May ‘23 meeting at The Railway in the Valley of the Mill

Our May meeting took place on a beautifully sunny – even hot – day, at the end to end Railway in the Valley of the Mill, which climbs around a couple of metres to its current terminus (with further extension work currently under way).

An intensive service operated, making the most of three intermediate station’s passing loops, and challenging drivers to take care to ensure each block was clear before entering, before taking time off to enjoy the delicious soup, rolls and cake taken on the deck in the garden.

Portmadoc emerges from the tunnel new tunnel at the current upper limit of the line (Photo: Phil)
The wooden viaduct is one of the major features of the line (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Portmadoc crossing the viaduct (Photo: Phil)
With a steady incline, running gravity trains is an option = although this one hides a motor! (Photo: Simon Wood)
Gravity train on the viaduct (Photo: Chris Thompson)
More alternative propulsion – Spooner’s boat (Photo: Chris Thompson)
A model of Maespoeth shed (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Benny the Booze passing Clara (Photo: Phil)
Convenience (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Kerr Stuart water tube boiler loco 4420 – 3D printed live steam work in progress (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Regner Konrad running round (Photo: Simon Wood)
Empty platforms (Photo: Simon Wood)
Waiting at Tan-y-grisiau (Photo: Chris Thompson)
No 3 from the Moel Rhos (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Clara at Tan-y-grisiau (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Another view (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Tan-y-grisiau looking down towards Dduallt (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Portmadoc heading down to Tan-y-grisiau (Photo: Phil)
Portmadoc takes the curve onto the viaduct (Photo: Phil)
Bentley on a viaduct (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Crane train (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Diesel hauled flying benches (Photo: Chris Thompson)
Skylark descending from the viaduct with a passenger train (Photo: Phil)
This experimental 3D printed camera wagon was on test, including recording the following video (Photo: Simon Wood)

The video comprises a complete driver’s eye view of the line up to its current extent. It uses footage shot from a smart phone with the camera at the top, shot in portrait and cropped to landscape. This footage was the best of three takes, one with the camera at the bottom (i.e. with the phone upside down, so the lens is just above rail head) and one with a compact mirrorless camera mounted on the wagon, which coped less well than the phone in handling the vibrations.

There are also a lot more of Simon’s photos in his web album of the meet-up.

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