November this year sees the 10th anniversary since the first exhibition outing for Fisherton Sarum. Wycrail 2006, the annual exhibition of the High Wycombe and District Model Railway Society, was the first public appearance, and was the first time the layout was actually fully operated. I was however able to set the layout up for the very first time at the Society’s clubrooms the week before and some very last minute corrections to wiring etc. (thanks again Mark!) ensured that on the day itself things went pretty much to plan.
Getting a new layout on the exhibition circuit for the first time can sometimes be tricky owing the chicken and egg conundrum that to get exhibition invites you often need to be already seen on the exhibition circuit. Being a member of a Model Railway Society or Club is often a way, as in my case, of getting an invite to the Society’s own Wycrail show and therefore that first public appearance.
I have always been indebted to members of the HWDMRS and my own family for assisting with the exhibiting of Fisherton Sarum and its first outing was no exception although Simon and Daniel, now somewhat grown up working for Network Rail and being at University respectively, probably wont thank me for showing them here in their younger days…
In the ten years since that first outing I have enjoyed exhibiting across the country, at now nearly 30 shows, ranging from Wadebridge in the South West, Manchester, Hartlepool, Doncaster in the North, The Warley NEC show, Tonbridge and Worthing in the South and of course on Salisbury station itself.
Since its first few outings many things have changed, developed and been added to the layout, usually as a result of the operating team making suggestions over a pint or two, such as:
- The addition of the lighting rig (essential in some venues and provides even and consistent lighting for the layout whatever the location)
- Adding an additional controller to increase operation on the main running lines
- Method of control and communications between the fiddle yards
- Point control change from Solenoid to slow acting motors
- Turntable control system updated to the MERG controller for indexing
- Automatic uncoupling added for stores van and ash wagon
- Control panel now located out the front of the layout
- Rolling stock continually changed as new models are built or produced
- Additional details always being added, a layout is never finished!
Fisherton Sarum returned to Wycrail in 2014 and will also be making an appearance at the High Wycombe and District Model Railways Society’s open day on Saturday 21st May 2016 see here for more details. I will continue to exhibit Fisherton Sarum, as it has always been enjoyable, but have always limited its appearances to approximately 3 shows a year and the current small number of booked appearances can be found here, although a couple more are in discussion so watch this space.
9 thoughts on “From the Archive #3 Making an exhibition of myself or Fisherton Sarum’s first outing, 10 years on…”
Don’t know where the young onlooker is but the old bloke standing next to him is still following your blog. Bit of a shock to realise that was ten years ago. Sore the layout at the Hornby show at Gaydon last year, always a pleasure to see a Southern layout. Both myself and two sons were members of the RDMRC and used to operate our layout Branscombes Junction at exhibitions. It’s been out of use for a number of years now but is about to be reborn in a permanent state in a purpose built shed in my son Andrews garden, so we have been busy buying Bullied pacifics off of eBay recently, although it is firmly set in the BR period 1960/62. I believe we have a mutual aquantance in John Gay, l believe he is a member of the Wycombe club with Maddy, he is also a member of the Vale of Aylesbury Model Engineers Society of which both my sons and l am members, Also Richard Turner who was a RDMRC member when l was.l must try to make the open day in May where l will introduce myself properly
Alan many thanks for the message. I really do hope you can make the open day and come and have a play on Fisherton Sarum!
Oh and yes John and Maddy are indeed fellow members of the HWDMRS.
Thanks Graham,will definatley try to get their, and look forward to seeing you.
Congratulations although should the model now be reflecting 1958 instead of 1948…..
No chance! *grins*
I did not realizes the layout was so small? who said a camera dos not lie! regards clive larby
Hi Clive, yes the scenic section is only 8 ft x 3 ft with two 6 ft fiddle yards at each end see http://grahammuz.com/2011/10/10/fisherton-sarum-–-size-matters…/