feature image steam train Alun George at Henllan Station

A Great Little Railway – Teifi Valley

A steam train trip just over the border…

The Teifi Valley Railway was created from a branch line of the Great Western Railway which served the West Wales rural area. Situated near the market town of Newcastle Emlyn between Carmarthen and Cardigan it offers the visitor a nostalgic reminder of the history of steam.

Teifi Valley Valley

This wonderful little railway may be just a couple of miles over the Pembrokeshire border, but is well worth a visit and a mention – until a few years ago this attraction was busy and popular, offering a scenic journey through the wooded Teifi Valley with a couple of stops  to get off and visit a waterfall or have a picnic. It is not for Pembrokeshire Life Online to comment on what went wrong, but suffice it to say, it appears that some asset-stripping went on and the future of the track and all that went with it was seriously endangered; to read the whole terrible tale of how The Teifi Valley Railway became rundown and needed rescuing, follow this link.

My family spent many days going up and down the tracks, enjoying the views and walks, chatting to the engine drivers and other crew and enjoying the play areas. On sunny days there were plenty of lizards in the walls around the yard to admire too. It was sad to go back years later and find a valiant team of volunteers working and fund-raising to reinstate the lost track and repair the yard and buildings, but their determination is admirable and I am sure the Teifi Valley Railway will become a busy tourist attraction yet again.

The Alun George steam train

You can still take a short journey behind  steam engine Alun George, a Hunslet 0-4-0ST built in 1894, or John Henry or Ruston diesel engine and take a trip to Pixie Halt on the miniature train, or spend time relaxing in the indoor/outdoor seating areas and cafe. Dogs are welcome on the train.

You’ll find the Teifi Valley Railway Station located at Henllan which is on the B4334 located between the A484 Carmarthen to Cardigan and the A475 Newcastle Emlyn to Lampeter.

Teifi Valley Railway  The Engine Driver
Station Yard
Henllan
Llandysul
Ceredigion
SA44 5TD

Phone: 01559 371077

We enjoyed the ride and were invited to take a look at the restoration work and then a walk along the track to the east, in the opposite direction to the railway activities. You can stroll (joggers would love it here, too) for four miles along the disused line and this walk is enchanting, full of wild flowers and glimpses of the river. We only went as far as Bangor Teifi, an idyllic hamlet along the river, but would highly recommend this route and will go back again with a picnic when we have more time.

 

The Teifi Valley Railway needs your help.

Benefits of volunteering include:

  • There is often the chance, especially in winter to get thoroughly cold, wet and worn out.
  • In summertime take on the challenge of track clearance bombarded by horse flies and midges, whilst sweating beneath the summer sun.
  • The chance to become even more involved by training as guard, fireman or driver.
  • There is also painting, gardening, general maintenance, track laying and helping out in the Busy Bee Cafe and Charity Shop.
  • All help is much appreciated and by volunteering you will be helping the railway to grow.
  • Everyone is welcome to attend the ever popular society meetings where they can learn about progress at the Railway.
Suzanne Ashworth of West Wales Web and Pembrokeshire Life Online
Words & Images by Suzanne Ashworth

 

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