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Llangollen Railway


RCD’s Overview

This heritage railway is located within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty running close to the waters of the River Dee for most of its length. It runs on the former Ruabon to Barmouth line, an important cross-country line which linked the Welsh seaside resort of Barmouth with the West Midlands and North West of England. Viewed by many as the premier standard gauge preserved line in Wales today, the line runs 10 miles between Llangollen and Corwen (to be opened imminently).  The railway runs a service on most days between June and October, and on weekends at most other times, making it a convenient line to visit. It operates both steam, diesel and diesel multiple units, so visitors are advised to check as to what may be running on any given day. Llangollen is a popular tourist town in its own right, and a visit can also be combined with a visit to its canal, the nearby Pontcysyllte Aqueduct itself being a world heritage site.


Happening This Month: June 2023

  • Trains running daily, except Mondays and Tuesdays.

Key Facts (where and when)

Extent of Railway (where to where):

Llangollen to Carrog (imminently to Corwen)

Principal Visitor Centre:

Llangollen Station (LL20 8SN)

Period of Operation*

- Late February (Near daily)

- March (Weekends and Fridays)

- April, May, September, October (Daily except Mondays and Tuesdays)

- June to August (Daily except Mondays)

- December (Special event trains)

 [* This is a summary. Please go to the railway’s website for definitive operating days] 


Key Facts (what you’ll see)

Services usually steam or diesel?

Mix of steam, diesel and DMU

Type of Steam / Diesel Locomotives Used:

Currently predominantly DMU, with steam locomotives on occasional weekends

Length of Line:

7.5 miles (10 miles to Corwen)

Time taken for a round trip:

1 hour 20 minutes

Number of trains per day:

Up to 5 in each direction

Number of Stations:

5 stations


Adult Rover: £25. Senior Rover: £23. Child Rover: £12.

Time to allow for Visit:

2 to 3 hours





Picnic/Play areas:


Preservation Established:


Car Park Facilities:

Parking available in town of Llangollen. Limited parking at Carrog Station


Key Facts (Galas/Events/Dining)

Dining Trains:

- None currently advertised                                                                               

Event Trains:

- Santa Specials: December

- Mince Pie Special: Post Xmas December                                                                               

Principal Galas:

- Railcar Gala: June/ July

- Diesel Weekend: September

- Autumn Steam Gala: October




Telephone:                                                           01987 860979


Social Media:                                            

                                                                              Also on Instagram


Brief History of the Railway and its Preservation  

Approximately half way along the Chester - Shrewsbury main line lies the Welsh border village of Ruabon. Being just 5 miles east of the important Welsh town of Llangollen, a railway linking the two was inevitable, and was opened in 1862. A forerunner to the Cambrian Railway had already obtained approval for a line running from Aberystwyth along the West Wales coast, and from Barmouth on that line, a branch to Dolgelly was also authorised. A number of companies, supported by the Great Western Railway, then sought to complete the link between Llangollen and Dolgelly via Bala, which was completed in 1867. The GWR had running powers from Dolgelly to Barmouth, and so was able to operate trains from the West Midlands and the North West of England to Barmouth, which was developing as a popular seaside resort. The line therefore saw considerable long-distance traffic as an important through route. It was however a duplication of the Cambrian route from Shrewsbury to Barmouth via Machynlleth, and was recommended for closure in the Beeching Report. It was closed in 1965 to all traffic save the Llangollen to Ruabon section which survived for freight until 1968. A preservation society set up in 1972 was looking at a number of potential preservation projects in north east Wales, and ultimately determined to preserve the Llangollen to Corwen section of the Ruabon to Barmouth line. The local council granted a lease of Llangollen railway station and 3 miles track westwards to the society. The station reopened in 1975 and the society progressively extended the line, reaching Berwyn in 1986 and Carrog in 1996.


Principal Aspiration

To open the line extension between Carrog and Corwen


Steam Operational Locomotives:

(1) GWR Class 2884 2-8-0 (Collett) No. 3802 (due in traffic in 2023)

(2) GWR Pannier Tank Engine No. 7754 (due in traffic in 2023)

(3) Kitson 0-6-0 tank engine - ‘Austin 1’ (often out on hire)

 Visiting: War Department (WD) "Austerity" saddle tank locomotive No. 68067

Diesel Operational Locomotives:

(1) BR Class 26 - 26010

(2) BR Class 31 - 31271

(3) BR Class 47 - 47449

(4) Yorkshire Engine Co shunter - 2782 ‘Pilkington’


Steam Locomotives Under Overhaul:

- GWR Class 57xx Pannier Tank (Collett) - 7754 (completion due)

Heritage Diesel Multiple Units/Railcars Operational:

 (1) Heritage DMU Class 104 (2 car) - No. 50454/50528

(2) Heritage DMU Class 108 (2 car) - No. 51933/54504

(3) Heritage DMU Class 109 (2 car) - No. 50416 /56171

(4) Heritage DMU Class 127/108 (2 car) - No. 51618 /56223


Stored/ Under Restoration/ Out of Service:

- BR Class 08 - 08195



Name of Support Group:

Llangollen Railway Trust

Annual membership fee:

Adult: £28. Senior: £23 Junior: £15. Family: £39. Life: £560


Benefits of membership:                                  

-          Concessionary travel

-          Quarterly Magazine, ‘Steam at Llangollen’


How to Join:                                             Go to


What They Say About Volunteering:

To become a volunteer, you must first become a member pf the Llangollen Railway Trust. Members who become volunteers carry out the tasks of the day-to-day operations of the railway as well as the background management and administration work required. Without the input of the membership, both physically and financially the railway would not be able to function.


How to Volunteer:                                               Go to


How to Donate:                                                    Email the railway for information on how to donate


WHY JOIN: The Llangollen Railway welcomes help to maintain its extensive services and also to complete its extension to Corwen.



Those interested in this railway may also be interested in the following railway societies also listed on this



Locomotive/ Engineering Societies:

- Llangollen Railcars Ltd


Traditional Railway Societies:

- Great Western Society

- Welsh Railways Research Circle


Model Railway Clubs:

- Wrexham Area Group of the N-Gauge Society

- Rhyl & District Model Railway Club

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