CREWE - CHESTER - BANGOR - HOLYHEAD
North Wales Coast
September 2001 Part 1

 Fragonset Class 47 47701 "Waverley" was switched off in platform 12 attached to two Porterbrook vans which sandwiched a MkII Virgin coach. The locomotive later ran round the stock and was waiting to leave from the North end as I left the station. 11/9/2001

 Dead on the shed was 47758 (formerly "Regency Rail Cruises" which was recently seen failing on the North Wales Coast Line. This locomotive was a victim of the Motherwell fire when the burning roof fell in onto it. The hurried, partial repaint has now produced different coloured roofs, one red and one black. Close inspection shows that the engine was quite badly singed. 11/9/2001

 The 13.43 Holyhead-London appeared in the form of 43180 "City of Newcastle upon Tyne" leading 43067. Seen here leaving for London it is passing 86435 "Saint Mungo" attached to Virgin coach 12049. 11/9/2001

 They're here.....another Class 220 "Voyager" passing through Crewe on test, 220 009 this time. I believe that this is the latest set to arrive from Belgium. 11/9/2001

 A visit down to Porthmadog can never be complete without paying a call on the two railways. The first was the Ffestiniog Railway where this exhibit, "Merlen Gymreic, was stuffed and mounted outside the station. 4/9/2001

 Inside the station was "Vale of Ffestiniog", one of the small stud of diesels, waiting to leave with a train for Blaenau Ffestiniog (header photo) which later left along the cob. This locomotive bears a close resemblance to the standard gauge Class 58 design. 4/9/2001

 Always the way, I had left the Ffestiniog site and was walking along the old trackbed near the Co-op Supermarket when I heard a chime whistle. An unidentified Fairlie was crossing the cob en route for the station, it is just about visible between the two bushes. 4/9/2001

 Next stop was the Welsh Highland Railway (the real one!) situated adjacent to Porthmadog main line station at the opposite end of town. 0-4-0 diesel "Glaslyn" had just arrived with the last train of the day and was performing the runround trick. The loco takes its name from the river and pass that the Welsh Highland Railway traversed en route for Caernarfon. 4/9/2001

 It later left for the Gellert's Farm depot with the empty stock. 4/9/2001

 The Welsh Highland has a great café with very reasonable prices and extremely friendly staff - well worth a visit even if you have no interest in railways. The poster on the wall at the back referred to "Eisteddfod Genedlaethol" - sob, just when I was learning to live with the loss. 4/9/2001

 I was just leaving when the road barrier warnings began to sound so an opportune shot of Central Trains 158782 leaving Porthmadog with the 17.07 for Machynlleth ex-Pwllheli. 4/9/2001

 The usual stop at Colwyn Bay on the way home produced 175111 leading 175003 en route for Holyhead. 8/9/2001

 A good day for Class 87's at Crewe where, at one point, there were four locomotives waiting to leave with trains plus this one basking in the Autumnal sunshine. 87006 "George Reynolds" 1/9/2001

 87006 "William Shakespeare" arrived with 1D87 the 08.00 London-Holyhead where it was detatched in favour of the necessary diesel haulage for the onward journey. 1/9/2001

 The diesel haulage took the form of Class 47 number 47785 "Fiona Castle" which had graced the coast a couple of days earlier.1/9/2001

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 Part 2

 Part 3