Vale of Rheidol Railway

Cowley

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Afternoon folks.

We’re hoping to have a ride on the line tomorrow afternoon and I was wondering if any of you had any advice on looking around the falls at Devils Bridge?
Basically the afternoon train gives you an hour and fifteen minutes between arriving and returning.
Here’s the times:

6165B5E0-8ECD-4D61-AA44-F023BA29C11E.jpeg

I don’t really want to spend nearly five hours at Devils Bridge and there’s only two trains that day, but would an hour and fifteen minutes be enough time to have a look around do any of you know?

Thanks in advance for any advice.
 
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Gloster

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Although I haven’t done the trip since I was a teenager (when the trains were in a proper blue livery with a double-arrow on the side of the locos), I don’t think there is much to do except take a look at the falls. I think that these are a only a few hundred yards from the station: I hope they have removed the dead sheep that was stuck on its back in the middle of the falls.
 

Cowley

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Although I haven’t done the trip since I was a teenager (when the trains were in a proper blue livery with a double-arrow on the side of the locos), I don’t think there is much to do except take a look at the falls. I think that these are a only a few hundred yards from the station: I hope they have removed the dead sheep that was stuck on its back in the middle of the falls.

:lol: :lol: I’ll have a look for that!
 

topydre

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I'd recommend taking the longer walk if it's open. The short walk simply leads to a viewing platform (10 minutes if that) whilst the longer walk includes the famous steps and much better views (3/4 hour approx). The longer walk would therefore fit in well with the train times.

If you have time, there's also a specialist chocolate shop in the village, more or less opposite the station.
 

Cowley

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I'd recommend taking the longer walk if it's open. The short walk simply leads to a viewing platform (10 minutes if that) whilst the longer walk includes the famous steps and much better views (3/4 hour approx). The longer walk would therefore fit in well with the train times.

If you have time, there's also a specialist chocolate shop in the village, more or less opposite the station.

That’s great thanks for that. We’re fairly fast walkers so as long as we crack on do you think it’ll be fine?
 

Tomos y Tanc

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That’s great thanks for that. We’re fairly fast walkers so as long as we crack on do you think it’ll be fine?
It should be so long as you don't dawdle! If you have kids, it's worth digging out the story about the falls (English) name. I loved that story when I was little.
 

bramling

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Afternoon folks.

We’re hoping to have a ride on the line tomorrow afternoon and I was wondering if any of you had any advice on looking around the falls at Devils Bridge?
Basically the afternoon train gives you an hour and fifteen minutes between arriving and returning.
Here’s the times:

View attachment 96806

I don’t really want to spend nearly five hours at Devils Bridge and there’s only two trains that day, but would an hour and fifteen minutes be enough time to have a look around do any of you know?

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Personally, I'd say that amount of time *isn't* really sufficient (especially normally when it's often advisable to be on the train quite some time before departure in order to get a decent seat - presumably not an issue at the moment).

It's about a 5-minute walk from the station to the falls, and how long it takes to walk round that depends on how long one wishes to linger. It's entirely do-able, but won't allow much time to hang around and enjoy the atmosphere, or whatever.

So do-able if you're happy to be brisk (won't have to rush, but equally will have to remain aware of the time), but personally I'd do the train ride on its own merit, and drive to the falls separately. The other benefit of doing that is it's possible to go round the falls during the early evening when it's likely to be pretty empty of people.

When we were in Aber last, we ended up with no car for a couple of days due to it developing a fault, so what we did was take the last train up to Devil's Bridge, trip round the falls, light meal at the hotel, and then book a taxi back to Aber. That worked quite well. We did something similar when exploring the site of the V or R's disused station at Lovesgrove (between Glanrafon and Capel).
 

Cowley

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Right ok. Thanks folks.
I think I’ll play it by ear and maybe drive to the falls the next morning if it looks too much.
@Tomos y Tanc - No kids with us, we’ve done all that stuff now and we’re enjoying a bit of new found freedom. ;)
 

30907

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Long time since I've been but the trains have always had a long enough layover and 5+ hours is overkill. Get seats on LH side uphill.
 

DarloRich

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Cant help you with what it is like but this line is on our list for the year so interesting to know what you find !
 

Bessie

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We're booked on the 10.30 train this Saturday. We are opting to spend 1 hour at Devil's Bridge and return on the same service. Their website says you have to return on the same train. First time in west Wales, if we like Devil's Bridge I'll drop by again on Monday by car before heading home. Talyllyn is booked for Sunday. Same rules apply - out and back on the same train.
 

Llanigraham

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The Falls are limiting numbers of visitors due to Covid, so you might not have been allowed in anyway.
Having done the full "walk" (climb really) a couple of times I don't think the hour is sufficient. Go and look at the up-stream falls instead and enjoy a coffee/cake/ice cream afterwards.
And if The Two Toots cafe is open in the station car park I would encourage you to support them as they are locals.
 

Cowley

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Well thanks for the replies everyone. @Llanigraham - I didn’t see yours until I was on the train back so unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to check that place out.

We ended up visiting the falls on the righthand side as you cross the bridge instead of doing the longer one, it cost £1 each to get in. This gave us fifteen minutes looking at the falls, the bridge and the ravine as well as enough time to pop into the pub (the Hafod Arms) for a quick pint and some chips before heading back to the train.
The journey up from Aberystwyth was wonderful, especially once the loco started working hard climbing up the valley side.
Stunning scenery and the weather picked up on the way back. Thoroughly recommended.

A few photos:

DCD58540-8C61-4B4C-B0C1-4E20DD993A39.jpeg

8CADB758-45D0-4D79-A80B-7E8E2E508AD7.png

8D0D8E75-47A1-443C-A82B-26F51F971D89.png
 

bramling

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The Falls are limiting numbers of visitors due to Covid, so you might not have been allowed in anyway.
Having done the full "walk" (climb really) a couple of times I don't think the hour is sufficient. Go and look at the up-stream falls instead and enjoy a coffee/cake/ice cream afterwards.
And if The Two Toots cafe is open in the station car park I would encourage you to support them as they are locals.

Absolutely agreed on the last part; the team at Devil’s Bridge are very friendly and welcoming, and in every way deserve the business. In fact this applies to the V of R as a whole - it’s one of the most professionally run preserved railways.
 

ChiefPlanner

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Well thanks for the replies everyone. @Llanigraham - I didn’t see yours until I was on the train back so unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to check that place out.

We ended up visiting the falls on the righthand side as you cross the bridge instead of doing the longer one, it cost £1 each to get in. This gave us fifteen minutes looking at the falls, the bridge and the ravine as well as enough time to pop into the pub (the Hafod Arms) for a quick pint and some chips before heading back to the train.
The journey up from Aberystwyth was wonderful, especially once the loco started working hard climbing up the valley side.
Stunning scenery and the weather picked up on the way back. Thoroughly recommended.

A few photos:

View attachment 96929

View attachment 96931

View attachment 96930


Wonderful pictures and glad you got out there. The work done is an utter credit , especially the tree felling to open up the valley views.

Not that I am biased in any way , as a student at Aber from 1976 to 1979 ! - in fact we had an agreement with the then BR management to spruce up the locomotives by doing the copper and brass work in the shed in return for the odd free pass on the line. (the main cleaning was done by the paid staff) ......
 

Cowley

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Wonderful pictures and glad you got out there. The work done is an utter credit , especially the tree felling to open up the valley views.

Not that I am biased in any way , as a student at Aber from 1976 to 1979 ! - in fact we had an agreement with the then BR management to spruce up the locomotives by doing the copper and brass work in the shed in return for the odd free pass on the line. (the main cleaning was done by the paid staff) ......

It’s nice to see a bit of the old BR era still around, concrete and wire fences, the odd sign etc. It really does have a ‘proper’ feel about the place and it looks extremely well maintained I must say.
 

Ash Bridge

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It’s nice to see a bit of the old BR era still around, concrete and wire fences, the odd sign etc. It really does have a ‘proper’ feel about the place and it looks extremely well maintained I must say.
Can I echo the comments from @ChiefPlanner - a truly lovely part of the world! Your mention of old bits remaining from BR days Mr C, I’m sure there are (were) some from very close to your part of the world as last time I was on the Cambrian there were some very Exmouth Junc. Concrete Works looking buildings still in situ at one or two locations- I think Tynwyn at least could have been one of them?
 

Cowley

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Can I echo the comments from @ChiefPlanner - a truly lovely part of the world! Your mention of old bits remaining from BR days Mr C, I’m sure there are (were) some from very close to your part of the world as last time I was on the Cambrian there were some very Exmouth Junc. Concrete Works looking buildings still in situ at one or two locations- I think Tynwyn at least could have been one of them?

That concrete certainly gets around!
 

ChiefPlanner

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Ah, interesting! To me I’d have sworn it had all the hallmarks of the SR works so how similar was the Taunton product to this? Tbh it would make more sense for it to have been of GW manufacture.

Probably post Nationalisation concrete - come to think of it Borth might have had some platform extensions ,and no doubt other stations. Rugged and cheap - modular station extensions. !

One of our Aber lecturers , as a junior man , used to walk around Capel Bangor on a Sunday morning on the track (before any trains were running) , with his dog and pick up fallen coal of the engines - good excercise for him and the dog , and eked out his modest wages.
 

Gloster

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I would have thought that one design of concrete fence post looks very like another. There may be small detail and dimensional differences, but it would need a real expert/enthusiast to spot them.
 

ChiefPlanner

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I would have thought that one design of concrete fence post looks very like another. There may be small detail and dimensional differences, but it would need a real expert/enthusiast to spot them.
I am sure they exist :D
 

Ash Bridge

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Thanks both. Regarding the structures at Tynwyn; after scanning images from google earth/streetview it seems that sadly most of what was the former goods yard is now occupied by a Co-op supermarket, so unless any photos are available it’s going to be difficult to confirm their origin of manufacture now?
 

Cowley

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Here’s some footage from the trip everyone. Hope you like it. :)
 

Bessie

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Thanks for posting the video. I did this trip on 29 May. We were in an open carriage directly behind the engine. It must be the best “legal” bashing experience out there.
 

Journeyman

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Very nice! Great railway, isn't it? I've only done it once, about 13 years ago, but I'd gladly do it again given the chance. Lovely locos and great scenery.
 

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