Llanidloes railway station
|Llanidloes railway station|
|Original company||Llanidloes and Newtown Railway|
|Post-grouping||Great Western Railway|
|31 December 1962||Station closed|
|Disused railway stations in the United Kingdom|
|Closed railway stations in Britain
A B C D–F G H–J K–L M–O P–R S T–V W–Z
|UK Railways portal|
Llanidloes railway station was a large junction railway station in Llanidloes, Powys, Wales. The Cambrian Railways, which completed the building in 1864, designed it to be both the station for the town and its company headquarters. This dual purpose gave Llandiloes station an imposing appearance.
The station closed to passengers in 1962. The rest of the line was abandoned in 1967. The permanent way has been redeveloped as a bypass carrying traffic around Llanidloes town centre. The former station building has been restored and is now a business centre.
Llanidloes development into a major junction station arose because of the rapid and chaotic growth of the Victorian railway network in Great Britain. In 1859, the Mid-Wales Railway (MWR) had received an Act of Parliament to build and run a railway from Newtown to Brecon via Builth Wells and then on to Merthyr Tydfil, Cardiff or Neath. But just as the MWR began building north towards Llanidloes, problems arose when the Manchester and Milford Railway (M&MR) finally received parliamentary accent to connect the industrial north west of England directly with the port of Milford Haven via a series of interconnecting lines in 1860. The initial proposal had been put forward in 1846 but the scheme was not passed until it received backing from the London and North Western Railway. As a result of this timing, parliament had accidentally granted the M&MR and the MWR the same rights to build two separate lines through the same terrain.
In response the M&MR prioritised its work on completing the first section to Llandiloes by working west from Llangurig on what became known as the Llangurig branch. However, by 1861, surveyors and navvies from the competing companies were physically clashing south of the town.
In response, another Act of Parliament was passed in 1862, giving the jointly owned Llanidloes and Newtown Railway (L&NR) (which was managed by the Cambrian Railways since 1860) the rights to extend southwards from Llanidloes with 1.5 miles (2.4 km) of double track to Penpontbren Junction where the M&MR line would diverge to Aberystwyth and the MWR line would continue to Builth Road (serving Builth Wells). The M&MR and MWR would both pay 5% "per annum" on construction costs and maintenance. The three companies would also pay equal shares of interest and running costs for a new station at Llanidloes. However these charges would eventually prove crippling for the M&MR. The northern section from Llandiloes to Newtown would be operated through the jointly owned L&NR; connecting the MWR and M&MR with the Oswestry and Newtown Railway.
The commercial rivalry between the rail companies meant Llandiloes station would no longer be just a small country stop between Newtown and Builth Wells. It would now stand at the junction between several diverging lines. The building was therefore designed in a style befitting a grand junction station and the headquarters of Cambrian Railways. When it was completed in 1864, Llandiloes had a Georgian-style exterior and the appearance of an early-19th-century country residence. The station also had a large island platform, a footbridge, and substantial freight sidings to the east.
By 1875 the M&WR was in receivership because it had been unable to raise the capital required to complete the railway from the NW England to west Wales. The line beyond Llangurig to Aberystwyth was never started; the remaining 1.5-mile spur from Penpontbren Junction was lifted in 1882. This left the junction-intended Llandiloes without a junction. The grand station building was largely left unoccupied. The Cambrian Railways (CR) had already moved into its main headquarters at Oswestry in 1864. On grouping in 1923, the CR became part of the Great Western Railway.
In 1963, the station and the line were part of a proposed move into the London Midland Region of British Railways. But before the Beeching Axe or the transfer occurred, the entire former Mid Wales Railway system was closed to passengers on 31 December 1962. Freight traffic continued to serve Llanidloes (via Moat Lane Junction) until 1967 when the final section was closed.
|Preceding station||Disused railways||Following station|
|Dolwen||Mid Wales Railway
- Mitchell, Vic; Smith, Keith (2007). Brecon to Newtown. West Sussex: Middleton Press. figs. 93-101. ISBN 9781906008062. OCLC 288983659.
- Image and brief description of Llanidloes railway station at Powys Digital History Project