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Whitland to Pembroke Dock (Hardback)

Local History Transport Photographic Books Colour Books Wales

By John Hodge
Imprint: Pen & Sword Transport
Series: West Wales Railways
Pages: 128
Illustrations: 27 colour & 270 black and white illustrations
ISBN: 9781399095723
Published: 1st April 2022


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Whitland to Pembroke Dock is the latest book in the West Wales Railways series which continues the previous South Wales Main Line series covering the line from the Severn Tunnel through to ends of the main line in West Wales. This volume covers the section from Whitland to Pembroke Dock, a largely agricultural and holiday line, centring on Tenby and Pembroke. The line was worked by Whitland depot which was a steam sub-shed of Neyland, with its own allocation, mainly of tank engines. These worked the Cardigan and Pembroke Dock branches until the former was closed under the Beeching closures of the mid-1960s, when the engine shed was closed under dieselisation in 1964. The volume of freight traffic was radically affected by the withdrawal of goods sundries and parcels traffic, but especially by the withdrawal of wagon load freight traffic in 1976, which had brought much Animal Feed and Farming traffic to the line. Like much of South Wales, the traffic is now purely passenger with DMUs though Summer Saturdays still sees a through train now with IETs to and from Paddington, carrying on the service from HSTs. The previous Pembroke Coast Express in steam and early diesel days was the prime train on the branch running to and from Paddington and is still reproduced in the modern preserved steam special workings.

John Hodge continues his series on West Wales Railways with the latest volume, this time, the line from Whitland to Pembroke Dock. As with other volumes in the series there is a logical layout of an introduction accompanied by an excellent map of the line.

There then follows a ‘Location analysis’ station by station down the line to journeys end at Pembroke Dock. Each one has a brief history which includes layout changes.

The accompanying photographs major on the classic ‘Front three-quarter’ shot loved by photographers, although there are at times station views which are ideal for modellers.

Again an interesting volume and I look forward to reviewing the final volume to Milford Haven & branches to see how it is produced.

6024 Preservation Society

Featured in

Welsh Railways Research Circle Newsletter, No.169 Spring 2022

As featured in

The Bookseller

Another great book from the author.

A detailed history of the branch. Contains some great photos including many in colour. Including to the present day.

I would recommend

James Simmonds

About John Hodge

John Hodge is a retired railwayman, who started his working life on the Western Region in South Wales in 1961, later transferring to London Paddington and British Railways Board. He was brought up in Barry, a port town west of Cardiff, which has strong railway connections, once being an important port for coal traffic and later being famous for Woodham Brothers scrap yard, which held over 200 locomotives, that are now mostly preserved on heritage lines. John is a lifelong railway enthusiast and historian, with many railway histories published.

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