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Irish Steam Preservation Society


An event took place on the ISPS line on Sunday 20 March, to commemorate an attack on the Maryboro (now Portlaoise) - Abbeyleix railway line on the night of Easter Sunday 23 April 1916, during which the first shot of the 1916 Easter Rising was fired. An account of the incident can be found at http://www.bureauof

A local group, Lord Edward’s Own, staged a mock engagement of British troops and Irish Volunteers, with the audience brought to the “battle site” by train. 4 special trains ran with 45 passengers on each service. An empty train operated between each passenger train for positioning. Scenes were filmed for a TV documentary about the events surrounding this first shot of the Rising. One of the ISPS railway volunteers was filmed patrolling the line with an old hand lamp from Maryborough Goods department and ducking on cue for the cameramen, while separately a member of the group playing the Irish Volunteers was filmed taking the "first shot". The TV documentary was shown on the Irish language TG4 television channel on Sunday 28 March.

Waterford & Suir Valley Railway

The W&SVR had an inaugural 2-mile run for officials and sponsors on Saturday 4 August 2001. Four trips for invited guests took place on Saturday 25 August 2001, and a supporters’ special also ran over this first section of line on Thursday 20 September 2001.

Public services started the following year, on Saturday 3 August 2002. By 2005, track had been extended to Bilberry, but advertised public service remained limited to Carriganore. Carriganore – Bilberry was however used for an unadvertised once a month service, Monday 16 May 2005 – Monday 15 September 2005 only (i.e. four Mondays only). Advertised public service was extended from Carriganore to the location referred to as Gracedieu, adjacent to the N25 Toll Plaza (see Journal 189), from Tuesday 13 July 2010, with a ceremonial trip to Gracedieu on the previous evening, Monday 12 July 2010.

On Saturday 11 June 2016, a special trip conveyed an IRRS party to and from Bilberry, following the final regular service of the day.



Dublin has recently acquired a Tram Café, located in Wolfe Tone Square, about 100m from the Jervis Luas stop. The café consists of the body (only) of Lisbon bogie car 305, which was brought to North Wales c. 1998 for its bogies to be under a proposed replica of a Llandudno & Colwyn Bay Electric Railway tram. It was assigned the No. 25, the next free number in the former L&CBER fleet, repainted in that company’s livery, and its destination box adapted to show “Colwyn Bay”. The body of 305/25 was in excellent condition as received from Portugal, and was sold for further use in Ireland in 2008. It travelled from Holyhead on 31 May 2008, destination Mullagh, Cavan, where it languished in a field, still bearing its L&CBER livery and number, and destination Colwyn Bay. See the following link

In 2011, the tram was spotted in its Cavan field by one the two partners now running the new venture, and now, after five years, the tram has entered a new phase of its working life, as a café, back under its original No. 305.

See and

In the latter link, the café is described as beingabsolutely tiny. It seats about 12 people at the very most inside, with another 20 or so outside.” The tram afficiionado will of course be aware that 305 was one of the larger Lisbon trams, with ten side windows, as compared with the 6-window 4-wheel cars used on the hiily routes, which are really very tiny indeed. The bogie cars had 40 seats in tramway use, total capacity c.60, while the 4-wheel cars accomodated 20 to 28 pasengers seated with the total capacity ranging between 42 and a remarkable 58!

We wish this new enterprise every success.

Bord Na Móna

Bord Na Móna General News

Procurement China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC), Taiyuan, is to supply 30 aluminium-bodied 914 mm gauge wagons to peat company Bord na Móna.

The remainder of this article appears in IRRS Journal number 190, published June 2016

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Revised: January 18, 2017 .