About the Llangollen Railway Great Western Locomotive Group

The Llangollen Railway Great Western Locomotive Group was formed with aim of preserving Great Western Locomotives for use on the Llangollen Railway.


At the beginning of the 1980s the railway was beginning to rebuild itself thanks to the efforts of volunteers along the Dee Valley towards Berwyn and beyond. Several volunteers realised that the railway would require locomotives suitable to work the growing line. As the line was formally part of the Great Western Railway and there were still plenty withdrawn GWR locomotives at Dai Woodhams Scrapyard in Barry, South Wales, it was decided to form a group which would concentrate on raising funds to purchase, restore and eventually operate and maintain at least one steam locomotive for use at Llangollen.


In 1987, more than enough funding had been raised to purchase a loco. The group had decided that a small prairie tank (4575 Class) would be ideal for the line, as this type of loco worked on branch lines and secondary routes just like the Llangollen line. The group looked at the remaining small prairies and from these chose 5538. However, the discovery of a cracked cylinder lead to the exchange of the frames and cylinder for those of 5532 which had been saved in 1981 by members of the Dean Forest Railway, along with other parts as was thought to be the most economic option. And so because of this, the Group became the owner of 5532.


In the same year, the opportunity was taken to purchase another GWR locomotive, 28xx class No. 2859.


Since then, both locos have received attention, with 2859 being cometically restored to help preserve what was left of it, whilst 5532 has been undergoing restoration as funding and Volunteers have allowed.

As of the 6th October 2017, 2859 had been sold for £38000 to a group intending to restore her to working order. The money from this sale will be put towards 5532's boiler restoration.


The main focus of the group now is to complete the restoration of 5532, which includes the complete rebuild of the boiler. This will require alot of funding, and so all donations will be most welcome. You can find out about how to donate to the group by clicking on the "How You Can Help" link above in the menu.