Van Vactory

An enjoyable time was had at the Thirsk Show last Sunday (even with some slight ribbing regarding my move to all things Western). In between demoing, I finished off some detailed work on this below, a Bachmann (ex Mainline) Mink.


Since I returned from the show, and after some enjoyable chats with David Scott regarding Wagons, I have thrown myself into a couple of Parkside kits. First up, a post war 12 ton LNER all ply van (dia 195).


An enjoyable and straightforward kit to go together. I will add Vac pipes shortly, couplings shall be added after painting.


Another Parkside kit, a earlier style Mink (built as a V16). I shall be weathering it similar to the prototype photographs depicted in Geoff Kent’s 4mm Wagons Book 2.

It’s a shame that nobody has produced a kit for V36, the plywood post war Mink. It is a van which I have…

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The Prodigal Pannier Returned

Loco Yard

South Devon Railway Totnes Littlehempston July 2015 64xx 6412 (7)Earlier this year, pannier tank engine 6412 returned to service on the South Devon Railway to begin a new lease of life as was originally intended when it hauled the first train in preservation on this line in 1969.  However it spent a long time away in between!  6412 was soon moved to the Paignton and Dartmouth Railway by its former owners and eventually in 1976 it was sold to the West Somerset Railway.  Funnily enough it hauled that railway’s first service train in preservation and remained there until 2009.  By this time it was too small for the West Somerset Railway but still ideal for the South Devon Railway who were happy to purchase the locomotive and bring it back.  Earlier this year 6412 entered service after completion of its overhaul and my wife and I had the pleasure of being hauled by it this summer.

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Didcot Railway Centre

Pete's Favourite Things


A trip to Didcot in Oxfordshire for a steam day at the Great Western Railway Centre. The last time I was here was for the re-introduction into service of the magnificent ‘King class’ King Edward II, but today this locomotive was only on static display in the yard.

King Edward II King Edward II

The working engine on the main line today was the 2-6-2T No 4144, a representative of the type of engines seen both pre and post WWII on GWR suburban lines.

4414 in steam on the main line 4414 in steam on the main line

The engine on the branch line was 0-6-0T pannier shunting engine.

3650 on the branch line at Burlescombe Station 3650 on the branch line at Burlescombe Station

In the yard Phantom was engaged in a series of shunting manoeuvres.

Phantom undertaking shunting manoeuvres in the yard  Phantom undertaking shunting manoeuvres in the yard

After this I spent sometime looking around the museum and the other displays that tell the history of Didcot and the GWR, which was…

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Loco Yard

UKHHbanner This blog has come a long way since it’s first post in 2012 and working as part of UK Heritage Hub has certainly been one of its’ successes.  UK Heritage Hub is more than just an ezine, it is the bringing together of a community of like minded people and the work of Rowan Jackson as editor has been the driving force behind this movement.  The statement below from Rowan Jackson therefore is therefore sad news, but it gives all of us who write on this blog to say thank you to Rowan and wish him all the very best!

It is with an awfully heavy heart that I write this. But, Issue 58 will be the last issue of UK Heritage Hub of which I will be editor. Due to circumstances beyond my control I have had to take the decision and stand down from the post. However, whilst in discussion with a…

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Train Spotting Days

Locksands Life

Now I’m the first to admit that collecting train numbers is entirely pointless. But I go on to say that it isn’t any more pointless than kicking a leather airbag around a field or collecting used postage stamps. Hobbies are hobbies and do not need any other purpose. But train spotters get a bad name and are deemed odd.

Let’s say that when I took up the hobby, back in 1959, it wasn’t odd or unusual although it was almost exclusively male. Platform ends up and down the country had gaggles of boys, avidly noting the numbers written on trains. It may seem pointless, but knowledge and skills were being honed all the time.

Let’s take a typical day out train spotting for me. I lived in Crawley, thirty miles south of central London. As an under 14 year old I could buy what was called a shopping ticket to…

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CAS Weekly 29/07/15

Calling All Stations

Image By Panhard

The delayed CAS Weekly has finally arrived!


UK Rail

  • Sad news as the owner of Britain’s smallest railway museum, John Rathmell, dies at the age of 63.
  • The talks to avert the next round of Tube Strikes is going badly with fresh accusations that TfL are not maintaining their trains to proper safety standards.
  • The government announcent that electrification of the TransPennine Route would be shelved/delayed… yet work is continuing anyway
  • Southern and GatEx join Great Northern and Thameslink to become UK’s biggest franchise… Hmm, I’d say that’s starting to look a lot like Network SouthEast.
  • ER20 Locos coming to the UK.
  • The Eurostar 373 units get an interior make-over.
  • On board catering. Is it dead?
  • Essex heritage line

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Nook Horton Works

So the ‘main’ shed is painted and weathered, and once I plonked it down I decided to add to it! As for the secondary shed I have decided to develop it a little further and add a visible interior, simply a work bench and some sacks for now, but the shed will be removable so I can switch the interior around each show, will be good for kids who may notice, may even change interiors around mid-show.

techicolour Once I had the shed painted I realised how lacking in detail the door was, though I am pleased with the effect I have achieved with layers of washes and dry brushing cheap acrylics

hinged And so some extra bits liven up the frontage, bit of paint and this is done, ready to be glued down and grounded in

bothsheds The two buildings giving an idea of the final scene – I have since cut…

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