The Ffrith Line
The Ffrith line ran from its junction with the Chester – Mold line along what is now the 2nd fairway. The trackway and bridge from the junction are behind the 3rd tee. The line continued across the 4th fairway and then followed the river Alyn towards Pontblyddyn. To the left side of the 4th green the remains of the trackway can be seen as a public footpath through the trees.
Construction of the branch line began in 1847. The original intention was to build the line up to the Ffrith Limeworks at Llanfynydd but following financial difficulties the line ceased when it reached Coed Talon and it was to be some years before it reached the limeworks.
The first mile of line to Coppa was opened to traffic in 1849. Coal was already being worked nearby and the collieries that developed here would become one of the main sources of traffic for the Ffrith branch.
In the mid-1930s there was a derailment of wagons near Pontblyddyn and the line closed shortly afterwards.
Coppa Colliery Sidings
The colliery was opened in 1854. In the 1860s the colliery was greatly extended to work the rich deposits of cannel (oil bearing coal) and ordinary coal. Two oil works were built and several shafts were sunk.
In 1872 Coppa Colliery was closed. Some limited working did take place when the lease was taken over by the neighbouring Padeswood colliery. Mining finished entirely in 1888
Coppa Oil Works
This was situated in the area between the 4th fairway and 9th green/11th tee. Opened in the 1860s, it was one of the largest in the area. The site beside the Coppa Colliery was not connected to the Ffrith Branch line but the distilled oil was transported by a tramway through a tunnel beneath the Ffrith Branch to the second works to be either loaded onto rail wagons or refined into such products as paraffin, grease and lamp oil which was then carried by rail to customers throughout Great Britain
The tramway is shown on the centre left of the map.
This tramway crossed the 4th fairway near the 150yd marker. The large dip in the rough on the right hand side (much visited by those of us who fade the ball) is the site of the old tunnel under the railway line.
The refinery closed after 1874 and the second works were thought to have been demolished by 1883.
Bibliography- Industrial Railways and Tramways of Flintshire – J.R. Thomas & M Griffiths