© Geoff’s Rail Diaries 2011
It was a day excursion - I'm not sure
where it started; we joined it at
Wellington on this hot, sunny Sunday.
The pair of 25s would be heading for
Barmouth (I think!) - we had decided to
go to Aberystwyth, joining the
connecting service at the lonely Dovey Junction station.
The Vale of Rheidol was still owned and operated by British Rail
at that time - a time of corporate image at all costs! At least the
VoR locomotives had been lined out. Most of the pre-blue era
diesels bore liveries that were "tweaked" to suit their designs -
hence the various two-tone colour schemes. The plain blue livery
was unsympathetic to say the least. It wasn't just the railways
that suffered - remember all those classic Victorian pubs that
suddenly sprouted illuminated plastic boxes over their doors,
with the name of the pub in plain sans-serif type face
(frequently partially-obscuring a far-more appropriate rendition
of the same name).
I'm rambling - must be the memory of the heat in Aber - and our
inability to get a pint (it was a Sunday, and much of Wales was
"dry" in those days)... We did the next best thing - left the wives
on the beach and headed back to the railway, to catch
(photographically) the steam-hauled departures up the valley.
Haven't been to Aberystwyth by rail for many years* - I gather
things have changed a bit - no more 25s, and the VoR locos have
had a repaint. As we headed back to the car at Wellington, in
the gathering dusk, we looked over the wall at our train as it
pulled away - showers of sparks from the rails as the wheels
slipped... I guess sprinters must be much easier on the
permanent way - but not quite as interesting.
* Until earlier this year... See
on Geoffspages Blog