The Goods Shed in Llanelli was, throughout the first half of the 20th.century,
one of the most important centres for the handling of goods traffic in south-western
Wales. However the genesis and early development of the “goods” facility in Llanelli
is not well documented.
It is likely that provision was made for handling “goods” in conjunction with
the development of the railway through Llanelli in the 1850’s. An initial “goods”
facility in sidings to the south of the “downside” station platform - the area of the
present day car-park - would have allowed efficient operation, management and
The Salisbury and Winchester Journal, 22nd.September 1861 reported “A
fire at the goods department of the South West Railway at Llanelli Station” The
report stated that a gas leak and subsequent fire set a platform ablaze; the platform
being crowded with goods of every description, including gunpowder. The fire was
quickly extinguished before much damage was caused because use was made of
large tanks of water close by the station.
A second fire occurred in 1871 as reported in the South Wales Press,
12th.January 1871. This fire, cause unknown, destroyed the Goods Office with
only minimal damage to the goods stored. That the fire and destruction of the old
wooden Goods Office was linked to the need for station improvements lest a similar
event occur would seem to support the notion that the two facilities were linked
from the creation of the railway. A reference to the development of a replacement
stone building probably refers to the plans for the creation on a new site of the
current Goods Shed and associated single storey office block. These were
constructed in the early to mid 1870’s.
The 1880 plan of Llanelli Station would appear to indicate indicate
that the sidings still had a functional use at that time. They are still evident, though
re-purposed, on maps through to the 1950’s. The presence of various “Stores”
including a Bonded Store, south-east of the station does not indicate any definite
connection with the railway company though it is probable. Further research is
required to establish the ownership, functions / re-purposing over time and the subsequent demolition of the “Stores” in the triangular plot of land next to the level-
crossing. The purpose of the “Office” attached to the “downside” platform west of the main station buildings is unknown.
Because of subsequent alterations to the building fabric of the railway station,
physical evidence of a initial “goods department” related to the “downside” platform
is lacking. It is assumed that it was integral to the initial station buildings in some
Lyn John. Chairman of Llanelli Community Heritage.
Salisbury and Winchester Journal, 22nd.September 1861.
South Wales Press, 12th.January 1871.