The Taff Vale Pages

compiled by Mikkel Kjartan

Modelling the TVR


The Taff Vale Railway is one of several Welsh Valley lines that provide an excellent basis for an unusual layout set in either pre- or post-grouping days.

The TVR connected the harbours at Cardiff to the Taff Vale mines and the ironworks at Merthyr Tydfil, competing fiercely with its neighbours the Rhymney Railway and Barry Railway. It played an important part in the railway history of Wales and was the oldest and largest of the companies absorbed into the GWR at the grouping. Click here to see a map of the TVR.


TVR 3-plank Open No. 9512


TVR Brake 3rd No. 203


Modelling potential

For modellers, the TVR does have some trade support – it isn't much, but certainly enough for a layout and better than what you get for most other Welsh companies.

If you want to stick with the pregrouping era, one precondition is that you'll have to work with kits. If that is not to your liking, there is always the option of doing a post-grouping TVR layout: After 1923, many of the standard GWR locos worked the TVR lines along with the ex-TVR types.

The tables on the following page outline the TVR kits that I know of, as well as selected books, links and liveries relevant to the 'Taff'. Before buying any kits, check that they tally with your chosen time-period, as substantial rebuilds often took place after grouping.

Apart from this, note that several of the TVR designs came quite close to similar GWR types. For instance, a kit for the GWR 'Iron Mink' vans can be converted into the TVR variant without too much trouble, as can some of the open wagons. There is also a close similarity between some GWR and TVR 4-wheel coaches, which might be exploited.

Map of the TVR

Derek Mundy's 7mm TVR layout "Glynmawr". Photo courtesy Rob Kievet.

Finecast 4mm TVR Class U1 on an RTR chassis