Here’s the story of the club’s first visit to Stuttgart.
….. and now it is history, as they say, but pleasant memories will be with us for a long time yet.
Our activities started when Duncan told the Alpenbahn team that there was an opportunity to visit and participate in the 10th International N Gauge meeting at Stuttgart for the four days 18th/21st November 2004. At that time only Alpenbahn modules were on request but later we were asked to bring along some typical British outline modules to fit into the circuit. In the event Alpenbahn was represented by Raymond`s three modules, Martin`s two modules and Duncan`s two Adapter modules, and N-Mod by Derek`s Fiddlesham Quarry and Martin`s St Chant. The latter two required the swift building of two further adapter boards to allow them to fit into the circuit.
Three of us, Duncan, Ray and Martin, were ably driven throughout the 1600 miles, out and back, by Duncan in a hired Short Wheel Base Ford Transit Van. Duncan racked out the interior in 2”x1” timber in record time and every item travelled safely. Our thanks go to Mark for letting us use space at Burgess Hill as our staging post.
We wish to express our thanks to our sponsors, Peter Brumwell and ESNG, without whose generous help we would not have been able to exhibit the modules. Also, our thanks go to Michael Curtis who visited us for two days and thus was able to assist with the operating and to join in the fun.
There is just not enough space here to describe all about the event even in the most general of terms, let alone the most enjoyable social side. We “Brits” were made most welcome and treated as full equals by the German, Italian, Spanish, and French members of N Club International.
At the event were traders and layouts representing the many aspects of our hobby in a great variety of scales and gauges. The general standard was high and imaginative, if not quite so extensive, it was said, as last year.
To be seen were examples of German, Swiss, Austrian, Italian, Spanish, French and North American Stock, both passenger and freight. One highlight of the N Club layout, in which we participated, was the sight of a Trix sponsored train hauled by double headed German outline Crocodile locos with an average of 80 double bogie baggage cars; some 2.4 kilometres in prototype. Next in line, and not to be forgotten, was Duncan`s 42 Oil tank wagons hauled faultlessly for the 4 days by Martin`s Grafar Class 40 diesel loco! There was also a most impressive static display of N-Gauge items, any one of which was to be desired as a possession.
We were invited to participate at next year`s Stuttgart event, and to other exhibitions rumoured to take place in Florence or Cologne or wherever, but it has to be said that the cost of participation in such overseas events in future will depend upon the sharing the costs between a larger number of our members, some of whom could travel on cheap air tickets, or by soliciting significant and considerable sponsorship.
Some issues like finance don’t change…..