Sunday the 16th July was a fantastic day for the Gwili Railway. Even though the day started wet and misty over 150 classic vehicles travelled from around Wales to show their cars, 4x4s, tractors, bikes and vans at the annual Gwili Railway car show. The event was organised and master of ceremonies was Scott Artus and Jeremy Johns.
The field opposite the Bronwydd Arms station was kindly donated for use by local farmer Angelo Conte (who also won the best in show Tractor award). The visitors to the event broke all Gwili records for visitor number with over 300 travelling up and down the line to Abergwili.
Vehicles on show ranged from 1930s vintage Bentleys, Jaguars, MGs (best in show Alun Houghton), Jarrett Van (yes tin show) Morris Minors, Minis, Fords, Humbers, Rolls Royce, Vauxhall Vans, Porsche, Austin Healeys, Bikes included Vespas, Triumphs, Rudge Ulster (Best in show), Royal Enfields, and a plethora of Land Rovers and Massey Ferguson Tractors (Best in Show Angelo Conte).
Anne Signol and Scott Artus writer and illustrators of the the book Norris and Gertie Gobstopper at the Gwili Railway were on hand to help the Preservation society raise funds by selling their book. Over £300 was raised. Anne an Scott will be going to the famous Llandeilo book fair and Litfest to promote their books. Today (17th July) they are presenting their book to Andrew the owner of the Plough Inn in Llandeilo as he feature in the story.
Gwili Railway History
The Gwili Steam Railway operates a standard gauge preserved railway from Bronwydd (near Carmarthen) in South Wales along a short section of the former Carmarthen to Aberystwyth railway that closed for passenger traffic in 1965, the track being lifted in 1975.
The Gwili Railway was formed in 1975 and, by 1978, had purchased and rescued about eight miles of trackbed and was running an initial steam-hauled service on a one-mile section of it. The Gwili Railway has the distinction of becoming the first standard-gauge preserved railway to operate in South West Wales when it re-opened the one-mile section of the Carmarthen-Llanpumsaint route from its base at Bronwydd Arms, three miles north of Carmarthen. Since then, the railway has expanded to Danycoed and the company continues to hope to expand to Llanpumsaint.
Currently, the railway is working south towards Carmarthen to a new station called Abergwili junction which will be located alongside the roundabout at the northern end of the A40 Carmarthen By-pass. The locomotive stock of the Gwili Railway is unusual in that it mostly represents local industrial and wartime operations rather than mainline services.
For more information visit: www.gwili-railway.co.uk