The weekend of July 1-3 was historic in more ways than one for the Talyllyn Railway as it brought its series of 150th anniversary celebration galas to a close.
‘The Grand Finale’ gala brought together all five surviving Fletcher, Jennings locomotives for the first time in preservation, two of which are the TR’s original engines, Nos. 1 & 2, Talyllyn and Dolgoch.
The gala also marked the first time a standard gauge locomotive had been in steam on the Talyllyn, as Captain Baxter, visiting from the Bluebell Railway, operated over a short demonstration line in the yard at Tywyn.
Not in steam were the two other Fletcher, Jennings locomotives, Townsend Hook and William Finlay, the former coming from Amberley Museum, while the latter was recently acquired by the Narrow Gauge Museum in Tywyn, where it is to be put on permanent display. It is believed these two locomotives are the only ones in the world built to 3ft 2¼in gauge.
Dolgoch took centre stage during the weekend as it celebrated its 150th birthday. It was built at Fletcher, Jennings Lowca works in Whitehaven, Cumbria in 1866.
A spokesperson for the railway said: “We would like to thank our friends at the Bluebell Railway and also at the Amberley Museum and Heritage Centre for the loan of Captain Baxter and Townsend Hook respectively, as well as all those who worked so hard to make these galas a reality. They have certainly made the railway’s 150th anniversary a truly memorable event.”