About the blog

The concept of the layout is a rural station in West Dorset on the proposed direct Dorchester-Exeter route during the first four years of British Railways from '48-52.

Thursday, 22 April 2021

Another exLSWR van

As if two exLSWR vans are not enough, this complete the trio. 

This time, a diag 1409 10t van, these lasted into the '60s, unlike the two plastic Cambrian diag 1410 examples, this is a all metal kit once available from David Geen. Just waiting for the kit to pitch up.

The completed example is not mine, it should be dark brown with a black underfame, although it would be rather careworn in '48-52. The underframe of the model does not look correct, it will need attention.

Sunday, 18 April 2021

30119 - By royal appointment

Sunday morning is layout time
LSWR/SR 119 later BR 30119 was used by the Southern Railway and early British Railways as a Royal engine and as such was painted in malachite green livery. The last years of it life were spent at Dorchester which makes it perfect for Beaminster Road.

Below, when the Royal Train that visited both the Somerset and Dorset Joint Railway and the Salisbury and Dorset Junction Railway. A Royal occasion at Broadstone on 15th May 1940. 

The empty stock of the GWR Royal Train having been brought from Blandford back to Broadstone behind 'Black Five' 5289 departs behind T9 SR119 towards West Moors and Downton, Here their Majesties will rejoin the train following their visit to Blandford Camp.

First coach is a brake third,probably either diagram D87 ex-ambulance stock, 57' long with flat ends (1924); or D107 or D111 bow-ended stock; 61'long (1930). This is a general service coach. 

The second coach is a G59 first class saloon, either No 9004 or 9005 (there were only two). 61' long, bow-ended. These coaches were completely self-contained, with kitchen, pantry, guard's compartment and coupe end windows and were for private hire. 

The third coach shows too little to identify, but is also late 20's/early 30's stock.

Despite being 'on' Southern territory, the GWR royal train was used, possibly as the Pullman (the Southern had no dedicated Royal stock)  stock used by the SR for was elsewhere in 1940
Hornby's R2889 is exceptionally good.

Saturday, 17 April 2021

Working the Dorchester and Exeter line


*Please note that the Dorchester and Exeter (D&E) line was never built

As the blog seems to be focused on the models and runnng sessions are about to recommence, maybe a description of how the D&E line may have been worked just after the the transition from Southern to British Railways.

Through trains

The D&E was a useful diversionary route for the West of England mainline however the single track west of Bridport would have been restrictive.  

The only regular through train was the Plymouth to Brighton which would have been routed via the D&E and WoE mainline on alternate days, with Fridays and Sundays always via the D&E for Naval personnel to make connections at Dorchester and Poole. When running on the D&E, Exmouth Junction locos would have worked the service to Bournemouth where a Brighton loco would have completed the journey. The service was in the capable hands of D15s and H2s, both replaced by Bulleid Light Pacifics by 1956. 

Local Services

These originated at Exeter and terminated at Dorchester until complete closure of Dorchester Shed 71C in 1957 after which they terminated at Bournemouth West. Most services were served by two car sets whilst a push+pull set ran between Axminster and Dorchester for both workmen and school/shopping services.

Goods traffic 

To relieve pressure on the WoE, all daytime goods between London and the West Country ran via D&E, the line was also used to transport fuel to the Esso depot at Cattewater, Plymouth.

Fast van traffic of both agricultural produce and meat, the latter from the abattoirs at Halwill, was a daily regular.  

No words necessary


Wednesday, 14 April 2021

D15 - small details

David's attention to detail is amazing.

The D15s (and the L12s) had a different pattern of injector, mounted below the cab: 

The model looked a bit bare without them, so David has rigged up something that vaguely looks like them, from the rather small and shadowy area of the prototype photos. 

The ingredients are odd lumps of whitemetal, 1/16" brass tube, .7mm copper wire, and various bits left over from Markits Clack-valve kits.

Markits sell a pack of copper wire, some stuff as comes with the clack-valves.

Bits of Markit clack valves

Tuesday, 13 April 2021

The station taxi

The station taxi is a modelling cliche however, Mr Tilly, enterprising proprietor of Tilly's Autos, knows that Beaminster Road station serves Beaminster in name only, it is over 8 miles by shank's pony. A cheapish Austin from the capital was acquired and can be found beside Mr.Tilly's garage awaiting weary travellers. It also serves local weddings and funerals.

The regulations were revised in 1928 to encourage more manufactures to start producing Taxi's. The car dealer Mann and Overton Director Will Overton who had been selling cabs in London since 1906 approached Herbert Austin about modifying the 12/4 chassis so that it would comply with the London 'Conditions of Fitness'. So a chassis from a Austin 12/4 was modified with bodies from various coach-builders.

Controls on a Austin 12/4 Taxi

Because the overall height of the Taxi was higher than the competition, it received the nick name 'High Lot' but this design gave the Top Hat customers plenty of room. It was soon outselling the Bearmore and Morris-Commercials versions. Building on its success a new model the 'Low Loader' was introduced in 1934.

Sunday, 11 April 2021

Sunday running session

Well, nothing goes to plan, the MultiMaus doesn't like the Lenz interface and there is a dead piece of track on the platform loop. 

The wiring sketch, hastily draw when building the layout proved invaluable by removing possible causes of the problem - it was a non-conducting jail joiner.

Either join the two rails together with a short "jump lead" across the joint; or add a feed from the dead rail to the centre contact on the microswitch (i.e. the one feeding the crossing vee) on the turnout at the left-hand end of the loop 

Option one, it was easier with a surface loop cut into the ballast, asap I will hide the repair.

It works perfectly, just two tasks remain, fix the MultiMaus Error 13 and hardwire a tiny Zimo into a kitbuilt loco.........

Thursday, 8 April 2021

Hattons SR 6W full brake


Beaminster Road has slowly morphed into a Southern/British Railways lump, if only because it is a bit different. Most of the stock originated on the Southern, from each of its constituent companies with a couple of interesting vehicles from the other three. Liveries are just as varied, copied from contemporary photographs including odd hybrid SR/BR examples.

Hatton’s images of their latest release are mouthwatering because their 6w full brake brings back distant memories of something similar banged up against the buffers on a siding in Bournemouth West during the ‘50s, its once beautiful lined Southern green fading into obscurity. The challenge to create the faded paint is going to be fun. 

Stay Safe

Sunday, 4 April 2021

Easter treat - 1

 David Taylor's superb work


 Scratchbuilt injectors

Monday, 29 March 2021

Yeovil's own - 30182

The home movies of Douglas Seaton feature the railways around Yeovil from the late ‘40s onwards. One loco is a particular favourite, 02 30182 as once offered by KMRC also featured is M7 30129 also available but this time from Hornby. I initially missed out on the release of 30182 but a silly error whilst searching resulted in finding an ‘as new’ example at reasonable cost.
The quest to ‘downsize’ the locos on Beaminster Road has resulted in 30182 usurping 30129 but this time it will not result in another episode on eBay.

The prototype images are Andy’s, all captured at Yeovil although after the BRITISH RAILWAYS tankside logo on 30182 had been replaced by the unicycling lion.

And this is the KMRC K2103 as received, fitted with a Zimo decoder.

Wednesday, 24 March 2021

Brighton brake van

 Brighton Brake Van


LBSC 20t Brake Van DS55907 built Lancing 1922, reduced to Engineering Departmental stock in 1960. Black livery at Three Bridges 24th July 1965, withdrawn 1970 as the last original LBSC Brake Van 

Another exLBSC brake van, designed by AH Panter, they were based on the LBSC diagram 50 that were built during 1923 similar to those produced in 1922 but with steel lower sheeting rather than fully planked sides. They became SR Diagram 1576, some lasted in to British Railways days although some were converted to departmental / ballast use.

They would have either stayed in faded SR brown, Red Oxide (SR departmental) or possibly might have ended up in BR Grey or BR departmental liveries.

 This one survived to become a ballast brake for the Engineering Department.

It started life as a Hornby SR brake van R019, it is a very good model.

Tuesday, 23 March 2021

LBSC Diag 1434 van

Smallbrook Studios resin body kit fitted with Dapol chassis
Built in 1900-1, the LBSC ordered 100 vans from the Ashbury Carriage and Iron Company, they were of a similar style to an existing Brighton -built design. 
 The body kit is a nice moulding, but the Dapol chassis is a completely inappropriate choice.  The LBSC wagons were steel framed, but the channel was the other way round, so all you see is a flat solebar, with a minimum of extra ironwork. It needs a scratch-built my chassis using plain plastic strip for the solebars, with etched W-irons and brake gear. 

The wheelbase was 9' 9" so I suspect the Dapol chassis is wrong there, too, and I don't think there is anything suitable in the Cambrian range.  The LBSC numbers were 10350-10449.  When new, most just had double brakes on one side only, although from 10435 the rest were fitted with a variety of different patented double-sided brake designs, for evaluation, although none were adopted. Some acquired a second set of brakes later, and many went into service stock from around 1925, but some did last until the 1960's. 

The roof ventilators shown in the photo can be made from the bits supplied, but they represent the original fitments, and later survivors seem to have acquired more orthodox shell vents.


Friday, 19 March 2021

Adams 0395 in 4mm - 12 Almost, almost there


 Some lovely images of the 0395 in primer, looking rather fab.



The backhead on the right belongs to the D15 30466. Some footplate crews are on their way to David.

The drawbar is soldered to a short piece of tube, and threaded onto an 8ba bolt.  Another shorter piece of tube is soldered to the bolt, with a bit of clearance. (David could have used a nut for this, but there wasn't room) making the drawbar/tube captive, but allowing it to swing.  The whole thing then screws in to secure the chassis in place.

The photos should be fairly self explanatory as to how David did it.  (Clear as mud...?)

Monday, 15 March 2021

The K10 or 'Small Hopper'

 The K10 or 'Small Hopper'

In 1901/2 Dugald Drummond introduced the K10 class or "Small Hoppers", a class of 40 4-4-0s which shared the same cylinders, boiler and firebox as his first 4-4-0 for the LSWR, the C8 class of 1897. They shared the same problem as the C8s, an inability to sustain their power, which led to them having only occasional main line use. This defect did not prevent them having an exemplary career on secondary routes on mixed traffic. 

Withdrawals started in January 1947 and although the majority of the class saw service with British Railways, it was not for long with the last one withdrawn by July 1951.

382 shunting at Verwood, SDJR in 1937
Unknown K10 Raynes Park, 1948

Below, is the 30382, the only K10 to carry a BR number, a simple colour scheme of unlined black with SOUTHERN on the tender, it lasted in the Yeovil area until August 1950

The original 6w tender has been replaced by the correct 8w watercart.



And this is the reference book, previously owned by the late Adrian Swain.

Saturday, 13 March 2021

Late '40s black cars

Does anyone else have an addiction to ‘Talking Pictures’, a lovely nostalgic channel that shows a lot of old b&w British films? The location sequences of the late ‘40s are a treasure trove of actual everyday life and it seems that road vehicles had not changed much since the late ‘30s, no doubt, WW2 and the subsequent austerity were factors. Almost every private car was British, black and small.

 Our neighbour had a Morris 8, reminiscent of Noddy’s car. It was black with red shining upholstery and suicide doors. This one will lose its Police signs and revert to civilian use.

And this is a Standard Flying 12, all came with integral boots and fastback styling, but under the skin it was the same mixture as before. A saloon cost £299, and although not a pretty car was much better looking than many contemporaries.