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  1. Back to normal here in mid Wales. However I notice that everything is advert free so perhaps we're at a transitional stage where ads have yet to be injected into the mix.
  2. @Nile It seems that if you click on the images they'll go big.
  3. @Penrhos1920Thank you, it's a modified Hornby Dublo starter set van. I did a piece on its construction here.
  4. Whilst tidying up, I found a couple of layout sketches. They almost made it straight into the recycling bin but I had a notion that I'd scan and share. You may remember that I was one of the Cambrian Coasters from the 'Best of British' round. I think it's been evident from the series and what other teams have written, that we had to submit designs and shopping lists for our initial entries to the production company some time ahead of filming. What is perhaps less clear is that we also had to submit designs for the following round and the final such was the compressed filming schedule. I thought it might be fun to share what we proposed to built had we made it past the first round. Blockbusters. After a lot of head scratching we settled on the Beatles film 'Hard Days Night' as being both culturally and musically significant. Cynically it also allowed us to go shopping for stock that we could all find a use for on our home layouts. The notion was that all the modelling would be in tones of grey to reflect the black and white nature of the film but with a limited number of patches of bright colours to represent the cultural explosion of the sixties. So we would feature the Magical Mystery Tour bus in colour, the yellow submarine, and an AL1 in blue hauling maroon Mk1s as the Beatles train. Strawberry Fields park would be an oasis of green. Here's the rough plan. All the other stock would be BR black steam and unfitted wagons in grey. Susprise, Surprise For our final entry we roughed out a OO rabbit warren, but with wild west cartoony scenery. We didn't get far with detailed planning but thought our scheme should give scope for inserting animations which we would come up with if we passed the first two hurdles. The surprise being not knowing where the trains were heading and cartoon style animated features. With hindsight I'm glad we didn't progress any further as it was a/ tiring b/ a long way from home and c/ perhaps a commitment too far.
  5. It's been seven and a bit years since my previous post and many models must have been built since then. However there's one which in my opinion is streets ahead of the rest as a scenic model and that's this model inspired by the Cockeril steelworks in Seraing Belgium. It's all the more impressive as it's the work of one man. For me it's not just the best of the recent crop of models but possibly the all time greats too.
  6. Progress has been made on the coal drops. I finished off covering the piers and applying capping strips and then covered the floor of the drops with sets. I used a sheet of plasticard which I suspect was intended to represent slates but it looks fine on the ground too. By the time this photo was taken I'd had the paints out for both base coat and weathering washes. Because the individual cells will be difficult to work on once the rails and decks are in place I next set about creating mounds of deposited coal. I used sponge rubber hacked into shapes and dyed with ink on the visible faces. Here they are drying. The same faces were then covered in glue (UHU) and various grades of crushed coal sprinkled on top. By the time of the next image I'd installed these blobs and blended them into the drops with loose coal glued in place. This afternoon I fixed the twin tracks in place by pinning the rails to the tops of the piers. Still to do are the timber decks but I feel as though I'm on the home straight now.
  7. I have the great good fortune to live in Tywyn and before moving here was in the tourism business just a few miles away, so am reasonably well placed to comment. I'm not sure how much the Tywyn economy relies on the Talyllyn Railway but I'd speculate that it's less than we might at first think. Many will just arrive for a trip on the train and then go on elsewhere. The railway is pretty self contained with cafe's at both ends and a gift shop at Wharf, not much need for the visitor to the railway to head into the town itself. Tywyn gets noticeably busier in summer but the majority of the holidaymakers seem to have caravans at the three parks which are adjacent to the town and are best characterised as Nan, Grandad and the grandchildren, here for a bucket and spade holiday with a ride on the train if there's a wet day.
  8. Oh dear, have you been at the Daily Mail again? I thought I'd fact check the first bit. It seems the world population last year reached 7.7 billion, whereas net migration to the UK was 226 000 for the same year. To put it another way that's 0.00293% of the world population, some way off the 50% you quote. To deal with the second part, this year we've seen Australia burn and the UK flood and we're only a couple of months in so should we continue as we are or try to do better?
  9. That's not something I was aware of Steve. I suppose that I shouldn't be too surprised as all sorts of unlikely and difficult proposals were generated at the peak of railway mania.
  10. Well it's not the first time their houses have been under the threat of demolition and redevelopment. Here's an image from the Esher Report of 1969 which has the street firmly in its sights.
  11. Some days I wake up knowing that it's not a good idea to make anything. If the mood's not right then there's a very good chance that whatever I build won't be right either. Normally I use these days to have a good tidy up but as my playroom was already unnaturally tidy this morning I had to cast around for something else to do. For some time I had been meaning to overlay my fictional design for Northern Town on top of its supposed location; today gave me that opportunity. I downloaded a series of map sections from the Old Maps website; 'right click, save as' doesn't work here so the 'print screen button' is your friend. Some cutting and assembling of the individual print outs gave me a large scale map of the Bishophill area of York. Some more work with tracing paper, pencil and pens allowed me to drop my fantasy into the reality of 1960's York. I'm pretty pleased that it has proved possible and reasonable to fit my concocted version of events into the space I hoped for. On the model what appears in a straightish line here has to be bent round a corner to fit into the garage but apart from that not too many liberties will have to be taken with geography.
  12. That's very nice John. All this continental loveliness is most addictive.
  13. Neil


    Lovely model making Gopher; my favourite image is the platform scene with the passengers looking out towards the Gresley buffet car. In the spirit of constructive criticism could I suggest that you take a look at the signal box name board. It's the only thing that jars on an otherwise excellent layout.
  14. As an island we benefit from a long coastline and many opportunities for tidal barrages. Apart from the energy generating potential in many cases with road and rail on top would significantly shorten journeys between coastal towns and regions with all the energy saving benefits which that brings. Though such schemes have a high initial carbon cost their payback time could be measured (like railways) in centuries.
  15. Supplies of brick plasticard arrived in the post yesterday dinnertime so I've made a start on the cutting and sticking. The experimental bits of rail have been temporarily removed by easing up the pins and pulling the rail out. They'll stay that way until the walls and base of the coal drops are complete and painted. Only then will I refit the rails, add in the rest of them and make a start on the decking.
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