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Schooner's (Mostly Maritime) Musings - A holiday in the Cotswolds [was Port of London, 1884]


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Last updated: 11th June

 

A thread to collate information rather than provide any I'm afraid, but I hope for it to turn into a useful resource in time. The aim is to arrive at a complete layout design, with answers all possible questions. There's much to learn, but I enjoy the research and 'real' modelling is out of the question for the forseeabe future so this period is to be viewed as a gift rather than hindrance.  I will endeavour to edit this post with tidbits, check them out, and then write a dedicated post once there's a consensus for each particular topic. So please forgive the awful mess for now, things can only get better :)

 

Introduction and Inspiration:

The reason we're looking at the London Docks at all is to satisfy a desire to meld my developing interest in Victorian industrial locomotives with a pre-existing interest in commercial sail of the same period. I've long admired the Highlevel Back Hawthorn and Neilson, and recently came across models of Cutty Sark in 1:75 and 1:78. Where else could I reasonably place them together?!

588072781_SouthDockStation.jpg.180411d7399a7fe54e86b7d6cb9d332e.jpg

 

The map, from NLS, shows a tasty little portion of West India Docks, London. South Quay of the Import Dock at the top left, North Quay of South Dock at the lower left. The sidings come off the goods line that ran from Harrow Lane Sidings down to Millwall. The other line, with the loop around South Dock Station, is the Millwall Extension Railway. It ran from Millwall Jnc Station down to a terminal on the river, optimistically named North Greenwich. South Dock Station was the only passing loop on the line.

 

With no fixed criteria, simply aiming to find an area on which to base an 'inspired by' shunting layout, I've settled on the above. East India Export Dock was a strong contender - a natural fit for a 'U' layout. However, the proposed section of West India edges it for me in terms of (operational) bang for (acerage) buck.

 

The Layout - latest revision here, including digital mock-up in Trainz

 

Below is the layout as it stands on Day 1. The trackplan has survived a couple of evenings playing trains on SCARM*, so I'm opening up to the public. This doesn't in any way make it finished, and developmental feedback will be essential :)

1714758730_SDannotated.jpg.1846fe65a463fefee02f4dcfba0795b9.jpg

*Max. roster: 1 x loco, 10 x wagons. Stock horrifically out of place but much better than nothing.

 

It looks like a roundy, but would be operated as three semi-independant end-to-end systems, yard-scenic-yard. The yard represents both Millwall Junction Station/Harrow Lane exchange sidings and North Greenwich Station/Millwall Dock and industries. The general idea is the siding off the goods line provides access to Docks (should be 'Berths' I suppose) A-D (Local, Regional, Home Trade; transhipment) and E-G ('Foreign') independantly. Movements from the Foreign to Warehouse, Shed or the Domestic quays would be shunted via the Primary Scene. The intentionally restricted sightlines aim to focus attention on this area, while allowing scope for movements to be seen in The Wider World, giving the impression (hopefully!) of being within an extended dock network. The prime example would be looking past the Dock B crane: through the gap between the warehouse and shed you might see wagons roll in front of the clipper's bow (or stern, who knows yet!), look further across and there's the dock full of lighters, beyond which is the just-visible entrance to a railway goods depot. The [slightly outdated - ed] diagram below should help make sense of the traffic movements: 

147727691_8x8routes.jpg.395f384b0f018a2fcf0e645519a86655.jpg

Designed for a 12' x 8' shed (-ish :)), the remaining 4' beyond the fiddle yard is envisioned as a utility/modelling space and gives essential access to the bottom half of the layout. The shed would therefore need doors at either end. 

 

With a storage yard of loops rather than sidings it should be possible to maintain coherent flows of empty/loaded wagons as required, and light loco movements.

 

Goods services might include longer trains (c.12 wagons) viewed going through the scene between Harrow Lane Sidings and Millwall Docks, but the main activity would be the shunting of 1-3 wagons to/from the represented docks as the 'shipping' ( @CameronL's Random Freight Generator) demands.

 

Passenger service is a shuttle. In reality from Millwall Jnc to North Greenwich and back, but on the model from The Other Station to...The Other Station, passing through South Dock Station in alternating directions, having run around at each destination. The loops at the top are largely to maintain the integrity of passenger and freight circuits whilst cassettes are being changed or D Dock/A Shed siding is being shunted, and are not intended to be an operational focus. Updated post here.

 

The layout is anticipated to require DCC control and a fair level of automation in order to manage quite intensive traffic movements with low operator stress: the operator fills the (primary) role of the driver of a dock shunter. Other traffic will be visibile, and will have to be allowed for re line occupancy etc, but shouldn't interfere with the job at hand. That's the idea anyway...

 

The Docks

London's enormous enclosed dock network began, in a meaningful sense, with the opening of West India Docks in 1802. By 1880 all the docks but Tillbury (1886) were up and running, the other of direct relevance here being Millwall Dock (1868). 

 

73bc3e34ec74bd9f5a079370e71cad49.jpg

West India Import, North Quay, c.1870

 

The date of 1880 suggests itself with some coherence: As the year of officially sanctioned through-running on the MER, it 'allows' full steam passenger workings (and so excuses steam motive power on the docks themselves) without flexing my (self-imposed, arbiterary and internally inconsistent...but working on it...) rules of realism too far. It also falls comfortably within the aimed-for timeframe when commercial shipping under sail was still the rule rather than the exception, on which I'm rather keen. It does no harm that this period represents the first sweet spot (to my mind) of form and function in steam locomotive design, both elegant and effective. How much of this will be apparent on the proposed layout is up in the air (probably not that much, unless one cares only for 0-4-0STs), but I find it worth keeping in mind :) 

 

 

 

Cheers and gone!

 

Schooner

 

ps. Please do feel free to skip the below. When there's enough information there will be a new post for each section. The remainder of this post is just the gathering of forces :)

 

Let the carnage begin:

 

Area overview:

With thanks to @Northroader

RCH London railway map 1935 - Docklands extract

 

and @Compound2632

Millwall_Docks_(Harrow_Lane)_&_Poplar_RJD_56.jpg

 

50 years too late, but useful nevertheless

https://britainfromabove.org.uk/en/image/EPW020965

https://britainfromabove.org.uk/en/image/EPW024256

https://www.britainfromabove.org.uk/en/image/EPW005993

https://www.britainfromabove.org.uk/en/image/EPW006142

 

And what may well turn out to be the single most important resource for this thread: https://www.british-history.ac.uk/survey-london/vols43-4

 

DCC and electrics

http://www.railmagic.com/

https://train-o-matic.com/

https://www.dccconcepts.com/

 

Dock traffic

Millwall - grain, flour, wine, liquor, fruit and vegetables, rail served engineering works, graving dock, nail works, whatever this is - telegraph cable works? - rope and wire walk.

West India Export -  rum, molasses and sugar, jute,  coir, wine, spirits, shell , horn, cork, indigo, spices, baggage, coffee, hardwoods, grain, meat (frozen, starting with beef from America in 1874 and by 1882 lamb from New Zealand and Australia), fruit and vegetables also became regular commodities.

West India South - timber, mainly hardwoods. (Softwoods from the Baltic trades were largely handled by Surrey Commercial Dock, South of the river...although often then lightered across the river to Millwall for railway connection it seems).

 

The Rules 1

...and 2.

 

The Reality.

 

Wagon loads

9c2cd1a2944b2c89e668cbe7c1d7fb9b.jpg

"Dock traffic on Whitechapel High Street 1899"

 

Specific inspiration for various areas. I'm sure you can spot them, but a future post will clarify and expand:

london-docks-victorian-period-DABMAA.jpg

Above: London West Dock, North Quay, 1896. Steam may have overtaken sail by some margin in terms of tonnage landed, but apparently not in numbers of vessels...

london-docks-port-of-london-london-engla

Compare and contrast. Earlier? Is that a bell on top of the post, lower left? Shorter shadows than in the 1896 photo, but where are all the people? What are the marks on the RHS casks about?

7379262.jpg?800

1896, showing excllent details from outside No.2 Warehouse, North Quay, London West Dock.

the-warehouse-is-used-by-bass-pale-ale-t

london-docks-victorian-period-DD38MK.jpg

geography-travel-great-britain-london-ha

barrels-of-molasses-west-india-docks-lon

Barrels of molasses, West India Docks 1926-27

 

the-great-western-railways-goods-depot-a London_docks_c1909.jpg 36df5d0a5a3c884e525895b4a8835582.jpg PA-4791551.jpgfigure0369-058-a.gif 129154.jpglondon-the-london-docks-the-gaugers-at-w

 

 

Railway

 

london-the-docks-thames-wharf-c1900_l130

 

 

Millwall Dock Co. motive power: In short, no joy so far. In fact, the greatest joy by a margin has been discovering @Ruston's utterly brilliant Manning Wardle Class H scratchbuild, a real treat :) Otherwise, odds and sods found so far include:

s-l1600.jpg

1911 Millwall Docks Railway Steam Locomotive No. 7

 

MW_1106.jpg

"The locomotive depicted is possibly Manning Wardle 1106 of 1888, a 14in class 'P' originally with the Millwall Dock Company in London." - Thoughts?

 

Manning Wardle produced locomotives (plural?) for the Millwall Dock Co, who had "special requirements" - does this mean 3'6" wheels too I wonder? "Four-coupled locomotives were required on the West India and Millwall Docks lines dues to tight radius curves"

 

It's suggested here (after "New Locomotives for the Port of London Authority", Locomotive Magazine, Vol XVII (15 August 1911), p. 178-179) and here that the PLA (which formed in 1909) ordered its first locomotives, 0-6-0T No's 37-9, in 1911 from Barclay's. Surpassing their design requirements of hauling 900 tons at 15mph, they were also quite the lookers apparently: "LM also commented on the "very smart appearance." The locomotives were painted brick red with black bands and yellow linings. Coupling rods were "bright" (polished, presumably), number plates were brass, and the buffer beams sported vermilion.

 

Irrelevant really, but it does lend credence to No.7, in the postcard linked above, being an original Millwall Dock Co. Manning Wardle :)...but from what date? Perhaps the answer is in here.

 

Anyway, still nothing on what might have worked the dock lines before 1888, so below is a little selection from late-Victorian 0-4-0T builders for flavour (images embedded from their advertisments c.1870-80s in Grace's Guide), and some potential 4mm options for discussion:

 

Shanks.jpg Im1881Ry-Hudswell.jpg Im18891213Eng-Manning.jpg 

MW_ad.jpg

Im18880106E-Huns.jpg Im18700408Eng-Hawthorn.jpg

 

Fox, Walker and Co at Grace's Guide

 

Potentially suitable models:

RT Model's Manning Wardle "Old Class I"

4mm%20scale%20mw%20old%20class%20i%20loc

An 0-6-0T or two might be nice, and the Class I fits in nicely, but the bulk of the stud would be 0-4-0T.

 

Of course, Highlevel were a major inspiration in the first place, with their

Black Hawthorn

blackhawthornbig.jpg

Neilson 12"

neilsonbig.jpg

GER 209

 y5big.jpg

...and their improved Pug chassis, which might come in handy.

 

Forgetting time and place for a moment would let the lovely little CSP's Avonside SS in through the dock gates

0.jpg

I'm sure an element of backdating would be possible to help her fit in. Compare to Aid below.

 

More research has suggested these may be of interest and relevance:

http://www.lytchettmanor.co.uk/lytchett-manor/oo-gauge-loco-kits

4002-pnlr0-6-0t.gif

or

https://www.cdc-design.net/nlr-75-class-park-tank.html

20200323-141221.jpg?1590674999

 

https://www.rtmodels.co.uk/rt_models_022.htm

4mm%20scale%20manning%20wardle%20class%2

 

https://traders.scalefour.org/LondonRoadModels/carriages/north-london-rlwy-carriages/ (a bit of a punt, leaning on West India's links with the NLR, for PAX services around the dock)

nlr3.jpg

 

https://traders.scalefour.org/LondonRoadModels/locos-tenders-chassis/lnwr/

loco3a.jpg

...no excuse..but...well...look at her! :)

 

 

In terms of RTR, a deft finger on The Hands of Time could excuse a Hornby Peckett W4 

r3702_peckett-daphne_2.jpg

Suspiciously close the the late MER/early PLA livery :) An even gentler hand would be required for a little back-dating, although even in the 1870s Fox Walker (taken over by Thomas Peckett in 1881) loco's  looked rather nouveau:

1873 NKJ 1 Karlskoga:

 1506867827_79d868fae8_b.jpg

No excuse really, I just admire the chimney :) More on-point is 1877's W/N 352 Aid (follow link for history):

CGR_Port_Alfred_Aid_0-4-0ST.jpg 

What a beauty :) Photographed on or about final assembly, 1878. Do follow the link above, she had an interesting life and was on course for preservation...

 

Ummm...where was I....ah, yes...

 

From the world of 3D printing comes Hardy's Hobbies Class H for a Hornby Peckett W4 chassis. Backdating and detailing required, but I think a Class P would be within reach:

LB_0009C-01.jpg

 

 After Edwardian put me on to the Bluebell's Captain Baxter, I came across this:

 

Im1956v201-p130b.jpg

No sleeping at the back!

 

Wagons

Lots and lots left to learn here, but the fundamentals are a very mixed bag of pre-1880 opens, vans being one in fifteen or so it seems. The Millwall Dock had its own internal user flats and grain bin wagons, details as yet unknown.

602e0eabeac9324719bdfae4958010d2.jpg 

london-scenes-london-docks-deadmans-dock 

LB&SCR's Deptford Wharf, 1911

number-1-warehouse-social.jpg 

41f7668a541adea7057f99d6dd1a0bdb.jpg

 

118363.jpgG3692.jpg

 

We've seen this one before, but at 1898 the photo is one of the best close-to-period [I've just remembered a thread, perhaps one of Compound's, suggesting the actual date is significantly later, for the Midland pic at least] depictions of stock I've come across so far:

although-poplar-dock-was-owned-by-the-no

there-were-many-warehouses-at-the-north-

 

OLD-TRAIN-PHOTO-The-London-North-Western OLD-TRAIN-PHOTO-The-London-North-Western

there-were-many-warehouses-at-the-north-

 

http://www.5and9models.co.uk/wagons.html

 

https://basilicafields.wordpress.com/2012/04/15/great-eastern-railway-wagons-part-1-round-ended-opens/

 

https://www.gersociety.org.uk/index.php/rolling-stock/wagons/construction

 

http://www.wmcollectables.co.uk/index.php?pg=fd

 

Millwall Dock Co. internal flats and grain trucks:

775863.jpg14883736827_669356080c_o.jpg?w=640&h=380

figure0369-059-c.gif 

The internal grain wagons were introduced c.1876, rated for 20 tons, and numbered 1,300. They were inside framed, c.8 plank (a scale ruler on the first pic would be handy to compare the height pof the man to that of the wagon), with a support for the ever-present tarpaulin. In the sketch, it looks like the side doors may be iron (?) and marked M.D.RY?

 

I think these would need to be scratch-built, but perhaps a stand-in could be found in the Slaters 20-ton wooden hopper wagons:

4042.jpg

 

IMG_8809.JPG

Millwall-resized.jpg

The flats were for moving timber around the internal network (c.48 miles of it by 1900), as shown above. The wagons can be seen loading (?) from lighters, which most commonly came across the water from the vast timber ponds, Baltic and Canadian quays of the Surrey Commercial Dock, at the Central Grain Silo. Slightly bizarre, but hey ho, that's reality for you!

 

 

Scenes inside the shed - dockers and goods handling:

unloading-frozen-meat-from-sydney-austra

Frozen meat being unloaded in this engraving of 1881.

 

dockers-unloading-sugar-at-west-india-do

Sugar at the West India, engraved 1889.

 

tea-warehouses-of-the-east-west-india-do

Re-filling tea crates with the settled dust and fine leaves, 1874. As above, so below:

tea-warehouses-of-the-east-west-india-do

 

residents-at-the-strangers-home-for-asia
"Residents at the Strangers' Home for Asiatics, Africans, and South Sea Islanders in West India Dock Road, Limehouse, east London, 1870. The home was built by missionary societies to provide temporary accommodation and food for foreign sailors. Original publication: Illustrated London News - Pub. 5th March 1870. (Photo by Illustrated London News/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)"

 

inspection-of-the-royal-naval-artillery-

"Inspection Of The Royal Naval Artillery Volunteers, By Admiral Sir W. Tarleton, K.c.b., West India Docks, On Saturday, 5th Inst." 1876. I suspect this may show the inside of the Drill Shed, just South of the proposed scope of the layout.

 

page-from-the-graphic-on-london-dock-wor

Self-explanatory. Helpful for clothing styles etc

 

Buildings and infrastructure

1926-millwall-dock-entrance-lock-guess-3 williamwhiffin_0025.jpg?resize=600,802 

 

I'm meant to be looking into the use of semaphore signals for lock entries (fairly well known) and dock movements (yet to find anything concrete), but instead thought I'd make a start on a section I've been putting off - inspiration for back scene warehousing and on-scene buildings. As so often, information and images embeded from here.

 

'Main' Shed, between operator and the clipper:

fig110.gif

South Dock, general purpose.

 

fig113.gif

Rum Quay Shed, South Quay, Import Dock. Note the later addition of lean-to roof to the warehouse on the right. Also shown is the curved dock edge, as was until extended wooden false quays were added from the 1890s.

figure0369-048-d.gif

Rum Quay Shed, South Quay, Import Dock, erected 1813, looking east in 1897 after damage by shipping.

 

fig107.gif

Import Dock, Rum Warehouse and vaults. Attributed to John Rennie, and deemed a remarkable bit of design and construction at the time.

figure0369-049-a.gif

Rum Warehouse, interior

 

I think the sweet spot lies in the middle - of some visual interest without imposing too much on the scene. But the clerestory is tempting...

 

For the adjacent warehouse, perhaps the centre section of this elevation would be a good start:

fig109.gif

 

This allows for a but of visual seperation between on-scene warehousing (as above) and that used for the backscene on that side (on the left if looking at the layout plan above):

fig102.gif

figure0369-047-a.gif

West India Import Dock, North Quay, No. 6 Warehouse from South-West in 1902

 

 

East India Import Dock's Warehouses 1 and 2 are also of interest:

fig225.gif

 

For the basis of the backscene behind South Dock Station, on the opposite side of the layout, the wood sheds could be based on the Import Dock Mahogony sheds:

fig114.gif

 

There's more choice around an admin-type building that I think will go in the place of 'Shed A' in the layout plan. Options to base a model on from West India include:

fig115.gif

The actual Dock office.

figure0369-053-a.gif

The Ledger Building, North Quay, Import Dock, south front and hall looking towards main door in 1988.

 

fig116.gif

The old Customs and Excise building.

 

fig117.gif

or the Import Dock Wood Dept office.

 

Probably of little use, but still of interest and so included here for now, one of the dock smithy buildings:

fig121.gif

 

The 'Rail Goods Depot', bottom left of the plan, would be based on the GWR's facility at Poplar,on which:

 

The Great Western Railway Goods Depot, on the west quay of the dock extension, was built in 1876–8 by John Cardus to plans by William Baker and Thomas Matthews at a cost of £24,000 (Plate 60d). Swingler & Company of Derby supplied the ironwork. (fn. 6) The depot measured 218ft by 130ft, with a 20ft-high open ground floor and a cellar below the platform. The two upper storeys were supported on wrought-iron girders weighing up to 30 tons, 30 large hollow-cylindrical cast-iron columns on 5 ½ft-square granite bed-stones and foundations 30ft deep. The triple-span slate roof was iron and timber framed and an awning over the dock was extended upwards in front of the loopholes. The road on the other side had glazed roofing as cover for carts. There was a two-storey office building to the north with smaller offices to the south, and seven internal cranes, three on the quay and four on the platform. Locomotives stopped at turntables outside the station and wagons were hauled in by hydraulic capstan, to be unloaded either directly into barges or into the warehouse above. Iron, machinery and hardware were the main goods handled at the depot, but the Great Western Railway Company was said to refuse nothing. The depot was destroyed in 1940. (fn. 7)

 

figure0369-053-d.giffig123.gif

Blackwall Entrance Lock Impounding Station, 1893–4, looking north in 1894; and Hydraulic Pumping Station, Works Yard, West India Docks, east elevation as proposed in 1854, and ground-floorplan in 1855. The sort of thing I had in mind with 'Engine House' on the layout plan.

 

McDougall's 'Wheatsheaf Flour Mill':

https://www.britainfromabove.org.uk/en/image/EAW011756 etc

 

912.jpg

 

1934-mcdougalls-25096874552.jpg

 

scan0041-copy-14884053419.jpg?w=640&h=41

 

 

 

Dock Gate, 1932

15th-august-1932-the-gateway-to-the-west

19th-august-1932-the-gateway-to-west-ind

23rd-august-1932-demolition-of-the-clock

 

Bridges:

https://collage.cityoflondon.gov.uk/view-item?i=235122&WINID=1592485866164

 

Millwall Industries

"Hooper died in 1878, but his son, John Pitman Hooper, who died in 1928, continued the business at the docks as Hooper's Telegraph and India Rubber Works. The undeveloped land reverted to the dock company in 1879, and was subsequently used for railway sidings. In 1882 the western part of the factory was sub-let to William Frederick Dennis & Company, cable and wire manufacturers."

 

"The brothers — Alexander, Isaac Shimwell, James Thomas, John and Arthur [McDougall] — built a fertilizer factory across the northern part of the plot. It was a single-storey triple 35ft-span brick shed in which chemical compounds were mixed with sawdust, then sent to gas works to absorb ammonia, brought back, dried and packed... The Millwall Dock factory may have been partially applied to the production of 'McDougall's Self-Raising Flour' from c1879, when the dock's grain trade began to boom, but the site was not redeveloped for flour milling until c1887, when the premises were extended by half an acre to the south, or 1895, when building work was carried out."

 

"The site occupied by Tate & Lyle Sugars, off Mastmaker Road at the east end of Janet and Malabar Streets, was at the south-western corner of land acquired from the Glengall Estate by the Millwall Dock Company in 1880. The Lead Warrant Company held 1½ acres here from 1882 to 1896 as a yard with railway sidings, the only buildings were small sheds along the southern boundary."

 

Modelling (!)

 

I think this method would be what I'd practice first. The major benefit I see is the level of control one has over the texture of the water, which means the ripples can convey quite a lot information, as well as be manipulated to show the reflections off dock and hulls etc.

 

I also love the results of epoxy based approaches (as seen in Luke Towan's Youtube channel, his Alaskan river scene has given me some dangerous ideas), but the air-gun required for adding wavelets lacks the control and definition of the above method. Perfect for the more random turblent currents in a river, no good for an inner dock. Perhaps practice would solve this, perhaps using a brush instead of the airgun would work better. There's also an almighty range of dedicated water products to investigate. Which will be the best for my purposes? Hopefully one day I'll be able to find out :)

 

 

Ships and shipping, lighters and loading

london-docks-unloading-pulp-victorian-pe circa-1900-ships-moored-at-the-west-indi

Still a vast number sailing vessels (nearly all barques) in this photo of the West India in c.1900

 

 3b8b5517fe9062400f2d0a7573c0206c.jpg 

10th-october-1919-4-000-gallons-of-rum-abfd229e0de27c0d42626976134795b70.jpg thames-sailing-barge-mixes-with-larger-s631f9d332adb9c90c9dba88ec993fd1f.jpgPhoto05-RoyalVictoriaDock-ViewFromWester  03a7eaef57bf7ef1945549d4cd7a99ec.jpg  b5648cf11ea1287ef8e3ca71c60ba5c9.jpg 644c14036c85d14c587db7d28e7cb987.jpg 62d676a049476a71aca7b8c89f336b0a.jpg tumblr_oebrknUqZo1vfqhbwo1_500.jpg 546726d43e74c5605cc8de3445611af8.jpg 9th-december-1949-a-member-of-the-tug-cr505d70162b414efcc7f349c21cd56a6e.jpg waiting-to-go-through-a-lock-london-dock19th-century-london-port.jpg?mode=max&qu https://images.app.goo.gl/1ENvGPNGnnSfDtNc8 tumblr_p01fjvEuxb1vfqhbwo1_640.jpg 3b9bd2c80467621a760a3cb7be2a1799.jpg  circa-1870-sailing-ships-in-london-docksPanel-4_image-4-web-banner.jpg

 

Ship models

https://www.sarikhobbies.com/product/thames-sailing-barge-oo-gauge/?v=79cba1185463

https://www.1001modelkits.com/ships-other-scales/6809-cmk-maritime-line-ml80283-rowing-boats-2-pcs-8595593111766.html

https://www.1001modelkits.com/ships-other-scales/100841-constructo-s12680703-carmen-8421914807035.html

http://www.billingboats.com/da/7/2/boats/the-expert/P-bb564-cutty-sark.html

https://www.cornwallmodelboats.co.uk/acatalog/mantua_cutty_sark_789.html

http://eezebilt.tk/lightplan.html

 

Books

London's Dock Railways, Part One: Isle of Dogs and Tilbury

London's Dock Railways, Part Two: Royal Docks, North Woolwich and Silvertown

The London & Blackwall Railway  (inc. the MER if the cover is anything to go by)

Harbours and Docks: Construction, Maintenance, Development

IRS Record mentions of Millwall Dock Co: G 83, 204; K102; R518....and Dock Extension Railway: D249; G204.

Industrial Locomotives & Railways of London & The Northern Home Counties

Lost Lines: London

THE LOCOMOTIVES BUILT BY MANNING WARDLE & COMPANY LTD Volume 2 - Standard Gauge

Locomotives of Quality - a pictoral history of Manning Wardle & co

 

Miscellaneous

looking-west-from-trinity-wharf-the-term

Not much to directly take from this view of Trinitiy Wharf in 1866, but it is fascinating. The veritable forest of spars on the left (West India Docks) and right (East India Docks), the Blackwall terminus of the L&B just in front; the material, steam crane and wagon in the foreground, and the ha;f-rigged vessels inbetween. So much to unpack, so little relevance!

 

http://www.rue-d-etropal.com/3D-printing/OO_gauge_track/OO_gauge_wagon_turntables.htm

 

RSODS-004-Fig28.gif 

...just in case :)

 

https://www.twowaymirrors.com/two-way-mirror-film/

 

 

Assorted  Unsorted links

https://www.british-history.ac.uk/survey-london/vols43-4

https://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/

https://www.museumoflondonprints.com/

https://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/museum-london-docklands

https://londonist.com/london/history/london-in-the-19th-century

https://thameshighway.wordpress.com/

https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Thames_sailing_barge

http://riverthames.sosugary.com/thumbnails.php?album=4

https://www.victorianlondon.org/publications/thomson-23.htm

https://isleofdogslife.wordpress.com/2015/03/24/the-story-of-ariels-girdle-and-the-millwall-extension-railway/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_London_Railway

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Eastern_Railway

https://www.gersociety.org.uk/

https://www.gracesguide.co.uk/Great_Eastern_Railway

https://www.gracesguide.co.uk/Millwall_Docks

https://www.gracesguide.co.uk/Millwall_Dock_Co

https://www.gracesguide.co.uk/London_and_India_Docks_Co

http://mikes.railhistory.railfan.net/r105.html

http://www.londonsdocks.com/west-india-millwall-docks

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/c/F160821

https://www.thehistoryoflondon.co.uk/millwall-dock/

https://www.railscot.co.uk/companies/M/Millwall_Extension_Railway_Blackwall_Railway,_London_and_India_Docks_and_Millwall_Dock/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_and_Blackwall_Railway

https://www.dccconcepts.com/manuals-advice/

http://www.thehistoryoflondon.co.uk/the-port-of-london-in-the-age-of-steam/

https://www.irsociety.co.uk/

http://www.portcities.org.uk/london/server/show/ConFactFile.83/West-India-Docks.html

http://www.portcities.org.uk/london/server/show/ConNarrative.80/Many-hands-Trades-ofthe-Port-of-London-18501980.html

http://www.portcities.org.uk/london/server/show/ConNarrative.104/Flour-milling-and-the-port.html

https://www.arct.cam.ac.uk/Downloads/chs/vol6/article1.pdf

https://www.noch.com/en/product-categories/model-landscaping/water.html

https://woodlandscenics.woodlandscenics.com/show/category/Water

https://spitalfieldslife.com/2013/05/12/the-docks-of-old-london/

http://www.tmterrain.co.uk/large-projects/victorian-london.html

https://portoflondonstudy.wordpress.com/

https://www.victorianlondon.org/thames/docks.htm

https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=y0ouAAAAMAAJ&rdid=book-y0ouAAAAMAAJ&rdot=1

 

Track plan as of 17.07.2020

1482385022_Annotation2020-07-17154045.jpg.92e575fb5d3143a648b2e8feadeb6520.jpg

 

Edited by Schooner
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Good luck with this one, schooner, the range of illustrations you’ve chosen show what a great inspiration the area has. My inspiration usually comes from a walk to the “Gun” at Poplar or the “Prospect of Whitby” at Wapping. My gut reaction just glancing at your plan is what a lot of points you have?

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Love the concept and look forward to seeing it develop.

 

Just one slight note of caution. A 12' x 8' shed is an outside dimension. So inside dimension is only 11'6 x 7'6. Does not sound like a lot but it will make a big difference in this context.

 

Can you not use the rest of the shed at all? It seems to me that two narrow legs each side of the shed door could be very useful, probably formatted as a quayside backed by a low-relief warehouse with hidden sidings (cassettes) behind.

 

Some lovely photos there. I have always had a great love for the traditional Thames sailing barge. 

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Dock cranes

victorian-london-poplar-dock-illustratio

An irrelevant but pleasing engraving of cranes coal hoists (thank you @Edwardian), Poplar Dock, 1872, to get us started.

 

Main sources: This map (OS London 1:1056 '93-'95) can be seen two cranes, marked as small circles. Compare to other cranes around the docks, as described below.

This passage from British History Online's Survey of London, from which:

"The Import Dock cranes were in box-like timber housings with pyramidal roofs; initially covered in slate, they were reroofed with sheet-iron to prevent damage from ships' yards (Plate 50c). (fn. 46) Armstrong's box-type hydraulic quay cranes were also used at the South Dock from 1870, in preference to the pillar type of crane, as used at the Millwall Docks (see page 370)."

 

p.370: "Hydraulic quay cranes for the Millwall Docks were supplied by Armstrong & Company in 1867–8; one of 15 tons, two of 5 tons, and 12 of 35-cwt capacity. These had fixed pillars with separate, timber, operator's boxes (Plate 57b). (fn. 164)".

 

Im1868EV6-p561.jpg  Im1868EV6-p560.jpg

 

"Armstrong's monopoly on the supply of hydraulic equipment at the West India Docks was broken in 1873–4 when Appleby Brothers made hydraulic cranes for the South Dock Wool Warehouses."

 

Armstrong and Co at Grace's Guide

 

Appleby Brothers at Grace's Guide

 

"Sir William Fairbairn supplied steam cranes to the docks in this period. A 40-ton, 36ft-lift wrought-iron crane, for handling heavy machinery, was erected in 1857–8, at the end of a railway siding on the Export Dock north quay, and a 10-ton 38ft-lift wrought-iron crane of a patented swan-neck form was placed near by in 1865–6 (Plate 51b)."

 

 

 

Fairbairn Cranes on Grace's Guide - good pics of the gearing on two examples

 

"The East Wood Wharf improvements of the 1870s included 10-ton travelling steam cranes from Appleby Brothers. Steam was cheaper than hydraulic power for machines like these, that were worked continuously."

Im1868LAX-AB.jpg Im1867EnV23-p362.jpg Im1873EV15-p439.jpg 

 

 

"The north quay of the Import Dock was reequipped in 1894, when the 'false' quay was built, with Tannett, Walker & Company, of Hunslet, Leeds, supplying ten 30-cwt 58ft-lift travelling hydraulic quay cranes (Plates 49b, 50c). These cranes and their drivers' cabins revolved on rail-borne undercarriages."

 

article-2325399-19CEE17D000005DC-678_964

 

To read (available online or for download, largely unabridged, for free. Isn't the internet amazing?):

Appleby's Illustrated Handbook of Machinery, Section II (hoisting machinery)

and Section V (inc. dock and railway machinery)

 

In this 1921 aerial photograph a crane can be seen in the same location as one on the 1890s OS map (linked above). Hard to see much, but it looks like it has a dog-legged jib, or boom-and-jib? "Through Asa Binns, the PLA modernized India and Millwall Docks cranage in 1936–7, with 3-ton electric quay cranes from Stothert & Pitt, and the electrification of lifts, hoists and quays." So in 1921 that could well still be the crane from 1880. Shame about the quality...

 

download.php?file=4753427&view=371928&em

 

When I started typing, I thought I could answer "What kind of crane served the East end of South Quay, West India Import Dock". I was mistaken! Plan A for the model remains an Armstrong-style hydraulic slewing crane; square wooden tower, sheet iron roof. Plan B begun...

 

 

Cheers for now,

 

Schooner

 

ps. @Northroader, it is a lot of points! It developed from bare circuits, and got added to as required to enable all the movements that seemed necessary. In time this process will need to be reversed I'm sure to find the sweet spot between operational flexibility and playing trains not being constantly scuppered by faulty points! Any suggestions would be most welcome :)

 

pps. @Joseph_Pestell, thank you for the feedback - well noted! My excuse is that the opportunity for me to do any real modelling is so far in the future as to be unforeseeable. I'm resigned (comfortably) to the hobby effectively being internet research for me, on both modelling and prototype. So although the space is real, like with with my Magnum Opus, it's more a contstraint to keep me honest rather than a real hindrance. As you've spotted, it turns out I'm not that honest... :) 

As it happens, the layout did start at 12'x8' but I felt I could achieve the aim (Little Empire systemic approach, with a place for everything and everything in its place, or on the way there, representing Victorian docks, in a known space) without taking up the whole thing. The other requirement was to be a tonic the 'gin' to the other plan's 'tonic' (suitably London analogy), for which the smaller and narrower the focus the better! Thanks again, Schooner

Edited by Schooner
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If I may proffer a motive power suggestion ....

 

This was the unique GER Kitson tram of 1878.  essentially a street tram type, if memory serves, it was used on the Millwall Extension during the time the GER was responsible for running the line and was the immediate predecessor of the tiny Manning Wardle  we have seen. 

 

 667232960_IMG_8362-Copy.JPG.35b56719c7587fb4fe0ebb51035dd534.JPG

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Schooner

May I make a suggestion. I appreciate that you are trying to create a comprehensive resource covering this interesting subject, but you are creating a bit of a behemoth, by constantly adding items to your original posting, which was long enough when you started. Because you have included a link to an old topic I created a few years ago, I receive constant notifications of your edits, but most other people will be totally unaware that you have made any changes, because the original post resolutely stays at the start of the thread, so no one who has read it once will think of trawling through the vast amount of info again, particularly as you haven't highlighted any of the edits. So I would suggest that you resist editing the first entry, but instead post a new item, as you have for the cranes, for the additions you want to make. When this thread has run its course, you can then consolidate the pertinent entries, and then perhaps repost it in easily digestable format as a new post, or a grand finale and closure of this thread. 

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Additionally, I hadn’t realised that the first post had been added to. Forum software shows when there are new posts, not new content in existing posts. (Because that’s how they are supposed to be used.)

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4 hours ago, Regularity said:

Additionally, I hadn’t realised that the first post had been added to. Forum software shows when there are new posts, not new content in existing posts. (Because that’s how they are supposed to be used.)

There have been 10 edits since Tuesday, and the new content isn't identified so it's a bit of a reverse Kim's Game to decide what has been added. Best of luck and I hope your memory is good!

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10 hours ago, Nick Holliday said:

I receive constant notifications of your edits

Argh, the exact opposite of my intentions, I'm so sorry! There have been tons of small edits today, hadn't realised that they sent out notifications at all - the whole point of doing it this way was to reduce fuss.

10 hours ago, Nick Holliday said:

so no one who has read it once will think of trawling through the vast amount of info again

No one is expected to, a lot of it is guff for now! The plan was to make a dedicated post for each topic once a decent body of info had been found, but collate it through edits till that time. Point taken however, I'll change tack.

 

 

9 hours ago, Regularity said:

Because that’s how they are supposed to be used.

Indeed, but not how I've been using it!

 

I've intentionally been adding scraps I come across as and when (often late in the night, which is great for exploring the web, but crap for cogent writing) until there's a decent lump of information worth sharing. The cranes post was a good example - in one evening I came across enough stuff to make a post. Conversely, tonight I've gone backwards and forwards over which Manning Wardle classes were where when, without much concrete to show for it. I don't want to lose what little I've come across but it's not worth a new post, so I've edited the initial post. 

 

Anyway, I'll chalk it up as a learning experience and get cracking on those posts tomorrow!

 

 

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8 hours ago, Schooner said:

Indeed, but not how I've been using it!

That’s what websites are for!

If you use “blogging” software such as Wordpress, you can also create pages, but you won’t get as much traffic as on a forum.

(Click on my name in my signature, and you will be taken to my blog, from which you can see some static pages.)

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Thanks for the suggestion @Regularity, I'll look into it :) In the meantime I'm afraid I'll probably keep using the OP as a clearing house, as it is very convenient and as long as it's not causing any disruption to anyone else (this post should put paid to @Nick Holliday's constant alerts, sorry once again) then it continues to make sense to me.

 

The information below is fairly complete, so any edits should be a) infrequent and b) more easily flagged as they would be for genuine developments, and can be signed in subsequent posts if they're of general interest. To business!

 

Millwall Extension Railway - the layout passenger service

1882-14906414108.jpg

An 1882 (note 'South West India Dock Station') map showing the MER (link to Island History, a great resource). It ran from Millwall Junction, on the London and Blackwall Railway, to the optimistically named North Greenwich via South Dock and Millwall Dock stations. As can be seen it was a pretty simple set up in reality, as it shall be on the layout :)

 

A very potted history:

1863 - L&BR propose a branch down the West of the Isle of Dogs. Proposal successfully fought by the East and West India Dock Company .

1865 - GER takes lease of the L&BR. Revives proposals, linking them to the construction of the Millwall Docks. Eventually the MER Bill was passed, permitted a line to the East of the West India Docks where there was already a siding connection.

1868 - Finance secured, and construction begun. Each Dock and the L&BR are responsible for the building and financing of the line on their land. 36 chains L&BR; 41 chains West India Dock; 52 Millwall Dock. Total branch length 1mile and 49 chains.

1871 - line opens to Millwall Dock, for freight and workmen's trains only.

1872 - line opens for full passenger service to North Greenwich.

1880 - through steam working permitted for the first time. Previously the West India Dock section of the line was horse-drawn.

...and here we are!

 

Information largely from here and here. I've read both that management continued under the GER, and that it transferred to the Millwall Dock Co. who were also responsible for the dock railway. I'm sure on the Dock Co. but would welcome concrete info.

 

It seems the line ran profitably into the 20th Century, but entered straitened times with a reduced service on the Blackwall in 1907, the loss of the Millwall Rovers FC in 1910, and reduction in services to two an hour during the First War. Loco-hauled services were replaced with steam railmotors in 1920 (elsewhere Novemember 1922 - possible confusion between the earlier ex-Port Talbot Railway 0-6-0 railmotors and later 0-4-0 ex-GWR?) in a bid to cut losses, but the line closed to passengers, two months ahead of schedule when the General Strike of 1926 stopped loco crews, and to goods traffic in 1929.

 

South Dock Station - the layout station-proper

1172673991_Annotation2020-04-12174521.jpg.9f6f3fabc724605726bfaaf29122d9d5.jpg

"South Dock was a railway station on the Isle of Dogs in east London. It was between Millwall Junction and Millwall Docks on the Millwall Extension Railway (MER) branch of the London and Blackwall Railway (LBR) which opened to goods traffic on 18 December 1871 and to passenger services on 29 July 1872. The station was on the northern side of the South Dock of the West India Docks, near the eastern end. It had an island platform as it was the only passing loop on the branch. The station buildings were of timber with a slate roof. Platform was brick faced. Station was staffed entirely by dock employees, company issued its own tickets."

 

South Dock at Disused Stations, and seen c.1904 below:

south_dock(c1904alsop)old1.jpg

Nestled in a loop between two large timber sheds, it can be seen clearly in the NLS-sourced map above that South Dock had no public access and the station served the Docks alone. Note platform height, station building details and the roofline of the timber sheds behind. It's also worth noting again that the passenger line is entirely independent from the Dock goods line next to it (from the North at least, they share c.220ft of line across the South Dock Basin bridge), and traffic on one did very little to interfere with the other. This has been taken across into the model, on which it should be possible to operate the passenger service largely, but not entirely, independently from any goods or shunting movements (see below).

 

Motive power - Subscribers to Castle Aching please feel free to skip! I find I'm actually rather late to the party...

milwall_junction_old4.jpg

"The Manning Wardle 2-4-0T engine, built in 1880; these engines were numbered 3,4, and 6 in the locomotive stock of the Millwall Dock Company; maker's numbers were 749. 750 and 776. It was the four-coupled engine with a driver's wheel three feet six inches in diameter; the cylinders were nine inches in diameter with an eighteen inch stroke. Originally these engines were painted dark yellow with decorative lines; by the end of the century the design had been changed to brick red and black bands, brass domes, number plates and chimney caps.

 

Many more photos and additional information to be found at the brilliant Disused Stations page for North Greenwich, from which:

  • New in 1880, they had standard Manning Wardle saddle tanks but were re-built with side tanks some time before c.1900 and the earliest photo's I've yet come across. This may well prove the first confirmed victory for Rule One over reality :)
  • The (lined?) yellow livery was "similar to that used by Stroudley on the LB&SCR which could be described as a 'yellow ochre' shade". In 1900 it was changed for an unlined red, which was then lined in black and straw (on some locos) by the PLA after 1909, as seen above.
  • "During the period the locomotives wore a yellow livery it is said they carried advertisements for Pear's Soap..."
  • The cast plate for the running number was probably there from the start, as were external spark arrestors (seen on all early photos)
  • The brass plaque on the lamp reads 'Cubitt Town' on the top line, suggesting they were used on the MER only.

Do we think the saddle tanks went c.1900, the same time as the livery change? That means 20 years, half their working life, was carried out with them looking different to how most people (I think) imagine...

 

However, even if the following isn't accurate for an 1880-condition loco, I think for the sake of variety and because they are so distinctive the layout would employ these:

710x528_12889203_6727139_1459349240.jpg

from CDC Design (and Co's) most interesting Shapeways shop.

 

Here endeth Plan A.

 

However, @Edwardian made the fine suggestion that we could look a little earlier, to 1878, and find a beautifully un-industrial 0-4-0, the Manning Wardle's predecessor, Kitson's first steam tram, GER 230:

DSCN6693.JPG

"In 1878 this engine needed replacement, and the GER purchased a standard street tramway engine from Kitson & Co., which was given the number 230."

 

Going by the drawing, No.230 (to be AKA 'The Chinese Dentist', apologies :)) wasn't quite a Kitson Light/four-window Standard, which entered into production in 1880...I think, I now can't find the reference. They are very close though. For comparison, here is a production tram

2003103_96845645.jpg

of 1882, possibly for one of the City of Birmingham tramways (whose history is so complex, and so tangential, that I'm happy setting it to one side for now).

 

Having come this far, I think we've all earned a brew and a sit-down with a nice slice of YouTube:

Imagine one of those in "yellow ochre" - delicious! Further information on the 1881 No.7 'Kitty' here.

 

Back to modelling, I'd be inclined to start here...

710x528_14974319_8959650_1467920462.jpg

......with judicious application of an encouraging email on subject 4'8 1/2" and the above drawing, rather than a hacksaw that is. Further information may come from @wagonbasher's rather fine 'Trams that Time Forgot' project, on which a scratch four-window Kitson in 7mm will feature. 

 

By-the-by, a later GER 230 was a Class 209 as offered in 4mm by High Level. 

 

Going back further still would bring us to the Ariel's Girdle, seen and described as for the Great Exhibition of 1851: locomotive-ariels-girdle-railway-exhibit"Light locomotive engine for railways, named “Ariel’s Girdle,” on four wheels, coupled to a four-wheeled composite tender; it makes a steady eight-wheeled machine, capable of lateral flexure for sharp curves. The tender contains water beneath the floor, and has a sledge break of peculiar construction, acting with friction on the rails to save the wheels. its handle being within reach of the driver.Eight-wheeled double railway carriage for first and second-class passengers. The wheels are left free to move laterally by means of swinging links and shackles, which enable the carriage to run round curves of 250 feet radius. A sledge break of peculiar construction is suspended from this carriage. The locomotive engine produced at the Airedale Foundry, Leeds, by  Kitson, Thompson, and Hewitson; the carriage portion produced at Birmingham by  Brown and Marshall.A spring for the locomotive engine, formed of patent ribbed steel; the rib, working in a corresponding hollow of the adjoining plate, reduces the friction and preserves the parallelism of the plates."

 

More to the point:

 north_greenhwich_old6.jpg

By some strange fate seen re-built as a 2-4-0 at North Greenwich at some point before 1878 (and after 1872). Photo embedded from here, along with a most informative caption.

 

...and, skipping forward 50 years and at the risk of really taking things too far, the MER's final bonkers motive power:

railmotor2.jpg

an ex-Port Talbot Railway 0-6-0- articulated steam railmotor. Almost full circle! Yet again, image and excellent caption here at Disused Stations. The PLA, having had their little joke, also bought a couple of ex-GWR railmotors in 1922, as soon available from Kernow.

 

For general interest:

ticket_box.jpg

"Millwall Extension Railway single line train staff and steel token box. The solid brass staff is 10" in length and has the engraving 'South Dock' on one side and 'North Greenwich' opposite. The ticket box has the worths 'South Dock and North Greenwich' painted in black with red shadow lettering." (very bottom of the page)

 

If further variety is required then we could always displace ourselves in Space instead of Time: the RADR also opened in 1880...

PORT OF LONDON AUTHORITY - ROYAL ALBERT DOCK RAILWAY - No.7 - 2-4-0T - built 1847 by LNWR as 2-4-0 No.102 HERCULES - rebuilt as 2-4-0T, No.436 - 1881 withdrawn - sold to Royal Albert Dock Co. as No.7 - 07/1896 withdrawn when GER took over services - seen here at Gallions with a train for Custom House in about 1890. The Royal Albert Dock Co. built a short railway line from Custom House to Gallions in 1880 to enable it to move goods and employees to and from the Docks and also to carry passengers joining liners within the Docks. Three venerable 2-4-0T's were bought from the LNWR, No.5 (ex-LNWR No. 1819, built 1850), No. 6 (ex-LNWR No. 1927, built 1849) and No. 7 (ex-LNWR No. 436, built 1847). All three were withdrawn in July 1896.

...seen here c.1890...but that's for another day.

 

Although apparently limited in some fairly fundamental ways, it seems possible to really ring the changes at South Dock without breaking anything too badly. Ideal :)

 

Stock

Mis-understanding the Manning Wardle photographs I thought any 4-wheel GER coaches, with guards duckets where suitable, would fit rather nicely. These lovely things were at the front of the queue: 

Brake-Third-and-Third-900-x-300.jpg

with @Guy Rixon GER fittings in mind, on a Ratio chassis. Excellent stuff all round, very much Plan A :)

 

But.

 

On the Wisbech and Upwell Tramway "Rolling stock consisted initially of four coaches originally built for the Millwall Extension Railway, two dating from 1871 and two from 1872.It opened in 1883. Is it possible that the coaches went there directly from the MER? In which case the coaches of relevance to this layout are, amazingly, likely to be as seen behind Ariel's Girdle, above, of which:

"Details of the tramcar-type trailer have proved elusive, however it is known there were four of them supplied by Starbuck of Birkenhead in 1871/2. Assuming all four were identical, they had a 6-wheel railway-type underframe enabling the car to use standard railway platforms and, it would appear, railway-type buffing gear. The car would thus have been relatively heavy by tramcar standards and would have required at least two horses to pull it. Under as close an examination as this picture permits, the bodywork displays the hallmarks of Starbuck with rounded window tops, camelback roof and central clerestory section. How it was driven, when drawn by horses, and how passengers entered and exited is something of a mystery as there are no obvious signs of end platforms despite the presence of extended roof ends and footsteps at each end."

 

...or do we think the Millwall Dock Co. procured some new coaches to go with their three new Manning Wardles in 1880?

 

Operation - passenger

The highlighted circuit is the passenger route on the proposed layout. 'The Other Station' is in the loop on the left, South Dock to the right:

1548551050_PAXcircuit.jpg.401324729e263fee5867c415024f796d.jpg

The idea is for passenger services to be run as an automated alternating out-and-back-style run. For example, a clockwise circuit from The Other Station, stopping at South Dock Station and round (representing Millwall Jnc - North Greenwich) to The Other Station again. The loco can run around and 'return' on an anti-clockwise circuit (North Greenwich - Millwall Jnc). A circuit takes two and a half to three minute. Aiming for busy-but-not-manic, perhaps thirty seconds or so at South Dock and perhaps ten minutes between circuits (with the run around taking place after 5) to give frequent movement without seeming like Clapham Junction.

 

It would be nice to work a second service in so South Dock can be seen as what it was - the only passing loop on the line - and I think it would be fairly easy to have one train circuiting in each direction, passing on the South Dock loop. Yet to work out the implications of this, if any.

 

Train formation depends on the stock question above. If early coaches are the answer, then each train would be 1 x 6-wheel Starbuck tram-type coaches for standard service, 2 x if a busy period, a single train of 4 x in exception circumstances. If later, then the 4-wheel GER coaches can be assembled in pairs for normal services, triplets for commuter services; four coaches for High Days and Holidays, five for Millwall Rovers FC playing a big home game. The random number generator will have to have some options for PAX as well as goods workings!

 

Required reading ('I am required to read'! A rather itinerant job means books and I currently have little to do with each other, very sadly)

Geoffrey Body's Blackwall and Millwall Extension Railways

J. E. Connor's Stepney's Own Railway: A history of the London & Blackwall system

Alan A. Jackson's London's Local Railways

E. B. Wilson and Manning Wardle's Locomotive Builders of Leeds

David Gladwin's A History of the British Steam Tram Vol. 1 etc

 

Outstanding questions

Who actually ran the MER in 1880? The Millwall Dock Company.

When were the Manning Wardles converted to side-tank engines? Why? Side tanks as built; weight savings.

What was the likely coaching stock of 1880? Starbuck 4-wheel tram-stock, as in the Ariel's Girdle pic.

What have I missed?

 

Edited by Schooner
GER Society coach link added to Stock section; the answers
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5 hours ago, Schooner said:

 

Millwall Extension Railway - the layout passenger service

 

1880 - through steam working permitted for the first time. Previously the West India Dock section of the line was horse-drawn.

...

South Dock at Disused Stations, and seen c.1904 below:

south_dock(c1904alsop)old1.jpg

 

milwall_junction_old4.jpg

 

Stock

Mis-understanding the Manning Wardle photographs I thought any 4-wheel GER coaches, with guards duckets where suitable, would fit rather nicely. These lovely things were at the front of the queue: 

Brake-Third-and-Third-900-x-300.jpg

with @Guy Rixon GER fittings in mind, on a Ratio chassis. Excellent stuff all round, very much Plan A :)

 

 

 

According to Kidner, after the tram stock was withdrawn, the MER gained two 4-wheel GER composites (1st/2nd) and three 4-wheel GER brake thirds.

 

These are said all to have been to 27'. 27' became the standard length for 4-wheelers from 1876 (under Adams), and remained the standard through to Worsdell's time (by which point 4-wheelers were only built specifically for suburban use to a widened design).  The body style in the picture below (which I take to be pre-1900) suggests that coaches were from the Adams or Bromley eras, and the David Eveleigh coaches are of the correct style and period. 

 

Unfortunately, however, David produces the 2-compartment Brake Thirds, whereas Kidner says the MER had the 3-compartment version, as ,indeed, can be seen in the picture below. Further, he does not produce the relatively rare 1st/2nd cComposite.

 

Peter K (sold via Kemilway) does produce the 3-compartment Brake Third (I know this, I have one) and, IIRC, the range also includes the 1st/2nd composite.  These were available at least as recently as 2018, however, the Kemilway website appears to be down at present.

 

Some detail points on the coaches:

 

- Note how, in suburban use, bars are fitted over the windows.

 

- You mention Guy Rixon's coach accessories, designed with the David Eveleigh etches in mind, and these would be equally of use with the Peter K versions, where the coaches are also supplied as etchings only, not complete kits with 'castings'.

 

.  Guy's set includes Pintsch gas light tops.  The GE fitted Pintsch gas lighting from 1877, and in the picture below you can just see the top of one.

 

- Superior to the flat etched door vents are Guy's 3D-printed ones, specifically designed to represent the bulbous type used by the GER in the 1870s, and you can see them featured in the picture below: LINK 

 

- The Ratio GW underframes can be obtained separately if you contact the Peco technical department.  These are steel channel u/fs, whereas the GER design has a wooden solebar.  IIRC, David included an etched blanking plate to represent the face of the wooden solebar.  I should have thought that it would be less of a faff just to build an underframe with fold- up brass W irons overlaid with Guy's springs and axleboxes. But, as I say, David's kits do not represent the particular coaches you need. 

 

- For the Peter K kits, off-hand I cannot recall what you get by way of u/f, but, again, I suggest fold-up W irons with Guy's 'castings' applied. 

 

 

milwall_junction_old4.jpg.c8ec9cad7dba8866d6f864ac55f8ef8b.jpg

 

Kidner adds that later eight GER 6-wheel coaches were used.  Aside from indicating tha all three classes were accommodated, he gives no further detail.  I would look to David Eveleigh's 6-wheel etches for these.

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The Peter K / Kemilway website appears to have been suspended, so it seems unlikely anything will be available from them, so it will be only the second hand market from now on. (Anyone got their GNoSR horsebox etching they want to get rid of?)

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2 minutes ago, Nick Holliday said:

The Peter K / Kemilway website appears to have been suspended, so it seems unlikely anything will be available from them, so it will be only the second hand market from now on. (Anyone got their GNoSR horsebox etching they want to get rid of?)

 

Ditto anyone with etches of the L&F/MGN Class A Beyer Peacock 4-4-0!

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7 hours ago, Schooner said:

Thanks for the suggestion @Regularity, I'll look into it :) In the meantime I'm afraid I'll probably keep using the OP as a clearing house, as it is very convenient and as long as it's not causing any disruption to anyone else (this post should put paid to @Nick Holliday's constant alerts, sorry once again) then it continues to make sense to me.

One thing you can do, is use the first post to provide a list (with links) to the various key posts within the thread.

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Thanks for the excellent  information on both prototype and model, and I'll have to add the Kidner to the reading list!

 

 Two quick things, if I may:

43 minutes ago, Edwardian said:

after the tram stock was withdrawn

Is a date given for this? I was surprised to read of ex-MER stock making it to the Wisbech and Upwell 3 years after the MER changed operator and got the Manning Wardles, which I had assumed ran with new (to the MER) coaches. The tram-like (they, seemingly, had standard buffing gear and screw-link couplings after all) stock could have been stored twixt-times, but would they have been...?

 

47 minutes ago, Edwardian said:

which I take to be pre-1900

As did I, but if I understand correctly the livery in that picture is the black-and-straw-lined red of the re-painting under the PLA, and so after 1909, the best part of thirty years or so too late... This is one of the risks of (over-)reliance on a small number of self-referential online sources, though...

 

I still think the David Eveleigh kits would be the way forwards (there's nothing so attractive as availability), especially with Mr Rixon's fine additions, but it's fun to investigate :)

 

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5 hours ago, Schooner said:

Thanks for the excellent  information on both prototype and model, and I'll have to add the Kidner to the reading list!

 

 Two quick things, if I may:

Is a date given for this? I was surprised to read of ex-MER stock making it to the Wisbech and Upwell 3 years after the MER changed operator and got the Manning Wardles, which I had assumed ran with new (to the MER) coaches. The tram-like (they, seemingly, had standard buffing gear and screw-link couplings after all) stock could have been stored twixt-times, but would they have been...?

 

As did I, but if I understand correctly the livery in that picture is the black-and-straw-lined red of the re-painting under the PLA, and so after 1909, the best part of thirty years or so too late... This is one of the risks of (over-)reliance on a small number of self-referential online sources, though...

 

I still think the David Eveleigh kits would be the way forwards (there's nothing so attractive as availability), especially with Mr Rixon's fine additions, but it's fun to investigate :)

 

 

Kidner says 1884 for the 4 tram cars departing for the W&UT.  There they would have presumably run alongside 4 of the 4-wheel W&UT tram cars of the type with which we are more familiar.  They were apparently withdrawn from the W&UT in 1890, and, I guess, scrapped, and replaced by 4 more of the 4-wheel W&UT types.

 

Thus, it looks like 1884 onwards, the GER 4-wheel late 1870s-type stock would have run; if you can get the Peter K kits, they will be right.

 

As to the MWs, I was forgetting what you said about them starting as saddle tanks, which might help to explain why the boiler is pitched so low.  They could have been built like this, however.  Look at the small Sharp Stewart 2-4-0Ts of the Hayling Island/Bishopstone/Inspector ilk. .  Nevertheless, I assumed the picture below was pre-1900 because of what you said about the livery.  Bearing in mind what you said about the early ochre livery in the Stroudley style, this looks like it.

 

For all the world to me this could be dark olive borders with IEG panels, separated by so rather Stroudleyesque lining, including the fancy incurves at the corners.

 

On that basis, I would say that the saddle tank went replaced with side tanks rather earlier than the c.1900 livery change to unlined red that you cite.

 

Whatever the date, I suggest that this is the original ochre livery.   

 

milwall_junction_old4.jpg.e739a79b4b4f76e00e593c9a4314da33.jpg

 

Further, whether or not red, the loco in your other picture, captioned as 1904 (below), is also lined (and has incurves) So, something isn't quite consistent in your scant sources. Could it just be the same ochre livery, worn and dirty?

 

south_dock(c1904alsop)old1.jpg.9250957007631b063672c7528f049bcf.jpg

 

Intrigued by this mystery, I looked for more pictures of the MWs, and I found a number on the North Greenwich page of Disused Station.  The first,in particular, caught my eye.

 

Now, one of the things I sometimes bang on about on Castle Aching is having an appropriate permanent way.  I have often opined that the 'classic' steam age track we're all so used to is a creation of the 1910s (limiting how far many model railways can be back-dated).  Prior to that, we are likely to see such features as the Victorian practice of fine ballast dressed over the sleepers, especially at stations. 

 

One of the Disused Stations pictures, estimated at 1900-1903, shows such ballast, but so do the two pictures above. Disused Stations says the track was re-ballasted c.1910.  

 

To confuse matters, all the pictures on that page show the spark arrestors fitted, save the last, said to show post 1909 PLA red.  On the two pictures above, there are no arrestors fitted.

 

I note the captions comment on livery, stating that it was the Millwall Dock Co in 1900 which applied red lined in black and straw. In 1900.  So that disagrees with your comment that lining was only applied to the red livery from 1909 by the PLA. Actually, the caption you cite does not say "unlined red", but "brick red with black bands".  Disused Stations notes a change in lining style from 1909 under the PLA, rather than the introduction of lining.

 

Thus, if these were saddletanks up to 1900, the pictures that show side tanks and top-dressed ballast could be in red lined black and straw and fall between c.1900 and 1909/10, when the change in ownership and lining style under the PLA coincided with the renewal of the permanent way and the end of ballast over the sleepers. Conceivably the lining could have been executed in a Stroudleyesque style before 1909.  However, I just cannot see that top picture as showing anything other than ochre, in imitation of Stroudley livery, complete with darker-coloured borders. Yet, it is applied to a side tank. 

 

You can, in a number of these pictures, detect outer black and inner pale lining (the pale lining, if the livery were assumed to be red, could be seen as straw).  The livery panels are either ochre or red, depending on your conclusion, but on both the pictures above, there is a darker colour used as a border.  If were are seeing Stroudleyesque ochre with Stroudleyesue lining, it would be tempting to suggest the border is in the same dark olive that Brighton used. On the other hand, if the pictures do show red locomotives, what colour is the border? 

  

Conclusion?

 

Well, I'm going to take a punt here and suggest that these two pictures represent different liveries.  The top one, as I say, looks as if it could well be painted in imitation of Stroudley's Improved Engine Green livery, notwithstanding it has been rebuilt as a side tank. 

 

The lower picture, captioned as 1904, may show a different livery.  Certainly, the border is no so deep as seen on the tanks in the other photograph. Turning back to your quoted cption - that Millwall Dock Co's livery was "brick red with black bands", "band" here could be boiler bands, but, possibly, it could refer to a black border to the red panels.  Leaving aside for a moment the tendency of period film to show red as darker than many darker colours, the "1904" picture might show black borders and red panels, edged with straw lining.  The effect would be something akin to Captain Baxter.  

 

126743413_Captain_Baxter_Bluebell_Railway-Copy.jpg.b6dd03b01c12b285f25bdb5743ceafa4.jpg

 

I confess, I'd be mightily tempted to set the layout in a wide period, say 1878-1909, with the cut-off when the track changed appearance.  In the absence of information on the appearance of the 4 tram cars and of the locos as saddletanks, however, I'd be tempted to concentrate on the turn of the Century and run late 1870s GER 4-wheelers with 2 MWs, one in imitation IEG and the other red in the style of Captain Baxter!

 

However, it's your trainset ...

 

Edited by Edwardian
spelling!
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image.jpeg.5ba49f14021fd5bdb0818d70a8c99328.jpeg

Although the disused stations site is a fountain of knowledge I wonder if it has gone astray regarding these Manning Wardle tanks and the concept that they started life as saddle tanks.  There was a detailed article in MRJ 53 and I don't recall this being mentioned, although I may have missed this point, but in Mabbott's MW works list all three are described as 2-4-0 T,j whereas any saddle tank is clearly identified. Mabbott does mention that Nos 3 and 4 were rebuilt by the East Ferry Engineering Company in 1908 and 1907 respectively, only a short time before becoming PLA property in 1909. Also in Simpson's Locomotives of Quality, it notes that the three were to a "special design to limit the weight over the bridges" being 2-4-0 side tank engines.

I would thought the lack of any photos suggests that they started life as side tanks, especially as the photos that are available seem to cover a wide range of dates. In addition the fairly authorative livery description would surely have mentioned such a radical change in profile.

 

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4 hours ago, Edwardian said:

I note the captions comment on livery, stating that it was the Millwall Dock Co in 1900 which applied red lined in black and straw. In 1900.  So that disagrees with your comment that lining was only applied to the red livery from 1909 by the PLA.

Quite right, the fault lies with me. I misread the "haphazard" in that caption, thinking it referred to the application of the lining. This is not the case - it was the continuation of the lining which was haphazard, on an otherwise similar livery.

 

49 minutes ago, Nick Holliday said:

There was a detailed article in MRJ 53

Sadly neither MRJ 53 nor MRJ 55 which also covers the MER MWs, is available online

 

However, in looking around for those issues, I stumbled across (taking a small leap, and being rather presumptuous) @Ian Rathbone's Workshop thread at Western Thunder. I'm not a member, so I'm only looking at a small preview, but even so the colour looks a ringer for IEG, and the Pear's Soap on the side tanks is most boldy stated. To quote his reply to an enquiry on that site: "The livery of the MW is taken from Carter with additional input from Jim Connor of the N.E. London History Group, and the photos published in MRJ."

 

LATE ADDITION: Aha! Embedded from http://www.ianrathbonemodelpainting.co.uk/:

MExR6-3w.jpgMExR6-1w.jpgMExR6-2w.jpg

So, so many beautiful loco's to be seen in his galleries, I can't wait to go back through them. This feels quite the find, hopefully Mr Rathbone will forgive my...name dropping? ....calling out? What is the verb? Anyway, I hope he might swing by and let us know how he worked out the lovely livery shown above.

 

Livery set to one side for now then, a quick thought on dating the photographs.

Known.

Pre-1909, locos's numbered 3, 4, 6 by the MER. Post-1909, numbered 28, 29, 31 by the PLA. Plate fitting may have been delayed.

Likely

Track re-ballasted c.1910.

Possible

Spark arrestors more prevalent earlier than later.

 

Livery Applying a less-wrong understanding of the captions at Disused Stations

1880 - MER - 'yellow ochre', possible black banding

1900 - MER - "mid-range", or "brick", red; lined in "straw and black"

1909 - PLA - red livery kept, but lining becomes "haphazard".

 

Between those it should be possible to at least set the photographs in order. I still think they're all comfortably post-1900 but will have a proper look in the next day or two.

 

To finish, a photo I'd not come across before. Have at it!

s-l1600.jpg

 

50 minutes ago, Nick Holliday said:

...in Mabbott's MW works list all three are described as 2-4-0 T,j whereas any saddle tank is clearly identified.

50 minutes ago, Nick Holliday said:

...the three were to a "special design to limit the weight over the bridges" being 2-4-0 side tank engines.

Edited by Schooner
Side tank vs. saddle tank. A conclusive answer reach, thank you.
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4 hours ago, Edwardian said:

 

As to the MWs, I was forgetting what you said about them starting as saddle tanks, which might help to explain why the boiler is pitched so low.  They could have been built like this, however.  Look at the small Sharp Stewart 2-4-0Ts of the Hayling Island/Bishopstone/Inspector ilk.

 

......

 

run late 1870s GER 4-wheelers with 2 MWs, one in imitation IEG and the other red in the style of Captain Baxter!

 

However, it's your trainset ...

 

 

1 hour ago, Nick Holliday said:

 

Although the disused stations site is a fountain of knowledge I wonder if it has gone astray regarding these Manning Wardle tanks and the concept that they started life as saddle tanks.  There was a detailed article in MRJ 53 and I don't recall this being mentioned, although I may have missed this point, but in Mabbott's MW works list all three are described as 2-4-0 T,j whereas any saddle tank is clearly identified. Mabbott does mention that Nos 3 and 4 were rebuilt by the East Ferry Engineering Company in 1908 and 1907 respectively, only a short time before becoming PLA property in 1909. Also in Simpson's Locomotives of Quality, it notes that the three were to a "special design to limit the weight over the bridges" being 2-4-0 side tank engines.

I would thought the lack of any photos suggests that they started life as side tanks, especially as the photos that are available seem to cover a wide range of dates. In addition the fairly authorative livery description would surely have mentioned such a radical change in profile.

 

 

My thought have been tending to the same conclusion, though your post emboldens me.  I should have thought that some pictures of the saddle tank would have survived. 

 

54 minutes ago, Orion said:

The very similar Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway Manning Wardle tanks were also side tanks from the start

 

It is not unique to see a small, low-pitched boiler with a distinct drop from the firebox.  I mentioned the 2-4-0T Sharps on the LB&SC.  Orion aptly reminds us of the R&ER.  They were 3' gauge Manning Wardles.  The MER locos are in appearance merely standard gauge versions, though the R&ER pair (1875 and 1876) were 0-6-0s with outside cylinders.  

 

1894142749_RavenglassEskdale01.jpg.8936de67f732f1c411d5c9fa1ab458af.jpg

 

A similar Manning Wardle looks to have been supplied to Malta.

 

Manning-Wardle-1883.jpg.79c20c6c7e08fd807e732244d99cfd26.jpg

 

I had called to mind another NG Manning Wardle feature in a company ad; dating from 1875 and built for Sweden to something like 2'1" gauge IIRC.

 

1812928568_ManningWardle536of1875NGSweden.jpg.a9b77991d8fbdeba0ffd3aed1f9a0350.jpg

 

 

 

 

33 minutes ago, Schooner said:

Quite right, the fault lies with me. I misread the "haphazard" in that caption, thinking it referred to the application of the lining. This is not the case - it was the continuation of the lining which was haphazard, on an otherwise similar livery.

 

the colour looks a ringer for IEG, and the Pear's Soap on the side tanks is most boldy stated. To quote his reply to an enquiry on that site: "The livery of the MW is taken from Carter with additional input from Jim Connor of the N.E. London History Group, and the photos published in MRJ."

 

MExR6-1w.jpg

 

So, IEG with red, one might say 'brick red', for the borders. 

Let us hope the sources quoted support that.  It is a tempting thought that in 1900 the decision was to adopt the border colour all over. 

 

 

Quote

 

Livery Applying a less-wrong understanding of the captions at Disused Stations

1880 - MER - 'yellow ochre', possible black banding

1900 - MER - "mid-range", or "brick", red; lined in "straw and black"

1909 - PLA - red livery kept, but lining becomes "haphazard".

 

So it would seem

 

Quote

Between those it should be possible to at least set the photographs in order. I still think they're all comfortably post-1900 but will have a proper look in the next day or two.

 

 

I'll give you the others, but this one is surely pre-1900 in IEG.

 

milwall_junction_old4.jpg.5b2172bfcb21dfe20a42e4fe991c86f1.jpg

 

Brick red borders might well look darker than they were due to the film of the time.

 

So, I'm sticking to my conclusion (!); one in imitation IEG (but now with red borders) and the other red in the style of Captain Baxter!

Edited by Edwardian
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1 hour ago, Edwardian said:

A similar Manning Wardle looks to have been supplied to Malta.

 

Manning-Wardle-1883.jpg.79c20c6c7e08fd807e732244d99cfd26.jpg

While on holiday in Malta several years ago I purchased 'The Malta Railway' by Joseph Bonnici and Michael Cassar.  From it, the loco illustrated on the stamp is one of the first three locos on the railway, Nos 1, 2 &3, which came from Manning Wardle for the opening of the line in 1883.  Makers numbers 842/3/4. They were all 0-6-0T's.   A further 2 were supplied by the same company in 1891.   No 5, a 2-6-2T , works no 1243, and No 6, an 0-6-4T, presumably works No 1244, but that is not quoted in the book.

 

The chapter on Locomotives and stock ends with the sentence :

The engines finally went for scrap in 1937 most probably to Italy and most likely returned in a different, deadlier guise during the second world war.

 

Jim

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On 13/04/2020 at 18:49, Edwardian said:

I'll give you the others, but this one is surely pre-1900 in IEG.

 

milwall_junction_old4.jpg.5b2172bfcb21dfe20a42e4fe991c86f1.jpg

 

Brick red borders might well look darker than they were due to the film of the time.

 

 

Most likely you're right, and I'm certainly not arguing the analysis! There are a couple of things that make me less than sure though, and I now wonder if the answer doesn't lie between us...

 

A quick run through the rough dating guides can get us between 1884 (GER stock) and 1909-10 (MER running number). The other known change in this period is the livery in 1900 - 'similar to IEG', possibly with black banding, to a lined 'mid red'. Compare the above to the most recently discovered photo below, the only real differences I can see are spark arrestor, livery, and style of photo itself.

 

On 13/04/2020 at 18:17, Schooner said:

s-l1600.jpg

 

Given spark arrestors were present on Ariel's Girdle and on the MW's, and the history of the early MER, it suggests (no more) to me that the lower pic is earlier. The unlined livery, with MER numbers, without making any guess at colour suggests earlier also? The photo itself gives me the impression of being unstaged.

 

I am well outside my comfort zone and in the area of others' expertise so I shall tread lightly, but note that a quick Google of LB&SCR Terriers in the 1870s shows every shade of grey...

Im1925EnV140-p002.jpg 36443785691_011c89d7e1_b.jpg

...and so only looking at the contrast of the lining, wonder if would be similar between IEG-and-red and between red-and-black...?

 

Why might there be a contrived-looking photo of an absolutely immaculate, beautifully lined MW with MER numbers...could it be an official/publicity shot to mark the introduction of the new livery in 1900...or even handover to the PLA in 1909?

 

Could any information be gleaned from where the photographer was set up?

1557952021_MLJnc.jpg.7f72e49305f837372bd52e8ba9a3d406.jpg

OS 1893-6, from NLS

millwall_junction(1936t_rowland_powell)o

Captioned 1936

 

In other news, I was poking at the Pear's Soap ad to see if anything turned up. Nothing on the MWs, and this may be old news to those here, but I had no idea the role of Pear's and the world's first Brand Ambassador, Thomas Barratt, played in the history of advertising.

6263302583_8c5fdf65ce_b.jpg

Back to railways, interesting stuff on the other MW side tanks. It was obviously fairly common, I wonder where the idea of their being a re-build feature came from. As far as I can tell Disused Stations is normally very good, can it be only be based on mis-understanding the available photo's?

 

On 13/04/2020 at 20:05, Caley Jim said:

The chapter on Locomotives and stock ends with the sentence :

The engines finally went for scrap in 1937 most probably to Italy and most likely returned in a different, deadlier guise during the second world war.

Poor Malta, an incredible history largely borne by the fortitude of those for whom it is home rather than a posting. I've just remembered that I was due to leave for there this week, not so long ago. [Syntax minefield]

 

On 13/04/2020 at 18:49, Edwardian said:

 

So, I'm sticking to my conclusion (!); one in imitation IEG (but now with red borders) and the other red in the style of Captain Baxter!

A conclusion that I would steal in an instant, if the layout were an imminent prospect! Sadly it's not, the silver lining being this indefinite period in which to explore the history. You're also spot on about 1884-1909 timeframe, it does make a lot of sense.

 

The aim of a tight hold on 1880 is to focus these little investigations*. It's also to catch the Port of London as it transitions from sail to steam: "...it was not until 1875 that the sail definitely took second place in the tonnage of vessels that used the Port..." but still in the mid-1880s half of all Britain's trade, by ton, was carried in schooners (a 'fact' that I have in my mind, but cannot yet give a source for so please season as desired). One of the major inspirations for the layout was stumbling across kits of the Cutty Sark in 1:75 and 1:78; wondering how one might see them in the same space as the Victorian industrial locos of which I've become so fond but which represent the nemesis of another area of interest for me, the last few decades of commercial sail. The Thames Sailing Barge and the coasting schooner** could be seen in the Docks largely unchanged 1870-1930, the period of the MER, but the ship-rigged clipper of the 1880s would most likely have been cut down to a barque by 1890 and seen no more after the turn of the Century; a screw-schooner or three-island steamship in her place. Aware of what a hit a ship model is to the wallet and the hourglass, I'm not planning for anything with a boiler...but...if all this comes to pass, it's an obvious, appealing and very evocative way to expand the scope of the layout.

 

*A focus which inevitably softens. I'm sure you've noted the title change, to avoid confusion re London Dock, Wapping and reflect the risk of mission-creep...

**A signifcant misnomer, as they were common sights on the coasts from New Foundland in mid-Winter to the Eastern Mediterranean under scorching sun; and far from unknown in the Far East, Australia and New Zealand. On which, I also came across, by Cicely Fox Smith, a poet new to me this evening, this on the little old trading ketch Ceres, 1811 (history, fate):

 

The Ketch Ceres 1811-1936

A century and a quarter, full of chance and change had passed
Since they built her, down in Devon, where they mostly build to last,
And sent her out to earn her keep at risk of wave and war,
And dodge the nimble privateer along the Biscay shore.

 

And war went out and peace came in and time it went and came,
And brought new changes every year but her it left the same;
The privateers they vanished and the Indiamen likewise,
And the first steam-kettle trailed her smoke across the affronted skies.

 

The tea fleet and the wool fleet, in their turn they had their day;
She marked them in their beauty as she plied upon her way,
Their canvas piled like summer clouds, …… like summer clouds they passed,
But —she was built in Devon and they build 'em there to last.

 

She loaded nuts and oranges, she carried coal and props,
And bricks and hay and china-clay and barley-malt and hops;
She traded north to Derry and she traded south to Spain,
And east about to Wells and Lynn and back to Bude again.

 

She knew the rips and overfalls from London to the Lizard,
And once she nearly left her bones off Padstow in a blizzard,
But when winter fogs were thickest she could mostly smell her way
By the old familiar sea-marks into Bude or Watchett Bay.

 

And peace went out and war came in and forth she went once more
To dodge the nimble submarines along the English shore,
And war went out and peace came in and still she held together
Spite of floating mine and tin fish and the good old Channel weather.

 

She loaded salt and timber and she carried slate from Wales,
Cement and corn and cattle-cake and paving-stones and nails;
She worked her way to Liverpool and down the coast for cloam,
Across the war to Swansea Bay and then with slag for home.

 

But a time it comes to ships and men when sailing days are past,
Even such as hail from Devon, where they mostly build to last,
And her seams began to open and the Severn tide came through,
And the water kept on gaining spite of all that they could do.

 

They did their best to beach her but they couldn't do no more,
And she foundered at the finish there in sight of Appledore;
And her bones'll never flicker blue on any 'longshore fire,
For she'll lie there and she'll moulder as an old ship might desire,
And hear the vessels passing by and dream about the past
And the great old times in Devon, where they built her once to last.

 

Good job I had nothing planned tonight! Evening all,

 

Schooner

 

Edited by Schooner
First pass at correcting errors in spelling and speculation. Two more edits to correct the errors in the spelling of 'speculation'...
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  • Schooner changed the title to Schooner's (Mostly Maritime) Musings - A holiday in the Cotswolds [was Port of London, 1884]

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