Longest private railway in Herefordshire
Titley Junction
24 September 2006
Between the "North and West" and the Central Wales line, there was once a network of minor lines. Some are fairly well known - the lines centred on Brecon perhaps. In the north of the region was a "mini" network, connected to the "North and West" at Leominster, and the Brecon - Hay - Hereford line at Eardisley Junction. Branches ran north to Presteign (without the 'e') and west, through Kington, to New Radnor. The hub of this little network? Titley Junction! (It was obvious, wasn't it?)
Inevitably, these routes, very much minor lines in the general scale of things, closed completely many years ago. Kington - New Radnor went in 1951, as did the Presteigne passenger service. The Kington - Leominster passenger service ended in 1955. Finally, 1964 saw the last goods trains run, and that was it... ...until the 1980s, when the then owner of the station began restoration work, and laid some track. Present owners Robert & Lesley Hunt purchased the station in October 2001, and soon began the work which culminated in the present ¾mile or so of track, running west from the station towards Kington. At this extremity a run-round loop is being laid, and it is intended to provide a similar facility at Titley Junction. Immediately beyond both extremities, bridges have been taken out, so perhaps that will be it for the time being. The whole operation is strictly private - but today was an open day, largely, I think, to satisfy the curiosity of the Kington locals, if overheard conversations are anything to go by. I found the open day listed on Kington Tourist Centre's "What's On in Kington" page (can't remember what I was actually looking for...), and decided a visit was called for. Pea-green Percy Peckett 1738 of 1928 was wearing his face, there were people everywhere, and there is lots of construction clutter, so this trip was not one for photographic masterpieces. However, the ride along the line (in a nicely-repainted DMU car, propelled by Percy) was pleasant. Overall, this was an interesting little trip out, and clearly Titley Junction is worth keeping an eye on for future events. Link: Kington Tourist Information Centre
Geoff’s Rail Diaries
The end of the line Return Journey Hibberd "Planet" 3906 of 1959 at Titley Junction Titley Junction - station sign Titley Junction - station scene Percy the Peckett in action at Titley