Railway coaches will be among the items going under the hammer when the administrators of the Llangollen Railway PLC auction off the property it owned before getting into financial difficulties.
The administrators Alan Coleman and Jason Elliott of Cowgill Holloway Business Recovery LLP, say the auction will be held on May 12 with viewing days scheduled for May 9 to 10, strictly by appointment. The operating arm of the heritage railway was forced to go into liquidation earlier this year after problems with engineering contracts and the lack of income because of the pandemic. The auction catalogue will be published next week but in the meantime the administrators have released the list of what will be up for bidding. Llangollen Railway Trust has stressed it is solvent and is actively looking at ways it can both bid for items in the auction and get the railway back up and running again once the coronavirus restrictions are sufficiently eased to allow visitors to visit the attraction. Rolling stock will include 10 British Rail Mark 1 coaches, together with a function coach. A diesel shunter, road/rail excavator and a 56-ton rail mounted crane, as well as a box van bogie, rail crane and a 25-tonne wagon fitted with a hydraulic crane will also be auctioned off. A large number of specialist tools are also to be sold including lathes, bandsaws, drills and milling machines. While vehicles including three vans, a diesel fork lift and a telehandler are also included. Llangollen Railway PLC contacted its bank at the beginning of March, asking it to appoint a receiver and revealed it had debts of more than £350,000. There had been fears that the railway would not survive. However the trust pointed out that all the locomotives and a considerable amount of rolling stock were privately owned by the LR Trust and the private groups that support the railway. The local council owns the land and trackbed while the trust owns much of the track and other assets. While staff employed by the PLC have received redundancy notices the railway is heavily dependent on volunteers to keeping it running. Anyone who wants to donate to help the trust either bid for items or to help it in the future can do so via the trust’s website.