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BG John - thought you'd like to know; we're rocking with a vengeance tonight!

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Lucky you. It's one of the things I miss now I live in a pile of stones. But at least I've got space to build something to run my new Dapol Terriers on! When I was travelling I had absolutely no intention of ever going above 4mm scale!

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Well, a pretty good night's sleep.  Save for one of the dogs wanting a walk at 3am.  Best sleep in a week, must be the soporific effect of the wind rocking the caravan.

 

The 1905 signal box, apparently utilising an older cabin on a new base:

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Best sleep in a week, must be the soporific effect of the wind rocking the caravan.

I told you you'd enjoy it :sungum:

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Some of the relatively few non-railway structures to be modelled are located above Merstham Tunnel.

 

The building to the left on the Tunnel picture appears to be the Jolliffe Arms Hotel, which I think is extant, though I have not pictures from all sides of the building.  I love the way kids and dogs just stand around in the middle of the road in such photographs - in this case on the main London-Brighton Road! 

 

The white building is more of an enigma.  It appears to be a substantial residence and the map shows what I take to be extensive outbuildings, stables, 'domestic offices'.

 

Finally, St Katherine's Church, which is likely to fall outside the curtilage of any model, but which is seen here with a good view of the London Road, which would probably form the boundary of the modelled scene.  I have seen this captioned as 1910, but I think that too early and that it is more likely a '20s shot.

 

EDIT: I was, of course, joking about 'buses on over-bridges.  The rather splendid 'bus pictured a few posts back, would, I presume, have trundled up and down the London Road (pictured) running parallel to the mainlines, rather than along the Jolliffe or Rockshaw Roads that crossed them. So, a 'bus, but not on an overbridge (everyone happy!)

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Edited by Edwardian
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When time permits, I'm going to hunt out a book on the Surrey Iron Railway and CM&G, because I wonder if that building might have been a stable yard and smithy - the map certainly mentions the latter, and it looks way too big to be a typical village blacksmith's premises.

 

K

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Well, I'm hoping that author Mr Bayliss would forgive this breach of copyright in pursuit of study. I have a feeling that this little book is pretty rare, because it was only ever sold in local libraries and a few newsagents in the area. It was printed in 1981.

 

Front cover and two relevant pages, legible using iPad.

 

K

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Excellent stuff, Kevin, many thanks once more.

 

So, the range of buildings behind the new Jolliffe Arms, may represent the outbuildings of an older Inn, set on the Brighton Road before the road was re-routed by the Old Mainline.  On the map, you point out "Smy", denoting a smithy.

 

Then we have an illustration of a pair of firestone cottages on Jolliffe Row, from your book, plus another group, also identified as on Jolliffe Row (see photograph below). 

 

Could the firestone cottages represent those seen on the map near the Grey Stone quarry line that cuts across the bottom right-hand corner of the map?  The map is a 1910 revision, and I wonder if the cottages look to modern, a view reinforced by the colour picture. Nevertheless, there are two groups of cottages on the map that appear to equate to what is left of Jolliffe Row.

 

Not much left of Jolliffe Row; it no longer runs its course north-west; a remnant remains in front of the firestone cottages, behind which is the M23, the building of which has obliterated much of the area.

 

Could the cottage group in the small black and white photograph be the structures set at right angles to the Row, with gardens in front, because you could construe the south-east wing of the large 'U'-shaped range in those terms?  Nothing left of these now.

 

Happily, I have a view of the north-west side of the Jolliffe Arms Hotel, but would need 'boots on the ground' in order to see the rear.

 

Finally, the tunnel picture again.  In line with the disappearing tracks, you can see two ventilation towers, both of which are clearly marked on the map.

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Edited by Edwardian
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I think you are right about "boots on the ground" - last time I explored the area properly was just before (got utterly confused) and just after (all was much clearer) getting that book, so nearly 35 years ago, and my recollections are by no means perfect.

 

Sounds like you need to take a holiday from caravanning, and spend a long weekend in ........ er ...... Merstham. Which isn't exactly famous as an inland resort, it's major tourist attraction being a stack of 200 year old tram plates and a number of light industrial units.

 

K

 

PS: with apologies to any Mersthamians present.

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Edwardian,

I have not replied to this topic for two reasons, firstly I know very little about the southern railways, except the LCDR, and I also did not want to say trite things about you being in a caravan, (not that I am saying that anyone else has.)

 

About the caravan, all I can say is I hope it all gets sorted quickly and you get a permanent home soon.  I am in the wrong part of the country to offer anything more practical.

 

The plan sounds good.  Having the opportunity to watch trains go by cannot be a bad thing, and more than one company I think adds to the interest.  I have a branch which is not the same I know but I will have different colour through coaches.

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Chris, you have been very supportive with your ratings, which is a much appreciated encouragement.  Thanks.

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My mother - we lived in Betchworth, not really very far away - was always cynical about the Jolliffe Arms, feeling the name to be suspiciously similar to the more common Jolly Farmers. It must be 50 years almost to the day since my skoolfriend Mike and I drove past on our way to Falcon Forge, a small business by the Covered Way, at the north end of the Quarry Line. We must have been picking up some light fittings for his dad's electrician business.

 

As for Mersthamians, implausibly a couple live at the far end of my small village. Peter used to be Production Manager for Caterham Cars.

 

Merstham Yard had a road called the Gullett - or was it Gussett? I would occasionally find myself taking their morning tally details in my Control days.

 

Life in a caravan - even a posh and capacious one - sounds like tough stuff for a family over an extended period. Sincerely hope bricks and mortar are able to replace it soonest.

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So, in the caravan yesterday, I was sitting up in bed, doing the washing up, and not really able to think about much other than the suffering inflicted in Paris. We are brothers and sisters and if you hurt one of us, you hurt us all; today we are all Parisians.

 

Now it is time to return to Merstham, via Hassocks.  Yesterday, here, in the land of the Prince Bishops, I picked up an album of pre-grouping pictures. Among them was Kevin's shot of an E2 on the Sand Pit line. The picture is dated 1921 and the comment is made that E2s were Londoners, not often seen in the Brighton area. Interestingly, the editor added a personal reminiscence: "I recall my amazement when in 1917 I observed a tank engine of the E4 class in a field apparently under Downs, and later discovered this sandpit branch"

 

A few posts back, when lauding Merstham as basis for a model railway, I commented upon the variety in coaching stock livery and questioned whether the Sunny South service would have utilised LNWR stock.  Well, thanks to the volume picked up yesterday, I have my answer: "yes"!

 

Below is a picture of a B1 Gladstone at Addison Road in 1914 with this service, comprising modern corridor LNWR stock.  Spot on.

 

Finally, although another 1921 shot, I was gratified by the sight of a brace of B4s crossing at Merstham; very much the sort of thing I'd like to recreate.

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Edited by Edwardian
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Edwardian

 

First a suitable picture, stolen from Semgonline.

 

Second, what is the album that you've found?

 

Looks like one that I don't have, so I'm very interested - I especially like that phot of two model B4s.

 

Kevin

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I've never heard of LBSC stock travelling northwards - The Sunny South Express, as its name suggests, ran south to the resorts in the morning, and returned in the evening, there not being a great deal of traffic wanting to travel in the opposite direction at those times.

The use of the Atlantic tank of I3 class was indeed a trial to demonstrate the benefits of superheating, and an un-superheated LNWR 4-4-0 was used for comparison. The tank was able to run from the south to Rugby on one tank of water and its relatively small coal bunker, whereas I believe the tender loco had to fill up along the way. However there were a few other occasions when LNWR locos traversed the system, at least as far as Lewes, with many incursions in the London area. Probably due to wartime considerations GWR locos worked goods trains, with pilotmen, through to Redhill. As a one-off the GWR royal train was used to transport a poorly Edward VII from Victoria to Portsmouth to convalesce on the Isle of Wight in 1902.

 

PS the album is John Kite's 1850-1925 Vintage Album, the third serious railway book I bought, when I was a teenager, and it is full of wonderful images that opened my eyes to the scope of pre-grouping railways.

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I've always understood the SSE to have used exclusively LNWR, latterly LMS, stock too, but heeding Simon's tag-line, I can't be absolutely definitive. If any of you has the album of photos by E J Bedford, there are some absolutely brilliant shots of the SSE, consisting of lots of LNWR six-wheeler brake-tri-composites, headed by Gladstones, but these are Victorian, not Edwardian, of course.

 

The Birkenhead to nearly-everywhere-on-the-Kent-and-Sussex-coast trains, known latterly as "Contis", definitely used two sets, one GWR, one SR, on alternate days, running onto the SR via Reading and Redhill. I'm still trying to work out exactly when they commenced - one source suggests late C19th, but I think there were gaps of several years here-and-there, and I have no idea what stock was used.

 

K

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The Birkenhead to nearly-everywhere-on-the-Kent-and-Sussex-coast trains, known latterly as "Contis", definitely used two sets, one GWR, one SR, on alternate days, running onto the SR via Reading and Redhill. I'm still trying to work out exactly when they commenced - one source suggests late C19th, but I think there were gaps of several years here-and-there, and I have no idea what stock was used.

K

The SECR built some composite brakes in 1907 for this type of service, as produced by Roxey Mouldings. The LBSC had few coaches that could be used for long distance runs, with only a handful having gangway connections (or toilets!)

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Mr Holliday has correctly identified the tome I acquired yesterday.

 

So, I asked someone at York to confirm the identity of this 4-4-0 seen at Rugby; definitely a LBSC B4, they assured me.

 

Bearing in mind Nick's comments, I might just run an old white-metal George V that I have hanging around through Merstham.  or, indeed, a Precursor, if I ever get one.

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In the above photo, can anyone tell me what those objects are which appear to be on the railhead, immediately to the front of the driving wheels?

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So, I asked someone at York to confirm the identity of this 4-4-0 seen at Rugby; definitely a LBSC B4, they assured me.

At York?

Was this mine of information from across the 'Pond' taking tea in Betty's Tea Room,

or perhaps down by Rowntree Park, one of the recently arrived agriculture workers from across the Bosphorus Sea.

Surely not the NRM...... 

As a LNWR fan, that's a nice coach formation, to model.... But it's not the 'Sunny South Special Express'.

Edited by Penlan
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In the above photo, can anyone tell me what those objects are which appear to be on the railhead, immediately to the front of the driving wheels?

They are to keep the sand on the rail head, stop it being blown away once it leaves the down pipe.

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No, it's a local, according to the caption, passing beneath the GC bridge.

 

The NRM picture is apparently of the Sunny South Express, and is given as 1910.  The stock looks older than in the J E Kite album Addison Road shot, where the service is, as you note, called the SS "Special", and which is captioned 1914:

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In the above photo, can anyone tell me what those objects are which appear to be on the railhead, immediately to the front of the driving wheels?

They were a sort of wind shield to prevent the sand from the sand pipe getting blown off the rails before it got under the driving wheel.  They were fitted to some engines for a while and then removed.

Edited by asmay2002
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No, it's a local, according to the caption, passing beneath the GC bridge.

 

The NRM picture is apparently of the Sunny South Express, and is given as 1910.  The stock looks older than in the J E Kite album Addison Road shot, where the service is, as you note, called the SS "Special", and which is captioned 1914:

The loco is one of Robert Billinton's (Note - not Billington with a G) rather feeble B2 class, still in Stroudley livery. From the look of the name it may be 324 John Hawkshaw, and, if so, the photo was taken before 1906, when it received a columnar safety valve casing, and might even be earlier, as there doesn't seem to be any numbering on the buffer beam, and the head code brackets seem to be the earlier configuration.

I apologise for the use of the name Express, although the majority of writers about the train use it. In the 1912 timetable the advertisement definitely calls it the Sunny South Special, and it ran every week day from June to September. The actual timings had trains leaving from either end around 11 in the morning, arriving at their destination around 6:30 pm.

The train is described as "Consisting of Corridor Coaches and a Luncheon and Tea Car", which the LBSC wouldn't have been able to provide. Portions started from Liverpool, Manchester, Hastings, Eastbourne and Brighton. Some L&YR stations such as Blackburn and Burnley were also served, but I don't know if they ever supplied any coaches for the service.

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So, sitting up in bed, trying to work, while the rain thunders down on the caravan roof, I hear of, yet another, indefinite delay to the sale of our house.

 

Who am I kidding that I will build this, or any other, model railway?

 

Just at the point I thought our house move would allow me the time and funds to make a start on this hobby, it looks as if it the whole plan is smashed.  It is probably time to think of selling my (treasured) collection of locos and rolling stock.  Better sell them now than wait for the bailiff, I'm thinking.

 

EDIT:  Sorry, I realise this sounds like a whinge, but we have been waiting to complete since July, and, frankly, the money's starting to run out.

Edited by Edwardian

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