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Pen-yr-Orsedd quarry was a slate quarry in the Nantlle Valley in North Wales. It was one of the last slate quarries operating in North Wales and the last operating in the Nantlle Valley area, finally closing in 1979.
|County||Carnarvonshire (now Gwynedd)|
|Track gauge||2 ft (610 mm);|
3 ft 6 in (1,067 mm)
Pen-yr-Orsedd opened in 1816, owned by William Turner who was also the owner of the nearby Dorothea quarry and the Diphwys Casson quarry in Blaenau Ffestiniog. It was acquired on 1854 by John Lloyd Jones who sold it on to the Darbishire Company, owners of the Penmaenmawr granite quarries, in 1862. The new owners invested £20,000 (equivalent to £1,923,077 in 2016) to expand the quarry, though with limited results; by 1871 the quarry was producing just 500 tons per year. William Darbishire took over direct management of the quarry that year and by 1882 had raised production to almost 8,000 tons.
Pen-yr-Orsedd was one of the major slate producers of the Nantlle Valley. It was the last of the Nantlle quarries to commercially produce slate, closing in 1979.
Narrow-gauge railway museumEdit
Railway enthusiast Rich Morris began collecting narrow gauge rolling stock in 1963, storing many at his home in Longfield in Kent. As the collection grew he sought a more permanent arrangement and in 1976, he came to an agreement with the Festiniog Slate Group to move many of his locomotives to Pen-yr-Orsedd, where he planned to set up a museum to exhibit his collection and tell the story of narrow gauge industrial railways.
With the closure of Pen-yr-Orsedd, The Festiniog Group offered Morris space for his collection at their largest quarry, Oakeley. Morris' collection was moved there in May 1978. Further collections were brought to Oakeley and the Narrow Gauge Railway Centre was opened in the Gloddfa Ganol tourist attraction.
In 1862 the quarry was connected to the Nantlle Railway, with 3 ft 6 in (1,067 mm) narrow gauge lines extended to all but the highest levels of the quarry. Most levels of the quarry had both 3 ft 6 in (1,067 mm) gauge and 2 ft (610 mm) gauge trackwork, many with mixed gauge tracks. The Nantlle Railway connection was used up until 1963, while the internal 2 ft (610 mm) gauge lines continued in limited use until the end of quarrying.
|Baladeulyn||De Winton||0-4-0VB||Sold to Glynrhonwy Slate Quarry in 1895|
|Starstone||De Winton||0-4-0VB||Thought to be sold to Glynrhonwy Slate Quarry in 1894 where it was renamed Padarn.|
|Inverlochy||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1877||Possible ex-Pen-y-Bryn Quarry. Scrapped 1937.|
|Glynllifon||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1880||Scrapped 1937|
|Rhymney||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1875||Scrapped before 1932|
|Chaloner||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1877||Sold to a private collector 1960; now preserved at the Leighton Buzzard Light Railway.|
|Gelli||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1893||Withdrawn 1945, still intact at quarry 1952; believed scrapped|
|Pendyffryn||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1894||Sold 1965, now restored to working order at the Brecon Mountain Railway|
|Arthur||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1895||Scrapped 1956|
|Victoria||De Winton||0-4-0VB||1898||Scrapped 1956|
|Kelso||Vulcan Foundry||0-4-0VB||1893||Withdrawn 1945, still intact at quarry 1952; believed scrapped|
|Britomart||Hunslet||0-4-0ST||707||1899||Sold in 1965, now privately owned and running on the Ffestiniog Railway|
|Sybil||Hunslet||0-4-0ST||827||1903||Sold in 1965, now privately owned, and restored to working order at the Brecon Mountain Railway alongside Pendyffryn|
|Una||Hunslet||0-4-0ST||873||1905||Sold in 1963. Now in working order at the Welsh Slate Museum, Llanberis|
|Diana||Kerr Stuart||0-4-0T||1158||1909||ex-Oakeley Slate Quarry, Blaenau Ffestiniog. Privately owned, and based in 2018 on the Amerton Railway|
|No. 1||Ruston & Hornsby||4wDM||235712||1945||20DL. Out of use in 1972.|
|No. 1||Ruston & Hornsby||4wDM||226298||1945||20DL. Out of use in 1972.|
|No. 2||Ruston & Hornsby||4wDM||235711||1945|
|No. 3||Ruston & Hornsby||4wDM||226298||1943|
|No. 4||Ruston & Hornsby||4wDM||226264||1943||20DL. Out-of-use in the top level of the quarry in 1972.|
|4wPM||Sold or scrapped|
- Lindsay, Jean (1974). A history of the North Wales slate industry. David & Charles.
- Swift, Mike. "Twenty Five Years of Narrow Gauge Preservation". The Narrow Gauge (73). The Narrow Gauge Railway Society.
- Quine, Dan (February 2017). "A history of Baguley 774". Talyllyn News.
- "The Penyrorsedd Stand at the Olympia Exhibition, 1928". Gwynedd Archives, ID: XS/1245/29. Caernarfon Record Office.
- Quine, Dan (March 2015). "Private railways of the West Midlands in the 1960s". Narrow Gauge World.
- "Pen-yr-orsedd Slate Quarry Co. Ltd" (PDF). Narrow Gauge News (80). The Narrow Gauge Railway Society. December 1972.