WHR

Phase 6 page

V4.2

Updated 10/10/10

Images Updated 23/12/05

Phase 6 possibilities

At the WHRS AGM in September 2005, WHR Director Mike Hart answered a question from a member about the possibility of the 10 mile Caernarfon-Bangor link in the future. He said that the link was inevitable but that it would have to wait for a future generation. The idea was mentioned again in the September 2010 AGM. Many members have expressed an interest in reviving the former BR route into Bangor section to allow a public transport link at the northern end, which is much more accessible in terms of journey times from most of the UK than the Cambrian Coast route. The WHR/FR would then link into Network Rail at three locations (four if the WHR(P)'s terminus is included). The scheme might see the re-use of ex-BR trackbed from Caernarfon to Bangor that was closed in 1970. 

Most of the alignment out of Caernarfon is accessible as it has been turned into car parking or the little used Caernarfon Road Tunnel, that emerges by the WHR's Caernarfon Station. The alignment will need moving into fields to the north for a few hundred metres at the roundabout at western end of the Y Felin Heli (Port Dinorwig) Bypass. A short diversion is also needed at the eastern end of the bypass just west of the roundabout, to carry the railway under the bypass where the B4547 already passes beneath. The railway would then need to cross over the A4087 on a new bridge, pass through the Vaynol Tunnel and the north cutting, which would need to be re-excavated. There has been some development on the alignment through Parc Menai north of Ffordd Gelli Morgan.

There is then the issue of a new Bangor sewage works to pass though before the new A55 is encountered. This will require raising an embankment and a new bridge before the route drops more steeply to the former Menai Bridge Junction to join the NR trackbed. The junction site held former exchange sidings (now removed) which were most recently used for stabling the Royal Train overnight.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05Caernarfon Tunnel  south.jpg (72071 bytes)

This northerly view (23/12/05) shows the little used short-lived road tunnel that occupies the old BR trackbed required by the CBL as seen from the end of the existing WHR Caernarfon car park. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05Cross Town roadlinkW.jpg (87702 bytes)

This westerly view (23/12/05) shows the east end of the short-lived road tunnel that occupies the old BR trackbed required by the CBL. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05RampW.jpg (74276 bytes)

This easterly view (23/12/05) from the same viewpoint as the image above shows the former double track incline that led to Caernarfon BR station. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

Network Rail could be asked to release the trackbed of the Down line between Bangor station and the former Menai Bridge Junction, through Belmont tunnel. This short 2 mile extension of the single track section already in existence across the Menai Bridge is thought to have little implication for existing mainline traffic. The WHR extension would then run into the outer face of the Down island platform at Bangor and have a run round loop between the island and the Carriage Shed. This would allow cross platform interchange with Down mainline trains. The former Bangor Yard along with its carriage/loco sheds and turntable could also be acquired and would become the main stabling and heavy maintenance depot for the WHR, relegating Dinas to a minor role.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05Cross Town rampW.jpg (72165 bytes)

This westerly view (23/12/05) shows the former double track incline from the site of the former BR station that led to the separate lines to Llanberis and Afon Wen. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05KwikSave car parkW.jpg (39472 bytes)

This westerly view (23/12/05) shows the site of the former Caernarfon BR station, now a car park for Kwiksave. The new route will cross this car park diagonally to reach the incline leading to the Caernarfon Tunnel. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05Morrisons Crossing.jpg (53039 bytes)

This easterly view (23/12/05) from the same viewpoint as the image above shows the Morrison's Level Crossing. The new route will pass to the left of Morrison's on waste ground. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05Morrison's Crossing west.jpg (52284 bytes)

This westerly view (23/12/05) shows the Morrison's level crossing that leads to the Kwiksave car park. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05Morrison's incline.jpg (66097 bytes)

This easterly view (23/12/05) from the same viewpoint as the image above shows the incline that needs to be built across wasteland to reach the level of the old trackbed, now a cycleway alongside the Menai Straits. The car park to the left has previously been mooted as a possible station site for a revived Network Rail Branch from Bangor and a joint station with the WHR. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

S15_BWH23-12-05Morrison's Garage.jpg (89126 bytes)

This easterly view (23/12/05) shows the Lon Las cycleway on the old trackbed below Morrison's petrol station. There is plenty of room to accommodate the WHR. Click on the image to enlarge. This image is copyright B.W.Hughes and was taken on a Kodak DX6490 digital camera. Image post processed using iPhoto Plus4 and displayed at 96dpi.

 

Spoof Text

This section was originally published with the following spoof text on April Fool's Day 1/4/06:-

Following secret discussions with a Russian oil magnate, a decision has been made to go ahead with the planning of Phase 5, the Caernarfon-Bangor Link (CBL). Roal Lipof is one of the new millionaires who made their money when the Russian oil industry was privatised. He has offered 10 million pounds to see his dream of a WHR link to the national rail system come about. With petrol prices set to rise steeply from 2010, he feels more people will come to the WHR by rail and the Bangor link is essential for the future well being of the WHR. Comrade Lipof's connection with the WHR is quite recent though he has an enduring interest in Fairlie locos, which were demonstrated on the FR for Russian engineers at the command of the Tsar in 1870.

The scheme sees the re-use of ex-BR trackbed from Caernarfon to Bangor that was closed in 1970. Network Rail has agreed to release the trackbed of the Down line between Bangor station and the former Menai Bridge Junction, through Belmont tunnel. This short 2 mile extension of the single track section already in existence across the Menai Bridge is thought to have little implication for existing mainline traffic. The WHR extension will run into the outer face of the Down island platform at Bangor and have a run round loop. This allows cross platform interchange with Down mainline trains. The former Bangor Yard along with its carriage/loco sheds and turntable is also to be acquired and will become the main stabling and heavy maintenance depot for the WHR, relegating Dinas to a minor role.

Comrade Lipof is a great enthusiast of long distance rail travel and has regularly used the Trans-Siberian railway. He is keen to develop a Trans-Snowdonian Express including Steam & Cuisine style dining facilities, with vodka aperitifs. The 50 mile Bangor to Blaenau Ffestiniog journey will be an international attraction to rival the best rail journeys in the world, he feels. A fleet of 10 new locos is envisaged based on the double Fairlie pattern. The problem with priming on the long 1 in 40 sections will be dealt with by a new design of self levelling boilers. The FR management has conceded that two of the new locos be named after Tsars as a concession to Comrade Lipof. These will be 'Peter the Great' and 'Ivan the Terrible'

Construction is planned to start on April 1st 2010.

 

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V4.2 dated 10/10/10