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Nearholmer last won the day on February 5 2018

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    Railways (eclectic); Model railways (clockwork, steam and electric); Vintage-style 0 gauge

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  1. The big 'fake history' question is how far the W&BLR got as an independent concern, before falling into the embrace of the LSWR as its main creditor. It definitely laid-down the more rural parts of its route, but probably not the expensive and argument-causing urban bit in Woking, but what of everything else? Postulated fiction: - early 1906, LRO granted (true), development land purchased in the Horsell and Knaphill areas (this is very close to true, in that speculative development did occur in these areas at this time); compulsory purchase of land for routes concluded; agreements reached with councils w.r.t. rural roadside bits; civils contracts let and grading of routes commences at several sites; specifications and invitations to tender issued for generating and substations, OHL, and electric rolling stock; negotiations start with Woking Borough Council, and go badly from the start; siding agreement with LSWR and siding/connection laid at Bagshot Station (but not paid for!); track-work contract let; - 1907, route construction in rural areas progressing very well, Amendment Order allowing a branch via Windlesham to Valley End granted (LSWR and highway authority successfully oppose the continuation of this via Sunningdale to Virginia Water); more development land bought in the Burrowhill area; contract for "everything electrical" let to British Westinghouse, who crack-on at great pace; by the end of the year, the line is effectively complete from Bagshot to Horsell, Horsell to Knaphill, and Lightwater to Valley End; generating and substations are built but not yet fitted-out, and OHL poles are up across c75% of route; - early in 1908, money troubles begin to bite. Allegations emerge that some of the Directors are engaged in sharp practice: they have sold their own land to the company at what some view as inflated prices, with "option to buy back at same price" clauses which they can exercise once the railway is up and running, by which stage land-values should have risen considerably. This obstructs other land sales and the start of house-building, stifling a crucial income-flow. The argument with Woking BC drags on, racking-up design and legal costs. The civil and track contractors are paid on-time, but stage payments to Westinghouse are delayed on the excuse of quality problems, and the LSWR still haven't been paid. Westinghouse do eventually get paid, and the electrification is completed on all but the Valley End branch, where the kit has been delivered but not installed and connected-up. - BoT inspection of the Bagshot-Horsell-Knaphill line takes place in January 1909, but numerous concerns are raised, not helped by the electric motor car being used during the inspection repeatedly derailing on point-work. The company is now down to its last farthing, banks decline to lend to it, but the LSWR can see an income stream in-waiting, so lends a one year 'tide over' sum with the tramcars pledged as security, and provides free consultancy and engineering support using staff from the Waterloo & City Line to help with the electrical side of things. Second BoT inspection and grand opening in June ........ barely any passengers or goods ......... income about a quarter of operating expenses. Land sales/development still mired by allegations, and further stifled because commuters will want to get to Woking, for fast trains to Waterloo, not Bagshot. - January 1910, the LSWR loan is due for payment, and the siding debt is still hanging. On January 24th, the LSWR becomes owner of the tramcars and a deal is signed by which it writes-off all debts and agrees to take-over the management and working of the line in exchange for 90% of receipts, plus title to all of the development land, provided that the Directors concerned relinquish their "buy back" options. By this point the shares in the W&BLR are effectively worthless, but the deal is agreed on the basis that "at least we get a working railway out of this mess". - from March 1910 onwards, the W&BLR is effectively an arm of the LSWR, who appoint a keen young manager to get what he can from it, while trying to decide whether the urban section should be pursued (they can strong-arm Woking BC if need-be, in a way that the little company can't). Things rumble gently on, land-sales take-place at a managed pace, there is a burst of extra traffic during WW1 with lots of military activity in the area, then buses start to run (true, they started in 1921 along these routes), fares income collapses overnight, and the local nurserymen start to buy lorries and drive directly to London. Passenger services are withdrawn in 1922, but a sporadic goods service (coal deliveries) continues until the track is too degraded to support it. The W&BLR isn't grouped, so the goods trains are worked by the SR as successors to the LSWR for a while (they offer to hire a loco to the W&BLR, but that really consists only of a solicitor acting part-time, two old and tired "gangers", and an AGM that lasts about ten minutes at the solicitor's office). What this means is that the W&BLR's main stock is electrically powered vehicles supplied by Westinghouse (probably car bodies built to US-like designs, rather than classic English double-deck trams), possibly including either a freight loco or motor-freight-car. If we assume that it took an age to finish putting up the OHL to Valley End (who was going to pay for that?), we can imagine a Terrier and then an S14 (=Nellie) being used in the interim, even a B4 being tried. One big final push to get electrification completed for The Coronation? Justifies both steam and electric being present. Enough fiction for one lunchtime.
  2. Which, if correct, gives us a really interesting double-circular-rooted dialect in parts of London, where youngsters mix estuarine SE, US gangsta copied from TV/films (so exported, modified and re-imported), afro-carribean (massively varied between islands and also having roots in slave/master relationships), plus bits of colloquial Hindi and Urdu, polari (which is partly, but not exclusively Italian-rooted), and prison slang. Sort of a reminder that Lingua Franca wasn't the invention of the learned for use in academic discourse, but a tool use by sailors, wharfingers and import/export traders.
  3. I'm attempting to have a bit of a clear-out of projects/models that I know I will never return to, actually selling things on ebay instead of buying, which should cheer-up "the domestic authority", who believes that I hog too much cupboard space. I found a disintegrating old margarine tub full of bogies, if you see what I mean. These are the last survivors of the US H0, which I ceased to pursue in 1996 .......... notice the price label on the packet. Might they come in useful for this project?
  4. Many thanks - its great to be able to see these models 'close up'.
  5. Yes, I was wondering whether there might be a mirror thread called ‘Stopping a Hornby Dublo collection’, which I hazard might be a more difficultly thing to accomplish.
  6. The G gauge one is truly bizarre, whereas the 0 gauge is a very good model indeed for the price. The Lionel Lionchief remote control system as supplied in 0 is exceedingly good too - 2.4GHz radio, with exceedingly fine control. In 0 it uses track power (ac or dc 12-18V), rather than battery. You never know, once the trade deal is done, we might be able to buy Lionel 0 gauge trains freely and easily here, which will be some compensation for the cr*p quality food that will doubtless be another part of the deal.
  7. There are others among us who would be interested to know too. Kevin
  8. Returning to fantasy motive power, one of the few options for electrified light railways not mentioned so far is what the Americans call a ‘freight motor’ or 'baggage motor', and the Germans a schlepptriebwagen. I don’t know what they’re called elsewhere [fourgon-automoeur; fourgon automotrice; locomotive-fourgon], but our nearest equivalent is a motor luggage van. Here is one that appears to have been recycled from a wrecked boat. This is the fairly macho LBSCR version, which sat in the middle of two 3-sets with cabs at the outer ends. Very useful things these, providing guard and small goods accommodation, and able to haul passenger, goods or a combination. The LBSCR ones were exceptionally powerful for the breed at 4x250=1000hp, and 2x180=360hp should meet our needs. Unusually, the NER had rabbits qualified as motormen/women/bunnies to drive theirs. The L&Y had one on the Southport Line, presumably driven by Diddymen, although I can’t find a picture. The Manx Electric has one that was a cattle car ..... imagine typical LWB cattle van, with a cab glued on each end, fitted on a bogie chassis, with a trolley pole What would Nine Elms or Eastleigh produce? Something looking like the steam rail motors?
  9. Ray Which red do you use for the crimson? I've got an 0 gauge Bassett Lowke coach stripped down ready to prime and paint, but it has to wait until its suitably warm and dry in the spray booth (= garden). Kevin
  10. This is turning into a Hornby-Dublo Masterclass, which I will watch with great interest. About one a week, I nearly give-in and start down the road that the OP is treading, but so far the itch has been dealt with my migrating my 0 gauge into the early 1950s.
  11. The interesting bit about that is the pair of iron bracket thingamabobs under the frame, which look as if they are there to carry girders, possibly for use as load-spreaders/out-riggers under the frame of the crane itself - they seem to be retained during transit by giant pins. I reckon that the form would be to uncouple the match-wagon, slide the girders part-way out, then use the crane itself to lift them as close as possible to the desired positions, where timber cribs would already have been erected to take them. On that CS crane, you can see the sockets that the load-spreaders/outriggers would slide into. Even now, cranes often carry loads of good-quality timber with them for load-spreading, and a 'classic' crane, especially one without built-in outriggers, would need to cart half a forest around with it, even for quite light/close lifts. there might also be jacks to go under the ends of the outriggers, but they may have preferred to use timber all the way, because if it is going to fail it gives warning and does so gracefully (then the crane falls over!).
  12. Thank you. Very helpful. I should have thought of livestock: dairy cows. must find out about breeds. The area would have got a poultry farm as soon as the LRO opened too, so more perishables to London markets. The LRO was finally granted in 1906, so a couple of years to build it, go bankrupt and fall into the arms of the LSWR, so c1908 to the early part of WW1, nominally 1910-11. This fits with a couple the more sensible loco options: The Terriers were kicking about doing not much, having been found wanting at Lyme Regis and not yet been reconditioned for use on the Chard Branch; and, the S14 class, the slightly bigger and less-silly Nellies, were built in 1910. A local photographer also captured several really good images in the area at that date, notably at Coronation parties, so I know what people looked like. The Coronation was in the strawberry season too, so maybe I could string bunting all over the station! It was a flaming hot summer, which sounds nice too - it was hotter and drier than 1976, which is saying something.
  13. Based on a scattered population of 400, which is possibly too many, and using my usual formula of 1cwt/week per household, with average household of 2.5 persons, we get to 8 tons/week, which probably means three or four coal wagons 'in circuit', allowing our merchant unloading time, and a gentle amble to/from the colliery. In summer, the merchant will be stockpiling, so that needs to be represented. Its was a weird area at the time, though, with a high proportion of the population being servants in 'big houses', a significant minority of truly dirt-poor people living in very basic cottage/huts on the common (wood fires), and nurseries with greenhouses that were probably coal or oil heated in mid-winter to keep the frost off, as well as a few farms and 'ordinary cottages', so my averages may be wide of the mark.
  14. Wagons. These should be less prone to wild outbreaks of imaginative creativity than either motive power or passenger coaches. I've got my name down for a r-t-r LSWR 10T Road Van, which seems perfect for a line such as this because it will work for goods, mixed and passenger trains, and is ideal for the market-garden and milk traffic. If/when rails produce an all-brake 4W passenger coach in LSWR livery, that can do the same job on a turn-and-turnabout basis. We have Mr Bowler's iffy coal wagon, and I shall foist a coal business onto the local builder, copying his 20s/30s lorry livery as below (Sand colour?) onto a more suitable wagon. Cambrian make a kit for a typical LSWR closed wagon, hopefully Rails will make the SECR van, and someone must make a typical LBSCR 8T van. Then an ordinary open goods wagon from each of LBSCR, LSWR and SECR, probably high-end & sheet rail/bar in each case. Not sure who makes kits for those. The obligatory MR D299 (Cambrian?). That's probably about it. Maybe an LSWR milk/fruit van and an LNWR one, both to appear only during the Strawberry Rush in June. I might also invent a Chrysanthemum Rush in September, in honour of my grandfather, who spent the latter part of the summer tying brown paper bags over the blooms to prevent earwig damage and managing the plants to be sure he had fresh blooms ready to cut every single day from mid-August to about mid-October. Bearing in mind the marginal nature of this operation, what, if any, other goods or NPCS do we need? The 'rarities' that I think might be appropriate are: a horsebox; an open carriage truck; a CCT; and, a pair of 4W timber bolsters.
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