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Norfolk area group, any interest?


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I was talking to someone at the Derby exhibition about getting started in 2mm and mentioned it was a shame there wasn't an area group close to me in mid Norfolk. "So why not start one?" he replied.  Fair point.

 

Anyone out there who might be interested in helping to get something going?  Many years ago in a previous attempt at 2mm I went to a couple of the Essex meets and got a lot out of them.

 

Richard

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I'm in Norfolk but its a big place - I live in the basement of Shop 4 near the North Norfolk Coast so its miles to anywhere except the nearby places. 🙂

If only the M&GN was still running. I used to enjoy the Darkest Essex meetings when I lived in that area, so a reasonably local group would be good.  I have noticed that none of the smaller scale societies seem to have area groups out here but the O gauge do - not sure why that is.

Cheers

Jon

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1 hour ago, GER_Jon said:

I'm in Norfolk but its a big place - I live in the basement of Shop 4 near the North Norfolk Coast so its miles to anywhere except the nearby places. 🙂

If only the M&GN was still running. I used to enjoy the Darkest Essex meetings when I lived in that area, so a reasonably local group would be good.  I have noticed that none of the smaller scale societies seem to have area groups out here but the O gauge do - not sure why that is.

Cheers

Jon

Not sure how reliable local exhibitions are as a guide, but I don't get the impression that Norfolk is a hotspot for fine scale modelling. We're world-class for Thomas the Tank Engine layouts though.  As you say, Norfolk is a big area and away from Norwich it's quite sparsely populated. Still worth trying to get something going though. What's the worst that can happen?

 

Richard

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39 minutes ago, Ian Smeeton said:

Have you put his out on the VAG, you might get a bit more response as not all are on RMWeb.

 

Also, something in the Mag?

 

Regards

 

Ian

If this looks like it might get off the ground I'll try to get something in the next Newsletter. Meanwhile I'll reacquaint myself with VAG, thanks for the suggestion.  Cheers, Richard

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I started the Norfolk & Suffolk Narrow Gauge Modellers a few years ago and we meet outside Beccles.

We have members travelling from Swaffham, Ipswich, Wymondham etc so people are prepared to travel if they really want to.

 

We generally get around 15 to a meet. Obviously I appreciate its a broader subject.

 

Good luck 

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I can't speak for other AGs, but the North Mercia Area Group draws people from an hour and more away by car.

 

As the Sunday meet ups are only every 2 months or so, it doesn't get stale.

 

Different AGs, different formats, but @Laurie2milgenerally organises someone to talk or demonstrate something, and then we repair to the railway room after refreshments.

 

Each to their own, though. 

 

Regards

 

Ian

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On 22/06/2022 at 22:29, Richard Hall said:

Not sure how reliable local exhibitions are as a guide, but I don't get the impression that Norfolk is a hotspot for fine scale modelling. We're world-class for Thomas the Tank Engine layouts though.  As you say, Norfolk is a big area and away from Norwich it's quite sparsely populated. Still worth trying to get something going though. What's the worst that can happen?

 

Richard

 

There are a few of us in Norfolk could take issue with your comments! 

 

If model shops are an indication of the number of modellers in an area, there are more model shops in North Norfolk than the whole of Essex!

 

Paul

Sheringham 

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3 hours ago, PaulG said:

 

There are a few of us in Norfolk could take issue with your comments! 

 

If model shops are an indication of the number of modellers in an area, there are more model shops in North Norfolk than the whole of Essex!

 

Paul

Sheringham 

Fair comment and I certainly wouldn't want to offend anyone in Norfolk, even if I am from Lincolnshire originally and therefore inclined to view all Norfolk people with suspicion.  I was responding to GER_Jon's observation that none of the smaller scale societies seem to have local groups in Norfolk, and wondering whether it is just that there aren't that many people in these parts working in the finer scales.  Perhaps one of the purposes of a local area group should be to promote 2mm modelling in that area via exhibition layouts: I can't recall seeing a 2mm layout at any of the local shows pre-Covid, nor very much in EM/P4.  I bet there are a few N gauge modellers who could be encouraged to have a go if they could see 2mm in action, and actually running better than commercial N.

 

Richard

 

 

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Would anyone object if I posted up my initial thoughts here on how a new group might operate?  Looking to get a bit of feedback and helpful advice, especially from people who are / were involved in running area groups, as well as getting a feel for what people might want from a group. I've had a look through some old Newsletters and there seem to be quite a few different ways of doing things.

 

Thanks, Richard

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I Don't think anyone on here would object, although it might be worth reporting your own post and asking Andy Y.

 

I would copy and paste the same and get it on the VAG, and also to the Newsletter editor so that everyone goes with the same ideas of what your AG should be about.

 

Regards

 

Ian

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5 hours ago, Richard Hall said:

Fair comment and I certainly wouldn't want to offend anyone in Norfolk, even if I am from Lincolnshire originally and therefore inclined to view all Norfolk people with suspicion.  

 

Richard

 

 

 

Richard 

You could well be correct about the number of "modellers"!!!🤣🤣 

 

Paul

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Some thoughts on area groups. (I thought I was subscribed to the VAG but it seems not.  I suspect I was bounced off a couple of years ago when I was late renewing my sub. Once I've rejoined I'll start a thread on there to mirror this one.) To kick off, why have an area group at all?  If you can decide what an organisation is supposed to do, most of the decisions flow from that.  

 

·        To inspire and encourage – not just new 2mm modellers, anyone can become stuck in a rut and get fed up with whatever they are working on.  Especially when you get to that stage where you have a couple of unfinished locos and some half-built trackwork, and all you can do is push a wagon up and down a length of Easitrac.

·        To share knowledge – materials, techniques, tools etc. 

·        To spread the word – 2mm presence at local exhibitions and on social media.

·        Above all it should be welcoming, friendly and fun. Something that people look forward to each month.

 

Anything I'm missing? Something blindingly obvious, if I'm on my usual form.

 

Richard

 

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14 minutes ago, Richard Hall said:

Some thoughts on area groups. (I thought I was subscribed to the VAG but it seems not.  I suspect I was bounced off a couple of years ago when I was late renewing my sub. Once I've rejoined I'll start a thread on there to mirror this one.) To kick off, why have an area group at all?  If you can decide what an organisation is supposed to do, most of the decisions flow from that.  

 

·        To inspire and encourage – not just new 2mm modellers, anyone can become stuck in a rut and get fed up with whatever they are working on.  Especially when you get to that stage where you have a couple of unfinished locos and some half-built trackwork, and all you can do is push a wagon up and down a length of Easitrac.

·        To share knowledge – materials, techniques, tools etc. 

·        To spread the word – 2mm presence at local exhibitions and on social media.

·        Above all it should be welcoming, friendly and fun. Something that people look forward to each month.

 

Anything I'm missing? Something blindingly obvious, if I'm on my usual form.

 

Richard

 

I would suggest securing a venue is quite important be it a hall  railway club or a  spare bedroom / shed

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20 minutes ago, nick_bastable said:

I would suggest securing a venue is quite important be it a hall  railway club or a  spare bedroom / shed

I'm coming to that, thought it better to break my thoughts down into smaller sections rather than post everything at once.  Venue, meeting format and frequency, group layout / test track and boring stuff like liability insurance all to be considered. Spoiler alert: I have a potentially suitable clubroom and it's free.

 

Richard

 

 

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8 hours ago, Richard Hall said:

I'm coming to that, thought it better to break my thoughts down into smaller sections rather than post everything at once.  Venue, meeting format and frequency, group layout / test track and boring stuff like liability insurance all to be considered. Spoiler alert: I have a potentially suitable clubroom and it's free.

 

Richard

 

 

 

There are a number of model railway clubs in Norfolk (Broadland, 32A, Norwich, and Cromer come to mind) and most seam to cater for most scales, have you thought about joining one of these? 

 

Paul 

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18 minutes ago, PaulG said:

 

There are a number of model railway clubs in Norfolk (Broadland, 32A, Norwich, and Cromer come to mind) and most seam to cater for most scales, have you thought about joining one of these? 

 

Paul 

Traditional all-scales clubs are, I think, very important for the hobby, especially in helping people who are new to it, but they don't really perform the same role as a 2mm area group IMHO.  No reason not to do both, but existing clubs are just far enough from home to be unappealing for me: I work quite long hours so by the time I've got home and showered it's a bit late to head off for a weekday evening meeting 45 minutes drive away.  As others have suggested, an AG being rather more specialised, people might be prepared to travel a bit further.  I would.

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11 hours ago, Richard Hall said:

Some thoughts on area groups. (I thought I was subscribed to the VAG but it seems not.  I suspect I was bounced off a couple of years ago when I was late renewing my sub. Once I've rejoined I'll start a thread on there to mirror this one.) To kick off, why have an area group at all?  If you can decide what an organisation is supposed to do, most of the decisions flow from that.  

 

·        To inspire and encourage – not just new 2mm modellers, anyone can become stuck in a rut and get fed up with whatever they are working on.  Especially when you get to that stage where you have a couple of unfinished locos and some half-built trackwork, and all you can do is push a wagon up and down a length of Easitrac.

·        To share knowledge – materials, techniques, tools etc. 

·        To spread the word – 2mm presence at local exhibitions and on social media.

·        Above all it should be welcoming, friendly and fun. Something that people look forward to each month.

 

Anything I'm missing? Something blindingly obvious, if I'm on my usual form.

 

Richard

 

 

Having been involved in various finescale groups in several scales,  I think a key thing to settle up-front is the group's purposes: 

 

Is the group going to have a group-layout ?    If so, what (test track, or layout), how big, purpose, where-to-keep-it, finance it,  stock,  etc.. 

Is the group really there for some mates to meet and do stuff around a layout belonging to one group member ?  
Is the group definitely not a group-layout owning group, but just a mutual modelling support group ?  

 

Is the group there to promote the hobby to others (ie. publicise things, talk to others, raise new members), or is it a private group with no interest in publicity (and possibly little or no interest in taking new members)? 

 

 

I've been members of all of the above,  all can work,  all have different constraints. 

 

 

- Nigel

 

 

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8 hours ago, Nigelcliffe said:

 

Having been involved in various finescale groups in several scales,  I think a key thing to settle up-front is the group's purposes: 

 

Is the group going to have a group-layout ?    If so, what (test track, or layout), how big, purpose, where-to-keep-it, finance it,  stock,  etc.. 

Is the group really there for some mates to meet and do stuff around a layout belonging to one group member ?  
Is the group definitely not a group-layout owning group, but just a mutual modelling support group ?  

 

Is the group there to promote the hobby to others (ie. publicise things, talk to others, raise new members), or is it a private group with no interest in publicity (and possibly little or no interest in taking new members)? 

 

 

I've been members of all of the above,  all can work,  all have different constraints. 

 

 

- Nigel

 

 

 

Thank you Nigel, that's very helpful and very much in line with what I am trying to do here.  I'm starting to think that what I really need is at least two other people interested in getting involved, then we can hammer out the basic aims and structure between us. There is scope for a smallish group layout or test track, but straight away you are into questions of funding, ownership and access which need to be sorted before anyone starts butchering innocent sheets of plywood. I know what I personally would like to see, but the idea is to set up a Norfolk Area Group, not a Richard Hall Modelling Support Group. 

 

Might be time to email the people on Jim's list and see what interest there is out there.

 

Richard

 

 

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Good luck with a Norfolk Area Group, Richard.  Nigel's words are wise (as always), and I would say you have the right approach.  If our experiences getting going with NMAG might be helpful, please contact me off-list (laurie4wheels@btinternet.com) and I'd be happy to share them with you.

 

Laurie Adams

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