2 Pacers arrive at Cambrian Heritage Railways and enter preservation

Cambrian Heritage Railways welcome Class 144 pacers
Credit: Cambrian Heritage Railways

Cambrian Heritage Railways took delivery of two Class 144 Pacer trains yesterday, Friday 22nd May 2020.

The Class 144s were built in 1987 and have recently been withdrawn from service with Northern and were delivered by rail to CHR – a first for the railway.

The intention for the Class 144s is to provide stock to operate the Oswestry to Gobowen Community Rail Service.

This now means that the Cambrian Heritage Railways has control of the railway, stock and Parliamentary Powers to run the service.

The Pacers were organised following discussions between the CRP and Porterbrook CEO, Mary Grant.

CHR Chairman Roger Date said “We are immensely grateful to Porterbrook for all their help. It is ironic that these trains were built in part as a cost-effective way to provide new stock for routes that would otherwise have shut, in their retirement they will once again provide cost-effective modern stock to the travelling public”.

The Pacers, 144006 and 144007, arrived at Gobowen after running on the mainline as 5Z44 Keighley & Worth Valley Railway to Gobowen Cambrian Heritage Railways.

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  1. Wow, This is one of the most exciting (and latest) highlights within the UK Preservation Movement.

    I always knew the ”Eagerly-Must-Visit” Cambrian Heritage Railway(s) – Oswestry, Shropshire would also take on these ”Latest to be Potentially Preserved” Pair of Pacer Units Especially as part of this ‘Heritage Railway Newcomer’ and it’s own fleet of rolling stock…

    Not to mention… As part of the CHR’s eventual extension from Outstanding Oswestry down to Weston Wharf (and back).

    Let’s Hope more Pacers are also Potentially Preserved… Because I think these soon to be permanently withdrawn 2nd Generation DMU fleet may have further extra potential of more than a new lease of life along Heritage Railway Territory across the UK.

  2. I myself hope to visit the ”Cambrian Heritage Railway(s) – Oswestry” ‘in-person’ someday.

    Mostly to check out the Outstanding Station Building, the fleet of Rolling Stock the CHR has as part of it’s own eventually extensive Heritage Railway line through the Stunning Shropshire Countryside.

    Especially to Ride Aboard whether these Pacers or either Steam or Diesel hauled slam-door train ride along the route of the CHR.

  3. Good job you won’t have to ride on them further than from Oswestry to Gobowen.
    Hope they can make it pay.

    • Great encouragement from Pedr Jarvis. The Cambrian Heritage Railways – of which I’m a ‘Lifer’, have quietly done very well here!

      Our then young family – when on holiday in Exmouth in 1986 travelled across Devon, via Exeter – to the North Devon coastal resort of Barnstaple – using a 142 train, described at the time as a ‘Skipper’ set and painted in the ex-GWR chocolate and cream livery. We found the ‘new’ train to be very comfortable, and entirely suitable for the speeds of very rural route. It was the first time that I had travelled in a four wheeled vehicle on standard gauge!

      Well done, Cambrian Railways…

  4. ABOUT TIME SOMEONE PRESERVED THESE! Like Layland Nationals and Alexander bodied Volvo B10Ms thee should be preserved! Nice trains!


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