The Old Railway Line Garden Centre was established by Mark and Christina Cleary in 1990 on the site of the old Brecon to Hereford Branch of the Midland Railway.
The garden centre has continually grown since it was first established and has now become one of the UK’s premier, destination garden centres.
The Old Railway Line (Three Cocks Junction)
Three Cocks was a major junction within the Midland Railway. The main line from Hereford entered the Three Cocks junction where you could either continue through to Brecon or branch off to Builth Wells. The Three Cocks station was opened to goods trains in September 1864 with the refreshment room proving popular with train drivers.
The line was closed to passengers in December 1962 and was eventually axed by Dr Beeching in 1964 as part of his national modernisation of the railway network.
Out of the Steam a Garden Centre is Born
Christina’s father purchased the land in the 1960’s and ran a small piggery from the site. In 1990 Mark and Christina started selling home grown bedding plants from a small 8x6ft greenhouse next to the entrance. Mark started to increase trade by attending local markets including Builth and Brecon.
Customer numbers and demand for quality plants was constantly increasing so the decision was taken to open a small plant area and build a couple of poly tunnels from which the garden centre you see today started from.
Garden Centre Growth Over The Years
As the reputation and demand grew, a number of production and retail tunnels were added over the years. In 2000 we developed a new plant area and plans were already being produced for a new Coffee Shop which was built and opened in 2001.
The existing poly tunnels were starting to show signs of wear and tear so in 2009 we developed a new retail space called Platform 1 which was the first permanent, insulated retail building to be built on site.
‘The Big Build!’ (2012 Redevelopment)
In September 2011 the diggers moved in to build what was going to be the biggest project we had ever undertaken.
We were going to build a brand new retail building that joined onto the Platform 1 building completed in 2009 which would house a new gift area, florist counter, farm shop, new till area, reception desk and offices as well as a brand new 150 cover restaurant.
We completed the build on time and the new garden centre was opened by celebrity gardener David Domoney on the 29th September 2012.
As a company we are always looking to the future and investing in ways to improve our product offer and standards of customer service.
Mark and Christina have a close-knit family who are all showing a keen interest in different aspects of the business. The Old Railway Line Garden Centre holds a special place in their hearts, and they are thrilled to see its legacy continue with the next generation. With their family’s enthusiasm and expertise, the future of the garden centre is in capable hands.