The Railways and Industry Series, Volume 2: The Last of the Welsh Coal Trains
Despite the substantial decline of coal mining in the UK over the last three decades, until recently, coal was still a vital energy source for the nation’s power stations. During 2013 and 2014, coal accounted for 36 per cent of all UK rail freight, but that amount plummeted in 2015 due to the doubling of the top-up carbon tax, a measure implemented to encourage power stations to use greener fuels. With the government’s phase-out of all coal-fired power stations by 2025, many have already closed.
South Wales is one of the last places in the UK where coal is still mined and despatched by rail for domestic consumption. Aberthaw power station was the principal customer for this coal until 2017, when they turned to imported coal. This measure was taken to reduce toxic Nitrogen emissions at the plant, which ended more than half a century of coal supplied from the South Wales coalfield and was the beginning of the end for the power station, which finally closed in late 2019.
Coal is still mined in South Wales and is supplied by rail to Tata steel in Port Talbot, to British Steel’s Scunthorpe works, to Breedon cement works in Derbyshire and to Immingham for export. However, the future of the industry remains uncertain as we move away from fossil fuels towards more eco-friendly forms of energy. Substantial amounts of coal are still required for the UK’s steel and cement industry, but coal mining and rail-freight coal flows could disappear altogether in Wales over the next couple of years.
This book looks at the last of the coaling operations in South Wales from 2013 to early 2020 and features 195 colour images of coal trains running to and from the mine sites along the scenic South Wales Valleys, and the picturesque stretch of coastline that the Vale of Glamorgan line takes to Aberthaw.
Softback, 128 pages, 195 colour photographs
Most orders are dispatched within two-three working days of receipt of cleared payment. If there is going to be a significant delay (more than 10 working days), we will contact you and, where possible, give you an estimated dispatch time.
Please be aware that advance orders will be sent as soon as the relevant book has been published.
When placing your order, please ensure that you add the correct full shipping address to your order. This includes house number, street name, zip code/post code. If parcels are returned on account of an incorrect shipping address we will contact you to seek the correct address and also ask that you pay a contribution towards posting the parcel to you a second time. Similarly, if a parcel is returned to us because the local mail service is unable to deliver it (or you do not collect it from the designated collection point), we will contact you and ask you for a contribution towards the cost of shipping to you for a second time.
Postage on all orders is £1.50 although orders of £25 and over are sent post free. These are normally sent via Royal Mail 48 Hour (the business equivalent of 2nd class mail) which is not tracked although Royal Mail do confirm delivery of parcels. If you require tracking for your order, tracking & courier options are available for a small fee. If the service that you require is not shown, please get in touch with us and we can quote for your desired service.
Large, bulky or high value orders may be split in to multiple consignments or sent via courier. There is no additional charge for this and you will be advised at the order fulfillment stage if this happens.
Overseas orders are charged based on weight, and postage will be automatically calculated at checkout. For a postage quotation, please add the items you want to your cart and proceed to the checkout. All orders are usually sent via Air Mail - this is not tracked. If you required your order to be tracked or sent by a different service, please contact us, preferably before checkout.
Royal Mail will only accept parcels up to 5kg in weight (2kg for Canada). If you are ordering multiple items that exceed these limits, please contact us first so that we can advise you of the appropriate shipping rate.
Due to the high volume of parcels going missing, we are no longer able to send untracked orders via third party mail handling services such as Parcel Motel. We are able to send untracked parcels to bona fide PO Box addresses, friends and family members and to work addresses.
Some countries charge import taxes and other taxes such as VAT; we suggest that in these cases, you asked for your order to be tracked so the local taxation authorities can trace your parcel.
Please note that courier services are unable to deliver to PO Box addresses. If you usually use a PO Box address, you will need to supply an alternative address if you require shipping by courier.
Shipping to the European Union
From 1 July 2021, all EU countries will be imposing VAT on all imports. In the UK, books are zero-rated for VAT proposes so there is no VAT to deduct from the prices quoted on our website. All of our orders are usually sent "DDU" (Delivered Duty Unpaid) using a courier service and the shipping prices quoted are on a DDU basis. However, we are now able to offer limited "DDP" (Delivered Duty Paid) services to certain EU destinations. If you would like to purchase books on a DDP basis, please contact us before making your purchase and we will give you a DDP price.
Therefore all of our shipments to the EU will be held by the relevant customs authority until the customer pays any VAT that is due. We understand that if no payment is received by the relevant customs authority after 30 days, the package will be either returned or destroyed. Rail-Books will not be liable for any loss resulting from the destruction or return of goods where VAT has not been paid.
We recommend that customers in the EU follow the tracking data supplied to them once we dispatch your parcel and once the parcel is showing as arriving in the destination country, make contact with either the postal or customs authorities to pay the appropriate amounts of tax/duty.
Updated: 29 December 2021