MORE than a thousand yards of railway track have been laid by volunteers.
Separate lengths of track were joined together on the Llangollen Railway near the Bonwm Bends to complete a two-mile stretch west of Carrog station.
The addition forms part of the Llangollen Railway Trust’s Corwen extension project.
And to mark the milestone a golden fishplate was fixed to the final rail joint in a special ceremony.
Attending were people from Corwen and some of the many volunteers who carried out the work.
The track was laid eastwards from the restored overbridge, near Plas Derwen, towards the existing railhead at Bonwm.
Denbighshire county councillor Huw Jones, who helped attach the fishplate, described the work as ‘impressive’.
“Their achievement is clearly visible to users of the A5 road and has raised hopes for the early completion of the project,” he said.
“Today’s link-up represents 80 per cent of the track work necessary to bring the railway to Corwen in 2014.”
Llangollen Railway Trust extension project coordinator Richard Dixon-Gough said there were many people to thank for the success of the project including Denbighshire Council, the Welsh Assembly, councillors, community leaders, members of the community and Llangollen Railway Trust members.
And he gave special thanks to the volunteers who had taken time out to lay the track.
“In the course of 16 working days, the volunteer workforce have laid 52 panels of track,” he said.
“We still have some way to go but with continued support we will be at our temporary station site in the near future.
“The next challenge is to lay 46 more panels of track and install a buffer stop.
“This further stage requires purchase of a thousand concrete sleepers and all their fittings, plus ballast, and will present a financial challenge for the Trust.”
A Corwen Sleeper appeal has been launched on behalf of the Llangollen Trust by member Paul Bailey.
The aim is to raise £20,000 and Mr Dixon-Gough said a generous response from supporters had so far raised half that sum.
Donations to the appeal can be made by sending a cheque to Mr P Bailey, Dolwen, Bryneglwys, Corwen LL21 9LY, with cheques made payable to the Llangollen Railway Trust Ltd.