Where is the Talyllyn Railway? – In the part of Gwynedd which was formerly Merioneth on the shores of Cardigan Bay between Aberdyfi (Aberdovey) and Barmouth.

What is the nearest BR station? – Tywyn: ¼ mile to Tywyn Wharf Station.

What main roads are nearby? – The A493 Aberdyfi to Dolgellau road. The B4405 shares the same valley and runs from Bryncrug to Talyllyn Lake alongside the railway for part of its length.

Historical Information:-

When was the line opened? – Act of Parliament & construction 1865. Opened in 1866

Why was the line built? – To carry slate from the Bryn Eglwys Quarry to Tywyn for onward shipment by the mainline coast railway.

Where was the slate quarried? – Bryn Eglwys Quarry is 500 ft above the village of Abergynolwyn, and the link to the railway is now part of the Forest Walks.

General Information

Is the Quarry still open? – It closed in 1947.

Has the TR ever closed? – No, continuous service every year since 1866.

Do passenger trains run in Winter? -Santa Specials and a daily service Boxing Day to New Year.

What is the track gauge? – 2ft. 3 ins.

Are there any other railways of that gauge in Britain today? – The Hafan & Talybont Tramway and the Campbeltown & Machrianish Railway are long since gone but the Corns Railway Society are reviving part of the old Corns Railway. Some coal mines also have the same gauge railways.

How long is the line? – The line is 7¼ miles long, single track with passing places at Pendre, Brynglas, Quarry Siding and Abergynolwyn.

Why are there doors on one side only? – Because of tight clearances the Railway Inspector required the railway to move the track southwards, seal the doors and fit bars to the windows on the south side.

Where can we obtain refreshments? – The railway has light ref refreshment facilities at Tywyn Wharf and Abergynolwyn stations. There are also cafes and public houses in Tywyn. Abergynolwyn has an Inn and cafes.

How far is Abergynolwyn from the station? – About ½ mile, There is also access from Nant Gwernol via the Forest Walks.

Talyllyn Railway in West WalesAre there any public toilets? – There are toilet facilities at Tywyn Wharf and Abergynolwyn.

Does the railway cater for disabled passengers? -Yes, but advance booking is helpful.

Are there Car Park facilities? – The main Car Park is at Wharf Station. Dolgoch and Abergynolwyn stations have Car Parks nearby.

Can we get a bus to Talyllyn Lake? – here are limited bus services to the lake, and during the peak season Circular Tours via Corns and Machynlleth can be taken, using timetabled bus and train services. Please enquire at booking offices.

Are there evening trips on the TR? – An advertised service operates on certain evenings during the longer days of Summer. There are also evening trains in connection with special events.

When is the line open? – Around Easter to the end of October on a daily basis and over the Christmas period.

How many people travel on the line? – Approximately 65,000 per year.


How many locomotives are there? – Six steam and three diesel.

Are the diesels used on passenger trains? – Only in emergencies and special events.

Where is the locomotive shed? – Pendre.

Does the locomotive take water en route? – Normally at Dolgoch Falls on the up journey.

What are the Engines? No.1 Talyllyn 1864 0-4-2ST Steam
No.2 Dolgoch 1866 0-4-0WT Steam
No.3 Sir Haydn 1878 0-4-2ST Steam
No.4 Edward Thomas 1921 0-4-2ST Steam
No.5 Midlander 1940 4W Diesel
No.6 Douglas 1918 0-4-0WT Steam
No.7 Tom Rolt 1991 0-4-2T Steam
No.8 Merseysider 1964 4-W Diesel
No.9 Alf 1950 0-4-0 Diesel
Sir Haydn is named after Sir Henry Haydn Jones, the previous owner of the railway and quarry. Edward Thomas was the Manager of the line during Sir Haydn’s reign. Tom Rolt was the General Manager the first years of the Society, of which he was one of the co-founders.

Why do the locos face Abergynolwyn only? – The line goes uphill nearly all the way so it makes it easier to keep the water level above the firebox crown. Generally the engines work better going forwards.

Are all the engines green? – The standard locomotive livery is green although from time to time some appear in different liveries in connection with special events.

How fast do the trains go? – The Act of Parliament of 1865 stipulated a maximum speed of 15 mph.

How many coaches are there? – Twenty-three (11 four-wheelers, 2 four-wheeled brake vans and 10 bogie coaches).

Are they all original? – No. The Talyllyn originally had 4 four-wheeled coaches and one four-wheeled brake van. All these vehicles are still in regular use.

Is there any stock other railways? -Yes. From the Glyn Valley Tramway came 2 four-wheeled coaches (painted green) and from the Corris railway came the brown bogie coach and the brown brake van.

How many wagons are there? -There are about 40 wagons on the line, mostly for use by the Engineering Dept.

Who runs the railway? – The Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society through the Talyllyn Railway Company.

Who appoints the board of the Company? – The Society’s Council and executors of the former owner, Sir Henry Haydn Jones.

Who appoints the Council of the Society? – The Society’s members at an Annual General Meeting.

Is there a permanent staff? – Yes. Although train operation is carried out by members of the Society in a voluntary capacity.

Do members drive the locomotives? – A number of members have reached the level of proficiency which allows them to drive locomotives. In addition, most trains are tired and guarded by volunteers.

How many members are there? – About 3000.

Can anyone join? – Yes. Please ask or send for details.

Was the TRPS the World’s first Railway Preservation Society? – Yes.

When was it formed? – October 1950.

What has the society done apart from keeping the trains running? – Since the Society took over, the railway has been restored to deal safely with the increase in passengers carried. The line has been relayed and extended over the mineral line to Nant Gwernol. Additional locomotives and carriages have been acquired or built, stations refurbished or rebuilt, new carriage sheds built and workshops modernised. More recent items include rebuilding a coach for the use of our mobility impaired visitors and their friends. Improvements to toilet facilities are being made wherever possible.

Talyllyn Railway,
Wharf Station, Tywyn, Gwynedd, Wales, UK, LL36 9EY
Telephone:- Traffic & Admin:- +44 1654 710472 – Engineering Dept:- +44 1654 710643
Fax:- +44 1654 711755 (Replace the +44 with 0 when dialling from the UK)
Website:- http://www.talyllyn.co.uk