Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Allan Downes

I know I'm a little behind the times, but I note with sadness the passing of model-maker extra-ordinaire, Allan Downes, in August (having only just noticed a passing mention now I've renewed my Railway Modeller subscription).

For both my dad and I, he was one of the main reasons to race to grab the copy of Railway Modeller when it turned up in the mid/late 70s. His scenery making talents were flat out unbelievable.

If you want a long read, here's a thread of him and almost equally gifted modeller Iain Robinson having a good-humoured 'model off' in RMWeb, that lasts right up to his passing, and is littered with utterly drool-worthy photos of their handiwork.

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Hrm..., Marshbrook...

After a conversation on RMWeb, there's also this alternative....

Marshbrook, as it was in the '30s.

Yes, yes. I know. Make your %^&*()ing mind up, Mike :D

In other news,. just scored a Millholme Models LNWR 4-6-2T kit on eBay.

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Locos on the Marches Line

Having had a bit of a trawl around various shed lists, photo archives etc, it's plain to be seen that there's a lot of potentially interesting locos to be seen... Here's a by no means complete list:


  • Shrewsbury shed
    •   Saints
    •   Stars
    •   43xx (lots)
    •   56xx
    •   ROD 2-8-0
    •   Dean Goods (lots)
    •   1016, 2021, 57xx class Pannier
    •   Bulldog
  • Wellington/Wenlock sheds
    •   2721 Pannier
    •   58xx
    •   517 class
  • Hereford shed (in addition)
    •   Aberdare
  • LNWR Webb coal tank
  • LNWR Cauliflower
  • LNWR Webb 0-6-0ST
  • LNWR Prince of Wales
  • LNWR Prince of Wales tank
  • LNWR Super D/G1/G2
  • 3F 0-6-0 (Johnson/Deeley)
  • Fowler 2-6-4T
and I'd guess at LNWR Experiments, 17" Goods, Precursors, Claughtons, etc... not a lot of info on what of the LMS (Fowler, Hughes, early Stanier) classes were about. Bear in mind we're only 10 years from the grouping, and the likes of Cauliflowers still have a life ahead of them...

Bishop's Castle Railway
  • No 1 (essentially a 517)
  • No 2 (Kitson 0-6-0)

Sunday, 11 November 2018

So, here's the current track plan

Subject to a bit of fiddling in the area of the passing loop, of course.

Designed for the new Peco code 75 bullhead, assuming they do eventually produce a single slip!

Saturday, 10 November 2018

The master plan

Might as well get this down somewhere as plans start to solidify :D

After discussion with my likely partner in crime, we're shooting for the original (wow, how far back was that?) idea I had.

Onnybrook Junction will be set between Craven Arms and Marsh Farm Junction: it's a smallish through station on the LMS/GWR joint line from Hereford to Shrewsbury: the date is late summer 1934 (with a tiny bit of leeway to allow me to run a 4-4-0 County (all of which were scrapped by 1933). Track plan to follow (it's on the other computer) but basically it's typical of that line in that it's two through platforms, and then a refuge siding on one side, and a loop and some goods sidings on the other, and the classic crossover with single slip feeding the loop. We don't yet have space for a full oval, but we do have a lot of length, so currently it'll be about 15' with a fiddle yard either end.

Someday, I may yet have a go at Craven Arms and Stokesay, but, as they say, This Is Not That Day. 

Wednesday, 17 October 2018

Well, that took a bit longer than anticipated!

Largely, to be honest, because despite the supposed extra space that having the workshop converted and the spare garage turned into a storeroom generates, we still have Too Much Stuff, compounded by being in a band with all the attendant stuff that entails.

Still, after much juggling, changing jobs, and other fun, I now have a clear shelf onto which I can move all the model railway stuff out of the back of the storeroom, and have started doing so. (Apart from anything else, once I get the toys out of the big Really Useful Box in there, it can be used for storing the band lights that are cluttering up my workbench!)

Please tell me I'm not the only person who has this kind of problem?

Friday, 19 January 2018

Inspiration from YouTube

Been trawling YouTube a bit for inspiration: lovely to see how many folks are getting cameras on to their layouts and documenting the build process.

Two I'm particularly taken by:

Everard Junction: entirely NOT my period (1980s Network South-East) but some beautiful, and detail-obsessed scenic work;
Lakeside: again, not quite my period, but he demonstrates (especially in the village) how every little piece of scenery is placed and thought about and detailed, and tells a story.

A little bit of shopping this week produced some more PO coal wagons on eBay, a metre of flexitrack and a point, both in Peco's new code 75 bullhead, and some spare wheels and couplings for the 'make everything run on fine scale track' project.

Aiming to get a board for Longville built as soon as I get my bit of the workshop back next month.