Club Update - April 2016

28xx class loco on the Gloucester and Warwickshire Railway - Photo: Gwion Rhys Davies


You’ll all have noticed that this is a rather later publication this month. It was delayed to allow some further discussion – and decisions – about the content within your Committee and so avoid a need to send out two updates this month.

So, what’s in this month’s update ? News about stock sales, possible outings and a further wagon commission to mention a few, and photographs of some recent events...


The FOYD Summer Fête

Recent updates advised that the FOYD fête would be held on the 9th July this year and we were invited to run trains in the club to entertain visitors. Unfortunately however, due to unforeseen reasons, the fête has had to be cancelled so if you were planning to attend, please remove the date from your diary. It is unlikely to be rearranged this year.


2016 modelling competition and next year’s event......

Noel Blows and Jim Law – plaque presentation - Photo Gwion Rhys Davies

Entries in this year’s competition were judged by members at the recent club open-night on the 29th. April. The event coincided with a ‘long service’ presentation to Jim Law, the club’s Honorary President and 81 people attended. A raffle held to support club funds raised £279 and we are enormously grateful to those who donated prizes for the luck raffle winners. Particular mention must be made to acknowledge the generosity of Oxford Diecast who, in addition to other prizes donated, supplied two models of their recent Adams’ Radial Tank release. Further, many thanks too to members Noel Blows, Peter Ryan, David Lane, Hywel Trick and Steve Giffard for their sterling work in arm-twisting the sale of raffle tickets !

The club is also grateful to FOYD for allowing the use of their kitchen and chapel facilities. A donation has been made to FOYD in acknowledgement of this.

The standard of competition modelling was impressive, as usual, and the following winners and runners-up were announced:

Best diorama:

  •  1st – Hywel Trick
  •  2nd – Michael Sarsfield

Best micro-layout:

  •  Michael Sarsfield

Chairman’s Cup:

  •  Scott Rhodes

Best scratch-build:

  •  1st – Kyle Williams
  • 2nd – Daniel Thomas

Best kit or heavily-modified build:

  •   1st – Tony Richards
  •   2nd – Daniel Thomas

Best junior entry:

  •  Daniel Thomas

In due course photographs of the winning entries will be placed in the club’s website. This will remain an annual event and in response to requests for clarification over the criteria for entry, some guidance will follow in due course. It is also likely that the diorama and micro-layout entries will be merged into one category.

Junior member Daniel Thomas’ near clean-sweep of the board is to be commended !

The presentation of cups will take place on Thursday 26th. May 2016. Be there !


The Club’s wagon commission

Many of you will have received your purchases by now and this looks to have been an extremely successful venture for the club. If you have yet to order however, please be aware that these are selling fast ! At the time of writing, only 3 ‘O’ gauge, 34 ‘OO’ gauge and 40 ‘N’ gauge wagons remain unsold. An article on these will go live on the club’s website in early June and orders will then be accepted from outside / other clubs. Strike whilst the iron is still hot, these will go !

We will almost certainly repeat this commission venture and options for the next release are now being considered. The same criteria will apply: a wagon local to the area and to our knowledge one not released by anyone before.


The recent Spring excursion and plans for further outings this year...

04 Class loco on the Gloucester and Warwickshire Railway - Photo: Gwion Rhys Davies

April’s trip to the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway was successful and enhanced by fine weather. Many members attending planned to re-visit under their own steam at a future date and we were grateful for the opportunity of making an accompanied impromptu visit to the workshops and sheds. The Merchant Navy class Pacific [P+O Line] was seen in its final stages of restoration: it is now running and can be seen on YouTube for those who are interested.

So, what’s planned for the future ?

  July 2nd – there are just 3 seats available in a mini-bus going to the Dean Forest Railway. The cost will be iro £15 per head and if you are interested please see Ted Hylton quickly.

  Autumn – if there is sufficient interest here will almost certainly be a further club visit to Pendon Museum with, possibly, a second visit somewhere else tagged on. The cost will be iro £30 a head and further details will follow.


The club’s [excellent!] website

The usual reminder to all to visit our website to see what’s new! You’ll see a review of the recent Oxford Adams’ Radial Tank in the Blog section and a new detailing project in the Members’ Project section. If you contribute to the website already, please be sure to update your entries [particularly in the Members’ Projects section].

I can also advise that Dapol will soon be allowing us to publish a preview article, with photographs, of a hand-built prototype model of their planned ‘O’ gauge 08 shunter.


Locking up rota

Broken record time and yes, it’s the rota again. The locking-up rota is designed to ensure that the building is properly secured after each visit. The personal commitments are very limited as members with keys will only have to undertake this duty two or three times a year. Problems remain however and members continue to fail to undertake their scheduled duty. Please – please – check when you are listed to lock-up and ensure that you either attend or remember to do it if you do attend. This avoids the same people having to fill in time and again. Many thanks.


Railway Modeller magazine article

This was mentioned in an earlier update and I’m delighted to advise now that following further discussions with the editor, an article about the club will appear in the October edition of Railway Modeller.


Stock sales

Always popular events, the club has not been able to arrange a sale for a while now. Some are on the cards though !

Two sales are planned:

  An ‘O’ gauge and ‘OO’ gauge commission sale

  A members’ stock sale [no commission charged]

Dates for each of the above will be announced very shortly by e-mail and on the club’s noticeboard. Sensible rules apply for selling at the members’ sale: be honest about the condition, price the model realistically [you want it to sell!] and be prepared to allow prospective purchasers to test models before buying.


Role of Chairman

Noel Blows recently advised that he would be standing down as Chair at the end of this club year [ie. the Autumn AGM]. Noel will have occupied this role for more than a decade and during that time the club has grown considerably and continues to flourish. Our profile has become national rather than just regional but this has required huge input from Noel at considerable cost to his own time and interests. It has almost been a full-time job: when did anyone last see him running his magnificent 'O' gauge stock? Standing down will allow Noel to be able to concentrate more on his family, his personal life and just enjoy ‘running trains’ for a while. There will be plenty of time to thank Noel for his huge contribution but this edition would like to get that ball rolling!

Committee officers are elected at the club’s AGM each year and your Committee is considering a succession strategy for the Chair’s post. This will be announced for the club’s consideration at the AGM [date to be announced].


Finally, the diary update...

  • July 2nd - Visit to Dean Forest Railway [extremely limited seat availability]
  • October 1st & 2nd - SRMG Annual Exhibition at the NWM

Best wishes all !