Bleasdale Photographs

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R H Bleasdale (1837-1897) was a photographer who specialised in recording the development of Britain's railways. He took over 3000 photographs, mostly of locomotives. In August 1887 he visited the Festiniog Railway and photographed the locomotives, a range of items of rolling stock and a series of views of the line. There is evidence that these photographs were commissioned by Charles Spooner possibly in preparation for a Royal visit two years later. Some 41 of the photographs were collected together to form the "Spooner Album". For many years it was believed that this album was compiled for presentation to George Percival (Percy) Spooner as a memento of the railway. However, whilst the album apparently belonged to GPS, it seems likely that this was not the reason for its compilation.

The Bleasdale photographs, along with a few other images, were recently published in The Spooner Album by RCL Publications on behalf of the FR Heritage Group. (A few examples of Bleasdale's Photographs are shown on The Spooner Album page).


Bleasdale's Photographs & the Festiniog Railway


The tables below have been reproduced from the The Spooner Album with the kind permission of Adrian Gray , the Author.

A number of the photos have now appeared on this wiki and on associated sites. Their locations are cross-referenced here.

The quality of these reproductions on the Wiki and the associated sites vary considerably but none can compare with the quality of the reproduction in the Spooner Album, a "must have book" for anyone who gets interested in the heritage of the Ffestiniog Railway.

Bleasdale's Photographs
Photo no. Description New Spooner Album Plate No. Wiki/Cross reference
LOCOMOTIVES
1 Double Bogie, side tank, Fairlie's patent, passenger engine, "LIVINGSTON THOMPSON." Outside cylinders 9 in. by 14 in., four-coupled wheels on each bogie, inside bearings. Built at the Company's Works, Boston Lodge, in 1885, No. 3. 7 No
2 Same as last, but slanting view. Page 20 No
3 Double Bogie, side tank, Fairlie's patent, passenger engine, "MERDDIN EMRYS." Built at the Company's Works, Boston Lodge, in 1879. No.10 6 No
4 Same as last, but slanting view. Not used Railway Magazine August 1900 article
5 Double Bogie, side tank, Fairlie's patent, passenger engine, "JAMES SPOONER." Built by the Avonside Engine Company, Bristol, in 1872. No. 8. 4 No
6 Double Bogie, single Boiler, side tank, Fairlie's patent, passenger engine, "TALIESIN." Built by the Vulcan Foundry Company, Newton-le-Willows, in 1876. No. 9. 5 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
7 Four-coupled, saddle tank, goods engine" LITTLE GIANT." Outside cylinders 8 in. by 12 in., inside bearings, wheels 2 ft. diameter. This engine has a four-wheel tender for coal only. Built by Messrs,, G. England & Co., London, in 1867. 3 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
8 Four-coupled, side tank, shunting engine" THE PRINCE." This engine has a cast-iron saddle-piece across the Boiler and tanks to give extra weight, and has a four-wheel tender for coal only. Built by Messrs. England & Co. 2 Prince
9 Same type as the last. "THE PRINCESS". 1 The Princess
ROLLING STOCK
10 Bogie Composite passenger carriage No.20 11 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
11 Two open First-class passenger carriages 23 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
12 Bogie Luggage & Guards Van no. 1 10 Van 1
13 Four-wheel Quarry Workman’s Carriage No 9. 9 No
14 Four wheel carriage truck 14 No
15 Bogie Ballast truck 12 No
16 Wood coal wagon No 118 13 No
17 Large iron slate wagon No. 945 16 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
18 Small iron slate-wagon No 27 16 No
VIEWS
19 Portmadoc Terminus and Train. 17 Spooner Album FR Heritage Group site
20 The Locomotive and Carriage Works, Boston Lodge, from the Embankment at Portmadoc. 18 No
21 Interior of the yard by the Stores Offices, Boston Lodge Works 19 No
22 Outside the Running-Sheds, Boston Lodge Works. 20 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
23 Sidings and Goods Sheds, Minfford Junction. 21 Minffordd Yard
24 Minfford Junction Station and passenger train 22 No
25 Penrhyn Station 23 Henry Owen, Stationmaster?
26 60-ft. Breast-wall and Curve, Cei Mawr. 24 Cei Mawr
27 Curve and view of Maentwrog (Tan-y-bwlch) near the residence of W. E. Oakeley, Esq. 25 No
28 Part of the" Horse-shoe Curve," near Tan-y-Bwlch. 26 No
29 Tan-y-bwlch Station and passenger train. 28 No
30 Tan-y-bwlch Station from the North. 27 No
Not listed Tan-y-bwlch Station with two passenger trains. 29 No
31 View of the Festiniog Valley, from near Dduallt. 30 No
32 Dduallt Station and passenger train, taken from a distance. 31 No
33 Portmadoc end of long tunnel 32 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
34 Festiniog end of long tunnel. 33 No
35 Curve on breast-wall, and view of Foundry near Tanygrisiau. 34 No
36 Tanygrisiau Station. 35 Spooner Album FR Heritage Group site
37 Loop Line to Dinas, and Junctions, from foot-bridge over the main-line. 35 No
38 Blaenau Festiniog Junction Station. 40 No
39 Blaenau Festiniog Junction Station, with down Quarry Workmen's train. 41 Railway Magazine August 1900 article and Quarrymen's carriages
40 Platform at the junction with the Great Western Railway, Duffws 42 No
41 Duffws Terminus and passenger train. 43 Railway Magazine August 1900 article
42 Platform at the junction with the Great Western Railway, Duffws 37 No
43 Viaduct over the London & North Western Railway at Dinas 38 No
44 Terminus of the Dinas. Loop Line, and entrance to London and North Western tunnel 39 No


See also[edit]