Peter John Randall – 1960-2020

The Board of Cymdeithas Rheilffordd Eryri is saddened to report the sudden death of Director and Trustee, Pete Randall. Pete was a former General Manager of the Festiniog Railway Company.

Our deepest sympathies are with Jane, his family and his many friends and colleagues.

Pete Randall was for many years a well known figure around the Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways, he was General Manager of the Ffestiniog Railway Company for a period in 2002 and at the time of his death was a Director and Trustee of Cymdeithas Rheilffordd Eryri.

Pete was born in Liverpool in 1960 and, passing his 11 plus, attended Liverpool Bluecoat School. After interview by Dick Hardy Pete became a British Rail sponsored student and followed a year at Crewe Works with studies at Hertford College, Oxford graduating with an MA in Natural Sciences in 1982. While at Oxford Pete became Secretary of the Oxford University Railway Society and amongst other things arranged addition of a Restaurant Car to a Paddington to Oxford commuter train as venue for the Society’s 50th anniversary dinner!

His career on the big railway saw spells at Gateshead, Bounds Green and Old Oak Common. Leaving BR as it began to break up towards privatisation Pete worked as a rolling stock engineer for Eurotunnel and after his time as GM in Porthmadog became a Principal Inspector with the Health & Safety Executive. Following time with Fiat Ferroviaria and Northern Rail Pete joined the Department for Transport in 2006 working on rolling stock procurement and retired as a Civil Servant in 2019.

Pete’s love of railways started very young, his Dad building him his first model railway when Pete was about 2 ½.

Pete was a proud Liverpudlian and lifelong Everton supporter. Amongst his many non-railway interests Pete had a love of music, his taste ranging from Heavy Rock to English Church music. He claimed, as a boy, to have occupied the same seat in his Parish Church choir that had been Ken Dodd’s some years previously and cited Ken’s name carved in the woodwork as evidence. Pete was a capable musician in his own right; his performances of Cavatina and Albatross, the latter on a home made electric guitar, often being mentioned.

In recent years the focus of Pete’s activities on the railways had been the Dinas based project to restore NG15 locomotive No. 134 where he acted as project leader enthusiastically running weekend volunteer working parties and negotiating with management at Boston Lodge to get as much work done by full time staff as possible within the works’ busy schedule. It is a great sadness that he will not see the project completed.

Pete will be sadly missed by his many friends and by Jane and his daughters Helen (herself a sometime Ff&WHR volunteer) and Elizabeth.