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LOCAL RAILWAY HISTORY

Llandudno Junction Steam Locomotive and Carriage Shed
Surrounding Area.

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COMPILED AND EDITED BY GEOFF POOLE
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David Eastwood was a former trainee fireman at 6G. He moved into site security work and took some interesting photos of
the opening up of the old Bethesda station in 2009 to carry out some pipe laying during the construction of a new medical centre.

Below are some of David's photos of the old station foundations.










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David also walked through the recently opened "time capsule" Tregarth Tunnel near Bangor, which was sealed up in 1963 when the
freight traffic finished on the single track branch from Bangor to Bethesda.

It was opened up earlier this year (2013) to complete a cycle track route.

The photographs below show the newly opened tunnel where trains used to thunder through.
 
Recesses in the tunnel can be seen which the railway workers would use when trains passed through.

More photos and detail can be found - HERE











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MOCHDRE TROUGHS

The first experimental water- troughs were originally laid near  Mochdre & Pabo station in 1860 by the LNWR.
Mochdre & Pabo was a small station , now demolished , on the main line between Llandudno Junction and Colwyn Bay.   

The troughs were designed by John Ramsbottom, the Chester and Holyhead Railway Company's
Engineer , to enable fast moving steam engines to take on water. 


They were long troughs, typically 600 yards to half a mile in length, which allowed a mechanism on the steam engine
to scoop up the water and replenish the tender without the need to stop , saving valuable journey time. 

Most railway companies adopted the same general dimensions, for the troughs, which were usually in 14 foot sections
made of mild steel, 18 inches wide and giving a typical water depth of 5 inches.
The troughs were cradled in brackets , bolted to the sleepers, and located in the centre of the track.
 A large water tank was used to feed the troughs, with a floating ball-cock system, similar to domestic water storage tanks.  

At the optimum speed of 40 to 50 mph a locomotive could pick up in the region of 2000 gallons of water.
Although the design proved very successful, the saving on time really couldn't justify the cost of installation.
Worldwide only a small number of railways in France and the USA installed them, and in fact, only 141 were installed
 in the UK with none on the Southern Railway.

 In 1871 the Mochdre troughs were lifted, and installed further along the main line at Aber near Bangor.
The remains of the original distinctive grass covered mounds, which marked the site of the reservoirs, were still
apparent up until 1985, when they made way for the making of the new A55 Expressway.

 A section of the original troughs was on show at the Railway Exhibition of Conway in 1948.

                                                                                                                    

                              [PHOTO NORMAN KNEALE]                                                                              

                             The fireman's view of the Mochdre troughs installed at Aber, taken from the footplate of a Llandudno Junction to Bangor train.

 

 

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This Colwyn Bay Library archive photograph,  from the air in 1963,  shows the railway goods yard, encircled by a ring of trees.
It has since been demolished and the Bay View Shopping Centre stands on the site.
  The Pier, which is still standing today, can be seen adjacent to the yard.

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Many thanks to Bill Roberts of Mochdre for the use of the two very old and rare photo's below, from the
Weekly News and Visitors Chronicle, of the Penmaenmawr Railway Disaster of 1899.
Coincidentally the same date as the opening of 6G.

 

 

 


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