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On the Welsh Marches line, approx half way between Hereford and Abergavenny.
Railway type and traffic
Crewe/Cardiff trains are normally 158s but events at Cardiff Stadium can lead to class 67s.
Freight is mainly steel hauled by 60s or 66s.
Beautiful countryside surrounded by rolling hills. I would think it is pretty safe even during the wee small hours.
Coming from Hereford, take the A465 and turn left as soon as you get to Pontrilas. Follow the road through the village parallel to the railway and turn left in to the station approach. It is not signposted as a station though. If you go too far you will get back on to the main road.Click here to set up your location for directions to this location Pontrilas map co-ordinates
The old station approach road has plenty of free parking space, it looks pretty secure.
Also the showroom of a large Internet retailer, On Tracks
, in Business Park opposite has free parking
Sadly Pontrilas station is closed, but there seems to be an express coach from Abergavenny to Hereford operated by Stagecoach.Click here to set up your location for directions to this location
Post Office/stores good for snacks.Garden Centre now closed but good pubs in Ewyas harold and nice Cafe on way to Hereford in Art Centre
The old station house is a Bed and Breakfast, which looked very welcoming to me. There are some nice hotels in Abergavenny as well. There are some good self catering cottages, Burnett Cottages
, at Orcop about 5 miles away.
Sun Compass using Suncalc by brought to you by Vladimir Agafonkin
It might be necessary to adjust the time to suit your visit, this link should open with the current day.
Pontrilas general view map
Pontrilas close up map
Windows Local Live Link
- image quality may vary
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Railway Gen Group
There are three good locations I saw, ideally for southbound trains only. Immediately south of the old station building the lines go in to a short tunnel so you can not see northbound trains approach [although the semaphore gives a clue], plus you can only get going away shots.
Old Station Yard and Goods Shed now Auction Centre - good if access available. Road to Orcop has excellent views over remaining sidings and old branch to Hay on Wye.
Alternativley, take the road through Ewyas Harold to Hay on Wye, on leaving Ewyas look right - see BR coaches on track in SAS camp - guess what they practice!
The location is the top of a long climb from Abergavenny and long signal section so south bound trains are often held here.
General views - All photographs © Richard Stiles unless otherwise stated
Fig 1 - Looking north
This shot should be best for mornings. It is an aerial vantage point east of the line and overlooking the signal box.
To get here you climb up the steep steps of a public footpath, turn left at the top and carry on walking until you reach a break in the trees which line the road. A powerful zoom helps but not essential, a 50mm lens would be ok. Because of line side vegetation, the train needs to be short [4 or 5 coaches] to get the best shot.
Fig 2 - Looking north
View 2 is back the way you came, and stand at the top of the steps. Not such a good view but you get the station roof and signal box. A powerful zoom is probably required.
Fig 3 - Looking north
View 3 is track level, just by the station house. There is a gate preventing access to railway land. Again, you probably need a zoom to bring the train nearer to the photographer. Would be best afternoons I should think.
Fig 4 - Looking north
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