Over a century after the Llanelli Railway Goods Shed was busy warehouse linking road to rail, despatching goods to the various factories, wholesalers, shops and houses throughout Llanelli and its district, trains have once again arrived at the site.
Thanks to a donation from Transport for Wales, two 143 Class Pacer reached their final destination last week; the platform (underneath the steel canopy) situated at the western end of the Goods Shed.
The first unit arrived on Thursday 24th June, from Landore, Swansea. The second carriage followed on Friday morning.
The trains arrived on a low loader and it took some time to skilfully remove the trains onto some newly laid track, courtesy of Network Rail. The delivery of the train was a meticulously planned and difficult operation and necessitated the laying of 80m of track which was kindly donated by Network Rail.
Volunteers from Llanelli and Mynyddmawr Railway were on hand to ensure the operation ran smoothly and eventually ended up driving the train alongside the platform.
The unit was built in the 1980s and until recently was used on the Valley lines in South Wales but has also been seen at Llanelli on the route to Carmarthen
The 143 Class train’s operational service around the UK began in 1985. The units have now been withdrawn from service and replaced with new vehicles, leaving many units destined for the scrap heap.
Bill Kelly, route director for Network Rail Wales and Borders, said: “It's great to see the progress on restoring this historic building, after we handed over the keys earlier
“We've continued to work closely with the trust since we transferred the goods shed, donating some track and fencing the site to help make it safe. We're very excited to see the goods shed become a focal point for regeneration and community development in Llanelli.”
“The Goods Shed Trust is delighted to be the new home for the train” said Nia Griffith, Chair of the Trust. “Its arrival will add to the appeal of the Goods Shed project which is now well under way. We are developing our plans for the train which include its possible conversion to a cafe and heritage display area”