Station Name:GAERWEN

[Source: Paul Wright & Bevan Price]


Date opened: First in timetable January 1849
Location: South side of Fron Daniel just west of its junction with Llanddaniel Fab
Company on opening: Chester & Holyhead Railway
Date closed to passengers: 14.2.1966
Date closed completely: 14.2.1966
Company on closing: British Railways (London Midland Region)
Present state: Degraded platform mounds visible
County: Anglesey
OS Grid Ref: SH485708
Date of visit: 25.3.2006

Notes: Gaerwen station was located on the Isle of Anglesey and was opened on the Chester and Holyhead Railway Companies line which was engineered by Robert Stephenson. The line opened to Bangor in North Wales on the 1st May 1848 and between Llanfair PG and Holyhead, both on the island of Anglesey on the 1st August 1848. The reason for the gap in the route was because the Britannia Bridge across the Menai Straights was still under construction. Passengers travelled from Bangor to Llanfair PG by horse drawn coach using Thomas Tel ford's Menai Road Bridge. Gaerwen passengers therefore could only travel by train to Holyhead and Llanfair PG. Gaerwen probably opened after the line first appearing in a public timetable in January 1849.

Finally the Britannia Bridge opened to public services on the18th March 1850 and from that date trains could run between Chester and Holyhead giving Gaerwen passengers a far quicker link to the mainland. On the 1st of January the Chester and Holyhead Railway was absorbed into the LNWR and the line became an important truck route for that company. Indeed the line
was of strategic importance as it connected London to Ireland via the Holyhead Ferry.


Gaerwen Station was provided with two platforms and had a substantial two storey brick built building on the eastbound platform. A more simple wooden waiting shelter was provided on the westbound platform.

On the 16th December 1864 the Anglesey Central Railway made a connection to the main line just to the west of Gaerwen Station. They started to run goods services as far as Llangefni and introduced a passenger service on the 12th of March 1865. By the 3rd June 1867 they had extended their line to Almwch. This resulted in Gaerwen becoming an important Junction
station and by 1876 the Anglesey Central railway had been bought by the LNWR.

The station served the local community well for many years but by the second half of the 20th century, traffic had begun to decline. On the 7th December 1964 the station lost its services to and from Almwch and less than two years later on the on the 14th February 1966 the station closed to all passenger services.

It has since been demolished but both the Chester to Holyhead and the Almwch branch are still present although the later has been out of use for many years. There are proposals to re-open it to passenger services. The Chester to Holyhead line remains busy with local and long distance services. Degraded remains of the eastbound platform can still be seen.

For a full history of the Chester - Holyhead line see the North Wales Coast Railway web site

Further reading: The Chester & Holyhead Railway by Peter E. Baughan (1972) - Volume 1 & 2, Published by David & Charles ISBN 10-0715356178 and Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain Vol. 11, North & Mid Wales by P.E. Baughan, published by David & Charles (1991) ISBN-10: 0946537593. Tickets from Michael Stewart

To see other stations on the Chester - Holyhead line click on the station name: Sandycroft, Queensferry, Connahs Quay, Bagillt, Holywell Junction, Mostyn, Talacre, Prestatyn (1st site), Prestatyn (2nd site and Dystrth branch platform), Foryd, Llandulas, Llysfaen, Old Colwyn, Mochdre & Pabo, Llandudno Junction (1st site), Conway, Conway Marsh, Llanfairfechan, Aber, Menai Bridge, Britannia Bridge & Valley  


Gaerwen Station looking south west in c.1910. The junction with the Almwch branch
leads off to the right.
Copyright photo from John Alsop collection



Gaerwen Station looking north east in the early 1960's
P
hoto by Nick Catford

The degraded remains of the eastbound platform looking north east in March 2006
P
hoto by Bevan Price


Looking north-east at Gaerwen station site in October 2011. To the left can be seen the Amlwch branch which by this date was disconnected from the main line. Dominating the view is English Electric locomotive 97 302 (a former class 37) on a sandite train.


Last updated: Sunday, 21-May-2017 08:24:57 BST
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