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Talyllyn Railway Press Release

Proposal For New Engineering Works

Recent meetings of the Talyllyn Railway Company Board and the Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society Council warmly endorsed a report from a working group which had been established to look at the future provision of engineering facilities for the Railway. This recommended that the opportunity should be taken to try to acquire a piece of land adjacent to the Railway on the Tywyn Pendre Enterprise Park with a view to building a new engineering facility on the site.

This facility would be the engineering base for the Railway for all major locomotive and rolling stock work including a paintshop, along with facilities for permanent way and other work. It would also act as the main access point to the Railway for deliveries, exchanges of locomotives and rolling stock etc.

Back on the existing Pendre site, where the locomotive running shed would remain, the report recommends that the existing facilities, built in the 1950s and 1960s, on the north side of the line are re-developed to provide additional carriage storage along with modern mess facilities and office space.

The final part of the proposal would see the original 19th Century workshop and locomotive shed building, along with the south carriage shed, restored and refurbished. A limited engineering facility would still be provided on site to deal with running repairs, but the opportunity would also be taken to provide a heritage engineering display with access for passengers.

Commenting on the scheme Talyllyn Railway General Manager, Stuart Williams, said: ‘This report is the culmination of several years of discussions about the provision of new engineering facilities. We are conscious of the historic nature of the current site but its limitations mean that we cannot develop it in the way we would like. The acquisition of a new site would give us the opportunity to develop new facilities which will last us well into the future. However, it is important to stress that this is very much still at the concept stage at this time and there are many hurdles to overcome before we can produce definitive plans.’

Chairman of the Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society, Ian Drummond, stated: ‘For anyone who visits our current works at Tywyn Pendre the limitations of the site are all too clear and so the need to provide a new first class facility has been obvious for some time. This proposal would have far reaching benefits not only in terms of a new engineering facility but also it could free up space elsewhere on the Railway to allow other plans to be developed. There will be many challenges, not least the raising of the necessary funds, but this has the potential to be a once in a generation opportunity to provide the facilities we need.’

It is planned to be able to reveal further details of the proposal at the Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society’s Annual General Meeting in September.