The Beeching Legacy: A Comparative View, Past and Present of the Beeching Report: 3: South & Central Wales and The Marches

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The year 1963 will always be remembered as the one when the Sixties really started to swing. The Beatles and Rolling Stones were topping the charts while the mini-skirt and the Mini car had become the latest fashion accessories. For those with an interest in railways however, 1963 was memorable for the publication by Her Majesty's Stationery Office of Part 1 of the report 'The Reshaping of British Railways' by Dr Richard Beeching, then chairman of the British Railways Board. The term 'reshaping' was somewhat of a euphemism as the report envisaged a radical reduction in the national rail network. Hundreds of stations were to be closed to both freight and passenger traffic, along with thousands of miles of track, while several thousand staff would be made redundant. This series is intended as a record of how the proposals affecting passenger services throughout England, Scotland and Wales were ruthlessly implemented over a ten-year period. Since then, despite the introduction of modern high-speed rolling stock and much track rationalisation, the extent of our rail network has remained basically the same. Train services today are therefore still very much Dr Beeching's legacy. In addition he bequeathed to the nation a linear network of derelict land which could be put to other purposes, including that of heritage railway. The passenger rail network in each regional volume before and after Beeching is shown using maps, text and illustrations. Featuring the lines listed for closure including: Swansea Victoria - Craven Arms - Shrewsbury Gloucester Central - Hereford Carmarthen - Aberystwyth Cardiff Clarence Road - Cardiff General Abercynon - Aberdare Low Level Porth - Maerdy Caerphilly - Senghenydd Barry - Bridgend Bridgend - Treherbert Cardiff - Coryton