Old Engine Shed

From Festipedia, hosted by the FR Heritage Group

The Old Engine Shed described here is the Festiniog Railway's first locomotive shed dating from 1863 and is located at Boston Lodge. It is now used for storing rolling stock not in regular use.

Old Engine Shed
Location Boston Lodge North of Boston Lodge Works on the oppisite (West) side of the main line.
Register No 89
T. Corner ID BL002.02
Operational Yes
Heritage Status Listed grade 2. Highly significant. Original part of the shed dates from around 1863.
Cadw Blg ID 14424.

Cadw listing text as follows:- Exterior. Built of local slatey rubble with corrugated iron roof; coursed rubble to south gable end but uncoursed to sides. Boarded gates to the twinned square-headed entrances with iron lintel; modern lean-to on west side. Embankment wall on opposite side of track. At north end it is attached to the weigh house. Reason for Listing. Listed as part of this especially complete example of a C19 railway engineering works which has important historical associations with the Ffestiniog Railway. Group value with other listed items at Boston Lodge.

Description Solid stone wall to east elevation. under a duo pitched roof covered with slates.

2012 Conservation Statement Description:-

The two roads of the main part of the shed were capable of holding six England engines. The original part of the shed was built about 1863 for the first four Englands.

The masonry break, that is visible on the outside of the south wall, suggests that the original shed was extended, probably about 1867 when the final two Englands were obtained.

Early plans show a gap between the lower end of the weigh house and the top end of the workshop at the end of the shed. This space was later occupied by the boiler house for the workshop but it is not known whether this was built at the same time or later. [Now believed to be 1871]

The building is stone built with a pitched slate roof. The main shed is some 95 x 22 ft and contains two long pits and brick flooring.

Behind this was a workshop some 55 ft long, a boiler house some 15 ft long and the weigh house.

A third road to the shed was added in the early 1880s [1878]. This was of corrugated iron on a timber frame. This shed was extended at the rear about 1891 and cut back at the front at some time after 1932, probably when main road was widened and the mass concrete retaining wall above it was built.

By 1954 the original roof [of the main shed] had been replaced by corrugated iron and the shed was in a poor condition. The roof was replaced by corrugated asbestos probably about 1964. The small office and partition between the shed and the fitting shop were removed and the two original roads extended to the rear of the building in order to increase the covered space available for carriages.

In 1962 the pit in the corrugated iron shed was filled in. The extension was demolished in 1972 and replaced by a narrower concrete block shed with a roadway giving vehicular access to the Works on its outside.

In 2008 the extension was demolished and the third road rebuilt almost in its original form and the external roadway reduced to a walking route. However, the taper at the rear of the previous building was squared and the replacement shed extended to its original length at the front in order to maximise the storage space available inside the building.

The whole shed was re-roofed with slate at the same time but the original smoke vents were omitted. In 2009 the Railway received a National Railway Heritage award for the restoration of the building. The shed is now mainly used to house historic rolling stock.

Present use Carriage shed
Previous use Locomotive shed
Condition The building is generally sound.
Urgent and Immediate Repairs required The following repairs are urgently required (2013):-
Less urgent repairs A summary of the repairs required are as follows:-
Improvements needed The following works go beyond 'repairs'.
  1. Suggest painting cladding in a more 'railway like' colour.
  2. Replace plastic gutters with cast iron.
Potential alternative uses The future use of this building is likely to remain as it is for the foreseeable future.