North West Wales

Talyllyn Railway loco back on track for 150th birthday

The engine broke through a 150th birthday banner on Wednesday Image copyright Barbara Fuller
Image caption The engine broke through a 150th birthday banner on Wednesday

One of the oldest steam trains in Wales is on the rails for its 150th birthday.

Tywyn's Talyllyn Railway's Locomotive No 1 Talyllyn has been extensively repaired at Ffestiniog Railway's Boston Lodge Works ahead of the anniversary.

The railway was built originally to transfer slate from quarries, and it later inspired the Thomas the Tank Engine author Rev W Awdry.

It has operated since the 1860s out of Tywyn and was saved from closure by its society of enthusiasts in 1951.

Organisers say the railway is the world's first preserved, volunteer-run railway.

"It's a wonderful day, there's not a lot of machinery in the world still doing its job after 150 years," the railways's general manager Christopher Price told BBC Radio Wales.

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Media captionIn its day, the engine was state of the art

"It's one of two engines that were built at the time and it's significant because we are the first preserved railway in the world... the first railway saved from a private ownership and run by volunteers."

A day of special events have been organised for the milestone birthday on Wednesday.

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