~ Ferrocarriles de Mallorca ~
Newsletter March 2001

Discover Majorca's forgotten railways

Pictures sometimes take a while to download but please have patience - I hope you'll think they are worth waiting for !! I'm continuing the different format in this Newsletter and will mostly just put thumbnail versions of the actual pictures on show which you can click on for the larger version. This should enable the page to download more quickly and people can choose for themselves which pictures they want to view in greater detail

Not so much happening this month - a quiet month at home and in Majorca. The excitement of the Sa Pobla extension is over and the Manacor extension is not yet begun but I hope you all saw the article on the Palma - Inca - Sa Pobla Railway in the March edition of Today's Railways, with considerable contributions from Richard Green and Dave Manders (congratulations !!). The April edition will contain an article on the Sóller Railway (my favourite) and I hope will be equally good. Few people go to Majorca on holiday at this time of year so it may be a month or two before anything new in the way of pictures or news comes to hand. I have had several new recruits to our band of dedicated followers and the total number of people who are "signed up" to be notified of changes and developments affecting Majorca and the railways in particular has now exceeded fifty. Mostly they are from Britain but we also have contacts in Australia, Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, the U.S.A. and, of course, Majorca - sorry if I missed any of you out.
One new contributor, José Morell, lives near Lyon in France. His grandfather was born in Sóller and José has been able to buy the old family home there. He is a very keen railway modeller and is modelling the Sóller tramway in HO gauge. The first picture this month is of José with some of his models of Sóller trams. It looks as if he does his modelling in the roof of his house and judging by the display case on the wall he has a very large collection. Click on one of the pictures below or
here to be taken to another page with larger versions of these photos.

José Morell

The next picture is a close-up of one of José's Sóller tram models.

Sóller tram model

The third picture is of the model mounted in its display case. I was particularly flattered to see that the backscene in the display case is one of my own photos !!

Sóller tram model

The fourth picture is of a number of José's models posed on top of a sheet of brass etchings which rests, in turn, on one of his genuine, original share certificates in the Sóller Railway

José Morell's tram models posed on one of his original, genuine Sóller Railway share certificates

Thanks very much, José, for these pictures - I hope we see some more before too long !!

Another new contact, Peter Walter of canton Graubunden (home of the lovely RhB railway) in Switzerland, has sent me a number of superb photos. Many of them are of the line between Inca and Manacor but I'm going to give you a couple which continue the Sóller theme. Peter obviously had the advantage of the most glorious weather but what lovely pictures they are !! The first is of Sóller tram No.3, coming out of Sóller town with the top of the Gaudi-inspired church visible at the back and a backdrop of mountains. Larger versions of these two pictures are available by clicking here or on the small photos below.

Sóller tram No.3

The second photo is of something very unusual - a sort of double tram. If you look at the bow-collectors (which give the game away as to date because they were all changed to scissors-type pantographs before Summer of 1998) you'll see that there are clearly two motor-cars in the line-up and, again unusually, each has only one trailer. I believe the location is a point which they call "cruce" which is about halfway along the line, where the trams are able to cross over using the loop which you can see. These trams will have come from from Puerto de Sóller.

Sóller trams at Cruce

Thanks very much for all your lovely photos, Peter.

You can click on the small picture below to access a very short (750Kb) clip from the film which John Huntley shot in Majorca in the winter of 1955/6. Full details are given in the January Newsletter. You can click here to see the clip but you will need the DivX ;-) MPEG4 Hi-Res Video Codec before you can view it on your own computers.

Steam at Palma in 1955

E-mail me if you would be interested in having a copy of the full video.


Dr Ken J Walker of Railstuff Videos sent me an advance copy of his new video on the Sóller Railway and Tramway, entitled "Atencion al Tren" (recommended). All the digital footage was filmed with a 3-CCD Mini-DV camera. All editing is digital, mastering to DVCAM professional tape. The final VHS copies are professionally duplicated direct from DV. Each copy is the best possible quality, with no "generation loss". I hope to make a brief clip of this video available to you as a "taster" but it hasn't arrived yet, meanwhile here's a rather poor quality (sorry, Ken) still which I made from the video before sending it on to Today's Railways magazine for review.

Railstuff Video - Atencion al Tren

Copies of the video are available through Camden Miniature Steam Services (of Barrow Farm, Rode, Frome, Somerset BA11 6PS Phone: O1373-830151 Fax: 01373-830516 Website:- http://www.camdenmin.co.uk ) and will be £19.95 inc VAT and U-K P & P. Outside U-K postage is £1.15 by surface mail. As soon as I receive the clip from Australia (I never did - Barry, 11th April, 2009) I will upload it and alter the newsletter so you can play the clip as you can with John Huntley's film above.

Peter Clayton's book "The Iron Road to Sóller", is still available available at special rates (see last month's newsletter) so let me know if you're interested and I'll put you in touch with him.

Here's a picture of the cover of his book.

The Iron Road to Sóller by Peter Clayton

That is all for now now - the new format is still very demanding !!. Thanks again to all my contributors and supporters, any comments on the revised format OR contents will be appreciated.

Brief descriptions of the contents of previous newsletters

Mike Kaben's Report

Books on Majorcan Railways

We have produced a Gallery of Pictures of the Sóller Railway and the Sóller Tramway and this is now available on Alan Rolfe's server (thanks Alan) here.

Majorca Railways Home Page

Majorca Railways Photo Gallery

Watch this site for further developments which will take place whenever new information or pictures come to hand. Any submissions of information, photos old or new, postcards, etc., will be very gratefully and enthusiastically received and if used on the site will be suitably acknowledged (as above). The photos, pictures and diagrams used on this site are presented for your information and viewing pleasure only. If any of them should be in copyright violation and the copyright holder would care to notify me I will either remove them or acknowledge the copyright accordingly.

Send your messages to Majorca Railways WebPages

© Barry Emmott 1st March, 2001 adjusted 11th April, 2009