The Association of Larger Scale Railway Modellers held their Annual show at the Rivermead Centre in Reading last Saturday. It was a must see show for the followers of the larger scales, with a splendid array of layouts, more than seventy traders present and a good selection of societies and demonstrations. The show was split over three halls, one for layouts, one for traders and a smaller one for demonstrators and society stands (Bring and Buy).
The Layouts on show ranged from On30 through to Gauge 3, with a selection of ten 0 gauge layouts. There was Bankfield Road from the St Ives MRC, Bristol Goods Shed (Broad Gauge), East Dean from Warley MRC, Great Train Robbery presented by Luton MRC, Lough Engine Shed, Normandy Junction from Guilford MRC, Pistyll – Craig – Ddu, Stodden Hundred, Mole End (0n30) and the East Midlands Test Track.
In the larger scales was the endearing Beamish Colliery in G Scale, Blackgang the expansive Gauge 3 layout,and the Invicta Track in Gauge 1 providing an ever changing selection of live steam and electric/battery powered locomotives with varying stock.
Bankfield Road shows what can be achieved in a small space and is operated in DCC with sound, a fine layout from the St Ives MRC.
East Dean formerly of Hillingdon Fame and now operated in DCC by Warley MRC is a fine scale model portraying a cross-country through station with a varied amount of traffic and local shunting movements. A great and entertaining layout.
Normandy Junction is a large and expansive Club layout operated by Guilford MRC presenting a fine cross section of pre-grouping trains running with scale length trains, in all a very entertaining presentation.
Pistyll – Craig – Ddu is a Welsh mining town layout running period stock from the Cambrian Railways and other pre-grouping Welsh railways. The atmosphere created by the layout illumination has to be seen as it is an interesting combination of blue and yellow light LED strips, giving the layout a smokey and frosty feel.
Lough Engine Shed portrays the era of change from Western Region steam into Diesel traction, with a continual change of locomotives on show it makes an interesting layout.
Mole End in 0n30 scale is a beautifully modelled narrow gauge railway with nicely modelled track and rolling stock all shown in a typical landscape.
Bristol Goods Shed is a model portraying both Broad and Standard Gauge track and stock in the early GWR era. Built to exacting standards, the layout is a work in progress with a large transhipment shed and the tracks from both broad and standard gauges.
Sodden Hundred is a group of three individual layouts all linked together, all built to the same level of finish, but each having their own presence. Making for an interesting concept with a varying degree of operation.
The very fine portrayal of the Great Train Robbery by Luton Model Railway Club was the best presentation on show, with it’s own tented theatre showing photographs of the event together with an audio visual presentation centred around the diorama. All in all a fine display.
Last but by no means least there was the East Midlands test track where an array of varied stock was run and where they offered you the opportunity to test run potential purchases before money has changed hands.
In the larger scales was Beamish colliery, a beautifully modelled and evocative layout in a small space. It occupies an area of around ten square feet but has a continuous run with such features as the colliery sidings a station and some beautifully modelled houses and shops all with interior details. This is the second time I have seen this particular layout and it never fails to make me smile, it’s enchanting.
The Invicta track was ran both live steam and battery/electric powered trains and presented a varied amount of Gauge 1 locomotives and stock.
Blackgang in gauge 3 is a large space layout and a combination of three layout all combined together to create a masterpiece in this scale. Running mainly Southern and Western small engines, the sort that ran on the Isle of Wight and Cornish Branch lines with beautifully modelled rolling stock, the layout makes a fine spectacle.
In the Traders Hall there were approximately seventy businesses each supplying an array of products for purchase, from kits through to ready to run stock, accessories to all the materials you need to detail your models. There were traders in all the scales and gauges. The highlight for me was the sight of the New Lionhearted Trains Mogul in both the black and green liveries of the GWR and British Railways, an expensive and fine model one for the collectors.
All in all it was a fine show well presented and laid out, the only down side being the catering facilities which were not as good as some of the other shows I have been to recently. Otherwise a Great day out.Tags: 0 Gauge, 0n30, 5inch Gauge, Gauge 1, Gauge 3