The Gelert Trust: Bagnall 3050 Registered Charity Number 1171674
The application for charitable status for The Gelert Trust was submitted before Christmas 2016 and was successful in February 2017. This website will set out the details of The Gelert Trust, the Loco’s history and provide as much information as possible about how the loco came to be where it is today and the people involved in getting it this far.
Gelert has been resident at Gelert’s Farm On The Welsh Highland Heritage Railway at Porthmadoc for many years, following its return from South Africa. Those who contributed towards that formed an owners group; it went into service and into the care of the WHR Company, and this situation continued ever since.
However, time moves on, and the original shareholders became older. Also, steam locomotives need heavy expenditure from time to time, which the WHR Company may not be able to afford. So the question arose of how to secure Gelert’s long term future for the benefit of future generations.
A proposal to form a charitable trust to care for Gelert had been discussed on and off for some years. The advantages of a Trust would be to ensure that there is a group of people focused on caring for the loco when the current shareholders are no longer around, to provide an organisation which will attract new and younger volunteer input focused on a specific project, and to ensure that Gelert has a secure future even if it is no longer required for use by the WHR Company. It would also ensure its continued use as a training tool, a role for which it is ideal.
Around the middle of 2016 time was found to get to grips with the detail of setting up a charity. This involved a considerable amount of research but following extensive consultation had overwhelming support from the remaining shareholders. It also involved demonstrating to the Charity Commission that the organisation would be of sufficient public benefit to warrant registration as a charity. The application for charitable status was submitted before Christmas 2016 and was successful in February 2017, just in time for scheduled major refurbishment work to start
Gelert’s home at the WHR is secure for the foreseeable future. A formal locomotive agreement was agreed between the Company and the then Owners’ Group in 2014, which is a 15 year rolling agreement for Gelert to remain at the WHR Ltd, and which formalised the informal arrangement and understanding which had been in place for many years. Following the formation of the Trust, both the Company and the Gelert Trustees have agreed that this agreement should continue in its existing form between the Company and the Trust.
Sadly Gelert failed in August 2000, with a leaky stay.
As it is so close to the end its 10 year boiler certificate, it may be some time before Gelert goes again. Seen here, the bunkers have been emptied, firebars removed, and lastly, water is drained from the boiler.
Bagnall 3050 was officially named 'Gelert' in 1992.
Here, 'Gelert' leaves the shed at Gelerts Farm, and prepares to take a loaded train out of Porthmadog Station.
WG Bagnal No 3050 was built in 1953 for the Rustenberg Platinum Mines.
Here it is seen at Birkenhead Docks prior to being shipped to South Africa.