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  • Location
    North of Annesley Junction (Near Manchester, actually.)
  • Interests
    The Great Central Railway, pre 1923.
    (Most other railways are of interest too, particularly if they have steam engines, but I can't model them all.)
    Bury Corporation Tramways 1903-1949
    My other great interest is the middle ages, especially England and Wales in the 14th/15th century.
    I write historical novels. Two have been published.
    I also enjoy walking, beer and eating out. Sadly I can no longer walk as far as I did or drink as much as I should like.

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  1. I just think of these things as logos. You see logos every day - literally - it doesn't mean we're all illiterate. The GCR did not just paint its five pointed star on wagons. It was part of the house flag on its ships, for example, and it was used on certain posters, which implies it meant something to Joe Public. The McDonald arches are better known, as a result of modern communication techniques, but they do a very similar job.
  2. This is very sad news indeed. My sincere condolences to Chris's family in particular and to his friends. A great loss to the hobby. A wonderful bloke has gone from us, and we shall all miss his contributions.
  3. The answer to the question is demand at a given price. There is only one Mona Lisa, and any number of rich people who would want to buy it so it is beyond price. Let's imagine a notional model loco. Superbly made, of an obscure prototype that maybe three people in the UK would want to buy. Two of them model in 4mm scale and this happens to be 7mm. Then let's imagine a very rare version of a Hornby Flying Scotsman. There were only a few ever made, This one happens to be mint and boxed. There are thousands and thousands of serious collectors who would want it
  4. The vans in question were built from 1912 onwards, and both versions had a RH brake lever on both sides, as required by the regulations for new construction from - I think - 1911.
  5. I like the open wagon very much. You cannot have too many "native" open wagons, and Ashby kits were such a lovely build - though I remember, back in the day, being utterly bemused by the brakes. (There were no appropriate reference books in the day and very few photos were available to me.) I gradually realised that all pre-group companies had their own ideas as to wagon brakes, and that the GC was far from being the most eccentric.
  6. I have got the diagram 17 van as far as primer, but I am not really satisfied with it. I think the fall twisted the model slightly and I don't have the skill to "untwist" it, despite sweating blood over it for some time yesterday. I am minded to put it on the shelf for now and look at it again when I can be more objective. (This is the equivalent of writing a chapter then reading it again in six months, when you see it more like a critic and less like an author.) If it runs well, despite all, I might just keep it, though it doesn't really meet my (modest but stubborn) s
  7. I was surprised (although in a way not surprised) to see how few members have traditionally voted in GOG elections. IIRC the figure given was 7%! This means that the managing body do not really have a democratic mandate, they are there by default. Of course, some would say that if only Joe is standing for Chairman (or whatever office) there is not much point in voting. It is odd though that in this year when there is at last a contested election, there seems to be an attitude in some quarters of: "How dare non-approved candidates stand!" (Normally the attitude is: "If you're not ha
  8. I expect the question a potential manufacturer would ask is - is there a sufficient demand at a given price for me to make a profit? I suspect the answer is no. Model railways are no longer the toy of choice for the overwhelming majority of kids. Partly because trains are not an integral part of their life as they were for my generation. HD trains (for example) were not only owned by lucky boys like me, they were also purchased by serious, adult modellers of the day. That (adult) market now demands high fidelity - even at the expense of robustness - and the younger mar
  9. I have just remembered that about my person I have the 1896 L&Y classification of goods trains book. (A volume that I keep meaning to hand over to the L&Y Archivist as it really should be with their archives.) Anyway, it does mention Midland trains over the L&Y at some length. (And indeed other companies trains, but that's beside the point.) On the specific question of Liverpool traffic northwards we have: 3-50 am M (Mondays excepted?) Carlisle to Liverpool Conveys through traffic for Blackburn and Lostock Hall and exchange thereat. Inspector Evans (Hellifie
  10. Next one up will be a diagram 17 van from a Connoisseur Models kit. This I can only describe as a cursed kit. Not that I am having a go at Jim's kit, you understand. The proof in the pudding is that I had previously built one without the slightest trouble. Let me explain: First, while I was building it we had one of our periodic major tidies. Guests were coming, or something. The castings got put "somewhere safe". Needless to say, when I returned to the job the castings could not be found. Never mind, I thought, they'll turn up. Months later I still couldn't find them,
  11. This is a diagram 5 three planker, one of the longer GC examples, 18' 5" over headstocks. It is built from a GP kit, with nickel-silver chassis and a resin body. It has lain about substantially complete for (er) years, but my recent burst of energy following on from the receipt of proper transfers and numberplates persuaded me to complete it. To my mind, the chassis is over-engineered for such a simple model, but I did manage to solder it together, which means that your cat probably could if it set its mind to the job. The most cursory glance will reveal that the brake
  12. According to the GC diagram book, the LDEC van of the type in question was 16' 1" over headstocks.
  13. Best bet, if you can find one, is a working time table. The Midland certainly ran goods trains into Liverpool, and the chances are they went from there over the CLC. The question is, where did the Midland exchange traffic with the L&Y? My guess is Philips Park, which the Midland could reach via Glazebrook, Stockport, and Ashburys. Bit roundabout, but the old companies didn't care about that, certainly not for goods.
  14. GCR diagram 145 was actually a converted cattle wagon (GCR diagram 146) designed to carry 9 tons. I am about 99% certain that the conversions were done in LDEC days, and it comprised altering the doors and boarding up the open upper parts of the side. What I do not know is what GER diagram, if any, the diag 146 cattle wagons were based on. Presumably the LDEC found it had more cattle wagons than traffic required. There were 20 conversions, assuming none had been withdrawn by 1914. I have only ever seen two photos. One of a cattle wagon in GCR condition is in a private collection (n
  15. The LDEC wagons were new, but built to GER designs. By private companies. At least, many were. I cannot swear it is literally true of every single diagram, one would have to have an intimate knowledge of GER wagon stock to be sure. You just have to be careful as to which diagram was copied - for example I once bought a GER bolster kit thinking it was the same, but when I checked I found it was quite significantly different. One problem is that very few photos exist of LDEC wagons in any condition, and in GC condition they are "hard to find". The GC livery I have put on the van is therefore a
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