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Neal Ball

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About Neal Ball

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  • Location
    : Villamartin, Costa Blanca, Spain
  • Interests
    All things GWR

    In 2014 I started to build my version of Henley on Thames, GWR in the mid-1930's. Progress is slow, but it's a big layout....

    I have had a fascination with Henley for ages, I remember one of my drives out just after passing my test was to Henley. The station building had only been knocked down a few years before. In those days, there was a huge expanse of open space around the one remaining platform, I recall the Goods shed had gone, but for some reason the Provender store was still there. That was an addition after the war, so will not be included in my model.

    Initially the railway was in its own purpose built garden room when we lived in Felpham, West Sussex. In Feb 2019 we decided to retire to Spain and the railway having been carefully packed is now emerging into the layout you now see.

    Temporary stalled projects:
    -I have a rake of Airfix carriages which will form the basis of a Centenary rake. This will include a Comet 1st class Kitchen (Being built March 2012), together with overlays for some of the other carriages needed for a rake of 6 in total
    -Set of Slaters Toplights, need to be finished and adjusted so they run properly;
    -Comet sunshine coach, needs a couple of weekends to finish;
    -Detailing the interiors of my carriages to include passengers and LED lighting.

    My wish list: GWR Semaphores (working from Dapol) although I will need bracket signals as well; RTR Collett Autocoach (to modern standards); Metrotank / 517 class. I'm waiting with anticipation for the new Kernow Steam Railmotor; and the Dapol and Heljan GWR Railcars.

    I am a member of the GWS at Didcot, Talyllyn Railway, as well as the Bluebell Railway.

    The old Layout is on RMWeb at: http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/67477-wharncliffe-junction-gwr-in-the-1930s This has now been dismantled / fell apart in our move to Felpham - but the new layout will be even better :-)

    Although the railway is new, the station building of Henley on Thames has been on-going for a number of years and is on the old forum: http://www.rmweb.co....php?f=8&t=20200

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  1. We've got the builders in at the moment fitting a new kitchen and the house is in complete disarray. Progress has stalled for a couple of weeks.... Hopefully we can move back in at the weekend and progress can start again. Last Saturday was my birthday, with the highlight being a new Heljan 47xx 2-8-0, seen here in company with new 28xx and GWR Railcar. Please excuse the pliers! Ive just ordered a Gaugemaster DCC95 Ruby decoder: https://www.gaugemasterretail.com/magento/catalog/product/view/id/64753/s/gaugemaster-dcc95/ to try in the 47xx; these are new to the Gaugemaster range and will be due in the next week or so. At the same time, I was also given a Hornby (Skaledale) Fowler steam plough, seen here with the Fowler steam plough that I bought at the GDSF. The new one os the shiny black one at the front. I will now set up a ploughing field between the goods yard and the allotments - thats all for the future. It will also need to be toned down, taking the shine away. Thats going to be a job for the new spray gun and compressor. Another job that needs doing at Henley is to put up the Christmas Tree on the concourse. I will try and do that sometime this week. As they say - To be continued!
  2. Neal Ball

    Little Muddle

    Rule 1 applies - I think you will find the King abdicated late in 1938 according to all sources at Little Muddle :-)
  3. That will probably be the cheaper option :-)
  4. Only if they have been bought from the official receiver - not impossible, but I suspect the news would be in the public domain already.
  5. indeed! Although I though R3721 the Great Western liveried were going to be first.... maybe not then.
  6. Neal Ball

    Little Muddle

    I think they have been frozen in aspic.... they've been talking about that crate for ages :-)
  7. January is the current date..... although the date has continued to slip, but hopefully they will arrive early in 2020
  8. Neal Ball

    Little Muddle

    That looks great Kevin, hard to think it is the same loco! Thanks. I doubt it as I have hardly taken any of the MRJ - particularly those early ones. I must have been dreaming!
  9. Neal Ball

    Little Muddle

    My mistake then Chris, my memory is clearly playing up!
  10. Neal Ball

    Little Muddle

    Yes, I’d love to start a railcar conversion project........ but that will undoubtably go the same direction as other projects that I have only 1/2 finished! I seem to remember that many years ago Chris Leigh aka @dibber25 did a conversion of a Lima railcar into 37 & 38. Btw I’ve suggested Little Muddle as the layout of the year and you as modeller of the year. Your layout is truly inspirational. Thank you for continuing to share.
  11. Neal Ball

    Little Muddle

    Surely Rule 1 applies Kevin.... I was even toying with the idea of doing a cut and shut with the Heljan and Hornby ones to make railcars 37 & 38 with an intermediate carriage.... that would be very late for Henley, but if I had a spare couple of weeks, could be a good project! This last shot is great.
  12. I’m surprised to see the gross margin is now 37.5% I would have thought it would be closer to 50% Overall it is good to see their financial position improving. Key to that though is going to be improving the engagement with the enthusiast sector (us), whilst at the same time attracting the non enthusiast sector who would have watched the TV and just want a train set. i echo the calls for the engine shed blog to get a revamp as called for by Mike ska @The Stationmaster Next years range will be interesting to see the plans from the new management.
  13. I wouldn’t like to say which locos are still here I’m afraid @PhilJ W I’m going to try and get over to Monforte to see if I can get some shots of them. The depot at Albacete is not close to a road so won’t be possible. In coming back from Madrid yesterday, I filmed us going past the Monforte site, although at @200km you don’t get to see much!
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