Page last updated at 11:36 GMT, Monday, 24 January 2011
Griffithstown Railway Museum to close its doors
Railway boundary marker
Pontypool was once a major centre for the railways in Wales

A museum dedicated to the railway heritage of Pontypool is closing due to financial pressures.

Martin Fay opened Griffithstown Railway Museum in a former Great Western Railway goods shed in 1993 and has spent much of his own money on its memorabilia.

"I can't go on with it any longer - financially it's broken me," he said.

He hopes that most of the items will find a home in a railway heritage project being planned for Newport.

Pontypool was once a major centre for the railways in Wales, with the community of Griffithstown effectively created as a company town for workers on the Great Western Railway.

The rail union Aslef was founded in Griffithstown in 1880 in an engineering club which survives to this day.

Martin Fay
Martin Fay hopes to find a good home for his collection

Mr Fay, a keen railway enthusiast, sold some of his own furniture to pay for items of memorabilia as he built up the museum's collection.

It includes signs and old railway uniforms, timetables and fencing.

Initially launched as a private collection, Mr Fay opened it up to the general public in 2001.

He was sad to say that the attraction, housed in a building leased from Torfaen council, was no longer viable.

"I'm busy clearing the place at the moment - it'll close as soon as physically possible," he said.

Mr Fay previously had concerns about the future of the museum in 2004 when the nearby Churchwood housing development was given the go-ahead.

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