the top half of the original Penrhyn cab sheet on occasion, which was equaly removable, and said top half has now been reunited with its bottom half, and they only, as far as I am aware, get put on on the increasingly rare occasions (last time was early this decade I think, but then Linda's been out of use for most of the intervening time) when she runs without a tender in pseudo-PQR guise.

    As far as the NG15s are concerned, I had heard that the tender cab was also going to be removeable on these, for fine weather days, but the sheer size of it could well make that impractical.

    John

    (p.s. Nice to meet up with you in the Snowdonia Parc, Pete. Have we been forgiven for having a Purple Range Rover with air suspension yet? As it happens I've just got myself a nice '86 110, ex-MOD in fine fettle, for an absolute song, so that ought to make up for it)
     
  10. pete2hogs

    pete2hogs Member

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    Yes, of course. It's just that round here we prefer kit you can hit with hammers ;-)

    I did mean wibble from all directions. I too look forward the the NG15's, and to heritage trains, and to many other developments, but there is an awful lot to look at right now. And hopefully what this means is there will continue to be developments that are worth coming to see for many years into the future.
     
  11. Roger Dimmick

    Roger Dimmick New Member

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    Just spotted this part of Henry's post...

    Thanks for the compliment, but - I do hope you didn't visit my photobucket album [as that's just a collection of odds and sods]

    The 'Scene thru the Lens' galleries on fotopic are the location of my main collections...

    I'm sure that's where you really visited, Henry... ;-)
     
  12. fatbob

    fatbob New Member

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    Hi Roger
    I did go to your photobucket album by mistake. I followed the link from the photos in this post as it was the only way I could see all of the photo!

    Im a bit of a novice so just followed the trail!

    You main albums are great though!

    Henry
     
  13. Smalllittlepuppy

    Smalllittlepuppy New Member

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    That will be because we have STILL not finished it! Has the countdown clock on the Russell website been adjusted to show just how late it is?

    slp
     
  14. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    I understand the lineside fire has now been ascribed definitively to scatteration of hot coals from the ashpan. Also that a second fire has led to mid- journey engine swapping to ensure that the oil burner is used as far as possible down to (more particularly up from) Beddgelert.

    There will be some growling from other coal burning lines if this leads to difficulties in getting insurance cover.
     
  15. Tracklayer

    Tracklayer New Member

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    Not when I was up there...
    I doubt it would lead to dificulties as each railway would be assessed on its own record and risk assessment.
     
  16. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    This information was gleaned from Barrie Hughes' WHR website and the links quoted therein
     
  17. Tracklayer

    Tracklayer New Member

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    They obviously have moved to changing loco for the pass, though this was not the case when i travelled earlier in the week and to be honest seems like a bit of a faff. As for the insurance, I can't see it causing a problem to other operators.
     
  18. SillyBilly

    SillyBilly New Member

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    It depends on how recently there has been rain, and how damp the ground is resulting in it either being a green(coal is ok, been damp) or a red(coal is not ok, dry land.

    One thing I heard recommended was that the grass that runs up the side of the only cutting where it takes place could be removed and something else spread on the sides to prevent growth so when the ash falls out of the pan it would be highly unlikely to ignite something and spread. Anyone who has been up there recently will have noticed that not all of the fencing needs replacing it's only a few scortch marks in some places, £20,000 is perhaps a bit excessive?
     
  19. Sheff

    Sheff Well-Known Member

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    We had a fabulous round trip from Caernarfon on Friday, superb weather helped of course (last time out the rain was horizontal at Rydd DDu). Engine swapping was taking place as described above.

    I wondered what the loadings would be like, what with it being beach weather and only the first week of operation through the pass, but then again it was half-term too. The 11.35 ex-Can was farily lightly loaded - maybe less than 50%, but filled up a little at Waenfaur and Rydd Ddu. Another dozen joined at the camp site, and quite a few at Beddgelert. The return trip was pretty much full however, so I guess a lot of folk caught the earlier train out and then spent time in Beddgelert.

    The NGG16's made it all look very easy, albeit on a very dry rail. The only downside was the fact that they were 15 mins down all day and the only "beer" available to slake my thirst was something called Carling, but the tea was good!

    All in all a very encouraging start I'd say, congrats to all involved. It can only get even better once the NG15 is also available, and maybe the odd heritage train too.
     
  20. michaelh

    michaelh Well-Known Member

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    Some pictures of NG15's in action in South Africa earlier this month on my Fotopic site
     

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