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Published by membersonly, 2018-04-25 01:48:57


20th August 2016



This newsletter covers the World outside the British Isles from information
supplied by members.

Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the Compilers or of the Society.
International Editor (to whom all email and postal contributions should be sent):
Paul Griffin, 7 School Bell Mews, Church Lane, Stoneleigh, COVENTRY, CV8 3ZZ
Email: [email protected]
Deputy International Editor: Derek Woodward, 68 Church Street, Matlock, DERBY, DE4 3BY


It may be early July, but there is still extensive snow cover over the entrance to the Finse Tunnel. The picture is taken at Finse station
which is on the Bergensbanen railway between Oslo and Bergen. Finse is the highest station on the Norwegian railway at 1222 metres
a.s.l. The Finse Tunnel is 10.3km long and is the longest tunnel on the line, and the third longest railway tunnel in Norway. Inside the
tunnel, at 1,237 metres a.s.l. is the highest point on the Norwegian railway network. The tunnel replaced a circuitous section of railway
prone to blockage by snow.
The train is the 06:25 Oslo to Voss and it was halted at Finse to cross a freight train from Bergen. Passengers were allowed off, but
warned not to wander too far away!


[324] Albania - Trains return to Librazhd and Shkodër
On 9 July all trains services in Albania were cancelled apart from one train pair between Kashar and Durrës.
In late July services were reinstated to Librazhd and Shkodër but European Rail Timetables advise that ‘the
situation remains very fluid and travellers should be aware that further changes may be made at short

[325] Austria – Threat to Innsbruck tram line 6
Tram line 6 (the “Innsbrucker Mittelgebirgsbahn”) was built in 1900 and is fittingly known by locals as the
“forest tram”, it runs from the Bergisel tram stop (the final stop on tram line 1), through the woods to the
south of Innsbruck, up to the alpine plateau and onwards to the Innsbruck district of Igls. Unfortunately
bus competition means that the trams, which run hourly, are only well used on summer weekends when it
is a popular tourist attraction. The route is therefore being considered for closure.

[326] Austria – Wien gricing (and micro-gricing) opportunities
Now that Wien Hauptbahnhof is fully open there are several routes to, from or through the station:
From the S-Bahn line from Meidling to Pratterstern there is a new connection after Matzleinsdorferplatz
which enables trains to reach Hauptbahnhof platforms 3 and 4. This only has an hourly service, line S80,
which is xx48 from Wien Meidling or xx34 from Hauptbahnhof. The S80 runs to or from Hirschstetten via
Simmering and Stadlau. Mainline services between Meidling and Hauptbahnhof in either direction
normally use Meidling platforms 4 to 8 and run via the mainline to Hauptbahnhof.
Train 557, 08:58 Wien-Graz, is the only mainline train scheduled to leave from Meidling platform 2. This
requires it to cross from the mainline to the (Praterstern to Meidling ) S-Bahn track and then use the S-
Bahn track to Hetzendorf Junction where this joins the main Südbahn route. This train ran as such when
our member travelled on it on 18 July. Trains from Wien Hauptbahnhof towards Simmering mostly use the
lower numbered platforms but if a train leaves from platforms 9 to 12 it may use a diveunder under the
eastern side of the station (a route with extensive use of crossovers is also used) before joining the S80
route mentioned above. This applies in this direction only. (Platform numbers are shown on the ÖBB
journey planner. Two examples are 2564 Wien Hbf-Marchegg at 07:49 or 2532 Wien Hbf-Bratislava at
20:16). All the routes mentioned can be done on a Wien day ticket (zone 100) and this is valid on long
distance trains between Meidling and Hauptbahnhof. The Ostbahn route through the station can be done
by line S60 or a loco hauled peak hour extra. For example: 14:37 Meidling-Grillgasse, train 7627 or 15:04
Grillgasse-Meidling, train 26050 (S60)

[327] Croatia - Gricing visit to Croatia with a bit of Serbia and Slovenia (part 2)
Našice - Našice Grad. The Pleternica - Našice through line closed in 2010, but subsequently a short section
of the north end reopened as far as Našice Grad. It now has a limited service of 3 trains a day, most of
which run to or from Osijek. On arrival of the evening service at Našice on 9 June, most passengers
alighted and only your reporter joined. Upon departure the nearly empty train climbed slowly up the
winding branch to a very short terminal platform, not even long enough for the 2 car DMU forming the
service. Despite this station being closer, and at a much more similar height, to the hilltop town than the
one on the main line, only two other passengers took advantage. Našice Grad station is situated on a sharp
curve just short of an awkwardly sited level crossing and, having dropped off its load, the unit drew
forward across to the far side where, it was assumed, it would be more visible. Your correspondent visited
the nearby town centre and, when he returned nearly an hour later, the unit was still sitting in the same
place with its doors open. Your reporter decided to try his luck and asked the driver if he could get on. The
indication was no but, within a few minutes, another passenger turned up and got on, maybe because it
was a hot day and there was no shade at the station, so your reporter decided to follow suit and nothing

was said. With nearly 10 minutes to go before departure the train drew back into the station, but only to
the point where the front of the train was level with the platform end. This meant that the back end was
blocking half the road, which wasn't popular with the local drivers. No further passengers joined for the
trip back to the main line.

Našice Grad station DMU stabled beyond the level crossing at Našice Grad

Pleternica – Čaglin. Pleternica is a junction station where the Velika branch leaves the former through line
to Našice. The south end of the latter line reopened in December 2015 as far as Čaglin, although only with
two weekday round trips. On arrival from Nova Kapela-Batrina on the Vinkovci to Zagreb main line, all
passengers alighted from this Friday evening service and only one other passenger, a railway worker,
joined. Confusingly the dot matrix sign on the side of the train showed Velika as the destination,
presumably as Čaglin wasn't coded in to the system. The line runs along a wooded and sparsely populated
valley, and the four intermediate stations, two in the middle of nowhere and two near isolated hamlets,
produced no customers in either direction. Čaglin is a passing place and boasts a staffed station. There was
freight here, but it consisted of wagons of old sleepers, suggesting that refurbishment of the line further
north may still be ongoing.

DMU at Caglin with sleeper traffic on the right

The return journey produced one fellow traveller, again a member of staff. Presumably the hope is that
once the entire line reopens, if it ever does, then through traffic will be generated but at the moment it
doesn't seem to serve any useful purpose. The track was, however, in very good condition with a decent
speed being maintained throughout.
Novska – Sunja. This line is electrified but the track is in very poor condition, especially at the Novska end
where the train travelled at an excruciatingly slow speed for many kilometres. The train crosses the river
Veliki Strug over a new bridge, and the remains of a bombed road bridge can be seen alongside. The line
then passes through miles of scrubland with the occasional ruined building. Railway infrastructure is
generally in a very poor state with no remedial work appearing to have been done since the war. All of the
stations were derelict and overgrown.
Proposed Gradec - Sveti Ivan Žabno cut off. Work has commenced on this line, which will enable trains
from Zagreb to Osijek to avoid reversal at Križveci or Koprivnica. Basic earthworks are in place as far as the
eye can see just north of Gradec, on the Zagreb to Koprivnice main line. The line is as shown on Ball, and
the other end joins the existing route just west of Sveti Ivan Žabno. At this end the preliminary work is
much less complete, only the first kilometre having been done. At neither end was there any earth moving
machinery, or any other equipment for that matter, to be seen, but it was a Sunday so it could be that it is
moved off site at the weekend.

[328] Denmark – Bjergbanen closed this year
The Bjergbanen runs from Lemvig to Lemvig Havn, the steep gradient being the origin of the railways
name, which means mountain railway. This heritage railway was forced to suspend operations for 2016
when it failed to get safety certification. Operation should resume next year.

[329] France – Thiers to Montbrison formally suspended
The announcement, reported in BLNI1257.209, of impending ‘temporary’ closure of the Thiers to
Montbrison section of the Clermont Ferrand to St. Etienne railway has duly come to pass after further
inspection tours confirmed the poor state of the infrastructure. Bus substitution was already in effect as of
1 June due to rail expansion problems associated with hot weather. The ‘temporary’ closure took formal
effect from 29 July. According to SNCF it would require nearly €53 million to refurbish the line, which in the
best case could not reopen before 2019.

[330] France - Planned improvements to the regional network of Hauts-de-France
The new super Region named Hauts-de-France, formed by the merger of Picardie and Nord-pas-de-Calais,
occupies most of the north-east corner of France and contains most of the rail network created by the
Compagnie du Nord railway company, anchored on Paris Gare-du-Nord.
During the next five years, various projects are planned and underway to adapt and improve the rail
network in the north of France. Here are details of some of those projects:
- Harmonise the tariffs and conditions of transport, renegotiate the conventions with SNCF, standardise
liveries, logos.
- Creil is an important junction that is used by 18,000 passengers a day on TET/TER/Transilien and 70
freight trains a day. Planning is underway to improve the track layout and modernise the station facilities
with a pedestrian bridge over the site. Completion is expected by 2020 - 2022 when cross-country TGV's
should start to operate between Roissy CDG - Amiens - Boulogne.
- Electrification of the line between Rang-du-Fliers and Amiens is underway in two Phases.
Phase 1 has started, to adapt the loading gauge of 8 bridges and to lay cables along the trackside. Phase 2
will start in 2018 to erect the overhead catenary.
Detailed planning begins this year on the Roissy - Picardie link of 7 km to carry TGV's / TER trains between
the Paris - Creil line and the CDG airport station. Completion is targeted for 2020.

- Between 2017 - 2018 urgent engineering work will be carried out on the Beauvais - Abancourt - Le
Tréport-Mers single track line. Between Beauvais and Abancourt, the track will be replaced (rails,ballast)
for a life expectancy of 30 years. From Abancourt to Le Tréport a "heavy" maintenance will be applied
(good for 15 years). The majority of the cost will be covered by the Region (and shared by Normandie for
the section from Abancourt to Le Tréport.
-The single track un-electrified lines from Saint Pol to Etaples/Béthune/Arras will be renewed at a cost of
69 million euros. Work has started.
- Sections of Lille - Valenciennes will be modernised at a cost of 100 million euros (no details at present)
-The rail access to the port of Calais will be modernised at a cost of 53 million euros.
-Detailed studies will begin to examine solutions to the problems for commuters arising from the
saturation of Paris Gare-du-Nord. The intention is to examine the feasibility of creating transfer connection
stops at Saint-Denis Pleyel, Le Bourget and Chelles-Gournay from 2022 when the Grand Paris Express
metro system begins to open. Item courtesy of the SNCF Society.

[331] Germany – Berlin observations
Berlin U-Bahn: It is intended that U-Bahn line U55 will eventually form part of a westwards extension of
line U5. At the moment it runs the short distance from Brandenburger Tor to Hauptbahnhof, with one
intermediate station at Bundestag. The line has been built as double track, with long, wide island
platforms. At present the sole two-coach train shuttles up and down on the eastern track, with the
western side of the platforms fenced off. There are stop blocks immediately at the south end of
Brandenburger Tor station, but there is an over-run tunnel north of Hauptbahnhof, presumably where the
train is maintained. With the entire line underground and not connected to the rest of the U-Bahn, then
according to Wikipedia, trains have to be lifted in and out by means of a shaft north of Haupbahnhof. The
tunnel walls at Brandenburger Tor station are decorated with a mural showing the history of the
Brandenburger Tor, with captions in English as well as German. At Hauptbahnhof the tunnel walls are
decorated with large photographs showing Berlin’s main stations as they were in the late-nineteenth and
early-twentieth centuries.
Berlin-Schönefeld: The new lines via Berlin-Brandenburg Airport must see some use, presumably to ensure
that everything remains in working order, because there are polished strips along the head of the running
rails, on both the S-Bahn and main line tracks. However, red boards marking a possession were in place on
the Airport lines east of Glasower Damm. Although it is still not certain when Berlin-Brandenburg Airport
will open, DB has severely downgraded Berlin-Schönefeld Flughafen station. The main station building is
closed off. Down in the subway that accesses the platforms are a small number of ticket machines. This is
inadequate, bearing in mind the number of users unfamiliar with them, who may take some time, even to
pay a straightforward fare to the city centre. The subway kiosk is boarded up, so the only refreshments
are what is available from vending machines on the platforms. There is no departure board and the only
“real time” information is by platform indicators. Timetable posters and fixed signs, which assume that the
normal service is operating from the usual platforms, are all that is available by way of information in the
subway. If this was Albania the arrangements would seem pretty good, but it is the capital city of
Berlin Ostkreuz: Construction of the high level platforms at Ostkreuz is complete. Curiously, the two S-
Bahn platforms and very wide concourse, with shops (similar to the Ringbahn platforms at Südkreuz), are
within a train hall, but the main line island platform is outside. At low level, the southern pair of S-Bahn
tracks are temporarily removed for reconstruction between Ostkreuz and Ostbahnhof. As a result of this,
service S3 was curtailed to work only between Erkner and Ostkreuz from December 2015. The line is
single-track from Ostkreuz to east of Rummelsburg and appears to be cut off from the rest of the S-Bahn.
Fortunately, there is a depot at Erkner. The south-to-west curve, used by trains between Treptower Park
and Warschauer Straße is also closed for reconstruction, with a concrete viaduct partly built. As a result of
this, there is currently no S-Bahn service between Berlin-Schönefeld Flughafen and the Stadtbahn. About

the only features of the old Ostkreuz that are recognisable are remains of the former S-Bahn north curve
and the historic water tower. The latter now looks somewhat incongruous in a setting dominated by
modern steel and concrete.
Berlin Außenring: A lorry damaged a bridge west of Saarmund, resulting in changes to the Königs
Wusterhausen – Potsdam RB22 service from 4 May. Trains are diverted via reversal at Michendorf. The
line between Saarmund and Michendorf lost its passenger service very recently, when RB22 was changed
to run via reversal at Golm, instead of via Ferch-Lienewitz. However, it is some time since any passenger
trains used the curve between Abzw Wilhelmshorst and Wilhelmshorst-Nesselgrund. (I travelled over the
line in 1994 on a train from Oranienburg – though it may have started further north – to Leipzig). As a
result of the extended journey time, trains were arriving at Berlin-Schönefeld Flughafen later than usual
and departing earlier, and the service was replaced by buses between Berlin-Schönefeld Flughafen and
Königs Wusterhausen. No doubt an additional train and crew would have been needed and there may
have been a problem with platform occupation at Königs Wusterhausen, where the main line goes down
to single-track through the station. Most posters gave no end-date for these arrangements, but signs at
Berlin-Schönefeld Flughafen advising of consequent platform changes were said to be valid until 5 June.
Temporary timetable leaflets, which were only to be found on the trains, gave an end date of 11 June.
Somehow it was possible to run trains direct between Königs Wusterhausen and Werder via Saarmund on
7 and 8 May, in connection with the annual blossom festival at Werder. Although RB22 trains now pass
through Potsdam-Pirschheide high level, they do not stop and it seems unlikely that they ever will. The
platform loops have been removed. The platforms themselves and their buildings are very run down, with
nature taking over.
Berlin Ringbahn: The Ringbahn Ferngleis were severed at Pape Straße in connection with re-opening the
Anhalter Bahn and construction of the new Berlin Südkreuz station. A Berlin Macht Dampf excursion on 21
March 1999, which ran from Baumschulenweg to Grunewald, may have been the last passenger train
before the line partly closed. Most of the track between the junction at Halensee Nordkopf and
Tempelhof has been relaid, retaining double track, and the line is complete again. The curve from
Halensee Südkopf to Grunewald has been reinstated and the connection to the S-Bahn south of Halensee
station remains. However, all track has been lifted at Wilmersdorf Gbf and the connections in the
Ringbahn Ferngleis removed. Resignalling is under way at Tempelhof, where a small yard remains,
together with the branch to Marienfelde. The Ringbahn Ferngleis is still single-track from Tempelhof to
the junction with the Cottbus line at Baumschulenweg. Both the DB branch to Treptow Gbf and the
Neukölln-Mittenwalder Eisenbahn remain in use from Neukölln Gbf. The branch from Neukölln to
Flughafen Tempelhof closed some time ago, but the bridge that carried it over the Ringbahn is still in place.
It has been suggested that line will be electrified from Halensee Nordkopf and Grunewald to
Baunschulenweg, but there is no sign of any such work under way.

[332] Germany - Problems for Museumseisenbahn Minden
Museumseisenbahn Minden runs heritage trains on selected dates between Minden Oberstadt and
Kleinenbremen. Unfortunately this year road works have severed the line between the penultimate
station, Nammen Grube, and Kleinenbremen., so services must terminate 2.8km short.

[333] Germany - Parkbahn Rittersgrün being improved
Parts of the Parkbahn are being rebuilt, including removing some significant gradients and changing the
turning arrangements. The ‘improvements’ will be in operation next year.

[334] Italy - Update on Italian timetable changes of gricing interest
On Sicily the line from Palermo to Piraineto did not re-open on 1 July as scheduled. BLNI1232.175 reported
that this section of line was being doubled with 7km in tunnel, so the works are obviously not complete.
The timetable shows buses until 3 September, but no service thereafter.

Main features of the Sardinian narrow gauge this summer: No trains between Seui and Árbatax. There is
one round trip Tuesdays-excepted from Mándas to Seui. No trains between Láconi and Sórgono. There are
two round trips between Mándas and Láconi on Sundays. A train runs from Sassari to Palàu Marina and
back on Thursdays, this being the first opportunity to do a round trip in one day for several years. There
are various workings between Tempio and Palàu Marina Tuesdays to Saturdays. No changes on the Bosa
Marina line.
The Trenitalia timetable indicates that there will be hardly any trains between Alássio and Ventimiglia from
Wednesday 2 November 2016. Presumably, this is in connection with commissioning the new line.
The only local trains shown are two early morning round trips from Ventimiglia to Imperia Oneglia (one on
Saturday, none on Sunday). Curiously, two eastbound EC trains are shown, but none westbound.
Presumably, an error, but if the two eastbound trains should not have been included, that means 1
November is the last day of trains between Alássio and Imperia Oneglia. See BLNI1256.190.
Until 18 September train R2895 Ravenna to Genova Brignole departs Ronco Scrivia at 09:35 and is
scheduled to use the local line to fast line connection Bivio Rivarolo to Bivio Bersaglio. The only previous
instance of passenger use of this line that our member is aware of was when one IC was scheduled this
way in the winter 2010/11 timetable.
It seems that efforts to run a regular service from Gallipoli Porto this summer have foundered. Apparently
Rotaie di Puglia thought they could run trains from Gallipoli to Otranto every Tuesday afternoon from 19
July until 30 August, but at short notice FSE was unable to provide staff. The train ran only on 5 August last
year, but was very popular.
The Gallipoli – Casarano service has been totally bus substituted since 1 July until further notice. This may
be the first consequence of the collapse of Ferrovie Sud Est.

[335] Poland – Trains return to Waliły
After a 16 years gap, passenger trains have returned to the Białystok – Waliły branch line, but only on
summer weekends from 2 July to 9 October. On most dates the train leaves Białystok at 09:00, and returns
from Waliły at 17:17. Full timings at:-

[336] Serbia/Bosnia - Heritage trains resume cross border section
The famous Šargan Eight narrow gauge railway, which is mostly in Serbia, has not been running across the
border into Bosnia for some time due to structural problems on the Bosnian section. These have now been
resolved and the first steam special operated over the cross border section to Višegrad in early June. It
seems a company named Balkan Romance will be running more charters on the full length of the line, but
their web-site was still under construction in early August.

[337] Serbia - New track layout near Ćuprija
BLNI 1223.433 reported a new 9.5km cut-off under construction on the Beograd to Niš line south of
Lapovo, starting 2.6km north of Paraćin and proceeding directly to Gilje. This opened at the end of 2015
and means there are now two routes between Paraćin and just west of Ćuprija since the old line has been
retained to serve the latter station. The continuation of the old line via Jovac has been closed. EGTRE
reveals that all local trains and some fast trains run old line to Ćuprija and take a new east to north curve
to join the northern part of the deviation, which is used by all trains. A number of fast trains use the entire
length of the new deviation and do not call at Ćuprija.


[338] Nigeria – New standard gauge railway opens
The 187 km standard gauge line between Kaduna and Abuja was inaugurated on 26 July, although Nigerian
Railway Corp had begun a period of trial operation on 15 June, with passengers carried free of charge.
There are 10 intermediate stations, and trains run at a maximum speed of 100 km/h. At its southern end
the line terminates at Idu, around 20 km from central Abuja, where there will be an interchange with the
light rail line which is under construction to link the central business district to the airport from December
2017. Construction by the China Civil Engineering Construction Corp began in 2009 and was planned for
completion in 2014, but was delayed by issues with the government’s share of the funding. Tracklaying got
underway in July 2013. Chinese suppliers have delivered rolling stock and locomotives for the project.

[339] USA – No more tourist trains along the Pend Oreille river valley
Since July 1981 the North Pend Oreille Valley Lions Club and the Pend Oreille Valley Railroad (POVA) have
jointly operated several weekend excursions rides in summer and autumn along the Pend Oreille River in
northeast Washington state. These rides run along the north end of POVA's railroad, which is especially
rugged as the track snakes along the cliffs that shadow the river far below. There are several tunnels and
bridges along this stretch of track, ranging from low wooden trestles to the huge Box Canyon Bridge. The
trips are very popular and often sell out, but this year will be the last year they run. This is because the
Federal Railroad Administration are now requiring the use of their track inspectors instead of the railroad's
own, at a cost of $131,000 per year. The locally owned railroad can't afford that as there is no freight
business north of Ione and the Lions Club certainly can't either. Remaining trips will be run the first
weekend in September and the first 4 weekends in October. You can order tickets at:-
Apparently another operator is interested in starting a tourist train running north from Newport to Ione or
some other destination, so the rolling stock may still be used.

IBSE - List of Special Trains on Lines without Passenger Services
Note: Entries marked with a "+" were updated within the last four weeks.

Germany 2016 Diversion IC 2241, 2242 between Lüstringen and. Hasbergen vmtl. via Münsterkurve (no
25-27. 8. DB halt at Osnabrück Hbf)
Shuttles Osnabrück - Mettingen
28. 08. ET Shuttles Reutlingen West - Betzingen (ZHL)
Draisine trips Werdau West - Seelingstädt(b Werdau) [also 10/11.IX, 1-3.X]
30. 08. ZHL Shuttles(Dessau Hbf -) Oranienbaum(Anh) - Ferropolis [also 11.IX, 1-3.X]
Shuttles Hafen Magdeburg
02-04. 09. + EFWO Shuttles Penig - Rochsburg
Shuttles on Gelände EF Aschersleben
03. 09. DVG Running day Feldbahn Blankenberg [also 25.IX, 3.X]
Running day Waldbahn Eichenberg
10/11. 9. MEBF u.a. Kamenz(Sachs) - Hosena, Abzw Altdöbern Süd - Abzw Lindthal, Großräschen Süd
(Münster(Westf) - Osnabrück Hbf -) Stahlwerkskurve - Westerkappeln
10/11. 9. Schienentrabi Egeln - Staßfurt (- Berlin Schöneweide) and return
Shuttles Cottbus - Bh Cottbus
10/11. 9. NbSE u.a. Thülen, Arnsberg Süd
(Dortmund Hbf -) Dortmund-Scharnhorst - Abzw Deusen - Abzw Buschstraße - Abzw
11. 09. + Blankenberg Huckarde Süd - Dortmund-Lütgendortmund - Bochum Nord - Herne-Rottbruch - Wanne-
Eickel Bro/Sot - Wanne-Eickel Wst - Bottrop Süd - Oberhausen Hbf - Mülheim(R)-Speldorf -
11. 09. Eichenberg Hafen Mülheim - Mülheim(R)-Speldorf - Duisburg Hbf - Abzw Sigle - Oberhausen West Orm
- Oberhausen-Osterfeld Süd - Essen-Vogelheim - Hafen Essen (Ost- u. Westufer) - Essen-
11. 09. OSEF Vogelheim - Oberhausen-Osterfeld Süd - Abzw Grafenbusch (- Mülheim(R)-Styrum -) Essen
West - Mülheim(R)-Heißen - Essen West (- Dortmund Hbf)
17. 09. ET 2x Egeln - Staßfurt and shuttles Staßfurt - Bw
u.a. Übg Jena-Göschwitz [also 22.X]
17. 09. NbSE Bielefeld Hbf - Güterloh Nord - Bad Laer and return
Hafenbahn Leer(Ostfriesl) [also 1-3.X Shuttlesim Messegelände]
17/18. 9. LDC Diversions between Kassel Hbf and. Fuldatal-Ihringshausen via Kassel Rbf

24. 09. DGEG Falkenberg(Elster) unter Bf - ob Bf, Leipzig-Mockau - Messe, Döbeln - Meißen T.(?)
(Helmstedt -) Berlin Südkreuz - DTM and return
24. 09. + ASM (Gera Hbf -) Erfurt-Linderbach - Erfurt Ost (- Klostermansfeld) and return
(Weimar -) Kassel - Henschel-Museum (?)
24/25. 9. NbSE Schongau - Landsberg(Lech)
25. 09. NVS (Rottenbach - Erfurt Hbf -) Artern - Laucha(Unstrut) and return
25. 09. Osningbahn (Harpstedt -) Annenheide - Adelheide and return
25-27. 9. + HKB (Gera Hbf -) Erfurt Gbf - Erfurt Nord (- Nordhausen) and return
30.09- DB Regio (Löbau(Sachs) -) KW Boxberg
04.10. (Münster(Westf) -) Hasbergen - Georgsmarienhütte
01. 10. OSEF (Berlin -) Altenburg - Meuselwitz and return
02. 10. + BNR u.a. Fredersdorf(b Bln) - Rüdersdorf
02. 10. (Bochum Hbf -) Mecklenbeck - Sudmühle - Abzw Osnabrück Süd - Osnabrück Rbf -
03. 10. Geraer Osnabrück Hbf - Essen(Old) - Herzlake - Meppen - Lathen - Sögel - Lathen - Haaren(Ems) -
03. 10. + TEV Eurohafen Emsland Mitte - Haaren(Ems) (- Bochum Hbf)
03. 10. Mannheim Industriehafen
09. 10. BEM Pritzwalk - Putlitz and return
09. 10. IG Unstrutbahn ´´Mit dem Schienenbus durch Norddeutschland´´
10. 10. + DHEF
14. 10. NVS Trierer Weststrecke, Merzig Ost IN PLANNING
15. 10. OSEF u.a. Berlin-Neukölln - KW Rudow
16. 10. ET Nossen - Meißen (- Dresden -) Freiberg(Sachs) - Nossen - Meißen
22. 10. BmD

29. 10. HE Mannheim
29. 10. + Sauren
4.11. DGEG
05. 11.
06. 11. DGEG
11. 11. BmD
+ IG Nossen

26. 11. DGEG u.a. Gelsenkirchen-Horst Nord, Essen-Vogelheim
27. 11. OSEF u.a. Übg Pirna
03. 12. + IG Nossen Nossen - Freiberg(Sachs) (- Chemnitz -) Pockau-Lengefeld - Marienberg(Sachs) (- Olbernhau
-) Freiberg(Sachs) - Nossen and return
03. 12. VCD Sundern(Sauerl) - Neheim-Hüsten (- Marburg(Lahn)) and return
10. 12. + IG Nossen Nossen - Döbeln Hbf (- Gera) and return
10. 12. NbSE Egeln - Staßfurt (- Wernigerode - Erfurt) and return
10. 12. BSM Seitzsteg - Augsburg Ring - Seitzsteg - Augsburg Messe - Seitzsteg
31. 12. OSEF u.a. Dresden-Neustadt - Dresden-Friedrichstadt

Europe 2016

23. 08. + FFI Rocchetta St Antonio-Lacedonia - Conza-Andretta-Cairano [also 26/27.VIII] IT
24. 08. + UZ Childrens Railway Užhorod CZ

27. 08. + KŽC (Praha hl.n -) Kladno-Dubí - Skanzen Mayrau and return [also 10.IX, 28.X, AT
28. 08. Landesbahn (Wien Praterstern -) Zellerndorf - Laa a. d. Thaya - Mistelbach Lb and return IT
29. 08. PL
TurKol u.a. Jankowa Żag./Hansdorf(Niederschl) - Żagań SK
03-11. 09. PTG Special trains in South West Sweden IT
03/04. 09. + FFI Shuttles Novara - Varallo Sesia [also 11.XII] IT
10. 09. TurKol Żagań - Lubsko and return PL
10. 09. + KHT Zvolen - Šahy and return
10. 09. TurKol (Wolsztyn -) Leszno - Głogów and return AT
11. 09. + FFI Ceva - Ormea and return [also 18.IX, 16,23.X, 8.XII] PL

17. 09. FdBB Shuttles Mixnitz Lb - RHI Breitenau IT
18. 09. Molise Isernia - Campo di Giove and return PL
18-24. 09. Siede Museum lines, Draisine lines and Goods lines in Souther France PL
18. 09. + Śmigielska KD Śmigiel- Stare Bojanowo Wąsk. [also 11.XI] CZ
23/24. 09. Mercia u.a. Vreoci - TENT A, Rakovica - Rasp K1 - Jajince - Rasp K - Rasp B - AT
Ranžirna A - Ranžirna B - Ostružnica - Surčin - Batajnica FR

24. 09. MLV Schwarzenau - Zwettl - Waldhausen [also 3/4.XII]

01. 10. + LDC (Cottbus -) Żagań - Lubsko and return [DE/CZ]

01. 10. + SHK (Kielce -) Kostomłoty - Kielce Czarnków - Piekoszów - podg. Szczukowskie -
Sitkówka Nowiny - Włoszakowice - Staszów - Połaniec - Staszów - Chmielów
k. T. (- Sandomierz - Ostrowiec Św. - Starachowice -) Skarżysko Kościelne -
Szydłowiec (- Skarżysko Kamienna - Kielce)

02. 10. FTI (Milano -) Novara - Varallo Sesia and return

08. 10. KHKV (Košice-) Medzilaborce - Łupków and return [SK/PL]
09. 10. TurKol u.a. Międzyrzecz – Międzychód

10-18. 10. PTG Patra - Katakolo - Kiparissia - Kalamata

22. 10. TurKol Railtouyr around Poznańn [also 26.XI, 10.XII]

22. 10. Mercia u.a. Hafen Amsterdam

28-30. 10. KŽC Short branch lines around Písek
11. 11. TurKol u.a. Wągrowiec - Rogoźno Wlkp.

04. 12. Landesbahn (Wien Praterstern -) Paasdorf - Mistelbach Lb and return

11. 12. CFCB Loudeac - St. Brieuc and return [also 17-20.XII]

Overseas 2016

13-19. 09. HIT Denver - Fort Collins - Cheyenne - Casper - Livingstone - Missoula - Sandpoint (- US

AUGUST 2016 BLNI Extra No. 17 - Railway Remains

[B64] Bolivia – The train graveyard
In the heart of southern Bolivia lies a mysterious train graveyard, where the skeletons of British steam
locomotives and rail cars rust away on the edge of the world's largest salt flats. Known locally as the
'Cementerio de Trenes', the graveyard contains over 100 steam locomotives and rail cars which have been
dumped around a stretch of disused track 3km southwest of Uyuni, Bolivia.
Many of the trains and locomotives are British imports and have eroded in the harsh Bolivian climate.
Nowadays, most of the locomotives and train cars have been vandalised and stripped bare for scrap metal
and parts vandalised and others even turned into swings to provide a memorable photo opportunity for
tourists passing through on their way to the salt flats.
Pictures and text courtesy of Chris Staring,

From Wikipedia:-
One of the major tourist attractions of the area is an antique train cemetery. It is located 3 km outside
Uyuni and is connected to it by the old train tracks. The town served in the past as a distribution hub for
the trains carrying minerals on their way to the Pacific Ocean ports. The train lines were built by British
engineers who arrived near the end of the 19th century and formed a sizable community in Uyuni. The
engineers were invited by the British-sponsored Antofagasta and Bolivia Railway Companies, which is now
Ferrocarril de Antofagasta a Bolivia. Rail construction started in 1888 and ended in 1892. It was
encouraged by the then Bolivian President Aniceto Arce, who believed Bolivia would flourish with a good
transport system, but the railway was also constantly sabotaged by the local indigenous people who saw it
as an intrusion into their lives. The trains were mostly used by the mining companies, but in the 1940s, the
mining industry collapsed, partly due to mineral depletion. Many trains were abandoned thereby
producing the train cemetery. There have been talks to build a museum out of the cemetery

One locomotive has even been used as a support for a swing to provide a memorable photo opportunity for
tourists passing through on their way to the salt flats.

[B65] Bulgaria - British Rail(s) in Bulgaria
South of Ruse is Ivanovo, close to which there is a rock-monastery overlooking a large gorge. The
monastery dates back to the 13th/14th Centuries. The inside of the small chapel is lined with extensive
murals. The image below, on the left, is a scan from one of the pages of the bi-lingual leaflet. On the
extreme right there are two beams at the foot of the doorway. These reinforcements are actually two
short lengths of rail, manufactured in Middlesbrough in 1898! The enthusiastic guide was almost as proud
about the rails as he was about the historic murals.

The rail seen in the rock monastery was not the first Teesside rail seen in Bulgaria. One was seen during
the 2009 PTG tour on the narrow gauge Rhodope line, the only surviving 760mm line still operating in
Bulgaria. At its western terminus at Dobrinishte, someone spotted a Middlesbrough-marked rail.

[Bolckow,Vaughan, which was established in 1841, was the first sizeable engineering firm on Tees-side.
Over the years it grew from an iron foundry and rolling mill in Middlesborough to having their own blast
furnaces at Witton Park and later at Eston. It eventually became a mammoth organization, which merged
into Dorman, Long & co. in 1929. – Ed]
[B66] Malta – Notabile railway station
85 years after closure of Malta's only railway (3ft gauge, 8 mile single line from Valletta), your
correspondent tracked down the former northern terminus at Notabile (terminus until the 1900 extension
through Mdina and Mtarfa).

Notabile Terminus (hire car adds authenticity) is on Racecourse Road, Rabat. The platform was down below in a cutting.

Trackbed path crosses minor road nearby

[B67] Norway - A railway remnant on Spitsbergen
The archipelago of Svalbard is Norwegian territory and a long way north, but not far enough north to
escape the attentions of a member who cruised all the way around the islands in July and in true BLS
fashion managed to find some railway history at one of the landings. It wasn’t coal however, despite this
being mined on Spitsbergen (the main island) and utilising railways, at least until recently. In western
Spitsbergen, on the south side of the fjord of Kongsfjorden, a railway was built in 1911 by the Northern
Exploration Company, an English company headed by Ernest Mansfield, to move marble. Machines,
railway, wagons, cranes, winches, heavy steam engines, tools and equipment for operations were brought
in. Private houses for up to 70 people, workshop buildings and storage facilities were built and it was
named Ny London (New London). Sadly, the marble was found to be useless as it crumbled in frost and by
1920 the site was nearly abandoned. Much of the equipment and building materials were then removed
and used in other places.
Today a landing must be made on a stony beach using rubber zodiac boats because the little quay has an
abandoned derrick crane and some wagons which are classified as architectural monuments. From here a
curving trackbed leads uphill a few hundred metres to the marble quarry.

The trackbed ends at the plinthed mobile crane. The marble quarry was on the left, behind the remains of the hut.
All are classified as ancient monuments and may not be approached closer than about a metre.

An interesting problem with visiting sites on Svalbard is the presence of Polar Bears, very hungry in the
summer months as the sea ice they need to catch seals has retreated north towards the Pole. Landings do
not take place when Polar Bear are sighted nearby, and when landings are possible several expedition
team members must be present with rifles, which they have been trained and certified to use.
Landings may also not be possible if there is a heavy swell, so landings at any site in Svalbard other than
the capital, Longyearben, are never guaranteed!

The mobile crane is well preserved by the dry air, and the maker’s name, Taylor & Hubbard of Leicester, is
clearly visible. Graffiti in this uninhabited, Polar Bear infested wilderness is not a major concern!

Looking from the trackbed near the marble quarry to the remains of the workshop hall reveals the empty and
spectacular nature of the landscape, seen at its best in summer but desperately bleak and desolate in winter.
Rails and formation can be seen curving towards the quayside.

One of the few guides to the area describes this as the remains of the workshop hall. It may be presumed that coal
was brought by ship and rail to feed the boilers here, though the guide is silent as to the exact means of operation
of the railway.

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