Machen Quarry, nr Newport

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Machen Quarry, nr Newport

Post by Steve Blick on Sun Sep 17, 2017 3:43 pm

Address

Hanson Aggregates
Machen Quarry
Machen
Caerphilly
Mid Glamorgan
CF83 8YP




Situated roughly 9.5 miles west from Newport, Machen Quarry sees ( at the time of writing - August 2012 ), two trains a week. Loaded trains, usually either a class 59, 60 or 66 hauled, are stone destined for Westbury and West Drayton.

For freight times, use the Newport station timetable, available through the subsciption based Freightmaster website.



By Car - From the M4, leave at junction 28 and take the A4072, signposted for Brynmawr. After negotiating the motorway island, follow for approx 3.5 miles, taking the 2nd exit at the next roundabout for Caerphilly ( A468 ). Continue along for about 4 miles, passing the Lower Machen village sign on your way. Roughly a mile past here, you will come upon a staggered crossroads, to where the entrance to the quarry will be on your right. This is easily missed though, as the sign is partly obscured by vegetation. From here, park up on the right, the small lay-by situated at the bottom of a track. This leads up to the loading stage of the quarry, to where the shunter sometimes stables.

An alternative for a closer look, is to return to the road. Turn right, following the footpath down the hill, turning 1st right into Royal Oak. Immediately on your right, is a public footpath. Follow this fairly overgrown and uneven path to the top, to where it brings you out near the loading stage.

If the shunter is still not visible, then return to the road and turn right. Then its 2nd right into Oak Lane and follow along, parking up when you see the T-junction sign. Continue on foot under the railway bridge, turn right and follow the path up towards the quarry. Overhead views of the line and loading stage may be had from here.


By Rail - As Machen is situated on a freight only line, Newport is the nearest station. However, a direct bus route is available, which runs directly past the quarry. For a 30 mins journey, ask for Royal Oak on Commercial Road or the quarry itself. For further details, times etc, please follow the link below.

http://www.transportdirect.info/Web2/JourneyPlanning/JourneyDetails.aspx?cacheparam=6



Notes - During the week, the shunter is usually parked in and around the loading stage area. However, the weekend will see it possibly parked under a bridge, as it has been the victim of vandalism. This will obviously hamper any clear view or photos.

Mentioned in the 3rd paragraph of the driving directions, it is unsure to how much of the railway line and shunter you can see from the footpath. Increasing vegetation may be a problem if using this view.

The quarry closes at 5pm on a weekday and is possibly closed all weekend and bank holidays. In past experiences, the staff seem enthuiast friendly, so if planning a visit during the week, you could contact the quarry on the above address. However, by using the track mentioned in the last bit of the 1st driving directions, could guarantee seeing the shunter anyway.



Vantage Points - A combination of using the track and the public footpath ( Royal Oak ) could prove to be fruitful in the week. These two are really the only vantage points for viewing the shunter.

The main entrance to the quarry itself, does not give any sightings of the shunter at all, as this stables at the top of the line, a good few hundred yards away. Therefore, there is no need to use the entrance, unless you have a pre-booked visit.



Photos - View from the gate at the end of the track, near the loading stage.


Maps - Road.
           Birds eye.
           Ordnance survey.



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08296 - Mendip Rail blue

Steve Blick
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