Llantrisant and Taff Vale Junction Railway
|Llantrisant and Taff Vale Junction Railway|
|Dates of operation||1863–1964/1984|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)|
|Llantrisant & Taff Vale Junction Railway|
The Llantrisant and Taff Vale Junction Railway was a railway located in south Wales which broadly ran between Pontypridd and Llantrisant. It opened to freight traffic in 1863 and to passenger traffic in 1875. Whilst it was technically an independent company it was regarded as having strong links to the existing Taff Vale Railway and indeed in 1889 it formally amalgamated with this much larger concern. The section between Llantwit Fardre and Trefforest closed in 1964.
Treforest to Llantrisant
The stations on the line were:
- Tonteg Halt railway station (Maes Mawr Road) until 1930, then Tonteg Halt at Tonteg Junction
- Church Village railway station
- Llantwit Fardre railway station, also known as Llantwit Dyffryn Red Ash Colliery
- Beddau Halt railway station, also known as World's end
- Cross Inn railway station
- Llantrisant railway station
Tonteg Halt railway station existed on the Taff Value line lower down from the Barry railway's Tonteg Junction. This was closed around 1930 and resituated at Tonteg Junction and the former station's name of Tonteg Halt was kept. The various junctions to the north of Tonteg Halt were built at different times as the rationalisation of the tracks through this area was made around 1930. See the article on Tonteg Halt railway station for further details.
Beddau Halt was originally named World's end and is not to be confused with Aber station in Caerphilly which was originally called Beddau Halt.
The line also had a number of branch lines subsequently built including a branch to serve the Cwm Coking Works, and this was the last section of the line to close (in 1987). Other branches lead across Llantrisant Common and the Treferig Branch (Common Junction).
The line between Llantrisant, modern day Pontyclun station, and Cwm is technically mothballed, though no trains have run since 1987. Track and a level crossing exists on the A473 Talbot Green bypass though no physical connection remains to the South Wales Main Line at the modern Pontyclun station. This section of line is considered for reopening for passenger traffic to Beddau. Realignment of the track here was made when the A473 Talbot Green by-pass was constructed, the level crossing was formerly on the Cowbridge Road.
Along the line were a number of tramways serving minor coal mines - these could be found particularly at Church Village to the south of the station and at Llantwit Fardre.
Common Junction was a triangular junction from which led to the Treferig Branch, Castellau siding and the line across Llantrisant Common to Ynysmaerdy. Shortly after Common Junction was Waterhall Junction to the Llantrisant No.1 Railway.
Cwm Colliery and Coking Works
Two spurs to the colliery sidings existed, one from nearby Beddau Halt and another from Llantwit Fardre. The latter had sidings in Llantwit which after being removed become waste land used for storing vehicles and recently a housing estate.
In 1952 a new junction and line was built to Cwm replacing the older, then closed junction.
The line from here to Pontyclun (formerly Llantrisant) on the South Wales Main Line via Mwyndy Junction was in use until 1987 though regular freight stopped in 1984.
Diverging at Common Junction this was a short freight line built to Glyn Colliery near Tonyefail. Approximately 1 mile from Common junction was the Castellau siding built to serve some minor mining concerns and later a sawmill near Beddau.
Diverging at Maesaraul Junction along with the Ynysmaerdy branch, this was a short freight line to a quarry in Groes-faen.
Llantrisant No.1 Railway (Waterhall Branch Line)
This was primarily a goods line (opened 1886) that left the LTV near Cross-inn and ran in a south-east direction to the main Taff Vale Railway line at Cardiff (via Rhiwsaeson village, Creigiau and Pentrebane). It carried traffic from both the Creigiau quarry and the Tor Y Coed Colliery. The line was taken out of use in 1980.
Passing close to Creigiau railway station there was a junction here with the Barry line for a short period during the 19th century.
Services and Timetables
The 1931 timetables show 11 passenger services in each direction between Pontypridd and Llantrisant operated by auto coach. Extensive freight also ran over the length of this line. Typical journey times from Pontypridd to Llantrisant were around 30 to 35 minutes.
The 1949 GWR timetable shows 8 departures from Pontypridd to Llantrisant (more services ran via Tonteg to Barry), for example, the 7:22 departure from Pontypridd and 8:20 departure from Llantrisant ran to the following timings:
|Pontypridd||7:12 (dep)||8:49 (arr)|
|Church Village Halt||7:28||8:37|
|Llantrisant||7:44 (arr)||8:20 (dep)|
Over the Waterhall branch between Common Junction and Waterhall Junction typically 4 or 5 freight services in each direction each day with various destinations - at least two of these started/ended at Cwm Colliery.
Relationship with the Barry Railway
The line from Trehafod via Treforest High-level, Tonteg Junction, Creigiau, Wenvoe and Cadoxton to Barry was called the Barry Railway; the details of this line are explained in a separate entry. The Llantrisant and Taff Vale Junction Railway "joined" with the Barry Railway in 1930 when Tonteg Halt was moved to create an interchange station at Tonteg Junction.
The other point where the lines met was at Creigiau station, although while running close, the Waterhall branch was not physically connected to the Barry line at this point except for a short period in the 19th century when a junction existed before Creigau station allowing trains to run from the Waterhall branch into Creigau station.
The 1912-1915 map of the area shows clearly the separation of the Barry and Llantrisant lines and the location on the former Tonteg Halt station before the amalgamation of the railway companies and the reconstruction of Tonteg Halt at Tonteg Junction.
- Chapman, C (1996) The Llantrisant Branches of the Taff Vale Railway. The Oakwood Press. ISBN 0-85361-481-4