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Fifth bite: The station building


Mikkel

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I now have four small layouts in the Farthing series, each of which can be operated on my desk or the dining table. That should satisfy my daily operating needs for a while, allowing me to take on Farthing’s main station building and platforms.

 

 

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For this I’m returning to the Newbury theme. When Newbury station was rebuilt during 1908-1910 four lines were laid, with loop lines along the Up and Down platforms and through lines in the center.

 

 

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This resulted in the above arrangement. Source: Britain from Above.

 

 

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As we already knowFarthing’s history and layout as a junction station was very similar to Newbury.  So I’ve grabbed this part of the Newbury trackplan and adapted it for Farthing. The two remaining bays are left out for now, but may follow later in one form or another.

 

 

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As usual it’s very simple. We live in a small flat and I don’t have a layout room, so I’ll join up four modules on the dining table. The modules are stored in an attic room so need to be short and narrow. We have two light work-desks which can be arranged at each end for 150 cm cassettes to slide on. It won’t be practical for my daily running sessions, this is for special occasions.

 

 

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Though limited, the plan is not completely without operational scope, as listed here. The run isn’t that long but I'd rather do something than nothing. If circumstances allow, future modules can add more length. 

 

 

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One module – the Branch Bay – was the first of the Farthing layouts and so is already done. It just needs the fascia removed, allowing another module to be fitted in front. I’ll still be able to operate it separately during my daily sessions.

 

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I’ve now begun the second module. It will be a scenic board, featuring Farthing’s main station building, viewable from both sides. As simple as it gets.

 

 

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Except that I have to build this. The station building will be a model of the main Up side building at Newbury.

 

 

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It is of course still there and can be seen in Google Streetview. Handy when you live across the North Sea during a pandemic.

 

 

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The architectural style at Newbury was not unique. This is Westbury, where the style appears to have originated when Westbury station was rebuilt in 1899 – indeed Adrian Vaughan calls it the “Westbury style” in his book on GWR architecture. Source: Wikipedia Commons.

 

 

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A distinctive feature of the style was the shape and decoration of the limestone lintels above rounded windows.

 

 

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The style was also employed on some other GWR stations in the early 1900s, although without the gables. There were several on the GWR/GCR New Line. This is Bicester North, built 1910. Source: Chiltern Railways on Pinterest.


 

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I spotted a simpler variant in photos of Tyseley, built 1906. Source: Wikipedia Commons.


 

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Back at Newbury, the Upside building is a long structure, as seen here on Google Earth using the handy measuring tool. In 4mm scale it comes out at just under 84 cms. The sensible approach would be to do a compressed version. But I need a challenge, so will do the whole thing.

 

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Here’s a GWR outline drawing of Newbury, with only the wording changed to match Farthing. It’s longer than some of my existing layouts! I’ll build the structure in three main parts, joined by magnets. I anticipate compromises along the way, so expect pragmatism.


 

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Work has begun. I’m tracing the GWR outline drawing in Inkscape in preparation for cutting out brick sheets on my Silhouette Cutter. The GWR drawing is rather rough, but OK for my purposes and I have historical and contemporary photos to work from.

 

 

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I'm still to decide whether I'll also build the footbridge, seen above. A big task, but tempting. Especially because it’s gone now, removed in 2018 for OLE installation. Slowly, the old world disappears. But modellers are sorcerers, we can bring things back.

 

Edited by Mikkel

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2 hours ago, Miss Prism said:

I look forward to discovering when window frames changed from the dark colour to white!

 

I think you will find it was when they had the painters in :jester:

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At first glance, when I saw the header picture, I thought "wow, that was quick" but then I saw the double-headed arrows on the sign.   It looks to be an ambitious project that should keep you busy for some time. 

 

During lock-down, I took quite  few 'virtual trips' by means of Google Street View.  It's great for re-visiting places, although it's a pity Germany doesn't accept it.

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Mikkel,

Yes it is an impressive project, it is more than twice as long as my station, which if I recall correctly is 100ft, or 40cm.  I am sure you are likely to be finished before me as well.  Cutting bricks out first, I shall look forward to how you build this and see, maybe, how I should have done it.  Things like the lintels and the what looks like a stone picture rail between them are the type of distinctive feature that will mark out the station for what it is, again an interesting challenge.

 

I do not live that far from Newbury, but have never been there, nor do I have an excuse to go, but if I do I will try and remember my camera, but do not hold your breath.

 

You need to be careful of any modernisation, which as Farthing is not Newbury, is not really a problem.  I have been looking at the main doors in and out of the station.  I have three stations with modern pictures, one is now a house, and the other two are nearly as they were but now for different uses.  I was quite keen to see the door on Barmouth onto the platform, but it was open, then I realised, it is a sliding door.  Fortunately obvious, but there are other features I have seen that are not quite so obvious.

 

I think this will be fascinating.

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15 hours ago, Miss Prism said:

I look forward to discovering when window frames changed from the dark colour to white!

 

I have the same challenge with my station building.  The early photos I have of it and other local stations in the early Edwardian period have them in chocolate.  The pic above also seems to have the fence in chocolate or maybe black too.

 

Ford_Bridge_Station_Master.jpg.edb00a26d1da13028348967c813543a4.jpg

Edited by Brassey
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15 hours ago, hayfield said:

Looks to be a very interesting project

 

I hope so, John. I've been wanting to do the main station structures and platforms at Farthing for a while now. Initially wracked my brain to see if it could be done in a smaller size, but since Farthing is a through station I couldn't use the usual trick of showing just one end of a platform.

 

15 hours ago, Miss Prism said:

I look forward to discovering when window frames changed from the dark colour to white!

 

 

Well spotted. The Edwardian postcards of Newbury station show dark windowframes. This fits with a point that @David Bigcheeseplant has made before, that in fact GWR window sashes were chocolate until the mid-1920s. See discussion here (third post onwards):

 

 

 

 

14 hours ago, kitpw said:

Wow!...magnetism as well as pragmatism.  That's a big station building - even without the enormous footbridge spanning 4 (originally broad gauge) tracks.  Quite a bite!

 

Kit PW

Swan Hill - https://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/blogs/blog/2502-swan-hill/

 

Yes, this is the main bite of the elephant, I suppose :)

 

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14 hours ago, Miss Prism said:

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I'll never tire of shots like that. For the new modules the idea is to expand on the idea used on the Branch Bay (a.k.a. Module 1), whereby the canopy is at the front so that the viewer is directly in the scene and can look under the canopy to see the action. 

 

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The canopy on the branch bay platform was made with modified Ratio components. The supporting pillars are (more or less) the correct pattern for Newbury, as seen in the crop below.

 

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Edited by Mikkel
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12 hours ago, MikeOxon said:

At first glance, when I saw the header picture, I thought "wow, that was quick" but then I saw the double-headed arrows on the sign.   It looks to be an ambitious project that should keep you busy for some time. 

 

During lock-down, I took quite  few 'virtual trips' by means of Google Street View.  It's great for re-visiting places, although it's a pity Germany doesn't accept it.

 

I'm thinking it will be one of those projects where it is best to set intermediate targets and then take a break when one target is reached. 

 

Streetview seems to be OK for me for German locations, e.g. this is Köln HbF: https://goo.gl/maps/WC7VwvTinozYBnKJA

 

But maybe there are restrictions in certain residential areas?

 

 

10 hours ago, magmouse said:

You have to do that ma-hoosive footbridge, Mikkel! It'll be spectacular.

 

It's all the glazing that worries me. But it certainly did add a lot to the general atmosphere...

 

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11 hours ago, ChrisN said:

Mikkel,

Yes it is an impressive project, it is more than twice as long as my station, which if I recall correctly is 100ft, or 40cm.  I am sure you are likely to be finished before me as well.  Cutting bricks out first, I shall look forward to how you build this and see, maybe, how I should have done it.  Things like the lintels and the what looks like a stone picture rail between them are the type of distinctive feature that will mark out the station for what it is, again an interesting challenge.

 

I do not live that far from Newbury, but have never been there, nor do I have an excuse to go, but if I do I will try and remember my camera, but do not hold your breath.

 

You need to be careful of any modernisation, which as Farthing is not Newbury, is not really a problem.  I have been looking at the main doors in and out of the station.  I have three stations with modern pictures, one is now a house, and the other two are nearly as they were but now for different uses.  I was quite keen to see the door on Barmouth onto the platform, but it was open, then I realised, it is a sliding door.  Fortunately obvious, but there are other features I have seen that are not quite so obvious.

 

I think this will be fascinating.

 

Hi Chris, I'm following your build closely to steal all the tricks!

 

My plan for the lintels is to leave apertures in the cut-out brick sheets, and then insert matching cut-outs for the lintels. The raised "mouldings" will then be added from triangular Evergreen rod, covering most of the joins in the process. Or that at least is the idea!

 

Good point about the doors, there is something strange going on in the GWR drawings in that regard. Probably explained by the way the rooms were organised internally, of which I do not have a plan. 

 

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1 hour ago, Mikkel said:

It's all the glazing that worries me.


Maybe build the whole structure in clear material like Perspex, and layer everything onto that. The fine glazing bars might just be scribed on and filled with paint. Create the structure and do the scribing first, so if you make any mistakes at that stage you can replace a piece without throwing out a lot of work. Then with the silhouette cutter, all the other layers won’t be too bad, and can be checked and corrected as you go.

 

Easy for me to say of course - I shan’t be doing one in O gauge!

 

Nick.

 

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For the footbridge I think I would start with the glazing as a full layer and work outwards with pre painted layers each side. 

 

Your silhouette is going to be very busy. 

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22 hours ago, Miss Prism said:

I look forward to discovering when window frames changed from the dark colour to white!

 

I understood from Slinn that they were always white, but I can see from the pictures that that wasn't necessarily the case. I'll have to have a closer look a some of the old photos.

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Mikkel, you are ambitious!

 

If I were doing it, I would have opted for the shorter down side building, but then I'm willing to settle for Metcalfe's wayside station based on Brunel's plans for Twyford and Bradford on Avon. (Not yet built, by the way... the fallback is my old Hornby Dunster station.):rolleyes_mini:

Edited by Dana Ashdown
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23 hours ago, Brassey said:

I have the same challenge with my station building.  The early photos I have of it and other local stations in the early Edwardian period have them in chocolate.  The pic above also seems to have the fence in chocolate or maybe black too.

 

Ford_Bridge_Station_Master.jpg.edb00a26d1da13028348967c813543a4.jpg

 

An excellent photo. Is it Berrington & Eye? Interesting if non-GWR companies underwent the same change. Perhaps the shift from dark to white had to do with paint technologies. Or simply what was fashionable.

 

 

 

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Excellent concept and I’m looking forward to the next progress report already. The footbridge will make an excellent scenic break…

Duncan

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On 13/02/2022 at 07:52, Mikkel said:

 

An excellent photo. Is it Berrington & Eye? Interesting if non-GWR companies underwent the same change. Perhaps the shift from dark to white had to do with paint technologies. Or simply what was fashionable.

 

Mikkel, this is Ford Bridge, two stations down from B&E.  Although a joint line, the 2 companies took it in turn over the responsibilities.  For the period in question, I believe that the GWR had responsibility for the station buildings whereas the LNWR had control of the track and signaling.  I have therefore assumed that the paint scheme and work undertaken on the line was GWR.  Certainly this far South the GWR probably had the greater influence.

 

Having said all that, on one of the signal box colours websites it states that the closest modelling paint colour to LNWR "buff" is GWR light stone so it's probably hard to distinguish subtle differences between the two!    The responsibility for signaling switched in around 1907.  So the wood on the brick box at B&E could have been painted in LNWR buff or GWR light stone but who could tell!.   The photo is of Ford Bridge signal box from the same series and the windows on the box are painted white.  Fascinating but mind-boggling stuff. 

 

Ford_Bridge_Signal_Box.jpg.71c5aa583a8cf7f959059405f578a541.jpg Peter

Edited by Brassey
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Thanks to all for the suggestions and encouragement on how the footbridge can be done. Will give it some thought. It's quite an expanse, but with half closed eyes I can just about imagine this in GWR stone colours...

 

newbury1.jpg.5bb1673eeace8497c36ce974dd7aa602.jpg

 

 

23 hours ago, Dana Ashdown said:

Mikkel, you are ambitious!

 

If I were doing it, I would have opted for the shorter down side building, but then I'm willing to settle for Metcalfe's wayside station based on Brunel's plans for Twyford and Bradford on Avon. (Not yet built, by the way... the fallback is my old Hornby Dunster station.):rolleyes_mini:

 

I did consider doing the Down side structure instead (seen below). But it's a little too small for Farthing, and in any case I'm thinking that much of the preparatory work will be the same anyway. So relatively speaking, the time and effort needed on the longer Up side structure won't necessarily be that much more (I may regret saying this when I've reached window number 21!). 

 

asas.JPG.1c28a323f79ca7a4a570574b346f7976.JPG

Edited by Mikkel
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3 hours ago, Brassey said:

 

Mikkel, this is Ford Bridge, two stations down from B&E.  Although a joint line, the 2 companies took it in turn over the responsibilities.  For the period in question, I believe that the GWR had responsibility for the station buildings whereas the LNWR had control of the track and signaling.  I have therefore assumed that the paint scheme and work undertaken on the line was GWR.  Certainly this far South the GWR probably had the greater influence.

 

I have no record that the LNWR spec for windows was ever anything but white (but before someone jumps on me, there is at least one photo of the lower windows of an LNWR signal box painted dark). 

 

Having said all that, on one of the signal box colours websites it states that the closest modelling paint colour to LNWR "buff" is GWR light stone so it's probably hard to distinguish subtle differences between the two!    The responsibility for signaling switched in around 1907.  So the wood on the brick box at B&E could have been painted in LNWR buff or GWR light stone but who could tell!.   The photo is of Ford Bridge signal box from the same series and the windows on the box are painted white.  Fascinating but mind-boggling stuff. 

 

Ford_Bridge_Signal_Box.jpg.71c5aa583a8cf7f959059405f578a541.jpg

 

Thanks for that. So if the GWR were responsible for station colours at Ford Bridge, that first photo of yours - with the station master and family - is in theory an unusually clear illustration of GWR painting practice on windows at the time. I would have expected plain chocolate, but it looks like a two-colour scheme to me.

 

IIRC, signal boxes had separate colour schemes on the GWR. Will check.

 

(edited to clarify)

 

Edited by Mikkel
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Brave man taking that on :O 

 

Am sure it’s going to be epic Mikkel. Am interested why you moved away from a compressed version? I think if you capture enough of the architectural elements you could pull it off and still have a credible model….but don’t let me try and talk you out of it :D

 

Looking forward to seeing how this evolves…:good:

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Impressed by your ambitious scheme. It is a big station to be modelling, and will follow with interest. 

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3 hours ago, bcnPete said:

Brave man taking that on :O 

 

Am sure it’s going to be epic Mikkel. Am interested why you moved away from a compressed version? I think if you capture enough of the architectural elements you could pull it off and still have a credible model….but don’t let me try and talk you out of it :D

 

Looking forward to seeing how this evolves…:good:

 

Hi Pete, yes I agree the compressed version would probably have worked well. Below is my attempt at the compressed version (61 cms in 4mm scale) compared to the original one.

 

1659850672_newburycompressedok.jpg.ca244c461c6c2c6e0fd2e17d3c3e59b7.jpg

 

1974271605_newburystationsideoriginal.jpg.f15ed8b093eaf6f7fe790ce500e52f28.jpg

 

But I just feel like a challenge really, going outside my comfort zone to build a large structure. And there's the bonus of having not only a station for Farthing, but also a model of an actual prototype. As with the Park Royal stable block.

 

 

2 hours ago, Nick Gough said:

Mikkel

 

I have around 60 photos of Newbury, taken in 2010, if they are any use?

 

Three examples:

100_8625.JPG.11b9be7ae47912a8750946ab4d9de3dd.JPG100_8630.JPG.67cf01dc71dea38e828b8f7338c86dac.JPG100_8633.JPG.d024ccaf6909d8b1475f734299baaaa3.JPG

 

Excellent photos Nick, they would certainly be useful if it's not too much trouble. Many thanks for the offer!

 

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