St Stephen’s Road heads north to Model Rail Scotland this weekend

Continuing my current schedule of 4 exhibitions in 5 weekends with 4 different layouts we have now reached (say in a Geordie accent) ‘week 4’ which means assisting Mike Wild of Hornby Magazine with his St Stephen’s Road layout at Model Rail Scotland being held this coming weekend Friday  24th to Sunday 26th February. This three day show organised by the Association of Model Railway Societies Scotland (AMRSS) will be 50% bigger than ever before, utilising for the first time, two halls  at the Scotland Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC) in Glasgow. Traditionally this show comprises of layouts from AMRSS member Societies with a small number of guest layouts from further afield along with full trade support including the leading manufacturers. The increase in floor space has enabled a greater number of layouts, including more non AMRSS layouts and more trade stands to attend.

An M7 pauses at St Stephen's Road before continuing up the Southern branch

This will only be St Stephen’s Road second exhibition appearance and the first for me operating it so a fast learning curve will be needed, before the show opens to the public on Friday Morning, especially as it has 4 fiddle yards!
The layout is based on a Western Region branch line in North Cornwall nominally just north of Launceston (those that know me will know that this is a challenge for me on a number of levels!). In  reality both the Southern and Western had lines in this area and indeed at Launceston each had their own stations.

The Western Region side of St Stephen's Road

The saving grace with St Stephen’s Road, from my perspective, is that the station is also where a Southern branch meets the Western Region with a dedicated platform face for the Southern line. A junction and combined goods yard  allows for workings between the two regions such as freight including china clay trains.

Fisherton Sarum attracts the crowds at the Doncaster Festival of British Railway Modelling a couple of weeks ago
I am happy to report that  exhibiting my own layout Fisherton Sarum, a couple of weeks ago, at the Festival of British Modelling Doncaster show went very well. The layout, except for very first thing on the Saturday morning before it warmed up, worked well and appeared to go down quite well with the viewing public  despite being quite a distance from traditional Southern Railway Territory. In fact, and somewhat surprisingly considering where we were exhibiting, three visitors to the show commented on the fact that they, like my own Dad, had bunked the shed in their younger days!

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