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Published on Jun 23, 2012
The start of our day out on the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways on the Friday May 25th 2012 'Snowdonian' special charter train from London to Llandudno Junction and Bangor. In beautifully clear weather (it stayed that way all day!) our especially chartered narrow gauge train (on behalf of UK Railtours) arrives in the platform of Ffestiniog Station after our arrival by road coach (a not so special a journey if you are sensitive to the 'soft and sludgy' suspension of modern coaches as they wend their way through the villages enroute). What a pity we couldn't travel down on the branch line from Llandudno Junction! It was a mad rush for seats on the FR train as there were no seat reservations and I had to look for somewhere where my (wobbly) legs would fit and I wouldn't interfere with the free passage of FR Co. staff using the narrow gauge corrridor stock -- as they sold refreshments, ice cream (at FR Co. inflated prices!) and souvenirs. The stock was mostly historic, basic and with mostly slatted seating (as you might expect) but exceptionally clean and well looked after. Quite an experience to ride in! The staff (as is expected of FR volunteers) were 'brisk & efficient' but didn't seem to radiate the 'superior' air that visitors from other preserved railway volunteer staff have noted over the years from FR members. In fact several were very friendly! During our trip down the line to Portmadoc we were very well looked after on this exceptionally well run railway. I look forward to my next trip which I hope will enjoy the same wonderful weather! Thank you FR staff and UK Railtours!