Ron’s Rovings – last day

Good call, Ron, getting out and about when we were all melting at home!

After days visiting family and friends and a planned quiet weekend I did one last journey today as the weather was hot and sunny. Travelled up to Clapham to catch the hourly service to Bournemouth at 8.08. From tbe station it was buses all the way to Portsmouth changing at Bournemouth town centre, Lymington and Southampton.

Eastleigh Yards

Southampton Docks

Bournemouth Station (no views of the beach, Ron?)

Bournemouth.  That bus has got a bit of a lean on it!

Lymington.  Hasn’t changed much from May Day 1978, when I went out for the day with Maxine and we got very wet and cold, and a tree fell across the line on the Lymington Branch…..


So that’s it from Ron this summer.  Will he escape to Europe next time?  Your guess is as bad as mine….

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It Ain’t Half Hot Mum – 2

Still too hot to do anything useful!  I was about to have a go at another project, and we hit 35C.  Not a lot one can do till the weather breaks.  Maybe tomorrow?

So I’ve just got a few modelling challenges to share.  Here are three possible Terrier repaints here. But if I did one, I bet Dapol would bring them out in weeks!

A 4-SUB unit at East Croydon station.  Note the Southern concrete signal gantry.  Looks a bit different now….

And a 2-BIL.  Another REAL EMU!

Another pukka EMU – a 6PUL this time…

LSWR splendour….

Heading into the New World, two very modellable scenes.  Ohio….

And somewhere down south….

And the real modelling challenges for the day.  Another picture of Bubblecars at Brighton.  This is so tempting to model, but you can’t even get a 3D printed one in ‘N’.

Now, I’d like to see this work in ‘N’.  They don’t look very happy with life….

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A little light entertainment

Thank you N Gauge Forum for the link

Can’t wait for club nights to start track laying again……

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More odds and ends

Phil sent this one to me….

Hi, All!

Locked down, I get my railway fix by YouTube – there’s a LOT of railway fixes to be found on YouTube!

This one had sound suppressed, thereby depriving us of some ripe Aussie epithets!

Stay safe, stay well! Phil.

Brian sent some model shop news….

Hi All,

In case you missed it – Ian Allan, central London’s only model railway & transport bookshop, has reopened! At Lower Marsh, Waterloo, I think it’s the last survivor of what was an empire of UK shops.

I don’t know if you have to roll up a trouser leg or practice a special handshake (socially distanced of course) as you enter the premises?

Have a good weekend 🙂  Brian

And some seaside news….

Southend Pier is to get new trains:

New design for Southend Pier trains 

Memories from my childhood – and the colour restored in green and cream. I wonder if there’s ever been an N scale model made?

The model would be OK – it would be the scale length pier that would be the problem – isn’t it a mile long?

And finally, Brian sent me this great cartoon.  I think I posted it on Facebook, but it’s worth repeating!

And modelling challenge of the day.  Morris Minor converted into a mobile record store.  Kingston, Jamaica, 1984 (photo from my cousin.)

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ESNG meeting – 6 August 2020

Another successful Zoom meeting tonight.  The usual suspects found nothing to talk about for 90 minutes or so.  We were also joined by Paula – great to see her and the family before relocating back home to Portugal.  And we also saw something of Graham.  But failed to hear him!  Nothing to do with me, guv.  Good to see you, Graham, and hope that the sound and connection work better next meeting.

Obviously, a topic of conversation was Bachmann’s impending release of a ‘Clayton’ in N.  Useless prototype, but a very tempting model to purchase.  I don’t ‘need’ one – but…..

A little something from Brian…..

Hi All,

here’s something to watch and comment on later – Sean Bean narrating ‘We Are RailFans’

See you soon!

Cheers, Brian

There’s some good photography there!

As for modelling, I seem to have achieved nothing over the past couple of weeks.  Plenty of other things to do, and none of the projects that I have started seem to appeal at the moment.  I’m sure it will get better soon!

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Ron’s Rovings – day 7 – Sun, sea and bus stations

A little closer to home today….

Set out this morning to catch first off peak train to Brighton. From there I travelled by bus to Portsmouth changing at Littlehampton and Chichester even though all 3 buses were on route 700. Showing my age as the Southdown route 31 used to run the whole way. Connections at both interchanges were around 20 minutes giving an overall journey time of around 4 hours 40  minutes.

Brighton Station….

Brighton Churchill Square….


Chichester Bus Station (Ron takes us to all the best tourist spots!!!!)

Portsmouth Harbour….

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Ron’s Rovings – day 6 – Up north

To the frozen north!

Another long journey today. Left home to catch 0904 from Euston to Liverpool Lime Street. Had a short walk into the city and thanks to the Government scheme to help the hospitality sector I walked into Cafe Nero and was charged around £2.50 for a coffee and buttered scone with jam. Walked back to station to catch 1254 ro Manchester Victoria but due to a train fault we did not leave until 1325. Upon arrival I was able to catch a train through to Piccadilly Gardens and then walked through to Manchester Piccadilly Station. I had reserved a seat on 1535 but managed to catch 1455. I boarded one of the coaches marked for unreserved seats. The train manager was in there and said it was for staff only. I explained my situation and showed my free pass and without saying a word I was told to sit in first class. So back to London in luxury.

All right for some…..

But not really….


Liverpool Lime Street.  Nicely redeveloped frontage….

Like the old 319 Thameslink unit cascaded all the way to Liverpool.

And one at Manchester Victoria….

Manchester Victoria….

With trams….

Piccadilly Gardens…..

And Manchester Picadilly….

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NGSE 2021 – sadly also cancelled

N Gauge SouthEast – 2021 – abandoned

I’m sorry to have to announce that we have decided to abandon the 2021 NGSE show, originally planned for April 2021.

This is a long way ahead, and it was not a happy decision, but it actually turned out to be quite an easy one to make.  Our new venue of Reigate College were still unsure whether they could host us in April 2021.  They will not be renting the college out this autumn, as it will be forming its own ‘bubble’.  It is possible that this will extend into 2021.  They were also planning building works next spring.

And of course we have no idea what Covid will be doing by then.  The last couple of weeks seems to indicate that ‘normal by Christmas’ is a little optimistic.  It still seems unlikely that all of the UK will have received a vaccination by April, and from the discussions on various forums including this one, running a show with distancing, masks and the like will be difficult – and of course expensive.  It is also debatable whether enough people will turn up to break even.

Finally, having cancelled this years’ show at very short notice, I, for one, couldn’t face the possibility of having to do it again next April.

So, we look to 2022 – Reigate College have been very helpful and they said they hope to see us then!

What we will do next year is to hold one or two open days / mini-exhibitions at our usual meeting place in Redhill.  Perhaps one in May, a little later than normal, and one in October.  We hope that these will work as a day to play trains, and a social opportunity for ESNG members and local enthusiasts.  These will be easy to set up – we hope to send out a few invites to exhibit – and cancel if things get bad again.

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Ron’s Rovings – day 5 – on the buses!

Still short of blogging ideas, and coming down from watching Arsenal win the FA Cup, again.  So thank you Ron, for a few more pictures…..

A day spent mainly on the buses.

Walked down to Tesco’s thing morning and caught the bus to Redhill. From there I took the first non-local service, which took me to Crawley. After a short break I took the Worthing bound bus to Horsham. From there it was a bus to Dorking. As the bus turned into Dorking High Street I saw a red TfL bus parked up so getting off at the next stop I discovered it was on a service to Kingston. It arrived 10 minutes later and I took it to Surbiton. Entering the station I found a fast to Clapham Junction was pulling in so jumped on and made the fast service from there home.

Phew!  Ron barely took breath!!  Should have waved to us as you passed Redhill.  Looks as if there is a rail replacement service by the bus in the background.  Now if I had a pound for every time I’ve waited for a bus here in Redhill….

Another spot full of romance – Crawley bus station.

At least Horsham has some rather nice flowers….

Dorking is the one place locally that has kept a lot of character in the main street…..

And so to Surbiton.  Despite the name being a source of amusement, the station is far more impressive than Swindon last time out.  Looks more at home in Los Angeles than south-west London.  It would make an interesting model, too.

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Ron’s Rovings – day 4

In the words of Jimmy Young (that dates me) “Orft we jolly well go”….

Left home to catch 1048 from Paddington to Swindon.  Leaving station,  walked to the bus station to catch the 2 hourly X5 service to Salisbury.  A most enjoyable 2 hour journey via Marlborough, Pewsey and Amesbury through delightful Wiltshire countryside and villages.  Best of all I had the front seats on the upper deck. Word of warning.  Do not have an accident in Swindon as the hospital is at least 5 miles from the town centre.  Arriving in Salisbury I walked to the station for the 1447 train back to Clapham for train home.

Once again, Paddington Station.  Lots of trains, and no people!

Swindon station.  Not a trace of the old GWR to be seen….



And Salisbury….

To the station and home.  Looking at Ron’s pictures, one thing does stand out – privatisation of transport has generated a nearly endless selection of liveries for trains and buses.

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