Club Update - November 2019

It’s strange to think that these once ubiquitous mainline greyhounds are now becoming a thing of the past. Long-lived and staggeringly successful, the 125s carried us everywhere [almost!] for decades, but their iconic design is destined now to become just a memory.

Here, on a wet, windy Wednesday in late January 1980, HST W43121 leads, pulling into platform 2 of Cardiff Central with a Paddington service. The clagg from the Valenta engines indicates that this set has just come up the road from Canton.

Photograph by Robert Masterman and used with many thanks.


It seems safe to say that Summer has now gone and we are into Autumn with darker nights upon us. Which means there is no excuse for not watching Channel Five’s ‘Great Model Railway Challenge’! Now rescheduled from Fridays to Saturdays, episode three saw the club’s Gwion Rhys Davies and his team [‘Who’s Counting Rivets?’] storm home to take first place. Congratulations lads, a well-deserved win, too. Now through to the semi-finals, Gwion and his mob will be back on our screens on Saturday October 19th at 7.45pm. If you have missed earlier episodes, they can all be viewed on Chanel Five’s catch up service.

Also, some important dates for your diaries in this month’s newsletter, including details about the forthcoming stock-sale and reminders about the imminent EGM and the Christmas Do. But first of all.......

The 2019 private owner wagon commission: an update

This year’s commission has been extremely successful and the whole lot has pretty well gone! The O gauge and OO gauge models sold out completely during the recent show and Noel has been left with just 17 of the N gauge version. It is not anticipated that these will stick around for long either, having been quite widely advertised. This may be your last chance to purchase one [or some!] if you have not done so already.

Should a commission be arranged for next year, Noel advises that the numbers ordered in O and OO may increase slightly as demand has been high, greater than he could meet in fact. A 2020 commission will first require a 2020 show however, and more on this, later.

Many thanks once again Noel for organising the venture.

The Christmas Do 2019

Again, please remember that this will take place on November 1st and whilst 44 places have now been secured, it is still possible to book a place – speak to Noel Blows.

The do will take place at Norton House and remains astonishingly good value at £14.00 for members’ partners [one partner per member only at this price] and free for members. Please would those who have booked to attend with partners pay for their other halves by Thursday 24th October, as well as giving Noel their individual choices of starter, main and dessert, as these have to be with the hotel by 25th October [a week in advance].

If any wish to book accommodation on the night, rooms are available at Norton House. Noel has further details.

SRMG Website update

A couple of things to bring to your attention here:

  • Richard Grigg has had posted a new review of the Hornby Class 43 HST with sound.

  • In the project section are some new loco-build accounts.

  • In the 2019 show section, Gwion has posted a shed-load of photographs.

The Autumn stock sale

The date for this popular event has had to be moved back a little unfortunately as stock is still being collected from various vendors. It will now be held on Thursday the 7th. November, starting at 7.00pm. The venue is, as usual, the old chapel on the first floor. I do not anticipate any further scheduling problems but, should any arise, I shall e-mail all with an update.

This sale looks to be quite a large one and includes a good number of early BR black- era steam locos [mostly WR, but including a GWR Mogul and a Wrenn LMS tank], some diesels, a great deal of goods stock [mint, boxed and otherwise – including a number of Wrenn wagons], a largish number of Centenary, Clerestory, Pullman and Mk1 coaches [again, boxed and otherwise], ready-to-plant resin buildings [Hornby and Bachmann], assembled card buildings, a substantial amount of OO diecast models and masses of track [mostly used but in quite usable condition]. In short, lots of tables!

Because of the size of this sale, it is open to ALL who receive this newsletter and not simply members only. I cannot supply boxes or bags in which to carry purchases, so please ensure that you bring your own. Everything will be priced to sell, as usual. A good commission sale on the 7th. will boost club funds nicely. Card machine available!

Another superb 125 image, this time captured by Carl Brunnock and used with many thanks.

60079 leading the Robeston - Westerleigh tank service and an HST on 09.55 Cardiff Central - London Paddington at Bishton [Gwent] on the 26th. September 2012. Wasn’t this the most attractive livery for the HST sets?

Layout for sale

I have been contacted via the website by someone who has a OO model of Crymych Arms on the Whitland to Cardigan line, which he is looking to sell, having gone over to O gauge. The layout [installed in a loft] measures 9’8” by 9’4”. The track is SMP, with hand-built points on copper clad sleepers. A control panel is built into one of the boards. The layout would come complete with all signals [working] and all buildings.

Contact me for further details if there is any interest. Any sale through the club would lead to a small donation to club funds by the vendor.

The recent show

An extremely busy weekend for all of those involved in setting up and managing the recent show saw our 2019 event open in its new school location on time and to an appreciative audience. This year’s numbers were down on last year however [by around 250], possibly a consequence of the need to move the event. Perhaps a reflection of rising costs generally, our expenses were rather higher too, although the venue itself was very much cheaper than the LC. Whilst the final figures have yet to be agreed, it looks pretty certain that we broke even. A full gallery of photographs is available within the 2019 show section of our website, courtesy of Gwion Rhys Davies.

Mention, too, should be made of the club’s N gauge layout, ‘Box’. This enjoyed its first exhibition and, in spite of some electrical gremlins and it being ‘work in progress’, it received much praise. A great deal about exhibiting was learned from this outing and the layout is being further adapted to make transport easier, conclude the ballasting and running more efficient.

Thank you, once again, to all who were involved in this mammoth event.

Excerpts from ‘Box’Photos: GRD / AJR

Forthcoming Extraordinary General Meeting

This important meeting takes place on Thursday the 31st. October, in the old chapel on Floor One, at 7.30pm. The purpose of the meeting it to make decisions about the viability of a further club show in 2020. Members were e-mailed about this event on the 28th. September, in which it was explained that a show could only proceed if a number of key organisational posts were filled and a larger number of club members were prepared to assist throughout the event itself. Since that e-mail, only one member has contacted me.

As part of the meeting, venue options will be discussed also as there are alternatives to Pentrehafod school which at least need to be considered if only to be ruled out.

The primary discussion involves the formation of a competent and committed show team however: without that, it is impossible to see that there could be a show in 2020.

The committee would be extremely grateful if as many members as possible could attend this important meeting to consider these issues further. Thanks, all.

Locking-up rota to the end on November

Best wishes all. Tony

Further shots from the show [GRD]