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Ripe - The Plans



From my previous posts not-so-subtle hint, you may guess that I have selected Ripe as the new area of the line to receive my attention.


My previous posts, setting out my history for the Cuckmere Valley Railway, have barely mentioned Ripe, as a small hamlet (both historically and at the present time), a station here would be pushing the boundaries a bit, but there are plenty of real locations which barely merited a station and had one (in some cases more than one!), so Rule 1 applies here!


Despite that, I want to maintain a very definite 'rural' feel to what will be a small layout (4' x 1', excluding the cassettes which will be used for operation), and without some lateral thinking, there was no way I could get in what I wanted. When I first started pondering the scheme, over Christmas (between Christmas and New Year I was at work, and had so little to do that I often found myself doodling plans on post-it notes!), I set myself a list of the following;

  • Small Through Station, rather than the halt originally envisaged
  • Bay with Goods Store from Litlington
  • Level Crossing
  • Cattle Pen
  • Very Rural, Open Feel

Fitting all of it in has been a challenge - but borrowing an idea from the superb Llanastr - http://llanastr.webs.com/ - I have been able to, by not having all pointwork 'onstage'. Llanastr is of course a terminus, but I have adopted the same approach to a through station, by having the goods loop offstage, and only part of it in the modelled area.


The plan then;




Starting from the left (Laughton) end, the loop to serve the goods yard (if you can call it that!) begins offstage, coming onstage under a road bridge*. From the top, the first siding serves a loading bank with small cattle pen on, whilst the second, forming a bay platform, is purely for goods, with the Goods store I built for Litlington used again here;




The third line from the top is the 'main line', which simply runs straight through the small station, over the level crossing and offstage, with the right hand exit hidden behind some trees.


* - I'm not sure about this, the real Ripe is a particularly flat area, but if I set the track in a bit of a cutting, hopefully this will not 'jar' too much.


Scenically, the ethos is on 'open countryside', hopefully to give the impression that the railway has been carved through - stage front will be scrubby land which slopes down to the track, with only a single, small flint-built cottage as evidence of any habitation here, the main village/hamlet centre being further past the cottage and up the lane, though a postbox on the corner of the station forecourt would be quite a nice addition.


As it stands, it encompasses just about everything I want for the moment, though it is a little 'straight' and clinical, which led me on to Version 2, which puts a gentle curve in the platform road as follows;




This would see the cottage brought to the other side of the tracks, and built in partial relief rather than full, with a heftier flint wall the other side, perhaps with apple trees poking out above it, hinting at an orchard.


I am someone who enjoys building over operation (well, I aim to be....!), so you could perhaps say there is limited operating potential, though this is a rural branchline in the very early 1920's in any case, and it does allow (with cassettes) trains to run straight through, as well as somewhere to indulge in a spot of shunting.


I would be interested in any thoughts, specifically if anyone can think of another way to hide the left hand side scenic exit,



EDIT 21.45


This is what it looks like flipped...




The building front right is a Barn (this is the Wills kit which I have on XtrkCad) - I would change the building material to flint, something like this... (Credit on bottom of image) - this is in Selmeston, just down the road.



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I'm all in favour of setting the area by using location-specific buildings. Looking at the 'Recent Entries' links, I can't see when this started, so I'll ask here: which period is this going to be ? (I'm shocked at the lack of a third rail, but if you are branching off a non-electrified line than I guess that makes sense, and anyway, "rule 1").





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