Ffestiniog Railway use milk bottles for new rail sleepers

Ffestiniog Railway use milk bottles in new railway sleepers
Credit: Chris Parry

The Ffestiniog Railway has announced that it is replacing the wooden sleepers with brand new plastic ones.

Recycled mile bottles make up most of the plastic used in the new sleepers, which look very similar to the wooden ones, the differences only become apparent when you are close to them.

The sleepers arrive at the Ffestiniog Railway in standard gauge form, and then they are
cut in half and predrilled ready to receive the rail chairs.

These new sleepers are very adaptable and any unwanted holes can be repaired with a kit similar to a puncture repair kit.

The railway’s Infrastructure Manager Alex Spring is very pleased with them and says that “they will last for a hundred years”.

Through replacing the sleepers with plastic ones, the Ffestiniog Railway will be saving more than a footballs pitch worth of tropical hardwood from Africa or South America to use as sleepers.

The Festiniog Railway Society has funded the sleepers for the next four years.

The plan is to replace five hundred metres of wooden sleepers with the new ones. Two hundred metres were replaced before Christmas with the remainder being replaced by the end of March

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