PROJECT RHEILFFORDD ERYRI
WELSH HIGHLAND RAILWAY PROJECT
1999 NEWS ARCHIVE
See also - [2009 News] 
  
  
   
- January 1999 - Parry People Mover no. 11 arrived at the railway
for trials, following the 1998 visit of the PPM test vehicle. No. 11 was the
prototype for a proposed light rail scheme in Llandudno.
- March 3rd 1999 - The Welsh Office Inspector's report from the Public
Enquiry into the Snowdonia National Park Authority's Eryri Local Plan was
published. The Inspector recommended reinstatement in the Plan of protection
of the WHR route for railway use as first option. Note: this was
NOT the DETR decision into the Transport & Works Application for permission
to actually rebuild, and was in no sense prejudicial to whatever decision
the DETR would eventually make.
On the same day, a reply by Transport Minister Glenda Jackson to a parliamentary
question from Caernarfon MP Dafydd Wigley about the DETR's deliberations
entry here) revealed that the Inspector's report had been submitted
in April 1998, and that to date the average time taken for decisions had
been twelve to thirteen months. This tells us more than the reply to a related
question on January 25th (Hansard
- March 9th 1999 - The Snowdonia National Park Authority Planning Committee
accepted the recommendations of the Inspector's report published on March
3rd. However committee members reportedly voted to protest instead to the
DETR about the railway scheme.
(Thanks to Eddie Bellass for the above photo)
the full text of the press release.
- May 1999 - Bontnewydd Halt was opened to traffic.
- Ffestiniog Railway Hunslet loco Blanche was moved to WHR (Caernarfon)
for use on lighter trains during the Summer season.
- Work started on the overhaul of NG15 class no. 134.
- July 21st 1999 - The Welsh Highland Railway Order 1999 came into
force, authorising the start of rebuilding work onwards from Dinas. Preliminary
work started at Waunfawr Station before the end of the month. The complete
text of the Order (126K) is available here, with acknowledgement to the
Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery Office.
- September 1999 - Trackbed clearance from the Waunfawr end reached
- The dismantling of the remains of the old Waunfawr station building was
- October 1999 - It was announced that an anonymous benefactor would
be donating funds to the Project to a value of £1,000,000 over three
- The Welsh Highland Railway Society presented a cheque for £20,000
raised by members towards work to be done at Waunfawr Station.
- November 1999 - Work started on the contract to renovate and/or adapt
bridges between Waunfawr and Tryfan Junction.
- The three 1922 steel river bridges between Beddgelert and Croesor Junction
were demolished owing to their condition. A section of one was accepted by
the National Trust for eventual display alongside one of the replacement bridges
to be built later.
- Gwynedd Council established a working party to serve as a direct link between
local communities and the railway, to be made up of councillors representing
constituencies along the route plus others with relevant responsibilities.
The Snowdonia National Park Authority also established a liaison group.
- November 24th 1999 - Permission was refused by a High Court judge
for the National Farmers' Union to seek a Judicial Review of the granting
of the Welsh Highland Railway Order 1999 by the Deputy Prime Minister (see
June/July news below). This meant that what was,
in effect, the last possible attempt to stop the WHR Project had failed.
See the FR press release
(at FR site - hit BACK to return here), also the BBC
News Report about the ruling.
- December 1999 - The second Phase 2 bridge contract was let, covering
the modification and renovation of bridges between Tryfan Junction and Dinas
(apart from one underbridge which is being dealt with directly by WHLR Ltd).
The Civils and Earthworks contract for Phase 2 was also let, covering trackbed
renovation and laying ballast. Both contracts went to local firms.
WHR Project News
Authored by Ben Fisher; last modified
January 15th, 2004