The station after closure, 17th March 1956. Looking up the line, towards the present Blaenau Ffestiniog Station. Photo: John Halsall
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- For more information on the changing railways of Blaenau Ffestiniog see the Blaenau Ffestiniog page
Stesion Fein (English: Narrow Station) was a former station on the Festiniog Railway in Blaenau Ffestiniog. It was located just above Glan y Pwll Road Crossing and before the GWR Exchange station. The track through the site is level - this is followed by a 1 in 66 gradient up to the current Blaenau station.
The station here was originally opened in 1881 to provide an exchange station with the then newly-opened LNWR station on the opposite side of the road. Because of the road at its rear, and an expanse of very boggy ground in front, the FR Co. station was quite narrow, but it did not need to be anything else as it only served passengers. All goods traffic was dealt with using extensive interchange sidings in the LNWR yard, on the far side of their station.
The FR Co. station had offices at the eastern end and toilets at the western end of the long platform, which was protected from Blaenau's notorious weather by a slate roofed, iron-framed, canopy.
'Stesion Fein' was not the official name of the station. According to the nameboard it was called 'Blaenau Festiniog Junction' (spelt thus) and the second line contained the helpful information 'Change Here for Bettws-y-coed and Llandudno'. However it was shown in FR timetables as 'Blaenau Festiniog (LNWR)' or later 'Blaenau Festiniog (LM&SR)'.
The correct Welsh for Narrow Station is Stesion Fain.
In mid 1956, part of the Stesion Fein site was taken over for the construction of the access road to the Tanygrisiau pumped storage project. The station canopy, together with its cast iron supports and valances, was sold, to raise much needed funds, for the shielding of spectators from the worst of the Cambrian elements at Cae Clyd Football Ground, at Manod in the parish of Ffestiniog.
Prior to settling on the expanded GWR Exchange site, Stesion Fein was one of many possible terminus sites for the re-opened line. For some years in the '70s Princess was placed on display on a plinth at the site of the station to publicise the railway's rebuilding.
There is now little evidence of there having been a station on this site due to alterations to the alignment of both railways and the road to create the approaches to the new station. See the Blaenau Ffestiniog page for more information and photographs of the way the railway alignment from here onwards to Blaenau has changed.
There was talk of repatriating the canopy with the FR (Feb 2005), and subsequently the canopy was returned and the slates from it were used in the rebuilding of Rhiw Goch Signal box.
Princess on display 1977