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The Brecon Mountain Railway

The Railway Today

Pontsticill station is set amidst the hills

The Brecon Mountain Railway is a 2' gauge line of 3.5 miles length running through part of the spectacular Brecon Beacons National Park, although perhaps not as rugged as the mountains of Snowdonia this area is rightly known for its natural beauty.

The Railways headquarters (and the only station with car parking facilities) is at Pant, just North of Merthyr Tydfil and outside the National Park. Pant Station has a large souvenir shop and cafe and a viewing area where you can look down into the railway workshops and whatch the 'behind the scenes' work go on.

The traveller at Pant boards the spacious and comfortable coaches via end balconies (wild west style!) for the journey to the temporary halt just beyond Pontsticill. Unusually the journey into the mountains is predominantly down hill, which seems almost unnatural to veterans of the Tallylyn, Rheidol and Ffestiniog lines. The descent takes the traveller along a valley of scenic splendour, surrounded by the rounded, but impressive outlines of the Brecon Beacons.

Eventually the Artificial, but none the less beautiful, Taff Fechan Reserviour is reached and soon thereafter Pontsticill station where the traveller can enjoy a break amidst the delightful scenery, the station has facilities for refreshments and even holiday accommodation in the converted signal box. The train travels on beside the picturesque lake to the temporary terminus, this is the end of the line at present but as plans exist to extend the line further there is no platform or station here and the passenger must remain on the train while the loco runs around for the return journey.

The spectacular Baldwin Loco

Motive power on the Brecon Mountain Railway is interesting and varied. A return visit in the same season usually sees the same loco heading the train but most years the management seem able to provide something different in the way of steam haulage.

History and Origins

The Railway was built on the track bed of the former Brecon and Merthyr Railway as a tourist railway. Road access is limited to Pant station by the terms of the planning consent the, idea being to keep cars out of the National Park whilst taking visitors in.

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