Chiltern Model Railway Exhibition 2017 #2

Portsea featured and End of the Line 👍


Getting to Stevenage from Redhill requires a circumnavigation of London on the M25, as one town is diametrically opposite to the other.  But the Dartford tunnel crossing had one bore closed on Saturday, so Allan played safe and drove through the centre of London.  Not much traffic on a Sunday morning, and it took us through some of my south London haunts around Brixton, Vauxhall and Victoria.  I even saw a couple of ‘Boris buses’ for the first time, that shows how long it’s been since I drove through the city centre.

Meanwhile, back at the show, the quality layouts kept coming.  Sidmouth is a P4 layout of the London & South Western Railway West Country terminus in British Railways days.  As with Canada Street, I had seen this layout in Model Railway Journal and wanted to see it in the flesh.  Another fine layout modelling the station to scale. …

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Chiltern Model Railway Exhibition 2017 #1


Last Sunday, Allan, Derek and I paid a visit to the Chiltern Model Railway Exhibition at their new venue in Stevenage.  I saw the list of layouts on display and thought I would really like to go.  So I phoned our pastor on Saturday evening, and asked if I was needed for church on Sunday morning.  I got the reply, “You’re indispensable, but have fun.”  Unfortunately Saturday night, most of his family went down with the lurgi, so neither of us were at church on Sunday.  However, it was such a good show, so no regrets.

There have been a few negative comments around the forums about the show, especially the time it took to get in.  We could see that they were still working out the logistics for using the new building, so no complaints there, and on the Sunday morning, we got in quickly enough.  Once inside, the gangways were…

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042/270: #Balham – The Gateway To The South

Calling All Stations

In 1949, a short sketch narrated by Peter Sellers was performed on the BBC radio comedy show Third Division. “Balham – Gateway To The South,” was a tongue-in-cheek travel advertisement, painting the austerity ridden post-war suburb in an almost exotic light.

An extended 1979 TV remake staring Robbie Coltrane continued to depict “Bal-ham” as a bleak and decrepit traffic-ridden slum.

Perhaps it put Balham on the map as fortunes changed. These days the gentrification makes for an attractive Zone 3 outpost, for those lucky enough to be able to afford it. Still, at least it remains a ‘gateway’ of sorts, the interchange between Northern Line and National Rail creates an important South London transport hub.

Image copyright A Carter – CallingAllStations.co.uk

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The Week of the Wagons

Lovely work

Max Stafford's Kennel


I’ve got a week off work. I always think of this first or second week of the year as my ‘Zombie Week’. Dawn comes later in these two weeks than it actually does at the winter solstice for reasons to do with the earth’s orbit of the sun and it will only be over the next couple of days that the sun begins to rise earlier. Anyway, the fact that it’s still so dark in the mornings means I don’t surface until pretty late and once you have had your breakfast and walked the dog the daylight hours are near half done. It’s therefore a good week to take time out, do your own thing and have as lazy a time as possible.

So, this week I’ve decided I’ll tackle some Wagons as the weather is a bit Ertha Kitt for the garden tidying I initally planned. These two are…

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