Model railway enthusiasts from all over Gloucestershire travelled to the Cheltenham GWR Modellers October 2017 Exhibition in aid of the Pied Piper Appeal at St Margaret’s Hall, Coniston Road, Cheltenham, GL51 3NX on Saturday and Sunday 28 and 29 October 2017 to raise money for The Pied Piper Appeal by enjoying the following attractions. There was also a moment to celebrate 30 years of Cheltenham GWR Modellers Exhibitions.
QUEENS STREET YARD
by Gerald Maher
0 Gauge 7mm Scale
This layout began life as a 7mm scale test track for newly built locomotives and rolling stock that Gerald likes to construct. It then developed into a fully scenic cameo layout with purpose built fiddle yard, backscenes, lighting and a fully functioning power box instead of the temporary wiring used in his workshop. Queens Street Yard was modelled as a typical Victorian small back street goods yard not aligned to any particular railway company thus allowing me to run a variety of stock. During the pre grouping period as there was such a wide variety of locomotives and rolling stock in many different liveries.
Most of this was London and North Western Railway with the occasional Great Eastern interloper. All stock is now fitted with automatic couplings instead of traditional three links for ease of operation at shows. The locomotives and rolling stock – including the Lowmac wagon carrying the traction engine – were all built from brass or plastic kits modified where necessary to improve the detail. All were spray painted and then weathered to suit. All the scenery was constructed from card, foamboard or plasticard faced with embossed plastic sheet to give the brick or stone textures. Some of the details were from cast kits as are the vehicles and figures. The two turnouts were hand built and operated manually by slider switches connected to the tracks with brass rodding. Most of the plain track was Peco but some was hand built. As a test track everything was made of spares box items so it was a real hotch potch! Including the wiring. This was laid across the surface of the board so is consequently now buried under scenery! Not ideal. But apart from that – a first class layout!
by Bernard Baker
P4 18.83mm Gauge 4mm Scale
Allt-y-Graban Road represented an alternative existence for the bottom end of the Central Wales Line. The 1964 closure from Pontardulais to Swansea Victoria did not happen and a new colliery off a Ministry of Defence branch was opened. The junction ground frame was upgraded with a modern track circuited single lead junction complete with a new signal box – a Western Region pre fabricated type 37 “Plywood Wonder”. The standard width of bitumend roofed type 37 – seen here with an ex Great Western tank engine, Class 14 diesel hydraulic 0-6-0 and a rake of 16 ton mineral wagons – was 13 feet.and the standard height of the floor above rail level was 9 feet. Based on a concrete foundation, they could be erected within a matter of days.
Twenty-six of Class 14 0-6-0 diesel hydraulic locomotives were ordered in January 1963, to be built at British Railways Swindon Works. The anticipated work for this class was trip working movements between local yards and short distance freight trains. The good all-around visibility from the cab and dual controls also made them capable of being used for shunting duties. The order was expanded from 26 to 56 in mid-1963, before work had started on the first order. The Class 14s, like many other early types of diesel, had an extremely short life with British Railways, in this case not because of poor reliability but because many of its envisaged duties disappeared on the BR network a few years after they came into use. BR started to dispose of members of the class from mid 1968, the entire class had been sold to industry or scrapped by the end of 1970.
The layout was not built using usual methods. The baseboards had no structural frames, the plywood existing only to protect the extruded foam slabs. Control was by NCE Powercab and Procab with CT Elektronik and Zimo decoders becoming standard. Points were worked by Cobalt motors via an NCE switch-8. Track was Exactoscale Fastrack laid on Woodland Scenics foam underlay fixed with Johnson’s Klear, as was the ballast. This was Bernard Baker’s first attempt at a P4 layout and the opportunity was taken to see how many model railway conventions, clinches and habits could be ignored. As such, thanks were due to the late John “Ruyton Road” Spencer for the signal box, bridge and generous practical help and advice. Thanks were also due to Rod “Llanastr” Hall for the Templot plan.
by Nigel Hawkins (Gloucester MRC)
EM Gauge 4mm Scale
A small brewery layout, originally built by Ian Manderson, but modified by the current owner, Nigel, who added an engine shed and additional fiddle yard. Locomotives are mainly industrial although some ex-mainline locomotives can also be seen. The layout was built for the 2002 Diesel and Electric Modellers United small layout competition which among other things, stipulated that it mustn’t exceed an area of 654 sq ins and have at least one working point. The track plan was arrived at using points that Gloucester MRC already had in stock and a traverser, to save space and allow hidden sidings plus connection to the run round and grain uploading shed. Gloucester MRC also chose to model a brewery as the members like beer! Such a prototype would also allow industrial buildings and a variety of wagon types. The wagons that could be seen included opens, vans, coal, grain and the odd internal user. The buildings were from the Walthers meat packing warehouse kit, from which Gloucester MRC got the main building (with loading dock) and grain unloading building. The baseboard was built as a single unit with legs that plug into pockets underneath. The layout also offered a chance to show a varied display of shunters and wagon types, some which were scratch-built. Gloucester MRC wanted to build a layout that would be of use beyond the competition and be interesting to operate too. As such it has exceeded the original design brief.
by Mike Browne
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Set in a fictional rural location between Bristol and Birmingham, Alkerton Road let a constant procession of 00 gauge trains from a nine road fiddle yard do the talking, although the station did feature a passenger / parcels bay platform with a small engine maintenance shed left over from bygone days. The station also featured kit bashed and scratch built structures and eras could be switched between steam and diesel. The signals were automatically operated by approaching trains and all the DCC locomotives were fitted with sound sourced from a library. A mimic panel handled points, which like all the track work was to Code 75. Steam locomotives included Western Region Moguls, Halls and Castles alongside Midland Region Black Fives,Jubilees, Patriots and Royal Scots. Diesels meanwhile embraced multiple unit trains for local services as well as passenger and freight workings powered by Classes 24 to 66. In this instance, D1026 “Western Centurion” is seen in blue livery coupled next to a first class carriage in the blue and grey corporate scheme of British Rail, as applied from 1966 to the early 1980s. New from Swindon Works in December 1963 and first allocated to Old Oak Common (81A), D1026 was withdrawn from Laira (84A) in October 1975 and cut-up at Swindon Works in August 1976. The C-C diesel hydraulic was noted at Gloucester Horton Road MPD on 6 November 1969 bearing the headcode 1A22, not quite half way through its twelve year working life. The Western Class diesel hydraulic locomotives were styled by Sir Misha Black, who died in 1977, the same year in which the last of the Westerns were withdrawn. Among other notable contributions to design of this 1910 born Russian Jewish immigrant were the street name signs in the City of Westminster, the black, brown orange and yellow moquette used by London Transport on its District Line Underground trains and later by the West Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive and the styling of the British Railways Southern Region Class 71 electric locomotives of 1958. Sir Misha Black also designed the London Underground 1967 Stock that was used on the Victoria Line up to 2011. His mantra was “We should approach each new problem from the base of practicality – how it can most economically be made, how it will function most effectively, how can maintenance be simplified, how can use of scarce resources be minimised?”
BISHOP STREET YARD
by John Long
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Set somewhere in London during 1955-65, this small front or back controlled layout depicted a goods yard in a very urban setting of factories, workshops and railway arch businesses. Above the (modified Hornby viaduct) arches ran a short section of electronic shuttle fitted London Transport track leading to a maintenance depot. On this occasion a classic aluminium passenger multiple unit sub surface vehicle was standing next to a grey painted District Line self propelled single vehicle modified to carry wheel sets. Shunting in the yard below were a number of Austerity 0-6-0STs in British Railways black livery.
The trackwork was all Peco Code 100 with electro frog points while the LT section used third ( and fourth) rail chairs and Z gauge conductor rail from the same manufacturer. The baseboard was made from 12mm ply on a 2′ x 1′ timber frame to give the necessary height to fit point motors and wiring. The back scene was made from 4mm ply and 1″x1″ stripwood. Two kitchen unit type 2′ strip lights were incorporated into a plywood unit on top of the layout to create a lighting rig with more light coming from the layout buildings. A small cassette type fiddle yard was located on one side of the layout and there was space for a Peco locomotive lift within the large factory building, adapted from the Heljan large brewery kit.
by Reg Owens (Pontypridd MRC)
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Blenheim Road was a fictitious terminus set somewhere in South West London. As such it was not unusual parcel, milk and van traffic off other regions to access Blenheim Road via the West London Line through Kensington Olympia, at any time. The layout construction was was standard, with a plywood top on a timber frame. Track, points and the third rail were by Peco and DCC with sound was by Digitrax. The buildings were a mixture of kits and scratchbuilt. In this picture, a multiple unit wired Class 33/1 stands with a rake of maroon carriages across a platform from a 2BIL electric multiple unit. In the nomenclature of the Southern Railway – and later British Railways Southern Region – 2BIL indicated a two car unit with both carriages including lavatories. They were eventually to become known as Class 401 under British Rail’s TOPS renumbering and were in service from 1935 to 1971.
CARLTON by Tom Cowling
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Carlton is the Yorkshire town that pioneered “joined up transport” in the 1950s! Set under the shadow of Ilkley Moor between Leeds and Bradford in Aireborough – the home of Crompton Parkinson electrical goods, Silver Cross prams, Harry Ramsden’s chip shop and Sooty and Sweep – Carlton’s millstone grit houses were served by their own steam powered freight railway and contemporary buses and lorries, each with their own motor following a magnetic guideway.
DOCK STREET SIDINGS by Chris Hopper
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Dock Street Sidings was a self-contained small layout built as a test track and also so Chris could still run the stock from his now sold “Pixash Lane” layout. It was a simple set of sidings which can be used as an “Inglenook” shunting puzzle if required but with a short head shunt off scene to improve operations. The layout was built using Peco Code 75 track and the buildings were a mixture of scratch-built, plastic kits and L-Cut with some use of the Redutex 3D textured brick sheets.
Dock Street Sidings was loosely based in the 1960/70s and depending on the stock used can be located on the BR Western Region somewhere in the Gloucester area or in the North Wales or Merseyside areas of the London Midland Region. Both Blue and Green diesels were used.The locomotives were detailed and weathered ready-to-run from Bachmann and Sutton’s Loco Works and the wagons were mainly Bachmann or kit-built. The layout was run with an NCE DCC system and many of the locomotives were sound chipped. The couplings are Kadees which are operated using fixed magnets.
British Rail’s Class 50 Co-Co diesel electric design was built in 1967 and 1968 by English Electric at Vulcan Foundry at Newton-le-Willows, Lancashire. Introduced to haul passenger express trains on non-electrified stretches of the West Coast Main Line, 50 locomotives were built and renumbered from D400-449 to 50001–50050. The engines initially saw work to Preston, Lancaster, Carlisle and Glasgow and were redeployed to the Western Region after electrification was complete on the West Coast. With the introduction of the HST in the West, they next saw service out of London Paddington to Birmingham until the late 1970s. After refurbishment, they worked from Paddington and Waterloo until complete withdrawal in the 1990s.
ELDERDYKE FOR CLOGGER by Eddie Whitlock
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
The Hull, Beverley and Scarborough Railway (HB&SR) was proposed to form a direct route across the flat land between Driffield and Seamer Junction without having to use the coastal route via Bridlington and Filey or the inland route via Malton.
The line from Driffield to Seamer was single track and completed in 1846 with intermediate stations at Kilham, Langtoft, Elderdyke and Foxholes before the Hull, Beverley and Scarborough Railway was absorbed into the York and North Midland Railway. The York and North Midland controlled lines in the Hull, Whitby and Scarborough areas until 1854 when it amalgamated with the York, Newcastle and Berwick Railway and the Leeds Northern Railway to form the North Eastern Railway. The North Eastern Railway controlled most of the lines in the north east of England between the Humber and the Tweed and became part of the LNER at Grouping in 1923.
At Elderdyke there was a short branch to Clogger to capture the vegetable traffic. Elderdyke was not the largest village on this section of the route, so was not blessed with a passing loop, but it was the most convenient location for the Clogger branch to join the route.
There was a siding connecting the works of Moore’s printers, who had acquired the Second World War contract to print ration books for the government, and like the vegetable traffic, this generated many van movements. Coal and general goods also arrived at Elderdyke by rail although passenger services were not well patronised outside the weekly Clogger market. HB&SR passenger trains were in any case never more than four carriages long.
The 20′ x 2′ layout was set in 1946 when the London and North Eastern Railway embarked on its renumbering scheme so some locomotives carried old and some new numbers. Similarly, both a Sentinel steam railcar and its replacement C16 4-4-2T and push-pull carriages appeared, trains being changed via a cassette system in the non-scenic rear area when Elderdyke for Clogger is not being operated as an end to end layout.
MINEHEAD by Bristolian MRC
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Minehead is well known to today’s railway enthusiasts as the terminus of the West Somerset Railway, but this layout took visitors back to the time when the town was a busy seaside destination and the Great Western Railway had an engine shed, turntable – complete with extension rails to allow locomotives longer than the circular bed to be turned – carriage sidings and full goods yard to cope with the traffic. Most importantly though, even though Minehead was busier with rail traffic in the 1930s than it is today as one end of Britain’s longest preserved railway, it was smaller. The platform had yet to be lengthened for excursion traffic and the Butlins holiday camp at Minehead did not open until 1962. Two years later, the line from Minehead to Bishop’s Lydeard ( also the birthplace of science fiction legend Arthur C. Clarke of “2001 : A Space Odyssey” fame) also played host to The Beatles when filming part of “A Hard Day’s Night” in 1964 and again to Ringo Starr who played a lead role along with Peter Sellers in the 1969 motion picture “The Magic Christian”. The layout was built on a plywood deck with Peco Code 75 track on a cork base. Signals were by Ratio actuated by Fulgurex motors. Rolling stock was a mixture of proprietary with some kit built items.
NORTH BRIDGE by Mike Kelly
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Mike Kelly’s 00 gauge Northbridge was based on North Bridge, an area north-west of Leicester city centre. For the model it was assumed that the Leicester & Swannington Railway terminated here instead of at West Bridge. The period modelled was early 1960’s and whilst none of the infrastructure was a copy of anything that existed then, it did try to give an impression of that area as it might have been.
For operating purposes, the passenger service did not cease in 1928 and in addition to trains from Coalville a service from Leicester London Road was invented to provide extra traffic. The goods yard at West Bridge was in reality very much larger and even in the mid 1960’s was still quite busy with coal, oil and other goods. On the model this was represented by a daily coal train and a twice daily goods train which has much traffic from the local mail order warehouse.
The trackwork was Peco 100 using small radius electrofrog points electrically operated.
Rolling stock was a mixture of proprietary products some modified most weathered and indicative of that used in the area had the bore of Glenfield Tunnel been a little more generous. Many of the buildings were Metcalfe, all altered in some way to fit the location. Most of the business names were of those that existed in the North Bridge area.
The overall size of the layout is 2060mm by 430mm; it was completely self contained and at home can sit on coffee table legs and folds in two to form a box 350mm deep. It was an exercise to see how much can be achieved in a small space.
SOUTHDOWN BUS RALLY AND VINTAGE SHOW by Vincent Tweed
00 Gauge 4mm Scale
Vincent helpfully set out his manifesto on an A5 sheet of cream paper with a shaded green san-serif headline and the final disclaimer “The above is a mixture of fact and fiction but what is true and which is made up? I’ll leave you to work it out!” “The above” is reproduced below:
This diorama is a small representation of the Southdowns Bus Rally and Vintage Show which is held annually in West Sussex over the Spring Bank Holiday weekend. The venue is Fennel Farm located on the A286 between Chichester and Midhurst. It is one of the most prestigious events in southern England, attracting exhibitors and visitors from far and wide and one of those “must see” events in the rally calendar.
It is in the territory of the former Sussex based bus and coach operator Southdown Motor Services and, as would be expected, a range of preserved Southdown vehicles are present. Also, public service vehicles of former and current operators are displayed and used for bus rides and mystery tours. A number of preserved commercial vehicles from the locality can be seen and there is a range of cars, motorcycles, tractors and other means of road transport and machinery.
HILLSIDE MINE by Dave and Sue Griffin
N Gauge 2mm Scale
Hillside Mine was David and Sue Griffin’s second layout situated in the fictional location of Hillside in mid Wales. The scale of both is 4mm with narrow gauge track to 009 specifications. The scenario was that of a drift mine that had been reactivated for coal supplies, during the miner’s strikes during the 1970s. It was situated adjacent to a preserved narrow gauge line of Hillside Works. This allowed the use of a mixture of stock, both kit built and propriety, with some preserved steam but mostly working diesel locomotives.
The origins of the Land Rover can be traced back to the end of World War II when the British government decided to ration steel to those motor manufacturers who could obtain the most exports. The Rover company in Solihull had been a manufacturer of expensive cars but decided to build a vehicle as rugged as the wartime American Willy’s Jeep but powered by the same 50 bhp 1.6 litre engine as the P3 road saloon to attract agricultural customers from around the World. In fact the idea came from Rover Chief Engineer Maurice Wilks who used a Willys Overland Jeep on his farm. The first prototype of what became the World’s first mass produced civilian 4×4 – with an 80 inch wheelbase and registration HUE 166 – was completed in 1947 and was unveiled in public at the 1948 Amsterdam Motor Show. It had permanent four wheel drive with low ratio gearing and a locking freewheel mechanism while the body panels were made from lightweight aircraft grade aluminium covered in army surplus green paint.
LYNTON STATION by John Nichols
009 Gauge 4mm Scale
This layout depicted the Lynton and Barnstaple terminus in the middle of the 1920’s as re built by the Southern Railway. The buildings were scratch built, mostly by Colin Hall, based on Wills embossed sheets, using drawings in Stephen Phillip’s meticulous book Lynton and Barnstaple Measured and Drawn.The station is operated to the Southern Railway working timetable of the period where there were no goods trains, all trains being mixed and including scheduled Road Box workings.Some rolling stock remains in the L&BR livery, whilst others are in Southern Railway colour scheme. The locomotives are Heljan, most wagons and carriages Peco, and some kits from Langley. Peco 009 track and paints are laid. The yard crane was built by Colin Hall from an etched brass kit. The original Lynton and Barnstaple Railway opened in 1898 and closed in 1935 although in 2004 it was re activated as a preserved narrow gauge railway based at Woody Bay station. The 21st Century Lynton and Barnstaple Railway is built to a gauge of 600mm compared to the 597mm of the original and has been visited by Michael Portillo as part of his BBC TV Great Railway Journeys programme.
BARTON HILL by Stan Potter
009 Gauge 4mm Scale
Until recently, if you were travelling either North or East from Bristol Temple Meads and looked out of the carriage window you would have seen the English, Welsh and Scottish Railways Depot at Barton Hill. This is now hidden by more recent buildings, but just a few years ago it was a Rail Express Services Depot hosting a range of red liveried postal rolling stock.
The baseboard of this layout was made of plywood with PECO track ( with PECO electrics ) laid on a cork base. The electric point motors were a mixture of Peco and Seep and the Railfreight wagons were fitted with Peco uncouplers to enable electromagnetic hands-off operation
Now that Barton Hill – originally built by Don Dickson of Nailsea & District MRC – is owned by Stan Potter the trompe d’oeil elevated road bridge has been extended into a third dimension to carry model vehicles and new buildings and working lights have been fitted to the depot itself.
MINI SCENES by Tracey Lippit
T Gauge 1/450 Scale
As well as delighting visitors with her 4 and 2mm scale static dioramas in perspex boxes – usually involving BMC Mini cars, Tracey also brought along a T gauge railway layout with a 3 vehicle InterCity 125 High Speed Train orbiting a village at the foot of a dammed reservoir. Hopefully Tracey will be able to source a 1/450 scale Avro Lancaster to fly over this in future and start some nostalgic conversations about one of the greatest British war films ever made. Released in 1955, The Dam Busters was directed by Michael Anderson and starred Richard Todd as Wing Commander Guy Gibson and Michael Redgrave as aircraft designer Barnes Wallis. The monochrome movie tells the story of how, in the early years of the Second World War, aeronautical engineer Barnes Wallis was struggling to develop a means of attacking Germany’s dams in the hope of crippling German heavy industry. Working for the Ministry of Aircraft Production as well as doing his own job a Vickers (where he had designed the twin engined Wellington bomber) he worked feverishly to make practical his theory of a bouncing bomb which would skip over the water to avoid protective torpedo nets. When it came into contact with the dam, it would sink before exploding, making it much more destructive. Wallis calculates that the aircraft will have to fly extremely low (150 feet (46 m)) to enable the bombs to skip over the water correctly. 617 Squadron RAF was formed to make this attack and although eight Lancasters and their crews were lost, the overall mission succeeded and two dams were breached.
1/35 SCALE MILITARY AND EX MILITARY HEAVY VEHICLES by Richard Smith
Churchill tanks were amongst the first armoured vehicles to land on the beaches of Normandy in support of the Allied invasion of France on 6 June 1944. These were the specialised tanks of the 79th Armoured Division. Known as ’Hobart’s Funnies’, these first tanks ashore were specialised Churchill AVRE tanks developed to perform combat engineering tasks, not the standard Churchill’s of the Infantry Tank Brigades. The first proper Churchill tanks into combat, the 31st Tank Brigade (consisting of 7th and 9th Battalions, Royal Tank Regiment), landed at Juno Beach on 19 June. Later they were heavily involved in Operation Epsom, expanding the beachhead, and then Operation Jupiter, which sought to retake the infamous Hill 112. The 6th Guards Tank Brigade (consisting of 4th Battalion Grenadier Guards, 4th Battalion Coldstream Guards and 3rd Battalion Scots Guards), landed over Gold and Juno beaches on 20 July. Their first action was Operation Bluecoat, which sought to take Hill 309 on the Caumont-l’Evente ridge from the German 326th Infantry Division, which would interfere with any attempt by the enemy to contain the American breakout. The attack proceeded well, but in the heavy Bocage country the tanks quickly began to outstrip their attendant infantry and in the end the plans were modified into what became the most concentrated infantry tank action of the war. All the Churchill tanks of the 3rd Battalion Scots Guards as part of the 6th Guards Tank Brigade were named after Scottish mountains. Ben Nevis, seen here on the back of a Pickfords liveried Diamond T tank transporter, was the tank of the Battalion Adjutant.
ABBOTSWOOD: THE BACKGROUND STORY by Phil Bullock
TWIN TRACK SOUND LOCOMOTIVES by Robert Webb
These two gentlemen were pointing towards the future of railway modelling! Abbotswood – The Backroom Story” allowed visitors to talk to Phil and learn more about one of the most impressive and best loved 00 gauge layouts on the Gloucestershire model exhibition circuit and its Digital Command Control systems. Pictured is Phil’s model of D1046 Western Marquis, one of the last of the Class 52 diesel hydraulics to remain in maroon livery before being repainted in BR corporate blue. The 2 700 bhp C-C was withdrawn in December 1975 and broken up at Swindon Works in November 1976. Among the duties assigned to Crewe built D1046 was substituting for the Blue Pullman trains running from London to Birmingham. When the ‘Blue Pullman’ was not available, as with the 1:00pm Birmingham Snow Hill to Paddington service, a locomotive hauling Pullman stock would be substituted, known locally as ‘the Wells Fargo’ set.
FAIRGROUND by Martin Nash
One of the great joys of the Cheltenham GWR Modellers Group Exhibitions is the unexpected takes on engineering. A visitor might have anticipated different presentations on the Great Western Railway or moving coal but how about a fairground complete with roundabouts, dodgems and all the service vehicles that transport them round the country and make them work? Come to that, how about the people who dismantle, re-assemble and work with these engines of entertainment? Their mobile homes were also portrayed, and with these models came the chance to learn more about the hidden and often misunderstood world of fairground folk. Did you know for example that a new ride will never open to the public on a Friday and that after passing insurance inspection the owners will be given “luck money” by their compatriots – money that will be preserved somewhere on the ride and never spent. Next time the model fairground is in town, roll up and smell the candyfloss!
It is always good to catch up with the attractions on Martin Nash’s travelling fairground, which on this occasion included a rare Jolly Tube – allowing punters to walk through a pair of contrarotating horizontal cylinders with the aim of remaining vertical. The Rifle Range – always more fun than a smooth bore Berrabah – was also interesting not only because of its use of a box trailer with a tail lift but because the two customers were First World War soldiers with their knapsacks removed and painted to represent country gentlemen in their Norfolk jackets and gaiters.
Dominating this view are the ever popular electric dodgems. Also known as bumper cars, The oldest and most common method uses a conductive floor and ceiling, each with a separate power polarity. Contacts under the vehicle touch the floor while a pole-mounted contact touches the ceiling, forming a complete circuit.
MING ING by Alan Drewett
MODEL BUS FEDERATION AND NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF ROAD TRANSPORT MODELLERS Represented by Paul and David Mellor
TRAVEL 2000 by Andy Peckham
It has been a great year for Ming Ing and as well as the Bullock’s Scania Irizar and Harry Shaw’s Neoplan Cityliner meeting in the yard of City Buses there have been new vehicles, structures and figures co-opted from Universal Works in Clarkson’s End which made its debut a week earlier at the 2017 Cotswold Model Railway Exhibition. Also joining York’s Chinatown district on a more permanent basis were the Bachmann Scenecraft sets of Roadside Technicians and Modern Street Scene. The former were mainly concerned with telecommunications in Jeremythorpe while the busker, policeman and street cleaners were stuck down outside the City Buses booking office. The latter set also featured a woman appearing to hand out copies of The Watchtower although I have yet to find a 4mm figure of an atheist throwing a punch to the face.
Indeed, co-operation was the watchword of the first show in the enlarged St Margaret’s Hall as Ming Ing hosted guest vehicles from both the Mellor Brothers and Andy Peckham. The Black and White division of Travel 2000 had organised an excursion to York with one of their Volvo B12Bs, fitted with a rear mounted 6 cylinder 12 litre Volvo engine, while back at the Travel 2000 yard new features included an automatic washing plant and low floor Plaxton Primo coaches. Introduced in 2005, the Primo was the result of close co-operation between chassis manufacturer Enterprise Bus Ltd and Scarborough based Plaxton and continued in production until 2010. The fully welded stainless steel integral chassis final assembly was supplied in right hand drive format as a running unit to Plaxton for final body assembly. The body and chassis design was also available in both 1 and 2 door left hand drive forms for sale in Continental Europe. The 138 bhp Cummins engined Primo was intended to replace the narrower Plaxton Beaver ( based on the Mercedes Benz Vario chassis) preferred by many smaller operators in rural areas but the Primo was phased out by Plaxton’s parent company Alexander Dennis in favour of its own Enviro 200.
Also appearing on Ming Ing courtesy of Paul and David Mellor was LDF 665F, a rear engined Leyland Atlantean with double deck Park Royal bodywork, in the completely fictitious all over livery of Hurran’s Garden Centre, Churchdown. Although taken for granted nowadays, the modern garden centre was the brainchild of nurseryman Alfred Hurran and this set of markings was based on early issues of Popular Gardening magazines. The model itself is a rebuilt Dinky 292.
The original Hurran’s Garden Centre in Cheltenham Road East is now a branch of Tesco, while other heritage brands featured on all-over advertising bus models in the Mellor Brothers fleet include Barclaycard, Severn Sound radio (both AM and FM versions now having been absorbed into Heart FM), Petsmart, Berni Inns, MGM Cinema Gloucester (based on a real life bus), Car Finder magazine and Gloucester motor dealers Lex Tillotson, Taylors of Gloucester, Target Truck and Moons.
Talking of heritage, I also have Andy Peckham to thank for the two tone Smoke Grey and Black Rover P4 seen parked just behind the Leyland Atlantean.
The Rover P4 series was a group of mid-size luxury saloon cars which Rover produced between 1949 and 1967, all designed by the company’s designer Gordon Bashford. The P4 designation was the in-house factory terminology and the consumers usually referred to the cars by their particular designations, in this case the Rover 90. The Rover 90 was produced between 1953 and 1959, during which time nearly 36,000 were sold worldwide. Classed as a top-end vehicle, it had a powerful 2.6 litre engine with a top speed of 90 mph. Modifications over its predecessors included a bigger boot, wide rear windows and flashing indicators. Registered 9076 TW, the model features the famous Rover Viking badge on the bonnet above the distinctive Rover radiator and the Rover 90 ‘signature’ across the boot. The Rover 90 claimed cult status in the 1980s, notably in France, where they were in particular demand by classic car enthusiasts.
Also helping to make the show a success was the children’s 00 Gauge Thomas layout and modelling demonstrations by Steve Harrod, Mark Begley, Trevor Hale and Andi Dell |( thanks for your work on my 0-4-0 4wDM by the way Andi!) Traders included Cheltenham Model Centre and Derails, Clive Reid, Stewart Blencowe, Iron Horse DVDs, Elite Baseboards and the Railway Correspondence and Travel Society.