Yesterday was spent with Fen End Pit in the loco shed at Page's Park. The conditions were far from ideal as the temperatures were in the 30s and the shed environment was pretty filthy, not a combination designed to allow model railway layouts to function flawlessly. The 009 and O16.5 guys were in the cleanliness of the station building but the larger scales were in the shed. Temperatures and dirty made several things fail, I had to jury rig the power to the conveyor and revolving screen at one point. Trying to work under the layout on a oil stained floor didn't improve my temper and the trousers I was wearing have been consigned to the bin today.
Despite these tribulations the layout was appreciated by a lot of people and it was great to meet and chat to lots of people. Seeing several 'rmwebbers' to put faces to names was particularly good.
Not wishing to appear to moan but I think the issues with the catering should be mentioned, if only to get the LBNGR to reconsider who they give the franchise in their cafe too. The organisation and attitude of the franchisee would have made Basil Fawlty proud. They appear to have been totally unprepared for the numbers of people to cater for, even though they had presumably been told how main exhibitors were coming and had some idea of the numbers of visitors expected (which was sadly down on last year). However they appeared to only start preparing any food as it was ordered, including running out to the local supermarket to buy basic ingredients. Time from order to delivery increased during the morning to over one hour and several exhibitors left before their food had been delivered (bet the franchisee still tries to claim the value of their lunch tickets). complaints and concerns were met with a 'don't care' attitude and general rudeness which unfortunately left a bad taste in peoples' mouths. The LBNGR need to remove this vendor as quickly as possible to avoid reputational damage.
On a lighter note here is a picture of Doll leaving with the first train of the morning.