ESNG meeting – 28 May 2023

No running or photos from the Sunday meeting.  I was on home duty looking after the better half, but slipped out for a bit to see what was going on.  Just the three people there and no trains running – so we sat down over tea and coffee and had a good old chat.  I left them still at it!  Even worse, this is the second failed meeting of the East Surrey Curry Club in a row…..

I do have some pictures of the Aylesbury show from Simon.

Took the train to Aylesbury this morning bright and early.  Good high quality exhibition, if a little small.  

A good 2mm fine scale showing.

Loved Kyle of Lochalsh – small but perfectly formed.



And here’s a suggestion for our next show?

Novel way of dealing with the little fingers problem – moats.


Some details for your layout.  A Southern Electric sign, existing into BR days, and Victoria platform end in the 1950’s.

And finally, Blackfriars station, on the way home from Ruth’s wedding.  This must be one of the best views from a station platform?


Posted in ESNG, ESNG meetings | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Sorry, pasties, not strudel #1

Ron’s travels this time are to the West Country, just about entering the land of the pasty.  Some interesting railway pictures are to come but we’ll start with his starting point, Barnstaple.


To get there, he passed through Yeovil Junction…..


And Exeter St. David’s (pictures from several visits below.)

Ron also visited the smaller Exeter Central station.  I find all those missing tracks rather depressing.

And so, once again, to Barnstaple.  Nice West Country holiday weather, too!


Posted in Inspiration, Out and about, Prototype | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

ESNG meeting – 25 May 2023

Seven members present today, most of whom were there for the afternoon work party and fish and chips.  It was mainly a testing afternoon.  We set up a large circuit to try out Mr Atfield’s new club corners and a resuscitated dash board.


All worked well, though there’s a bit of ply on one board that may need a bit of fettling.  Back to the workshop now for ballast and perhaps a little scenery.

Elsewhere, we worked out that we’ll need to replace a point in the fiddle yard, as the tie bar is damaged.  And perhaps add more droppers to the boards as one or two sections had a large voltage drop.  Another afternoon’s work may well be needed!

However, the Chairman managed to fix railings to his N-club ‘Temporary Bridge.”  You wouldn’t catch me crossing it in a train, though!


It was mainly an American running afternoon and night.  Funny how that happens sometimes, though it’s rare to have a USA session.  Chris tested his Metroliner EMU.


Simon had a good range of steam pulling fruit express reefers, plus a diesel lash up…



And I got my full D&H passenger train out again, that ran impeccably…


A pleasant and relaxed session (except when the two Derek’s were trying to repair the fiddle yard point!)

Posted in ESNG, ESNG meetings | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

SWING exhibition 2023 #2

And here are a few pictures of some of the rest of the exhibits.

Arun Quay (O) is a familiar layout on the exhibition circuit, but always worth a look.


Norge (HO) is unusual in being set in Norway.  Some interesting rolling stock, some unusual, some all to familiar.  And those chickens moved….

Launceston Steam Railway and Tamerton Foliot (both OO9.)

A Lehigh Valley diesel idling on ‘K’ Street Yard (HO).


O gauge at Manor End and Cartsdyke Yard.


Shellsea Harbour and Swantons Lock (OO).


Kaninchenbau (HOe).  Alpine meadows and computer controlled trains and road vehicles.  Much more reliable than the average ESNG member….

And finally, Little Bognor (On16.5)


Posted in Exhibitions, Inspiration, Layout design, Out and about | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

SWING exhibition 2023 #1

After a busy wedding weekend and a few days holiday by the sea in Poole, I thought a side trip to an exhibition would be good.  SWING (Small and Wonderful Industrial, Narrow Gauge and light railways) exhibition down in Worthing, and organised by the 7mm Narrow Gauge Association looked good.  Not all narrow gauge, and it turned out to be well worth a visit.

A highlight was to see Canada Street (EM) again.  I’ve seen it a good number of times before, but Saturday allowed me to get a really close look at this lovely layout and talk to the builders.  They were treating the show as a relaxing weekend after the crush of EXPO EM the previous Saturday.  The dockyard scene and the BR period rolling stock are well observed and very well weathered.  On Saturday, the locomotives were from the south, and Canada Street was somewhere near Southampton.  It’s generic look, and typical wagons, mean that it can change region.


My other highlight was Bunkers Lane.  Built in O9 – 7mm scale, 9mm gauge – this layout is based on the Leighton Buzzard sand workings, and has both trains of hoppers and preserved passenger trains.  O9 represents miniature, estate and industrial railways with gauges between 15″ and 18″.  It produces a very compact model, with lots of detail.  I’m tempted (but only after my sugar cane railway amongst others….)


I especially liked the double-sided main layout, and the looped fiddle yard at one end.


Waalhaven (HO) models a Dutch yard somewhere near Rotterdam.  It’s the turn of the century, and privatisation has begun to change the liveries seen in the area.


More layouts next time….

Posted in Exhibitions, Inspiration, Layout design, Out and about | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Redhill 1990 #2

The second set of pictures mainly show two engineers trains passing through Redhill.  One is headed by two Mainline liveried 73’s, the other an interesting double header with a 33 and a 73.


And to close, some hoppers in the sidings.  All sorts of interesting wagons were dropped here on occasion, to be collected by a train on one of the other lines out of Redhill.

It is sobering to think that I took these photos 30 years ago.  And since then many, if not most, of the buildings in the background have been demolished and rebuilt.  Redhill has become a bit like the child who was asked whether he liked living in Hong Kong.  “Yes, but I wish they’d finish building it.”

Posted in Inspiration, Out and about, Prototype | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Redhill 1990 #1

We moved to Redhill from Camberwell in 1986, and in those days Redhill station was a far more interesting place than it is now.  These pictures were taken in 1990, when I would take the train-mad Michael (age 4) to the station on Saturday morning for an hour or so to watch the trains go by.


Even the Gatwick to Reading DMU’s were fairly interesting!


The best spot of any visit was a 47 in Mainline Intercity livery.  These ran round their train when operating the Brighton to (I think) Newcastle service.  I think this is what is happening here, but with the loco named ‘Royal Mail’, it may be a mail or parcels train!  I always thought that this livery suited the 47’s very well indeed.

Other liveries were available.   A Railfreight Distribution 47 distributing a single wagon southwards.


Another good spot was a handsome red Rail Express Systems loco.

A plain blue 47 shunts parcel stock into the sidings now removed for ‘Platform 0’.


Class 33’s were also regulars.  One is seen above and below in the rather unflattering general grey livery.  Even Network SouthEast toothpaste looked better than this!


Also common were Class 73 electro-diesels.  Here are two again in general grey.  Somewhere I must have pictures of them in their pomp – in Gatwick Express livery.  In the background is a rake of oil tankers, pulled out of the oil distribution depot siding to the south between Earlswood and Redhill.  This facility is now long gone, but the pipework for unloading tankers can still be seen by the track.


Looking at these pictures, apart from the buildings having changed in the background, the big difference is the lack of buddleia and trees that now block this view from the car park. 

Also missing from these pictures (I’m sure I’ve got some shots somewhere) are Class 37’s on the weekly coal train and placing tankers in the siding south of the station.  Plus the interesting selection of EMU’s, including the excellent ‘Jaffa cake’ livery, and MLV’s in Jaffa and also Post Office red running into the mail siding at Redhill.

Posted in Inspiration, Out and about, Prototype | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Potpourri #1073

Simon sent me some good photos of his weekend in a Toad (brake van or caboose to our overseas readers) last weekend…..

A few photos of our stay in a Toad at Northiam last weekend, including a spiffing meal on the Wealden Pullman in an SR boat train diner on Sunday.  The Toad brake wheel seems to have been repurposed as a table.

Good to see Mile’s plaque again.

A few more pictures….

A 4-LAV at Hassocks, near Brighton.


Redhill in 1985….


A few years earlier, an EPB enters Redhill…


Snow at St Helier station and overgrown track on the Lehigh Valley…

Posted in Inspiration, Out and about, Prototype | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

ESNG meeting – 14 May 2023

I was otherwise engaged this weekend (see below), but Brian took his usual video of the trains passing, and even staying on the track!

Our weekend was occupied with my eldest daughter Ruth marrying Cory.  Originally planned for spring 2020 in northern Italy, for some reason this was postponed.  Ruth settled for the logistically simpler venue of the Barbican Conservatory, and we had a lovely weekend.  Lunch Friday at a pub in Shoreditch (our taxi driver told us that the Kray brothers drank there.  They probably drank at a lot of pubs in the area, and for free!)

Saturday the wedding.  Slightly unconventional – I’ve never been to a wedding where the bride enters to a mediaeval group including hurdy-gurdy and bagpipes.

And Sunday brunch at a bakehouse in the railway arches under London Fields station.  Arrived home 4:30pm Sunday – I’m knackered, but in the best sort of way!!!!  

Or just comfortably numb?

Posted in ESNG, ESNG meetings | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Three Bridges CMD #2

And now for the wagons.  Just a photo-dump, really.  Engineers wagons are often an interesting breed, sometimes being old rolling stock, like the ex-SR brake van, and sometimes rebuild, like the Rudd on old hopper wagon chassis.

A Seacow..


Not to be confused with a Sealion!


A Salmon….


Not to be confused with a Brill…


And an unidentified species!


A very shiny Rudd.  New or recently maintained, as it will soon be as dented and rusty as the others!

A Dace…


A Crab….


And a Seal…


A Bass…


Don’t tell them your name, Pike!


A veritable shoal of open wagons….


An interesting one, a Squid.  Is it really this colour, or has all the paint dropped off?


And finally a Flatrol (otherwise known as a Lowmac?)


You could have a lot of fun modelling all of these.  A fair bit of scratch building needed, I suspect.   We’ll move onto the Redhill pictures next.

Posted in Inspiration, Out and about, Prototype | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment