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Posts Tagged ‘247 Developments’

Last weekend I was attending the Festival of British Railway Modelling held at Doncaster racecourse organised by Warners the publishers of BRM Magazine, and spent the weekend as part of the operating crew of the High Wycombe and District MRS large ’00’ layout Hinton Parva.

Hinton Parva keeps the crowds at the Doncaster Show entertained

Hinton Parva keeps the crowds at the Doncaster Show entertained

Hinton Parva represents a very busy junction station on a Joint Midland/Eastern north-south line. The “Branch” purports to be a cross-country line bringing Southern and Western trains from the south-west. As well as the usual “mainline” movements, there is a goods yard constantly shuffling wagons for the pick up goods trains, and a motive Power Depot which has to receive, service, prepare and dispatch locos for the stopping branch express trains, all of which require a loco change. We operate a varied, late 1950s,  steam/early diesel schedule with a wide range of stock from modern detailed RTR and a large sprinkling of quality kit and scratch built locos and coaches.

A view from the other end of the 32' long Hinton Parva, different day different crowd

A view from the other end of the 32′ long Hinton Parva, different day different crowd

Not many layouts feature two Garratts  (one an LMS and the other the sole LNER machine) hauling 60 wagon trains or an ex LNER W1 or 10001,10201,10800 and prototype diesels / gas turbines. The loco roster for an exhibition is nearly 50 locos, and they all make a running appearance.
Another unusual feature is the working semaphore signals, 37 working arms at the last count. Apart from the aesthetic value of the signals, they also provide drivers with their only means of indications of what they are supposed to do, truly prototypical.
The layout is large at 32ft x 12ft, and maximum use is made of this size to provide a running spectacle for the viewers. The complete sequence takes some 50 to 60 minutes and involves about 90 mainline movements, trains in, trains running through, trains starting.

21C3 'Royal Mail' making an appearance on Hinton Parva

21C3 ‘Royal Mail’ making an appearance on Hinton Parva and easily handled an 8 car Pullman rake

Hornby, have increased the number of shows they are having a presence at this year and I took the opportunity to run and photograph on Hinton Parva, courtesy of Hornby, one of the first of the product batch their new original style Bulleid Merchant Navy Pacifics 21C3 ‘Royal Mail’. This is an advance version with the main production batch due to arrive at retailers during March.

21C3 rests on shed on Hinton Parva

21C3 rests on shed on Hinton Parva

These locomotives have a 5 pole motor with flywheel and plenty of adhesion weight and hauled an 8 coach rake of Hornby, Pullman cars with plenty of power in reserve.  It should be noted that in the pictures to the left she has been taken straight out of the box and the detailing pack containing front steps and cylinder drain cocks etc have not been fitted. I am also pleased to confirm that the lettering shading has been corrected from the livery sample to be black as it should be.

Another view of 21C3 on Hinton Parva

Another view of 21C3 on Hinton Parva

As I advised in my Talking Stock #35 post back in December about the imminent Hornby Merchant Navy releases R3435 No. 21C3 ‘Royal Mail’ is in the condition between when introduced in September 1941; with the ‘widows peak’ style front end without smoke deflectors but with the opening around the chimney and the slot in the front face above the smokebox; and when she was painted in wartime black livery in May 1943.

R3422 Adams radial number 3125 in SR wartime black livery

R3422 Adams radial number 3125 in SR wartime black livery

The next batch of ex London & South Western 0415 class Adams radial tanks have now arrived with the retailers including R3422 number 3125 in SR wartime black with ‘Sunshine’ lettering. this means that for once to suit my modelling period I do not have to repaint and/or renumber an RTR Southern release (although I do have an R3334 ex 30582 with Drummond boiler ready to become 3520 also on SR black with Sunshine lettering as she ran between March 1945 and March 1948).

Another view of R3422 number 3125

Another view of R3422 number 3125

Number 3125 is in the condition she ran between October 1944 when she regained an Adams boiler and March 1949 when she was repainted in British Railways lined black livery. The other recent Hornby, Adams radial release is R3423 as number 30583 also with a an Adams boiler in British Railways lined black with late crest that she gained in early 1959.

H Class smokebox door number plates from 247 developments

H Class smokebox door number plates from 247 Developments

Also now available for Southern Region modellers wishing to enhance or renumber the H Class tanks being released by Hornby later this year are etched smoke box door number plates from 247 Developments.

A cruel enlargement of the H class smokebox door number plate

A cruel enlargement of the H class smokebox door number plate

Recently under the new ownership of Brian Mosby, an excellent modeller himself whom I have known for some time, 247 Developments has produced the full range of H Class numbers (except 31264 and 31312 which never gained the BR number!) The etching is of a high standard and will be welcome addition to the 247 Developments range for any Southern Region modeller.

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With a nod to David Frost et al for the title… although I am not really that old…  honest…  As regular readers of my blog will know last weekend was the last of three exhibitions in three weekends, and was the third year in a row that I have exhibited with a layout at the Warley National Model Railway Show. This time it was turn of the Layout Ashland which was built by myself, Richard Proudman and Hornby Magazine Editor Mike Wild as a challenge, which we duly completed,  to build a layout in a weekend at the Hornby Magazine Live show in Hartlepool last July.

21C102 'Salisbury' arrives at Ashland. Note her short deflectors and original style cab.

Ashland formed part of the Ian Allen / Hornby Magazine stand at the show and is based on the North Cornwall Line, the track plan being a mix of Ashwater and Dunsland Cross. We ran my own Southern 1946 to 1948 era stock on the Saturday and moved forward 10 years or so on the Sunday with Mike’s own BR Southern Region stock being used. Along with a couple of Bulleid light pacific’s, M7’s; an O2, N, N1 and a T9, my recently re-liveried Beattie Well Tank also put in a sterling performance hauling a mix of suitable stock.

Beattie Well Tank 30586 in early British Railways livery trundles into Ashland with a pick up goods

T9 721 on the morning parcels turn

Warley is a bit of a marmite show you either love it or hate it, however a number of changes made to the show this year including widened aisle widths and increased seating available for visitors to rest weary legs (due to the extremely hard concrete floor) which seemed to improve circulation around the show. There will always be discussion on the cost to visitors attending taking into account the entry fee (still half the price of the next door motorcycle show) and parking, but even all in, its still cheap when you consider the cost per layout ratio or the cost per hour of entertainment as most visitors appear to spend all day there (which is needed to see all or nearly all the 75 layouts and nearly 150 traders!)

Many of the suppliers and manufacturers now appear to time announcements and new releases for Warley, with respect to the latter also Christmas is possibly a factor, however this must put strain on the traders stocking policy and cash flow having to suddenly stock so many new items.

Bachmann released a number of new items and had on display a number of pre production tooling’s in both 2 and 4mm with the most noticeable being the 6 car Midland Blue Pullman.  The N Gauge Society’s commissioned, from Graham Farish, fine model of an SR Queen Mary brake van was also available.

Hornby had their livery sample Brighton Belle unit on display, and very nice it looks too, and their non corridor Gresley suburban coaches now released certainly look excellent despite not being Southern.

Dapol have just recently got there 4mm Class 22 into the shops. Kernow Models had the excellent looking livery samples of their commissioned weathered versions on display. Dapol also announced their intention to enter the 7mm market with a 6, 7 and 8 plank private owner wagons to start with. Hattons although not having a stand had a presence with Dapol showing off their stunning looking LMS Twin diesels 10000 / 10001 (both of which ended up onAshlandtowards the end of Sunday!).

Heljan announced their intention to add to their range of transition ear diesels with the Class 16 The prototype, not the most reliable of engines,  “worked” mainly out of Stratford so am not sure if they ever reached Southern Region metals via transfer freights.

Gary at 247 Developments showed me his new etch of Southern engine head signal discs (often incorrectly called route discs or headcode discs) that are complete with half etched handle.

This post is not intended to be a full review of the show but just a snapshot from my perspective / interests. Operating a layout at Warley does not really allow the time to fully view all on show and therefore the above are just some of those things that came to my attention. I am sure that there will be a fuller roundup in the various next magazine issues or on some of the web forums.

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