The River Wye runs to the north and west of the Forest of Dean, with Ross-on-Wye in the northeast corner, Monmouth in the northwest corner and Chepstow in the southwest corner, where the River Wye flows into the Severn Estuary. At the beginning of the 19th Century, Monmouth was the focus of four branch lines, from Monmouth, Coleford, Ross-on-Wye and Pontypool. This section focuses on the line between Monmouth and Chepstow and the branch from this line to Coleford.
The Wye Valley line, unlike the Severn & Wye and Forest of Dean lines, was primarily intended for passengers. Before the construction of the line, anyone wishing to travel from Chepstow to Monmouth or vice versa had a 43-mile round trip via Newport. Freight on the line consisted mainly from the quarries along the line, which kept a small section open after passenger services were ended in 1959 until 1992. There are no plans to re-open the line (which was perhaps more deserving of preservation than its neighbour, considering the scenery along the line), but several possibilities have been suggested for the southern part route from Chepstow to Tintern, although these plans would appear to have been met with some local resistance.
Abbreviations used in the timeline : WVR - Wye Valley Railway, GWR - Great Western Railway