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  1. Ah! the Blue Pullman. I used to take it occasionally on Monday morning returning to work in London after a weekend at my parents. Great service from the Pullman staff and, if memory serves me well, the breakfast was excellent.
  2. I'd like to see backs of Victorian-era terrace housing and their garden walls, - so common on the linesides approaching big towns and cities. Also, the backs of Georgian terrace houses - they make great view blockers. being several stories high. They backs often varied when the fronts didn't and that would make them interesting to look at.
  3. 4901

    Panic buying

    We keep some toilet paper in the garage. I decided to move it in case someone saw it when the door was open and came back for it in the middle of the night.
  4. Thank you all for these great ideas.
  5. As I recall, it was tiny and the owner was very helpful. He knew what he was talking about and that's very helpful and inspiring to a beginner.
  6. Where can I find scale drawings of the backs of Georgian houses, perhaps three to four storeys high? Thanks
  7. My first layout was started when I was 17 in 1959, using 00 Peco brass bullhead track my father had bought many years before and Peco cast metal frogs for the turnouts. I could not afford to buy ready-made track so I used shellacked card for the track bed and the sleepers. The rail was soldered to brass tacks hammered into the baseboard. The baseboard eventually warped - it was the fibre board recommended in the Railway Modeller on a soft wood frame of 1" by 2". For electrical control I used an old aircraft WW2 switch box that had all sorts of switches and even a morse key. The only engine I had was the R! Hornby's first two-rail locomotive, a couple of southern green Kitmaster coaches that I still use on my current layout complete with Peco interiors and Kitmaster people on the seats and standing in the corridors. I installed fine-scale wheels from a tiny shop near New Street Station in Birmingham (decades before Ian Allen). Goods wagons were Peco Wonderful Wagons and they ran so sweetly. The very first length of track I built was from Peco flat-bottom glued onto the shellacked card sleepers and base but I started using th Peco bullhead for the rest of the layout. I recall going to a model railway show in Birmingham and seeing Iliffe Stokes layout featured in the RM. A club member, Smokey Bourne, took time to draw wiring diagrams for point motors and I read the RM to understand cab wiring. I was even about to wire a rotary switch for route control but left home to start my career away from home. The layout was demolished by my father but I recently found a poor black and white photo of the layout that shows a double crossover in the station. I had forgotten how complex I made the layout but the cast frogs made it quite easy to build points. Point control was by Gem point levers and wire-in-tube with a piece of brass across the wire to change the polarity of the points. The layout was never finished but the stock ran smoothly over it. In building that layout, I learned woodwork, soldering, wiring, filing metal, etc., skills I used to add a ring main to our first house eight years later, as well as building shelves, cupboards, etc.! I still ave a bundle of the Peco Bullhead brass rail and the paper templates they made for laying track.
  8. I have just found this thread. I have enjoyed reading all the comments and clearly writers have in-depth knowledge of the Great War and the state of railway economics at the time. I recommend Niall Ferguson’s book “The Pity of War.” He addresses it from several points of view including the rising economy of Russia threatening Germany, the command structures in the warring nations. I don’t have the book to hand, but I believe one of his counter-factual positions is if he BEF had arrived later or not been sent at that time, German armies would have swung past and encircled the French army and not been halted for those few critical days at Mons by the BEF. That slowing down of the German Army gave the French Army time to position itself in front of Paris and force the race to the North Sea. Ferguson suggests that the French would have been neutralized, and Germany would have concentrated on Russia and won quite speedily. He also suggests that Germany would have become the dominating power in a European Union - but many years earlier! “The Pity of War” is really worth the time to read. I was surprised by some chapters, such as: censorship; the enjoyment of brutality by some people; and the economics in 1914 as a rising tension among nations. Also an eye-opener was “The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914” by Christopher Clark. See this link for a review. https://www.foreignaffairs.com/reviews/capsule-review/sleepwalkers-how-europe-went-war-1914 A shorter read is Barbara Tuchman’s “The Guns of August.” I’d like to think that if the war had not happened or been contained as a Balkan problem, Lenin would have become a lonely voice carrying his soapbox around Europe. Hitler - a second rate artist? Russia might not have fallen to Bolshevism; and how about German colonial islands in the Pacific Ocean not being given to Japan, giving them stepping stones across the Pacific Ocean later on. Railways with British neutrality or a limited war – The WCML could have become one company and unprofitable bits spun off, and didn’t the GNR want to take over the GCR? Would government interference have been neutralized, allowing the railways a fair deal with road transport? Would unions have become very powerful and disruptive? What would railways have done without the financial losses incurred by the railways fighting the war?
  9. Highland Railway River Class - under-appreciated at Inverness but not by the Caley. Pen-y-Darren with all the cogs whirring.
  10. Why did Beeching and BR sell the tracks? Seems shortsighted to have not mothballed them or leased the land on a leasehold basis with the right to repossess.
  11. Use the 12mm plywood for the framing - Look at Iain Rice's books on how he uses the framing to form L girder support. It can't warp since you are using the straight edge of the frame to keep the baseboard flat.
  12. George Dixon? For the first couple of years I was at Five Ways we were still using our old playing fields at the back of there. Used the 11 to get back to Harborne after games afternoon. Yes, it was George Dixon Grammar School for Boys, 1954 to 1959. Great rugby and cricket teams in those days. Several of us had quite an interest in model railways.
  13. I have just come across this posting and I will have to get one for if only for the memories. When I was little my mother put me and my brother on the Outer Circle from the "Swan - Yardley" to amuse us for much of an afternoon. How long did it take to do the full circle? When I attended school, I took the Number 11 from Kings Heath to City Road. One afternoon after school, three or four of us had been training with the athletics team and we saw a Number 11 at the bus stop. We ran towards the stop but the bus did not wait and started off. We sprinted after the bus, caught up with it easily and jumped on, one after the other. Then there was the boy who would climb the stairs and shout "Tickets, please" and almost everyone would display their tickets, then nothing happened. One person said it was a great route for meeting girls. For us, it was a good place to start on the homework or writing one hundred lines.
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