May 29, 2024

A popular Mid Wales steam railway has kicked off its new running season with a record breaking half term week.

Talyllyn Railway, based in Tywyn, Southern Snowdonia, reported its busiest ever half term, exceeding the pre-pandemic 2020 half term by more than 50%.

Steam trains continue to run every weekend in March, before starting daily services on April 2 which continue through until November 6.

The railway has returned to its popular ‘hop on – hop off’ explorer tickets which allows passengers to alight the train and explore the amazing valley with highlights such as Dolgoch Falls or a walk to the remains of Bryn Eglwys quarry.

General manager, Stuart Williams, said: “We are delighted to be returning to a ‘pre pandemic’ service allowing our passengers to make the most of their journey and explore the local area.

“We had to shut our intermediate stations and restrict travel curing COVID, but all restrictions are now removed, other than mask wearing in public transport areas. We still offer visitors the ability to book a compartment if they feel they wish to travel in their own private space for the trip.”

The railway is also introducing some special trains to celebrate becoming part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Northwest Wales slate landscape.

The ‘Quarryman’ and ‘Pioneer’ trains run during May, June and September and offer passengers a guided trip of the line as well as behind the scenes tours of the railway and the rich history of the area.

Later in the season, the ‘Awdry Extravaganza’ returns after being hugely popular for the railway in 2021. Popular TV and railway personality Tim Dunn will be back in Tywyn with a weekend dedicated to the author of ‘Thomas the Tank Engine’, the Rev W. Awdry.

Details of all the timetables and fares as well as the special events are on the Talyllyn website www.talyllyn.co.uk .

 

Picture caption:

Talyllyn Railway’s locomotive No. 6 ‘Douglas’ steaming into spring.

Photograph: Nathan Spence.