Allan Garraway obituary

Allan Garraway obituary
Railway manager who brought the abandoned Ffestiniog Railway back to life in the 1950s

The railwayman Allan Garraway, who has died aged 88, led the restoration of the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways in North Wales. He saw the potential of reviving the then-abandoned railway in 1951, during the first of several working visits to the Talyllyn Railway, which had just been taken over by the first railway preservation society.

The Ffestiniog Railway was famous from its opening in 1836 for the proficiency with which it ran slate trains by gravity (horses hauled the empty wagons back up the line). It was built to carry slate from the mining town of Blaenau Ffestiniog to the harbour at Portmadoc. In its later years it became the first passenger service on a narrow-gauge railway, but its decline started in the late 19th century, due in part to the popularity of new roofing materials. After the outbreak of war in 1939, the passenger services were cancelled, and the goods service followed suit in 1946.

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Source: Guardian Transport

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