Hafod y Llyn (WHR)
|Hafod y Llyn (WHR)|
Siding in use|
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- Not be confused with Hafod y Llyn, the site of a former passing loop (1836-74) on the Festiniog Railway
Hafod y Llyn (briefly known as Hen Hafod) is a siding loop on the Welsh Highland Railway. Although the loop exists it is not a token station so trains cannot pass here. The loop can be used to terminate trains and was used as temporary terminus before the railway opened to Porthmadog. Recently the loop has been used to terminate winter trains from Porthmadog. There was a halt nearby on the original line.
The full name of this place is Hafod y Llyn Uchaf. It lies at a height above O.S. datum of 3m (10ft). [route 1]
It has been established that the original Hafod y Llyn site was at the location Ch 26200 on the TWA maps, and is this location. This corresponds to the roadways visible in Boyd/Lloyd drawing of the station, the surrounding area, and Level Crossing (construction No. LC96). It was (and is) at the end of a public road, leading from/to the A4085; south of the halt the public right of way is only a footpath.
The 200m loop is conveniently at the foot of Nantmor Bank, so any locomotive failing to cope with the gradient on a soft day may return to terra firma without too much ignominy. In terms of running time, it lies almost halfway between Cae Pawb and Beddgelert. It was opened to passenger trains on May 21st 2009; a short platform was installed later in the summer (officially regarded as 'open' from September 1st 2009) but passengers were not encouraged to board or leave the train here. The halt closed again from May 27th 2010 upon the extension of services to Pont Croesor.
In recent years some winter trains from Porthmadog have terminated here. Terminating here avoids the steep gradients of the line onward to Beddgelert. This allows a small FR locomotive to be used whilst larger locomotives are undergoing maintenance.
At one point, it was decided to call the new loop Hen Hafod, to avoid confusion with Hafod y Llyn on the FR (just below Tan y Bwlch). However, within a short space of time, after protests from local people, the name reverted to the original. Hafod was the old name for the summer quarters used by the farmers who took their animals up the valleys and hills for the summer (= Haf), returning to the lower house (= Hendre) for the winter. Hen = old; there is a stone barn of some antiquity hard by the loop. Llyn refers to the lake in the woods above tree line.
The principal inhabitants are a family of otters in the river, a family of ospreys in a tree a further distance toward Porthmadog and an intelligent but inquisitive family of pigs.
Former "Proposed" New Site
The Transport & Works Order (TWO) maps for the rebuilding of the line showed a possible new location for Hafod y Llyn, at Ch 27100. Before construction started, the idea was dropped and the original location was used The difference in locations, coupled with Boyds comments on the 3 halts, and confusing pictures has caused much confusion. The appearance on public maps in 2010 of a station at this possible site will confuse even more in future.
For general details see here
After 21st May 2009, trains will run through the Aberglaslyn Pass to Hafod y Llyn. However, there is no platform or public road access so it is not possible to alight or join a train here. A small platform for walkers may come into operation later in the year but this will only be to access local footpaths and we do not recommend its use for anyone other than those suitably equipped for hiking.
A revision was issued September 2009, with the halt being brought into service
“The halt may be used by pedestrians via the tarmaced bridleway from the A4085. There is no parking facility at the halt. Passengers wishing to alight at Hafod y Llyn should do so by prior request to the guard due to the length of the platform. Although the platform itself is accessible, there are no facilities at or near to this location so it is recommended for use by able-bodied walkers only” A further revision was issued after May 2010, when the halt was closed. There is now no passenger service to this location