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April 9th 2020.

Three shots below, by Roger Carvell , that he took from a dmu to Llandudno in 1979 showing the unusual site of a permanent way train on the down line at Llysfaen forcing
 passing trains to go 'Bang Road' or wrong road to proceed.

We were on a dmu to Llandudno and between Llysfaen and Colwyn Bay we went ‘bang road’  (wrong road) as Eastern men say. A Class 25 was on
 a pway (permanent way) train near the tunnel.

Look, no hi-viz, even in 1979, as this pway gang stand back. How and where are they now? I wonder.
The cars down on the road, classics now.

In this pic below, of the box at Llysfaen, we are about to reverse over a trailing crossover - the bobby , getting back in his ‘box has just given the
 driver permission to reverse and then proceed ‘bang road’ through the tunnel, past the pway train.

This shot below shows the reversing back photo - note, S&T man is at least wearing a hi-viz vest top this time.


January 21st 2020.

 Below is a view at Conway, takenin 1936, on a bright day-hooray! Photographer is unknown but the picture
was bought from Roger Carpenter at a recent exhibition.

LNWR G1 0-8-0 9248 rumbles into Conway station with a pick up freight, quite lengthy as it stretches back through the tunnel and out beyond again,
dated August 1936.

There isn't a great deal of info on this engine, suffice to say it was built at Crewe by the LNWR in July 1914, and numbered '72'.

The LMS renumbered the engine as '9248'  and it survived two world wars and railway nationalisation but was withdrawn in 1949 without
ever taking up its BR number '49248'.

Depot allocation history is little known, except that it was stationed at Walsall in January 1948.
No 0-8-0 goods locomotives were stationed in the '7' district in 1936 but possibly
9248 was allocated to Mold Junction (6B) at the time.


January 14th 2020.

Here is a print of Llandudno signal box (ex-No.2) taken by Kevin Lane (of Dunstable - I have corresponded with him in the past).
The photo is dated May 1975.

Of interest is the signaller's Austin A60 Cambridge! A 1967 model with Anglesey county letter marks, 'EY' registration.
A check on eBay today shows that a nicely restored Austin Cambridge would fetch about £6000. Over a quarter of a million were built and sold, a
good return for Austin, or Morris, with their similiar Oxford.
 The Cambridge was succeeded on the car production lines by the Austin Maxi, a useful loadcarrier, but now,
like the Cambridge, seldom seen on our roads.


January 6th 2020.

A nice pic of a Llandudno Junction Class 3F surfaced on Facebook’s ‘British Railways Old School’ or ‘BROS’ group.
 Here is 47507 under the footbridge between pilot duties. 47507 spent most of the 1950s at Birkenhead Mollington St (6C, later 8H).
 After an overhaul at Derby it went to Rhyl for a while, up to closure and then arrived at 6G where it stayed until Sept 1966 when it headed east to Chester.
 It was quickly withdrawn and went to its doom at Cashmore’s Great Bridge in 1967.

 I love the ‘Drinkapintamilkaday’ poster advert! Photo by Richard Courage, with kind permission.



December 18th 2014.

A photo by Roger Carvell of a double - headed " Cathedrals Express" pulled by Black Fives 44871 and 45407 arriving at Cambridge's
newly built platform 7 from Southend en route to Norwich on December 6th 2014.


December 18th 2014.

Another local shot from the past by Roger Carvell is shown below.

A nice, clean Caprotti valve-geared 44741 stands at Llandudno during the early 1950s, an undated view credited to 'H.B. Priestley'.
This was one of a batch of ten built at Crewe, under H.G.Ivatt's direction,in 1948. These engines were not the best-looking adaptation of William Stanier's original
design; the boiler was pitched two inches higher than normal for a standard 'Black Five', and was equipped with plain, rather than roller-bearings

 The wheel splashers give 44741 a dated appearance which may have resulted in the very last two Caprotti 'Black Fives', 44686/7 having
high running plates to bring the design up to date.

44741 spent time at both Longsight (9A) and Llandudno Junction but curiously was withdrawn from Speke Junction (8C) at the end of March 1965 and cut up
at Cashmores of Great Bridge by October that year.

 The Caprotti engines had a reputation for fast running on the flat, so the North Wales coast line was ideal.

 44741 must have once been a very rare 'cop' at Cambridge; for it visited the university city (normally an LNER stronghold) on
September 8, 1955 off the Bletchley line, again a route of few, challenging gradients.

 My thanks to the Cambridge University Railway Circle for that snippet.


November 25th 2014.

Another rare shot from Roger Carvell's photo box.

Here is a picture of Armstrong Whitworth-built 45331 at Llandudno on station pilot duties, c.1954.

Delivered as LMS '5331' in March 1937, this Black Five was a London area engine for many years, mainly at
Bletchley and but also Wlllesden.

 After transferring from Bletchley to Swansea for a spell, 45331, as she was now numbered, then headed north to '6G' in late 1953, staying
for just over a year at the 'Junction'.

In early 1955 45331 then proceeded back to where she had started- Bletchley! Perhaps the shed master there was glad to have the engine
back where she stayed for many more years.

 45331 was another Black Five that nearly made the final year of BR steam, ending its long career at Springs Branch, Wigan, with
condemnation in November 1967. Drapers of Neptune Street, Hull,  did the final deed in May 1968.



November 25th 2014.

Double - headed Black Fives 44871 and 45407 at Newton-le-Willows with an East Lancashire Railway move to Bristol on November 21st 2014.

A4 "Bittern" with the Cathedrals Express (London Euston - Chester) at Chorlton just south of Crewe.


November 12th 2014.

LMS Royal Scot Class 7P 4-6-0 No 46115 'Scots Guardsman' pictured on platform one at London Kings Cross with the
November 11th 2014 "Robin Hood"
- St Pancras - Lincoln - Kings Cross.


November 4th 2014.

Another interesting shot from Roger Carvell.
This one is from 1963.

In August 1963 45149 has drawn up at Llandudno Junction with a return excursion to the Stoke-on-Trent area.
 The fireman can be seen returning along the six-foot to his cab side and the train has the 'peg'.

 45149 was built by Armstrong Whitworth and delivered to the LMS as '5149' in June 1935.

 After some years at Stoke and then Crewe South it migrated westwards to Chester in June 1961 and then arrived at Llandudno Junction in March 1962, 
staying until closure in September 1966.

 It nearly saw out the end of steam but was stopped at the end of June 1968.

Despite a June withdrawal, sources state that it wasn't finally disposed of until January 31, 1969, Draper's of Hull eventually scrappIng 45149.

 On a personal note, I recorded 45149 in steam at Lostock Hall on December 30, 1967. A long-lived, good all-round, steam locomotive!



October 20th 2014.

A4 60009 "Union of South Africa" is shown below with a locomotive movement from the East Lancs Railway to Southall, at Winwick yesterday.


September 22nd 2014.

Two shots sent in by Roger Carvell showing a couple of colour shots of the penultimate working 'Crab', 42727 to visit '6G'.

On March 27, 1966, the Midland Area of the Stephenson Locomotive Society ran a railtour from Birmingham Snow Hill via Wolverhampton, Shrewsbury 
and Wrexham to Chester and onwards to Llandudno Junction. The tour was to mark a  farewell to GWR and L&YR design locomotives. A GW 0-6-2T, 6697,
ran the tour to Chester where Birkenhead's 42727 took over for the run down the coast, arriving at 14.40hrs.

 42727 looks very smart with some nicely applied 'bull', whitewashed buffers etc, and even still sporting the early lion and wheel crest, 
a rare sight by 1966. Birkenhead's 42727 and 42942 were the last two working Crabs in the country, outlasting a few Scottish sisters by a few weeks.

 A Lancashire-based engine for much of its life, 42727 was condemned at Birkenhead on January 7, 1967 and sent to Cashmore's of Newport.
 Its working life almost reached 40 years, an excellent LMS investment.

42727 on 6G.

42727 waiting at Llandudno Junction station.


September 22nd 2014.

Another rare shot of a Black Five at Llandudno is shown below sent in by Roger Carvell.

Another delve in the '6G' goodie box has turned up 45277, a 6G engine in its latter years.

Black Five 45277 is seen awaiting departure from Llandudno in August 1963 with a stopping train for Chester. Carriage enthusiasts
will note the two LNER-design Thompson coaches behind 45277, the oval toilet windows were very distinctive on this post-war design.These
coaches, like their wooden-bodied Gresley predecessors were quite common 'down the coast'; the riding of the Gresley design bogie
won a lot of praise in contrast to the newer BR1 design.

45277, at nationalisation in 1948, as 5277, was a Midland Division engine, a long-serving member at '14B', Kentish Town and continued so throughout
the 1950s before the new diesels forced a move northwards to Llandudno Junction in 1963.

 It moved to Chester when '6G' closed and was withdrawn in February 1967.

There is no photographer's credit.

Roger travelled on the Cumbrian Mountain Express from Newcastle to Carlisle on August 30th 2014 and his shot below shows
"Coronation" 46233 "Duchess of Sutherland" at Carlisle.


August 23rd 2014.

Roger Carvell keeps coming up with these evocative gems like this one below.

Another delve in the '6G' box has found Class 3F 0-6-0T 47673 on shed, and nicely lit by morning sunshine.
 Built at Horwich in 1931 as LMS '7673', at nationalisation, it was renumbered 47673 and was a long-serving '9A', Longsight, engine.
 By 1960 it had migrated to Mold Junction, '6B', and arrived at '6G' in May 1965, staying just over a year before going back along the
coast to Chester, '6A', in September 1966 and seeing its BR service finish there in November 1966.

Enthusiasts always called this class a 'Jinty' , but the nickname was not used by railwaymen.
 The class was known at Mold Junction as a 'Humpy' while other sheds sometimes referred to the popular 0-6-0T as a 'Jocko'.

Nobody knows who coined the word 'gricer' for enthusiast or train spotter,
likewise 'Jinty' for the 'Standard LMS 3F shunter'. Incidentally, Bachmann Industries offer the actual 47673 in
 'OO' Scale, a nice touch, in model form, hopefully with a 6G' shedplate.

The photo is uncredited on the back and undated.


August 19th 2014.

Two shots of today's Welsh Mountaineer are shown below.

8F 48151 with today's Welsh Mountaineer outward leg approaching Dolgarrog en route to Blaenau Ffestiniog.

The above trains homeward leg - photo taken from Bryn Euryn nature reserve showing the train racing traffic on the A55 Expressway and running over the original site of
 the world's first water troughs at Mochdre and Pabo, after leaving Llandudno Junction en route to Preston.
The original four tracks were lifted and moved across to their present two track position to make way for the A55 Expressway.


Two more shots of the above train by Derek Wall are shown below.
(These shots are stills taken from video footage.)

The outward leg approaching Dolgarrog after passing through Tal y Cafn.

A later shot arriving at Betws y Coed station.

Another view of it's arrival at Betws y Coed.


August 18th 2014.

Another gem from Roger Carvell is shown below.

Rebuilt 'Patriot' 45523 'Bangor' is seen approaching Llandudno Junction on August 10,1960 and by studying the 'single peg', appears to be routed 
into the up slow platform. The fourth coach looks like an aged Fowler dining car which would suggest this might be the Llandudno-Euston portion of 'The Welshman'.
45523 was a long-time '1B' Camden engine, so the 'Welshman' theory stands.
I am sure this 'norff Lunnon' engine, quite at home in North Wales, is enjoying the sea air, with Crewe North footplate men presiding.

 In Derek Cross's book 'Roaming the West Coast Rails', several pictures of Llandudno Junction appear and a similar view to that of 45523 has
an amusing caption which says 'there was a very convenient hotel in the 'V' of this junction, the bathroom window of which proved to be an excellent vantage point for
traffic coming off the branch, which I used on many occasions, much to the annoyance of my fellow residents.'


August 17th 2014.

A4 - 60009 "Union of South Africa" with today's North Wales Coast Express, Crewe - Holyhead (outward leg) shortly after
leaving Colwyn Bay en route to Llandudno Junction.

Two shots below of the above train taken from Penmaenmawr signalbox by Relief Signaller Alan Roberts, also showing support diesel loco
37518 at the rear.

Three shots by Dave Wood who travelled on the train.

  60009 arriving at Crewe after a long day.

Waiting at 6G with the outward leg.

Waiting at Holyhead for the return journey.

Dave tells me that the train was restricted to 60 mph on the homeward leg due to line side fires at Bodorgan on Anglesey.


August 3rd 2014.

A4 60009 "Union of South Africa" replaces Black Five 45305 on the NWCE today and my three shots show the train at
Warrington Bank Quay with the outward leg.

An 11 coach Virgin "390 154" stops 'on the button' but unfortunately ruins my approaching shot of the A4.

The A4 moves off from platform one heading for Holyhead.

A final shot of the A4 with the support coach for 61994 and 60009 leaving Warrington Bank Quay.

Two more shots of the above train on Anglesey by Ieuan Wood are shown below.

The outward leg at Llanfair PG.

the homeward leg at Bodorgan.


July 30th 2014.
8F No. 48151 with the 'Fellsman' approaching Lostock Hall station tonight at 8.00pm by Dave Wood.


July 29th 2014.

LNER K4 2-6-0 No. 61994 "The Great Marquess" with the outward leg of today's "Welsh Mountaineer" skirting the Conwy RSPB before passing Glan Conwy.

61994 failed with steaming problems after arriving at 6G with the homeward leg and was rescued and towed back to Preston by 47 245.

Watch the stricken K4 being towed back to Preston, through Rhyl , by the Class 47.

An earlier shot of the train at Winwick by Dave Wood is shown below.

Chris Evans caught this colourful shot of the outward leg at Roman Bridge.


July 28th 2014.
 Dave Wood got this shot of the 8F 48151 at Brindley near Preston pulling the 'Fellsman' on July 23rd 2014.
The engine is due in North Wales tomorrow to pull the Preston - Blaenau Ffestiniog Welsh Mountaineer.


July 27th 2014.
Another classic submission from Roger Carvell is shown below.

This is a photo taken by H. B. Priestley on July 30th, 1930. (he must have gone to Llandudno for his annual holiday).

'Claughton' 4-6-0 5952 is having its thirst quenched and it appears as if the fireman is pushing away the heavy, water-laden bag.

Inspiration for a name seemed to have run out for this engine and  many other 'Claughtons' that ran their lives up to World War Two nameless.

The engine looks like it is in LMS crimson lake livery, a colour that seems to suit these particular LNWR-built engines. I dare say Crewe Works 
loathed painting them this colour- any colour as long as it is 'blackberry black' lined out, as befitted an express locomotive built at Crewe.

A total of 130 'Claughtons' were built from January 1913, in response to heavier loads over Shap and Beattock and also in reaction to the 1905 visit 
of a GWR 'Star' 4-6-0 to Crewe for trials on heavier LNWR trains.
The Claughtons share a characteristic with the later BR 'Clan' Pacifics- no one is really sure how good they were in day-to-day performance, 
but as this photo shows, they looked very handsome.


July 27th 2014.

A4 No. 60009 "Union of South Africa" pulls the homeward leg of today's North Wales Coast Express approaching Tan y Bryn bridge, Mochdre.


July 21st 2014.

A4 60009 "Union of South Africa" and support coach at Winwick with a Farrington Jct - Crewe movement on July 19th 2014.


July 21st 2014.

Hall Class No.5972 'Olton Hall' still as "Hogwarts Castle" at Shipley, North Yorks with another "Wizards Express" on July 12th 2014.


July 21st 2014.

A4 No. 60009 "Union of South Africa" at Long Preston with the Cumbrian mountain Express on July 12th 2014.


July 16th 2014.

Another great shot dug out by Roger Carvell is shown below.

This view, taken on August 2, 1962, shows the 4.05pm 'Welsh Dragon' pull and push service leaving Llandudno with out of sight Standard Class
2 tank 84003 doing the propelling.

The driving coach looks very smart, ex-carriage shops with glossy maroon livery, lined out. The roof may have been
repainted silver rather than grey.

 I can remember such sightings.

This vehicle shows the modification to the doors that BR did to ex-LMS coaching stock- remove the ventilator above the door drop
window (compare with second unmodified vehicle). It is a useful aid in trying to date undated photos.

Maybe it was for clearance reasons or to reduce maintenance costs.

Whatever, the coaches could be draughty enough! Such non-gangwayed stock would be ruthlessly swept away in the next four years, but happily the 
signal box and gantry are still with us.

 I wonder if the Llandudno semaphore gantry is now the last in the country on Network Rail?

Photo is credited to H.N. Priestley.


July 16th 2014.

Dave Wood got this shot of Black Five 45428 at Pickering, on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, on Saturday July 12th 2014.


July 13th 2014.

A rare shot and detail from Roger Carvell is shown below.

M4763 is seen in experimental LNER apple green, said to have been lined out on one side only. It is working the
7.45pm Llandudno to Chester stopping train at Maesdu passing the golf links on June 8, 1948.

It was one of three examples painted experimentally for the newly-formed Railway Executive to decide on new liveries for 
the nation's locomotives.  M4762 was treated to SR malachite green and M4764 to GWR Brunswick green.

 They were displayed at Kensington Addison Road (now Olympia). It seems the great and good couldn't make their minds up, but
Robert Riddles, as the new CME, had been in charge of the project. He had, with a fourth choice up his sleeve, 'parked just round the corner'.
He chose his moment while the dithering carried on- in rolled a freshly-painted Black Five, fully lined out in LNWR-style gloss black. 
It got the vote! Quite right too.
 The Black Fives never looked 'right' in green. Any colour you like as long as it's black.

 Oddly, the LNER's counterpart, the B1 4-6-0, looked very nice in green.

I am not sure how long M4763 lasted in this trial colour, but it gained its proper BR '44763' number while still in green.
44763 was a fairly early withdrawal, being condemned in 1965.

The photo is credited to E.D. Bruton, a noted Hertfordshire railway photographer.


July 7th 2014.

Two more locomotive movements today by Dave Wood are shown below.

The first shows GWR Hall Class 4-6-0 No. 5972 "Olton Hall" still masquerading as the Harry Potter Hogwarts Castle at Red Bank
near Wigan today, with a movement from Tyseley - Carnforth along with two empty coaching stock.

This shot at the same location today shows Black Five No. 45407 with diesel pilot and ECS with a movement from Bristol - Carnforth.


July 5th 2014.

Dave Wood caught this shot at Winwick this evening of 60163 "Tornado" and support coach, returning to Crewe with the
final leg of today's 'Border Raider'


July 5th 2014.

Two Standard Class 4 engines with local trains during the 1950's are shown below sent in by John Powell.
(Photographers unknown)

75010 leaving the Junction with an up stopping train in April 1958.

75013 at Colwyn Bay in the mid - 50's


  June 22nd 2014.

Another archive photo from Roger Carvell is shown below.

Here is a nice summer's evening view of 'Rebuilt Patriot' 45529 'Stephenson' approaching Llandudno Junction
with a stopping train service of five Stanier coaches which shouldn't be much of a challenge for a '6P' rated
4-6-0. 45529 was a Crewe North engine for many years until a move south to Willesden by 1962 and then north to
ex-GC Annesley saw out its final years until withdrawal in February 1964.

It didn't bear the name 'Stephenson' until after rebuilding in 1948.

Built at Crewe in 1933 as 'Patriot' 5529, it bore the name 'Sir Herbert Walker KCB' until 1937, when the name was 
transferred to sister locomotive 5535.
 At that time Sir Herbert Walker (ex-LNWR) dominated the Southern Railway at Waterloo, so Euston might have 
sought to honour him with a fresh renaming.
Who knows anything further?

Roger Carvell.


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