Wednesday, 28 January 2009

More Grids

A while ago I posted a bit about a Cass 56 which had used the original Mainline model as a base - in those original photos the model didn't have its handrails, windscreen wipers or couplings in place. So here's a glimpse of it before it moved on to pastures new. I still think it's worth consideration if you want a model of a Class 56.

Friday, 23 January 2009

Me Babbies! Me Baines!

Berwick Kaler - York's amazing Dame!
Well back from York again this evening! We've been to see the pantomime again! We booked both lots of tickets months and months ago - good job as it was a full house again tonight! Though I doubt you'd get in for the final week, you must try and go next year - it is a magical evening!

Oh, and the title to this entry? Go and see and then you'll know!

David Leonard - the greatest Pantomime Villian in the land!

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

The ultimate model of a diesel?

In the new issue of Model Railway Journal there is the first of a two part article which could be one of the most significant articles on Diesel and Electric (D&E) modelling. Chris Pendleton has taken a Bachmann Deltic and transformed it into the best four millimetre scale diesel I have ever seen. It's not the first time I have mentioned this model; I had the pleasure and honour to see it on Brian Hanson's stand at Scaleforum in September.

This is how D&E modelling should be; not people competing to see who's got the newest Bachmann or Hornby release. This article takes the kind of modelling and puts it on a par with the best steam modelling.

The final photo is 'borrowed' from MRJ and to me shows just how good Chris Pendleton's modelling is. He's one modeller I greatly admire and just wish my modelling was half as good as his!

Saturday, 3 January 2009


Today we went Newcastle to pick up my Dad's new car and rather than stopping at a service station for lunch we came ever so slightly off the A1 at Shildon. A bit nicer than many motorway services too (especially Leeming Bar services).

It's only the second time I've actually been to Locomotion. It's a strange place too; incorporating the Hackworth Museum and providing what is effectively a store which is open to the public; the exhibits would, in some cases, be stored away from public view otherwise. Shildon is not an obvious choice for a tourist attraction either. That's not to criticise the town; it is a true railway town, built by the railways. Probably one of the oldest railway towns in fact. As one drives through there are many reminders of its past - even the signal which features in so many of the Stockton & Darlington 125 photos as locos left the wagon works for the cavalcade. I do hope that the town has benefitted from the museum.

It is worth a visit though if you are in the North East. The layout of the building means photography isn't that easy but you can get 'up close and personal' with the vehicles with few problems - the only problem I had was the Christmas 'decorations' which blocked the view for even looking at, let alone taking photos of, some items of stock!

The site is quite wide spread and involves a half mile walk from one end to the other; it does feel like the location has a lot of currently unfulfilled potential. I don't what the plans are, if there are indeed any, but it could be made into something really special.

I enjoyed my rather brief visit to Locomotion and would like to return at some point possibly visiting North Road at the same time as I've never been there and both museums have a good selection of exhibits from the premier pre-grouping company, The North Eastern Railway!

Friday, 2 January 2009

How to start the New Year

Happy New Year!

I was trying to think of something impressive for my first post of 2009 - it's not really happened though!

Suzi and I saw the New Year in at The Bay Horse in the village which was rather civilised! Following a few hours' sleep and waking Suzi up with a bacon sandwich (and filling downstairs with the smell of said bacon!) we headed up to the NYMR as it's one of the few places which seems to be open on New Year's Day! So we arrived in Grosmont around lunchtime, it only took an hour but after being up late the night before I think we had earned a lie-in!

On the way back we stopped at Levisham; it was the first time I had driven down ton the station. It not a comfortable road for a car with hard sports suspension though! One thing I love about Levisham station is that it still retains the feel of a remote country station - this is something which many preserved stations lack. The signal box is also rather pleasing - a lovely small North Eastern Railway structure which sums up the whole essence of the location.

I like to 'do something' on New Year's Day - not quite sure why but I always think it's nice to do something worthwhile rather than (just!) sleeping off the night before! And it seemed to work last year - 2008 was a pretty eventful year and on the whole went very well. I say 'on the whole' as we did have the odd little disaster like the kitchen ceiling falling down a matter of days before the wedding! But with marriage and the house it was quite a significant year for us. Hopefully 2009 will be an equally good year.