‘GWILI 40’ CELEBRATIONS KICK OFF WITH ‘FIRST TRAIN’ RE-ENACTMENT
Preservation history was recalled at the Gwili Railway in March as the line began its 40th anniversary celebrations. The Gwili became the first standard gauge preserved railway in Wales on March 25 1978, when Peckett 0-4-0ST Works No. 1967 ‘Merlin’ and Class 100 DMU trailer No. 56317 ran in push-pull mode over a mile of track from Bronwydd Arms to Cwmdwyfran. The highlight of the ‘Gwili 40 – The Opening Act’ event, on March 30/31, was a re-enactment of the first trains, with ‘Austerity’ 0-6-0ST ‘Welsh Guardsman’ and a DMU trailer working shuttles to Cwmdwyfran. An exact re-creation was not possible, as ‘Merlin’ is currently at the Telford Steam Railway undergoing a re-tube, while the original DMU trailer later moved to the Swindon & Cricklade and Whitwell & Reepham railways, and was scrapped in 2017. The main celebration, ‘Gwili 40 – The Party’, takes place on June 9/10, and the endof-season gala on October 6 will be themed ‘Gwili 40 – The Finale’. Visiting locomotives are being sought for both events.