N Gauge SouthEast 2020

N Gauge SouthEast 2020
4 April 2020 10am-4pm

Reigate College
Rushworth Road

Well, I’ve given in and we’ve committed ourselves to NGSE 2020. The show will be on 4 April 2020, and it will be at a new site, Reigate College.

The show will be a little smaller than Riddlesdown this year, but still a good size with around 15-18 layouts. This facility does look as if it could be a regular home for us, access is a lot easier (it’s just behind Reigate station), and a slightly smaller show will be more sustainable as an annual event (at least for the exhibition manager).

The hall is a large single facility (no long walks between exhibits), using the two halves of the College refectory. It’s a modern, airy, space. Access to public transport is good, train or bus, and there is plenty of car parking on site.

I appreciate being supported for next year by a larger team, so I hope that life won’t be quite as pressured coming up to the event – and the slightly smaller size will help.

We’ll try and plan another fun show…..

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Taking a few days off

Life’s got a bit busy, so I’ll be taking a few days off from blogging.

Hope to have some news on N Gauge SouthEast 2020 over the weekend.

And here’s a dreadful warning for our larger readers….

Britain’s steepest cliff railway has carriages reinforced because passengers have become heavier

As for me, I’m just resting…..

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A little whimsey for Sunday

An entry by Railsquid on NGForum caught my eye….

Mate, you wouldn’t know Rule 1 if it came up and punched you in the face.

This is Rule 1.

We do get a little too serious sometimes….

And today’s modelling challenge….

Government launches ‘exciting’ plan to turn Pacer trains into village halls

Pacers could also become community spaces or cafes once they are finally replaced by new trains, according to the government, one year after the northern rail meltdown

This popped up in the press a couple of weeks ago, and was well discussed on the usual forums.  I liked this response in the linked article.

Stalybridge and Hyde MP Jonathan Reynolds responded with bemusement, however.

“I am not sure my constituents will agree that this is an ‘exciting opportunity’, unless one of them is turned into a museum dedicated to highlighting years of under-investment in Northern transport,” he said.

“My personal suggestion would be to invite my fed up constituents to dismantle them piece by piece, a bit like when the Berlin Wall came down.”

Still, the Dapol Pacer is reported to be a bit inclined to blow its lights and strip its gears, so perhaps a village hall conversion is just what we need!

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ESNG meeting – 6 June 2019

Back to the normality of a club night, with 9 attending.  A particular welcome to Paul, visiting for the first time.

It was ‘Terrier’ night again.  Simon was running a second hand ‘Brighton Works’ and I test ran my three new Terriers.  I’ve been waiting for a couple of years for these models from Dapol, and they are all a treat to own – ‘Brighton’ in LBSCR livery, then Terriers in SECR and LSWR greens.  All the liveries are very well done.


A more usual train from Simon….

Bullet trains in the fiddle yard – though the one on the left won’t get any further than the Kent coast (it’s just a 4-CEP, really!)

And newspaper headline of the week.

‘Metal thieves’ steal 56-tonne, 23-metre rail bridge in Russia.
Central span of bridge in Arctic Russia vanished leaving no trace or debris.

At least the line was disused!

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The Bartlett’s in Berlin – 2019

Back from a pleasant long weekend in Berlin.  We did less tourism than usual, but 34C temperatures does rather discourage trudging the streets, and encourage ice cream and beer and polite conversation.  But here are a few railway (and other) shots…..

An ideal hotel room overlooking the U-1 line.  The trains are remarkably quiet, even at night.  More than can be said for the emergency services, with full sirens at all hours.

Having climbed up to the top of the Berliner Dom (too many stairs) it was worth the view.

Next day, we did another boat trip – the ideal way to relax and see the city – and a few trains if you are lucky.


I saw some new liveries on trains crossing the bridges, but none close enough to get a picture.  This picture of the new Flixtrain cut-price service comes from their website, but is taken from a boat on the Spree.

A visit to my daughter’s partner’s craft brewery (good product) and the old and disused Witenau station building on the S-bahn.


Queuing for Sicilian ice-cream – and U-bahn spotting…

One topical (if not political) one on a taxi.

And the compulsory sunset to ride off into…..

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The Bartlett’s in Berlin – 3 – repost

Back to the U-bahn.  Looks like we’ll carry on visiting Berlin, as Ruth went for an interview at the immigration department in Berlin and to her great surprise came out with a permanent resident’s visa.  So she’s B**x** proof for a while, and doesn’t have to apply for German citizenship.

The area around the Warschauer Str. terminus is of both railway and historic interest.  Behind the station itself is this small maintenance shed, and a large carriage shed.  I don’t think Lidl are now operating trains!  Although I didn’t see any trains enter the shed, I suspect the trains are on the elevated level and there is a Lidl store underneath.  At least, I hope so…..

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Leaving the terminus, the train crosses the River Spree by the Oberbaum bridge.  This was a Cold War crossing point from east to west, and trains were unable to cross the river to the Warschauer Str. terminus.  Old aerial photographs show all the tracks lifted.  But with reunification, the terminus came back into use.  The 3 photos below are taken from where the Berlin Wall and crossing point would have been. The longest remaining section of wall, decorated with murals lies behind me as I took the photos.

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After crossing the bridge the line curves away to the right.  This location is very model-like, and would make a fine scene for a model railway.  The second shot comes from Wikipedia, I’m afraid, as we didn’t manage a boat trip on the Spree (Ruth was worried that they would be full of Barcelona and Juventus supporters – not a nice thought in a confined space), and this is such a good shot of the attractive bridge structure.


The next station along the line, Schlesisches Tor, is a fine piece of railway architecture (as is the next station along).  Many of the other stations along the line are simple train sheds, perhaps indicating war-time bomb damage.


To close out our Berlin adventures here’s a video of the U-Bahn, an alternative form of transport of the Spree (I love float planes, but you wouldn’t catch me on anything smaller than a Sunderland), and the family at the amazingly OTT Russian war memorial at Trepnow Park.

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The Bartlett’s in Berlin – 2 – repost

Larger trains today……

Just next to the Warstrauer Str. U-Bahn station was the S-Bahn station and the DB main lines.  I suppose in UK London terms, the U-Bahn is like London Underground, whilst the S-Bahn is more like London commuter trains – the stations are further apart and the lines are generally above ground.  The S-Bahn trains we travelled on looked to have more wear and tear than the U-Bahn – perhaps new units are due.  Both systems use a raised 3rd rail, as shown below.  I guess this system is easier to keep going in the winter snow, and not prone to complete failure, like the low-level UK system.

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Next to the station were carriage sidings, mainly holding sleeping car trains.  I was pleased to see that DB also have a problem with graffiti.  And even more delighted to see a real-life Talgo train parked in a siding.  These lightweight carriage sets, with a single pair of wheels on each carriage, fascinate me.  I’ve always admired models of them, but the real thing was even better.  Not sure I want to travel on one though – I’d rather have 8 wheels under me.

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On the other side were the DB main line tracks, coming in from what would have been East Germany in the past.  There was an interesting mixture of ICE high speed trains, inter-city locomotive hauled stock, and local multiple units.  And what to me seemed a rather antique diesel helping shut the yard.  No goods trains, though, so close into the centre of the city.  The civil engineering work being carried out appears to be adding more main line running tracks.  It was good to see a system that is actively adding capacity to its lines.

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My next, and last, post of Berlin will return to the U-Bahn.

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