Newport, Abergavenny and Hereford Railway

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Newport, Abergavenny
& Hereford Railway
Including the Taff Vale Extension
Up arrow
Shrewsbury and Hereford Railway
to Shrewsbury
Right arrow
Cotswold Line
to Worcester
Left arrow
Hereford, Hay and Brecon Railway
to Hay-on-Wye
Hereford Moorfields
Hereford Barton
Hereford (Barrs Court)
River Wye
Right arrow
Hereford, Ross and Gloucester Railway
to Grange Court
Redhill Junction
Tram Inn
St Devereux
Left arrow
Golden Valley Railway
to Hay-on-Wye
Abergavenny Junction
Left arrow
Merthyr, Tredegar & Abergavenny Rly
to Merthyr
Abergavenny Monmouth Road
Right arrow
Coleford, Monmouth, Usk & Pontypool Rly
to Monmouth Troy
Little Mill Junction
Pontypool Road
Right arrow
Pontypool, Caerleon & Newport Rly
to Newport
Right arrow
Monmouthshire Rly & Canal Co (GWR)
to Newport
Pontypool Clarence Street
Left arrow
Monmouthshire Rly & Canal Co (GWR)
to Blaenavon
Crumlin Valley Colliery
Glyn Tunnel
280 yd
256 m
Left arrow Ebbw Valley Line Right arrow
Crumlin Viaduct
over Ebbw River
Crumlin High Level
Great Western Railway
Pennar Branch to Risca
Pennar Junction
Great Western Railway
Pennar Branch to Markham Colliery
Pontllanfraith Low Level
Left arrow
London and North Western Railway
Sirhowy Valley Branch
Right arrow
Bryn Tunnel
398 yd
364 m
Maesycymmer Junction
Left arrow
Brecon and Merthyr Railway
to Bargoed • to Maesycwmmer
Right arrow
Hengoed Viaduct
over Rhymney River
Hengoed (High Level)
Left arrow
Rhymney Railway
to Bargoed • to Ystrad Mynach
Right arrow
Left arrow Penallta Colliery Branch
Penallta Junction
LowerRight arrow
Taff Vale Railway
Nelson Branch to Pontypridd
Nelson and Llancaiach
Trelewis Halt
Left arrow
Rhymney Railway
to Taff Bargoed
UpperRight arrow
Taff Vale Railway extension
to Pontypridd
Quakers Yard Branch Junction
Quakers Yard (High Level)
Quakers Yard Low Level
Quakers Yard Viaduct
Cefn Glas Tunnel
703 yd
643 m
Quakers Yard No.2 Viaduct
LowerLeft arrow
Taff Vale Railway
to Merthyr Tydfil
Down arrow
Rhymney Railway
Taff Branch to Merthyr Tydfil
Down arrow Vale of Neath Railway

The Newport, Abergavenny and Hereford Railway was a railway line connecting the Welsh port city of Newport via Abergavenny, to the major English market town of Hereford.

Sponsored by the LNWR, it opened on 6 December 1853. But in 1860 it merged with other railways to form the West Midland railway which was in turn taken over by the Great Western Railway in 1863.

On nationalisation post-World War II became part of the Western Region of British Railways. Surviving the Beeching Axe, it now forms the southern section of Network Rails Welsh Marches Line.



Incorporated on 3 August 1846, in 1847, the Act was passed for the Taff Vale Extension, from Coedygric North Junction, Pontypool westwards to the Taff Vale Railway at Quakers Yard. The railway company was formed by the amalgamation of the Hereford Railway, the Llanfihangel Railway and the Grosmont Railway.


Surveyed and designed by Chief Engineer Charles Liddell, he noted that at its northern end, the terminus at Hereford Barton was not big enough to take the five railways converging on the major market town. So it was agreed by the joint GWR/LNWR Shrewsbury and Hereford Railway and the broad gauge GWR sponsored Hereford, Ross and Gloucester Railway, the construction of Hereford Barrs Court. A joint opening of both stations took place on 6 December 1853.

Natural barriers[edit]

Liddell faced the problem of bridging two key natural geographic barriers to connect with the Taff Vale Railway at Quakers Yard, the Ebbw Valley and the Rhymney Valley. After agreeing a tendering process with the board, the winner was agreed to be Thomas W. Kennard. While Liddell was the key architect of both the Crumlin Viaduct (built from wrought iron due to its projected height), and the Hengoed Viaduct (built from stone, on a curve), Kennard acted as designer and engineer for both projects, and supplier for the Crumlin, where his father Robert Kennard's company Falkirk Iron Co supplied the innovative Warren trusses.


On 2 January 1854, the line opened from Hereford to Coedygric, Pontypool on the Monmouthshire Railway and Canal Company line. The station at Abergavenny was opened.


In 1860, the Newport, Abergavenny and Hereford Railway merged with the Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway and Worcester and Hereford Railway to form the West Midland Railway.

Abergavenny Jct[edit]

On 1 October 1862, Abergavenny Junction was opened to the Merthyr, Tredegar and Abergavenny Railway. Abergavenny Junction closed in 1958.


On 9 June 1958, the majority of stations on the line were closed to goods traffic.


  • 1846 - Tramroads the Llanvihangel Railway, Grosmont Railway and Hereford Railway purchased.
  • 1847 - Act for Taff Vale Extension passed from Coedygric North Junction to the Taff Vale Railway at Quakers Yard.
  • 1852 - Construction work commences on Crumlin Viaduct.
  • 1853 - Construction on Hengoed Viaduct (Maesycwmmer Viaduct) begins.
  • 1854 - Line to Abergavenny opened.
  • 1854 - Section opened from Hereford (Barton) to Coedygric on the Monmouthshire Railway and Canal Company. Line is operated by the London and North Western Railway.
  • 1854 - Railway becomes fully independent.
  • 1860 - Newport Abergavenny and Hereford Railway, Oxford Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway and Worcester and Hereford Railway merged to form the West Midland Railway.
  • 1862 - Abergavenny Junction station opened.
  • 1863 - West Midland Railway builds platforms north of the south facing junction with the Merthyr, Tredegar and Abergavenny Railway.
  • 1864 - Traffic serves the newer Abergavenny railway station.
  • 1870 - Abergavenny Junction station re-built further north from original site.
  • 1871 - Abergavenny Junction station re-built at London and North Western Railway expense.
  • 1884 - Private coal and stores siding laid to Joint Counties Lunatic Asylum from south junction at triangle. London and North Western Railway acquire running powers.
  • 1928 - Double-track across Crumlin Viaduct downscaled to a single track.
  • 1950 - Abergavenny renamed "Abergavenny Monmouth Road".
  • 1958 - Abergavenny Junction station closes, and all stations between Pontypool Road and Hereford (excluding Abergavenny Monmouth Road) all close to goods traffic.
  • 1964 - Passenger services between Pontypool Road and Neath withdrawn and the line over Crumlin viaduct closes to all traffic.
  • 1965 - Pontypool Road engine shed closes.
  • 1965 - Crumlin Viaduct demolished.
  • 1967 - Pontypool Road engine shed is demolished. Sidings in Pontypool and at Coedygric are largely removed during Beeching Axe.
  • 1968 - "Abergavenny Monmouth Road" station is renamed Abergavenny again.
  • 1972 - With the closures of Crane Street and Pontypool Clarence Street, Pontypool Road station is renamed "Pontypool".
  • 2000 - The disused Hengoed Viaduct is opened for public access.
  • 2004 - The Heritage Lottery Fund provides refurbishment grant for Hengoed Viaduct and remains of Hengoed High Level railway station which becomes part of the Celtic cycle trail.


External links[edit]