Vale of Rheidol Railway

Gauge: 1ft 11½in (600mm)

 

Collection Objects

Number Railway Object Type Description Image
TYWRM:VR001 Vale of Rheidol Railway notice cab warning notice from locomotive file VR001.jpg
TYWRM:VR002.1 Vale of Rheidol Railway photograph framed photograph of VoR Railway file VR002.jpg
TYWRM:VR002.2 Vale of Rheidol Railway photograph framed photograph of VoR Railway file VR002-2.jpg
TYWRM:VR003 Vale of Rheidol Railway plaque Wooden plaque with Vale of Rheidol Railway badge file VR003.jpg
TYWRM:VR004 Vale of Rheidol Railway lever frame Two lever point frame; Vale of Rheidol Railway file VR004.jpg
TYWRM:VR005.1 Vale of Rheidol Railway timetable poster Rheidol Valley poster file VR005-1.jpg
TYWRM:VR005.2 Vale of Rheidol Railway timetable poster reproduction of Rheidol Valley poster file VR005-2.jpg
TYWRM:VR006 Vale of Rheidol Railway timetable Vale of Rheidol hanging card timetable for 4th June to 10th September 1960 file VR006.jpg
TYWRM:VR007 Vale of Rheidol Railway handbill Vale of Rheidol timetable handbill for 4th June to 10th September 1960 file VR007A.jpg
TYWRM:VR008 Vale of Rheidol Railway report Vale of Rheidol Railway financial report; estimated position under BR Management 1967 file VR008.jpg
TYWRM:VR009 Vale of Rheidol Railway report Vale of Rheidol Railway Report; Situation and Proposals April 1968 file VR009.jpg
TYWRM:VR010 Vale of Rheidol Railway report Vale of Rheidol Railway Report; Situation and Proposals January 1969 file VR010.jpg
TYWRM:VR011 Vale of Rheidol Railway report Vale of Rheidol Railway Limited; Report & Accounts 12.8.1969 to 30.9.1970 file VR011.jpg
TYWRM:VR012 Vale of Rheidol Railway report Vale of Rheidol Railway Limited; Proposed Timetable and Working Arrangements for First Year of Operation file VR012.jpg
TYWRM:VR013 Vale of Rheidol Railway timetable Vale of Rheidol Railway hanging card timetable for 9th June to 8th September 1962 file VR013.jpg
TYWRM:VR014 Vale of Rheidol Railway timetable poster Vale or Rheidol Railway timetable poster 13th June to 17th September; year not shown. file VR014.jpg
TYWRM:VR015 Vale of Rheidol Railway timetable poster Vale or Rheidol Railway timetable poster for 1965 file VR015.jpg
TYWRM:VR016 Vale of Rheidol Railway handbill Double sided handbill advertising the normal timetable and cheap evening excursion for 1956 file VR016A.jpg
TYWRM:VR017 Vale of Rheidol Railway gauge Vale of Rheidol Railway Wheel Profile Gauge file VR017.jpg

The Vale of Rheidol Railway was authorised by act of parliament passed in 1897 and construction began in 1901. Gauge was 1ft 11½in. Since the railway would offer views of the spectacular and remote valley of the Rheidol river some tourist traffic was envisaged, but the primary purpose of the railway was to haul lead, copper, zinc and iron ores extracted from the Devils Bridge area to the sea and the railway in Aberystwyth. The railway was inspected for safety twice in 1902 before being granted permission to carry passengers.

Two large, purposeful 2-6-2 locomotives were built by Davies and Metcalfe of Cheshire. Three later locomotives, built in the Great Western works at Swindon, follow the style of the two originals.

The freight traffic never amounted to much and passengers, particularly in the summer season, brought in the profit.

Cambrian Railways took over the line in 1913. In the grouping of 1923 the line passed into the hands of the Great Western Railway which immediately set about relaying the entire track with new rail, built two brand new locomotives and heavily re-built one of the originals and provided new carriages. The railway was closed during the Second World War. It reopened in 1945 and three years later, under Railway Nationalisation, was transferred to British Railways. As steam passed away elsewhere, it became the last steam operated BR railway. In 1989, as the first privatisation, the Railway was sold to the Brecon Mountain Railway which operates a 2 foot gauge tourist line in South Wales. The railway has since regained its independance under the current management.

The locomotives and rolling stock on this railway are built to a large loading gauge with the result that the passenger accommodation is roomy and comfortable. The locomotives are powerful and heavy and more modern than many on British narrow gauge railways.

Locomotives

1 Edward VII Davies & Metcalfe No. 1 of 1902; 2-6-2 tank. GWR 1212. Scrapped 1935
2 Prince of Wales Davies & Metcalfe No. 2 of 1902; 2-6-2 tank. GWR 1213. Scrapped and replaced by No 9.
3 Rheidol W.G. Bagnall of 1896; 2-4-0 tank. Ex. Plymlimon & Hafan Talybont. Scrapped 1923
7 Owain Glyndŵr GWR Swindon of 1923; 2-6-2 tank. Survives
8 Llywelyn GWR Swindon of 1923; 2-6-2 tank. Survives
9 Prince of Wales GWR Swindon; 2-6-2 tank. Survives.

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