The visit of the The Summit to St Neots was most enjoyable, and we received a lot of appreciate commentsfrom stewards and visitors alike, though no silverware for the first time with this layout. We also had a most interesting (and at least sort of appropriate) guest loco on the Sunday morning, which oddly considering the lack of catenary also ran extremely well on its own!
Setting up such a large layout on an earth floor was certainly a challenge with a great deal of packing being required for the build.
As planned after St Neots and prior to our visit to Aylesbury Rail-Ex only the fiddle yard for The Summit has been re-erected and the new Evercreech New (EN) boards were moved into their relative positions next to the EN old boards now on their new steel legs. From the pictures you can see the relative heights of the large boards to the EN station boards – this being to cater for the full height of the eleven arch Prestleigh Viaduct. The gaps between the fiddle yard and the new EN boards will be filled with plain 4ft base boards at each side though they could eventually represent Cannards Grave cutting at one end and the short cutting with the three arch stone bridge just before Evercreech Junction at the other.
This a model of the area around Prestleigh. The heights are exaggerated on the model. Knowing the area well there is much to commend the selected route of the S&D Bath extension in very difficult terrain! Once the current baseboard of Heyno Junction is completed we will concentrate our efforts on Evercreech New.
Radcliffe Street (RS) was exhibited at the Yeovil Model Show at Bucklers Mead School Yeovil on Saturday (24th March). Robin and Dave S arrived at about 9am with RS, closely followed by Nigel, and we set up the layout quite quickly – small layout you see. Apart from plugging a wire from the router into the Z21 in the wrong hole – soon corrected – we were up and running well before opening time at 10am. The operators, Nigel, Bob O, Simon W and Dave S were soon operating the layout from the other side of the room and outside the window as well as close by to RS. There were some problems with points and loco settings, but as it was RS’s first outing it did OK. Nigel has a snags list that we will need to work through. We were the only ‘railway related’ exhibitors at the show. Lots of planes and boats and Star Wars models and figures and plastic kits galore and paint. The standard of modelling was high. There was interest from Joe Public in RS but whether we get any inquiries about visiting CS2 remains to be seen. By about 4:30pm, after dropping RS off at CS2, we were at home. Ahh, the advantages of a small layout but not the spectacle of a large one.
It looks like Tim, is up for taking Gasworks to the Gaugemaster’s open days (1/2 Sept) with support from Bob O. Another two operators and the trip is a goer. Dave S will be going in the other direction to Telford with St. Martin’s Wharf.
Well CS2 survived the ‘Beast from the East’ with hardly any of that fine driven snow getting in. We had another busy Wednesday with a good turnout at CS2 and at the ‘greasy spoon’. Work continues on the Holly Junction and Tottington Hall. South Junction has gained an extra operating signal. Tracklaying has commenced on the so far un-named N gauge layout – though it won’t be ‘Bangor’ – apparently.
The Summit is all packed up ready for its trip to St Neots. This is not a venue we’re familiar with and it’s quite a trek cross-country from Somerset. There will be a full update on layout progress next week together with our impressions of the show.
If anybody reading this is going to the East Anglian MRE this weekend then please come and say hello – we like a chat and are always happy to answer questions!
Kingsferry now has ample goods facilities that are obviously well used. For more pictures and details of this superb layout see here. The new photos can be found in a slide show at the foot of that page.
Recently The Summit featured on the front page of the January issue of Hornby Magazine as a ‘Settle and Carlisle Masterpiece’. Many will know that the layout was designed and planned in great detail by the late Brian Draper; and we’ll take that description as a tribute to his vision (which we were told couldn’t be done), not to mention the skill, hard work and commitment of the YMRG members who made it happen! Below is a slide show of superb pictures taken for the magazine, and below that the track plan marked with the photo positions in time-honoured fashion.
Lots of work going on in CS2 this week. Dave from Shepton Mallet visited
again. Good to see Gary back and Halston Road populated with modern image stock. Paul and Olivia continued sorting out Yeovil Town for automatic operation. Tottington Hall made a welcome return from its successful first outing and was reunited with the rest of the baseboards.
Holly Junction has a new sideways extension made and now painted.
The front scenery has been removed from The Summit for maintenance purposes. It is unlikely to be replaced before the outing to Huntingdon in 7 weeks time. Volunteer(?) positions for operator/roadies are still open for this show… Jim’s new Class 60 was running in and got better the longer it ran. Julian’s Jinty went well too.
Ballasting continues on the diesel depot – Ratcliffe Road.
The curved edges of one of the new big Evercreech New boards was fettled into a better shape. A visit to Avon Plywood in Keynsham answered some questions about the plywood we use. They offer a cutting service if we provide a CAD file (.dxf) to them, and we will see how much it would cost for a couple of Heyno Junction end boards. Also it seems Birch ply is more expensive, but the best for what we are doing. Some large scale contour maps have been ordered for the area around Evercreech New. These along with photos of the area will help to give us the topography around the viaducts on the new baseboards.
The new N gauge layout has legs and a name – Kingsdon Central (KC). Work continues on the baseboards. Levelling of the boards will begin next week.
Tottington Hall Estate Railway was well received at its very first show appearance at Ilton. Peter (mostly) and DaveS, with Harry later on, operated and answered questions posed by the crowds at the 009 Society (SWOONS Group) Open Day. Thanks to other members who turned up to support, it was appreciated. We may even get a possible new member from the show.
Just before the public were admitted.
An ace operator operating.
This was a well attended event: Just some of the crowds that were there.
We’ll have a pictorial feature on the completed (for the moment) THER in the next few weeks – now there’s a threat!
We hope that you all had a good Xmas and are looking forward to the New Year.
Saturday brings us the West Camel Winter Show at the The Davis Hall, Howell Hill, West Camel, Yeovil, BA22 7QX starting at 10am. We will have Gas Works there so please come and support (and operate and chat and say how wonderful we are).
Yesterday a very select subset of the membership met at CS2. Work continued on Yeovil Town (YT) with Paul H, Olivia and Nikki working away on the telephone exchange to work YT. Looking forward to the demo on that. Paul also installed a roof bucket to catch drips. Richard was installing a worktop in HoJ.
Young Peter continued to get Tottington Hall Estate Railway ready for its debut on the 13th January at Ilton for more detail see here. Dick got his diesel going properly and ran his newly acquired milk tanker on The Summit. The N gauge chaps cleaned the component parts of their legs, made a jig for welding them together and will hopefully have a complete set ready for next Weds. They thought that having them chrome plated would be a good finish for the legs. A bit flashy eh.
Simon and DaveS continued with EN baseboards. The picture shows the extended outer gussets which will provide support for the curved face and cross members. The latter will now no longer need bracing. Lightening holes will be cut when the outer face is attached. Weight however is not a problem as the board will never need manual lifting as it will be on castoring wheels. For reference there are two boards this size both 12′ 8″ long (corner to corner) and 4′ 2″ wide – that’s if everything has gone to plan! The board in the photo has room for scenery plus Pecking Mill Viaduct, the other board is identical apart from having a different drop on the end boards to allow a full length and height representation of Prestleigh Viaduct.
A Healthy, Happy and Productive New Year to you all, and hopefully we’ll meet at least some of our followers at the shows we will be attending over the next year in West Camel, Ilton, St Neots, Aylesbury or even in CS2 on Open day!