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Anthonys Visit to the Bristol Harbour & Avon Valley Railways

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Established Member
19 Aug 2008
South Wales
Started off by waking up at 04:33 and wondering why I woke up at that time of morning

So after a shower and getting changed I made myself breakfast I sat down to do some downloading form the internet since I had unlimited downloads til 8am.

Left my house at 07:40 and stopped at my local spar shop for some stuff and used the cash point which gives out £5 notes and I arrived at Pyle station at 08:04.

The train was due at 08:09 but didnt turn up til 08:18 and was 175011. I must admit it was a bit strange being on this service when it was nearly empty as on a normal day it is worked by a 3 carriage 175 and is usually packed with commuters heading to Bridgend or Cardiff.

I got off the train at Bridgend and got on the 08:42 Aberdare service worked by a single class 150 and travelled via the vale of glamorgan line.

This journey was a bit slow as there was a tempory speed restriction near the jct with the line to the fords engine plant causing the train to loose time and but get into Barry just before 09:15 showing there is about 2 minutes slack in the timetable between Bridgend & Barry.

I spotted the class 26 with the Gatex mk2 carriage outside the shed at Barry with the class 73 as my train passed.

I managed to get a good look at what was on canton depot which was full of Mk2 & Mk3 carriage and a freightliner class 66 as well as a few wagons. I spotted a DCR liveried class 56 in a siding on the bridge over the river taff just outside central station where my train arrived at 09:38.

I then spent about 50 minutes photographing some passenger working but stayed undercover as the weather was terrible. and I then got the 10:46 service up to Heath High level where my freind picked me up in his Renault clio and we began our driver to Bristol which was good apart from teh weather.

Got into Bristol and parked near teh Harbourside at about 12:35 and we got the 12:45 train down to teh Create centre and back before traveling down the other branch to the SS Great Britain.

The trip was spoilt by an idiot who decided to jump on and ride hanging onto the side of the brake van forcing the train to stop and sopmeone from the loco to run after the brat and give him and who I would guess were the boys parents a good talking too although the parents didnt seem to care but quickly hurried off no doubt embaressed when a lot of us shook our heads at them when we passed.

After our trip me and my freind andrew went to the brunels buttery for lunch (Most reconmended if anyone visits the area) before taking some pics of the train and then paying a visit to the M Shed before getting caught in the rain and getting soaked before we dried out in the car driving down to the avon valley railway.

We decided to take the short route and pass the Bath road park & ride site and got to the Avon valley railway for 14:39 getting the 14:45 train to Avon riverside the train being worked by the railways polish steam loco similar to the one that was at the Bridgend Valley railway a few years ago.

We also got a trip on the class 107 dmu before calling in a local chip shop on thw way home which according to my freind used to offer battered mars bars sadly no luck this time and we arrived back at Heath high level for 18:42.

We had a shock while waiting for my 18:49 train to Cardiff which was running late when a class 142 pacer arrived being the late running 18:40 service to Bargoed which was very overcrowded with the conducter being unable to get through the train and it really struggled to pull away from the station.

My train arrived at 18:53 so now it was clutch at straws as I had to get the 19:04 Pembroke dock service which would call at Pyle the next service not being til 21:04 so ATW how about stopping your 20:00 service at Pyle please.

Cardiff Central was chaotic as the platforms were very crowded and I just managed to squeeze my way onto the 2 carriage class 175 which was packed.

That said some people got off after the driver said there was a hst due soon so some passengers for Bridgend as it would have more carriages and it would allow some passengers like myself going to Pyle or traveling beyond Swansea to get on.

I managed to get to Pyle at 19:31 and getting a taxi (aka Mum) to give me a lift home as the weather was terrible and I didnt want to walk for 25 minutes in heavy rain.

So overall a good day out if not for the terrible weather and the problems at Cardiff Central in the evening.


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