Spring 2016

June 8th 2016 - Wednesday at Badlesmere  - Ross Shimmon - writing & photos

We are well settled into our new home. It doesn't take the more able-bodied members to take the Edington Boards from their shelves and onto the trestles.  It's a treat to be able to erect the whole layout and have space to walk around it.  The main task was a 'dress rehearsal' for the Chatham Show at Gillingham on Sat/Sun 11/12 Jun. Two freight trains were run, plus two passenger trains and a railbus. There were a couple of engineering possessions interrupting proceedings and David W assiduously cleaned tracks in between services. John B took charge of one fiddle yard, while Ross and Roger alternated on the other. John P and Roger took turns on the station section. At times Chris acted as the admiring crowd. While all this was going on Paul and David Ho worked on the new 'roundy-roundy' boards and trestle. Luckily for our ears they did all this outside.

The following engines were spotted: ex-LSWR O2 & G6 and, inevitably these days, several Terriers. Two did not manage a run: SR Q1 and C. John P continues in his role as club caterer, providing tea and coffee at suitable intervals. However, we do miss the convivial lunches at the round table outside the barn.

June 4th 2016 - Saturday session at Badlesmere  - Rob M

As zero hour approached, the diners tumbled out of the Red Lion and Paul’s red car drew up across the green for him to open up for the others.  Once inside, trestles were got out, tables found for test tracks and chairs arranged.  John P, who’d found a carved throne to sit on (!), installed Edington’s chimneys, despite nobody ever having noticed that the station was chimney less.  It took a whole posse of us to check that they were vertical and at the correct height.  David 2 quietly fettled the layout’s electrics.  Some good old baseboards, to be a test track, with clips to join them were aligned by Roger’s crew; as from outside came the sound of Paul machining ply for the new curves.  Rather like picking oakum, a small group checked over old track, removing foam and wires.  So when the Hall’s Chairman dropped in we were all busy.  With mugs of tea under our belts, we turned to running on Edington, where an Ivatt 2-6-2tank proved reluctant and a 4-4-0 shed its bogie.  Meanwhile Terriers began to appear with freight stock and diesels gathered on the back roads.

May 2016 -

Work on the layout was in full swing on Wednesday 11th. Titivating ‘Edington’ were a full complement of three Davids, plus John P, Paul and Chris. They were taking a lunch break when I swanned in, but it was soon “all hands” to lift sections as uncoupling magnets were positioned, foliage improved and detail added. The sections were joined for trials with a couple of locos later in the afternoon as we took a mug of tea and Paul set out curved templates to check for size. Then it was sections stowed into the racks and a sweep of the hall before we left at four. The exhibition layout should be in fine fettle for when it appears at the Chatham (Gillingham) Show. [photo by Ross S.]

Meeting pattern: Please let us known which meeting days and times would best suit you. It looks likely that three meetings a month is our preferred option, but do you want two Saturdays and a Wednesday or vice versa. We could also vary start and finish times a little from those we’ve begun with. Do say, then we can try to adjust to suit most people and establish an easily remembered pattern.

Website: If you have photos or notes about meetings that you wouldn’t mind me mangling to go on the website do send them to me. They also help with pieces for The Guild News.

EKOGG clothing: Should you want to be smart at exhibitions, do then put in an order for a polo or sweat shirt. They cost £17.25 and £18.75 respectively. [Your name can be added to polo shirts for a small additional charge.] Chest sizes in inches: XS 34/36 - S 36/38 - M 38/40 - L 40/42 - XL 42/44 - XXL 44/46 - 3XL 46/48 - 4XL 48/50 - 5XL 50/52 - 6XL 52/54 ] Phone or email me after checking your measurements.

Moving Day: We moved into our new base on Wednesday 4th May.  Gloriously sunny and with the path freshly ballasted John P and I were ready when the van came; David G, Chris and Paul having loaded the layout earlier.  Jim soon joined us as "Edington" was slotted onto Paul's racking. John organised a brew-up, then it was off to collect more of our kit, before a well deserved lunch.  RM

Saturday April 30th - EKOGG visit to the Thanet Group's Open Day RM


When I found Kearns Hall by St Thomas’ Church in Birchington, I was greeted with waves from the EKOGG contingent at the stage end of the hall. John P was looking after the coal yard’s shunting, John B was managing the Guild Stand (while Roger nipped out to grab some sandwiches), Chris was at the quadruple test track, with Jim and Colin S keeping an eye on Geoff’s diorama and sales stall.  Trains circled: third and coarse rail on the high level with fine scale below. The two pairs of lines are stepped from the front, the lower level piercing the upper so that all are visible. British models and SNCF were on the lower, but the upper had various USA models: Cab-forward on a long freight, SF War Bonnets, a PRR electric, with a ‘propeller powered’ 1930’s DRG railcar making an appearance. Coffee and tea were plentifully available as we chatted.  At the end we watched with interest as four people swiftly dismantled the tracks. (Having such deep sides, what with the two levels sharing each section must make for a stiff box girder.) A pleasant ‘get together’ running session, but a little disappointing that so few had heard of it.


Saturday April 16th 2016 - Final full meeting at the Barn

Although it was intended to keep running sessions going until early summer, events are pushing on.  Paul has approved the shelving in our new Badlesmere venue so we intend to move in during the next fortnight, and our old tracks were dismantled.  Now members are deciding what form a new test circuit will take; most likely universal peco track.  In the midst of this we have to erect and test our exhibition layout, ready for shows in the next month.  It was all a bit sad moving out of the Barn, but we looked to the future over mugs of tea.  [New storage photo by Paul W.  More photos in the gallery.]

Saturday April 9th 2016 -  Faversham meeting

We were lucky to be privy to a new venture at the Tenterden Railway Museum when Bob Clifford visited us.  He shewed us prototypes for several information displays.  These started with slide showing “Goods Lading Bills” with him pointing out details of cargo and routes, before moving on to “Tickets” and finally “Colonel Stephens’ Rail Motors”.  Members raised points as we went along, then commented on the suitability of the presentations for a general audience.  We thanked Bob for this insight into the wealth of information held there, which we hope to see more of.  The meeting continued, after refreshments, with discussion on the move to Badlesmere and films provide by David G.

Saturday 19 March  -  At the barn.   Roger H

The group split itself into mix-and-match groups. Some helped Roger finish the final packing of the sales items into a neat pile while others finished separating the Nailbourne timbers and boards into stacks of re-usable bits and rubbish. Then all the “useful” stuff that we had stored under Cavedale was attacked. All of the scenic material, previously kept in little boxes here and there, was gathered into one large (but still liftable!) box; similarly, the electrical bits. While this was going on others attacked Cavedale itself saving what track, accessories and electrical stuff could be saved, binning the rest. With all the timber neatly stacked we became aware of just how big our barn space is! During all this activity our true purpose was not forgotten and Maurice and Roger both ran trains and Chris kept the kettles (no, not another train....) coming to keep us in tea and coffee.


March 12th - Faversham Town meeting

John Plumpton gave an enjoyable and informative talk on ‘Cardboard Building Construction’ before leading the resulting discussions.  Fourteen of us were at this town meeting, several having lunched at The Vaults beforehand.  John showed us various examples of building techniques as well as some finished examples.  He’d asked members about the models they’d brought along, so we heard about others’ methods too.  After tea, and chance to see what was on Roger’s ‘Bring & Buy’, we caught up on the search for a layout home.  Badlesmere should be our new base  after installing racks for the layout.  We may change the pattern of meetings to have two Wednesday and one Saturday session a month, making it easier to cope with family commitments.  Watch this space for dates and details.

March 5thLayout meeting

Running on the circuits will continue while we sort through the all the useful things we have accumulated, in fact it did with Jim’s saddle tank, a flock of little diesels from Colin and John B’s ballast train.  It had been sleeting in North Kent and was decidedly wet around our base.  When I squelched in members had removed the buildings from the termini.  Luckily Alastair appeared to reconnect the electrics so we were soon huddled around steaming mugs at lunch.  Preparing for our move, in a few months, we began to group boxes of gear.  We turned to the problem of making workspace so as to be able to make supports or a base for a future project and decided to dismantle Nailbourne, first removing the storage from beneath it.  All a bit sad seeing the enjoyment we’d had working on it, and in my case coming up with the design.  Hopefully EMUs, steam and diesel trains will emerge from its iconic tunnel in a future incarnation.

February 26th/27th - Tenterden: The Ashford Model Railway Show

Over the weekend ten of us were helping display our exhibition layout; from setting up on Friday, when Chris Nuttall joined to load the van and take it to Tenterden, to packing-up and transporting it back to its base on Sunday.  Six operators were in action on Saturday, with David Hopkins managing to get a couple of shots between managing the yard.  You can spot John B, David G, Maurice and Roger in control.  On Sunday there were four of us.  (More photos are in gallery section of the website.)

!  The Group is looking for a new venue for its test track.

If you know of anywhere within reach of Faversham do contact us.  30' by 15' or there abouts.


New Year 2016 & Autumn 2015

AGM  February 13th

Two dozen of us and visitors piled into the Fleur hall for our AGM.  (A dozen had joined for lunch earlier.)  Our searching out a new home for our test track was the hot topic.  Although we have some possibilities lined up, members are continuing to look around, with Paul Weeden and Ross Shimmon helping to co-ordinate this.

Wanted: a space 30’ x 17’ or thereabouts, preferably in the vicinity of Faversham.

We had a smaller display of models than usual, perhaps because many were on the exhibition layout.  Still there was plenty of interest with the winning entries being: Colin Smith’s Rye & Camber station, Mike Perry’s LMS 0-8-0, and David Grimwood’s S&DJR carriage and brake van.  We also had three tables of sales items for our Bring & Buy.

February 2016

After a successful and enjoyable year we have a new challenge - leaving The Barn and finding a home for our layouts, but I reckon we'll cope.

I'm sure we would all like to thank Alastair for the great times we've had over the last dozen years; picnicking in his garden, hammering in his workshop and modelling.

Rob Moody, Chairman EKOGG

The year's programme will continue as planned until Autumn, by which time we hope to have a home for our layouts in addition to our Faversham monthly meeting place in the Fleur Hall.

January 2nd / 3rd -  Our layout operating at Edington in Somerset, its home location!

December 12th  -  Christmas Gathering  -  RM

Amongst the twenty-two gathered for the Christmas quiz we were glad to see Ron Steward, Stan Clark and Joe Spinks.   Geoff set the questions; John Bullimore, Roger and myself vying for the honours.  As we munched mince pies we wondered how to celebrate “EK0GG's 30th" in 2016” ….

December 2nd  -  Show Preparation  -  RM

I joined one of the sessions, led by David G, for developing a timetable of moves for the next show; siding capacity and fiddle yard working coming to the fore.  One sector table needed 15mm shaved from a corner to better align the storage tracks.  It was accomplished with an enormous saw and everyone holding the offending board.  We became familiar with the sequence of switching controls and keeping the traffic moving.  All members are asked to “learn the ropes” for operating.  [More photos in our gallery.]

November 14th   –   Faversham Meeting   -   RM [photo Ross]

Brian, from the Faversham MRC, was able to join a mass of us for lunch before we helped bring over tool boxes to the Fleur Hall, ready for his informative session on soldering.  Soon a selection of irons and equipment were spread on the tables with us gathered around.  Brian explained what was available to use and demonstrating soldering wires to rails.  He stressed having an iron with enough power to cope with the heat loss and how to tin both wire and surface before soldering together.  We were admonished never to take a file to a modern soldering bit and to keep the tool clean with wipes on the damp sponge.  Then it was time to ask questions and “have a go”.  John P and Jackie soon had refreshments on the tables as we milled around exchanging information, before Paul, John B and Colin S led the cleaning up team.

November 7th  -  Layout Season Finale

Terriers had started appearing on the line when Stuart arrived; his Thames on local PO waggons soon joined by Jim’s SR version for parallel running and double heading.  The eleven of us who’d emerged from the wind and rain, agreed that the G0G Gazette had done our group proud with their colourful article.  Edington was titivated and checked in readiness for transporting; boards being placed face to face and the endplates to be bolted on.  Wiring tucked in, these crates were manhandled down to the waiting cars to be packed in with all the paraphernalia needed for its visit to Somerset.  We could now see the completed new surface for the floor and were quickly out with brooms.  Peter climbed up in time for tea; his first trip through the lanes verging on traumatic.    My Susie-Q diesel, with a few boxcars, had started the running next to Colin S’s 2BIL, his first 0 gauge piece made some years back, before Barry’s M7 went skimming round the circuit.    “Nailbourne Timber”, made by Colin S, was added adjacent to the yard of the terminus.    Then the power failed for a second time, a rural problem, and, covers on, we called it a day.

October 10th  –  Faversham Saturday Meeting

Exploring the far reaches of Scotland’s railways was featured in our films. Fifteen of us turned up at the Fleur Hall; eight of us including Mike S having lunched in The Vaults. It was good to see Joe B, who hasn’t been well for a while; and Peter V, up from the White Cliffs. John P’s expanding refreshment team were thanked for their efforts. Jim had been out to the loft and has screwed down the last of the new floor covering. (He was wondering about stock-unloading and new shelving.) After chatting we watched 1950s film of heavy haulage, followed by a study of York Station.

October 3rd - Saturday at the layouts

Out of the fog we gathered, but the sun broke through, so it was outside for lunch.  The afternoon felt balmy, partly accounting for the time we chatted over tea.  Sage green paint along Edington’s facia still needed a wet paint notice when members swarmed in.  Signal work began straight off and, after a quick tidy up, an awkward point and new vegetation were dealt with.  Beneath the sink a new stop cock was fitted, which entailed tictac men conveying messages to our president who was down a hole controlling the mains.  Floor panels were being fitted at the stairhead.  A Lord Nelson was tested on the circuits, finding a gap in the procession of LMS trains.  With space to work, the leapt into action to lay in the loco yard, and succeeded in running a huge SR electric.

Back at base camp Jim May soon had us positioning our improved floor.  Edington was erected on this smooth surface for the fault fixers to get to work.  Maurice was cutting back ivy from our walls, Stuart rolling up old carpet for a tip trip, and John P collecting rubbish sacks. (I got the bin washing job.)  Although Roger had just missed becoming G0G Chairman, he did not escape Scot free as he is to act as Area Rep. down here in the SE. With a record fifteen present, we almost ran out of mugs when we went out to the garden for tea.  RM

By the close of Wednesday’s meeting the majority of our exhibition layout’s difficulties had been ironed out.  We’d taken a relaxed outside lunch, with a willow warbler bathing in the gutters above.  Paul was planning powered signals, Colin touching-up paint, John adding scenic details and David Ha. doing something tiny and complicated.  Locos from Jim, David G and Roger were shuttling around Edington with confidence.  Beneath our feet smooth flooring spread towards the stair head.  Geoff and his wife briefly dropped by while my UP Consolidation - a delivery from Telford- circled the loft with a combine.  RM

12th September 2015 - Edington Junction’s first public showing! [ Ross and Ron's photos of the day are in our gallery section. ]

David Grimwood - On 12thSeptember, with careful planning and a lot of hard work on Friday, the layout arrived at the Bysing Wood Community Centre, and was set up and looked great. Unfortunately, a short circuit had paralyzed most of the layout. Fast and furious work by David Hopkins resolved most of the problems, just in time for the opening. We were able to run trains all day, quite an achievement bearing in mind the limited time for testing. The layout did look superb, and visitors admired the care taken with the details and buildings – a tribute to all who have contributed in so many different ways over the last year or so. Lots of EK0GG members came along to see and support, which the operators appreciated immensely. Despite the layout’s gremlins, we received provisional invitations to no fewer than four shows over the next year!

David Hopkins - I hope you have recovered if you were operating Edington at the Faversham show, an enjoyable day although stressful at times, especially with ‘shorts’, the show opening in 5 minutes and unable to run anything. We managed to isolate and fix one line. The other short (still to be investigated) I think is caused by failure of point motor contacts, or touching wires. We also had an operating rod snap off another point, which meant we were unable to use one line through the station. The gauging was slightly out to one of the points, there were a few dips and humps, plus one fiddle yard seemed to tighten up during the day. But there were a lot of plusses, I heard comments about how good scenery was, praise for the station building, signals and signalbox, and I saw fellow members having a good day. Seeing Edington has been constructed so quickly, normally it would take 3 years or longer to construct a layout of this size, I think we can all feel proud of ourselves, even with the minor hic-cups. Thank you everyone, even the members who just came to visit us at the show.

September 2nd  -  Layout development  -  RM

From sector plate to sector plate a procession of trains tried out the exhibition layout, with Paul noting any glitches as they passed.  This afternoon Edington’s team were learning the controls, after a swift demonstration from David Ho.  John, with everyone organised, led us to fill kettles and jugs with water, the taps having finally given up.  Roger was primping wires, and Ross and David Ha enhancing the scenic.  Colin kept a weather eye open as the last baseboards were manhandled downstairs. Geoff, with a box of carriages, joined us for lunch in the garden.  Bereft of Edington, the loft looked quite empty as a SR Terrier took to the circuit.  We planned the floor’s re-surfacing after our previous strengthening work.  After tea in the garden, beneath a swirl of housemartins, it was back on the tracks.  Locos ranged from a tiny DM to a Class 47!  A BR Terrier and O2 found a couple of tight point blades and checked train lengths.  Quite a day!

High Summer 2015

29th August  -  Saturday session  -  David G

The big moment came as Edington was taken down the stairs and erected in the main barn. Alastair kindly squeezed the tractor into a corner, and Edington was then turned round. Although one fiddle yard was still upstairs, we borrowed Roger’s diesel shunter to start learning how the layout operates. David Ho produced some clever lampstands with neat lighting which he had made, which threw much needed light on operations.  No less than three areas of track were found to have been laid with chairs the wrong way round, and these chairs will have to be filed down. Everything else seemed to work well (once a switch had been rapidly rewired), and in the daylight from the open barn door, everything looked splendid.

August 22nd  -  Working party  -  Ross S

A small, but select, group decided to do some work to catch up at the barn in preparation for the first public appearance of Edington Junction in September.  Colin Curtis worked on the path leading up to the lamp hut and John P continued building the fencing around the main station building. Ross, meanwhile, having forgotten the (model) fire buckets, fixed the hooks to put them on and placed that trademark Edington lamp post with the ladder and upside-down bucket. It was an incredibly hot day and, having achieved a few things, we retired to brave the gridlocked roads around Faversham. RS.

August 15th - Saturday  Running & making  -  RM

Improvements being made to the exhibition layout in all corners of the loft, as well on its actual baseboards.    Windows were being installed in buildings, platform trolleys soldered, paint toned down and signal gantries erected.  Then a suspect place in the floor was pointed out, so Jim and I leapt into action, nailing a bulk of timber beneath it to stop membership numbers falling.  John had brought a coach, newly constructed from one of our sales items, which ran behind a saddle tank.  On the other main line, Roger’s electro-diesel was putting in some miles on a coal train.  We nipped outside for tea and biscuits, before getting back to the layouts.

August 12th -  Wednesday  Construction & Running  -  RM

The much needed rain was petering out by lunchtime, but was still heavy enough to confine us to barracks, where there was plenty for the eight of us to do.  Wiring and fencing on Edington were progressing, with other associated jobs fitting round them.  We all had a chance to look at info. sheets and poster ideas.  The circuits were occupied by a coal train with a SR H class 0-4-4t drawing it and a shocking blue Alco diesel with huge grain hoppers going the other way.  Several modellers sported our new polo shirts; a few even had their names emblazoned above our logo.

August 1st - Saturday Running & Construction  -  RM

I had American trains out on the circuit, while Ron and John B were running BR and GER stock.  As that circled, we tidied and discussed improving the look of the minimal scenery behind the circuit.  Every now and then we clustered round Edington to turn or upend baseboards for the team. Paul, Roger and John P were at workbenches constructing buildings and signals for Edington, while David G and David Hopkins worked on electrics. Ross brought one of the station shelters and David Hayes added to scenery. Below stairs, Jim was preparing woodwork and advising Alastair and me about the new floor surface we intend to install. Twelve of us were out in the garden for lunch and tea, keeping up to date with group planning and news. The G0G Gazette had come, so we had a range of topics to chat about, including Roger standing for G0G Chairman. Super weather, the circuits in use and modellers all over the place making things, made for a good day. (With Operation Stack was winding down, we stood a chance of easier journeys home.)

July 22nd -    Mainly construction  -  RM

You could tell it was high summer by the comma butterflies resting on hats and turtle doves cooing above; there was also the continental traffic stuck on the motorways and combine harvesters filling the lanes.  John and David let us out for lunch, but we had a working tea in the loft. A BR/LMS Crab and SR M7 hauled freight on the circuits before moving onto Edington to test the electrics. Colin Curtis made sure they didn’t overshoot. We all moved substantial pieces of the layout so that wiring of another section and fiddle yard could progress. The workbench was occupied by signal and building construction, while groundworks continued on scenic boards. Around the loft, housekeeping chores were tacked.