The Brine Tank Waggon
This wagon was constructed to convey sea water from Portmadoc to a lineside slate tank above Plas Tan-y-Bwlch, the home of the Oakeley family. The water was piped down to the house as salt water baths were considered a health tonic in Victorian times. Though the opening in the top is an obvious means of loading the wagon the mechanism for raising water has never been established. Similarly, as there is no evidence of an outlet in the floor, or on either side of the wagon the method of unloading into the lineside tank is unknown.
The wagon, with wheels and axles removed and mounted on a sleeper-built tower, later served as a water tank at Pont Croesor on the Welsh Highland Railway. The tank was established to serve Palmerston while working on the construction of the WHR and the tank was fed by a self-acting hydraulic ram in the river below (see FRHGJ xx).
Recovery was organised as part of one of the Plas Tan-y-bwlch courses and led by Michael Seymour. Since being returned to Minffordd Yard the wagon has suffered further deterioration of the tank, due to rust, and of the chassis due to rot; one solebar has since become detatched.