Temple Ewell Show

"At the Show"  -  report by Ross Shimmon

Geoff Roberts invited the EKOGG to take part in an Area 10 (South East) one day exhibition at Temple Ewell near Dover in early November.  With an air of optimism we agreed to take our (trans)portable layout 'Nailbourne' for its first outing.  It is based on a permanent layout bequeathed to us by a former member.  It normally lives in the barn we call home during the warmer months, attached to a large continuous circuit and another (non-portable) terminus 'Cavedale'.

To prepare for the show one of our members constructed folding trestles.  We also built a traverser and sector plate at one end and a tunnel with mirror at the other.  The station is based loosely on Heathfield, LB&SCR. It consists of 6 sections, each 3' x 2'. The track is Peco laid on foam, slow action point motors are used.  We rely on members to bring stock.  Surprisingly for a layout built using mainly recycled materials which lives in a building with wild extremes of temperature and humidity, it worked reasonably well. 

Several of us were exhibiting 0 gauge for the first time - and it showed.  We did not realise how difficult it is to couple screw link couplings, especially on vehicles with vacuum and steam heating pipes.  In the end we recruited a nine-year old boy and promoted him to chief shunter. It was an enjoyable experience - mostly. 'Nailbourne' wasn't the only EKOGG presence, Roger Harmer showed his fiendish coal yard shunting puzzle layout and Mike Perry exhibited his exquisite Tar Works, with lights and sound - all it needs is smell to complete the experience.

Among the star attractions was a Gauge 1 branch terminus, complete with a working Colonel Stephens-style wind pump and very smoky fire.  Up on the stage was a 7mm narrow gauge layout with several locos based on the Hornby 'Smoky Jo' 0-4-0 tanks.  Also up on the stage were trams which the builder insisted were made out of date boxes.  In the middle of the delightful village hall was a display of vintage tinplate models, with non-stop running on a couple of circuits.  Another continuous double track was busy with a Q1 and an O1 hauling substantial goods trains.

But for me, the outstanding feature of the show was the catering, provided by a local church group - scrumptious food at extraordinarily low prices.  The official attendance was 210. Proceeds went to the Dover Soup Kitchen.

'Nailbourne' - encouragingly was awarded a trophy for the most 'industrious' layout.  We were not quite sure what that meant, but we're taking it as a compliment.  The Trophy?  An EMU AWS warning unit.
                                                          Photos by John P & Ross S

Autumn 2012

Faversham Meeting  17th November 2012



We had a dozen for our “Bring a Book and a Model” afternoon.  Ross brought a circle of track which we set out at the front of the room with locos and stock.  At the back of the room another table held more stock, a loco and news items.  My L&Y Pug pottered round with Maurice’s freight  wagons, as did Nigel’s red 4F, but the sharp curves defeated longer wheelbases.  Vintage tinplate didn’t even try.  Gathering around the tables in turn, we heard about many models we don’t usually see, and found what reading matter inspires us to research, model or journey.  Earlier eight of us had chatted over lunch at “The Chimney Boy”. 


Photos by Jackie Davidson

The members have been extra busy of late putting in mid-week sessions on the layout as well as our usual fortnightly weekends.  A sliding fiddle yards has been assembled, electrics examined and landscape started.  As we all enjoy modelling and problem solving, it has been great fun.  Despite some rain we have usually lunched in the open air, talking over many subjects in addition to railways.

We had our first town meeting featuring photos of our activities over the last two years, with plenty of construction tips and suggestions.  We will be at the Temple Ewell Show with the Nailbourne layout.

[photo -  Ross S.  His LBSCR tunnel mouth being installed on Nailbourne.]

High Summer


On September 15th Nigel scaled a ladder and hacked the invading creepers, clearing the small window, daylight streaming in on twelve modellers and their trains.  Landscaping continued on Cavedale and began on Nailbourne with profiles to the tunnel end.  David had been busy since Telford, assembling the main frames and wheels of a Nelson, plus its sprung bogie.  We had lunch and tea outside in the sun.     The following Friday seven workers finished checking electrics, added platform surfaces and landscape profiles; and saw the sliding fiddle yard readied.


On September 1st we had 14 busy workers.  John B., a tram builder,  was soon deeply into electrics alongside David and Robin.  he got away at five.  Stuart tried out the footbridge and goods shed, as platform, bridge and landscape profiles took shape.  Nigel  battled the creepers as they spread inside the eves.  At Cavedale they quietly pursuing their one electrical fault.  A Royal Scot was on the circuit with a pair of Austin 7s.  We took tea on the lawn; visitor John showing us an aged loco that looked as if it should be pushing a train up a Swiss mountain.

High summer and harvest arrived on August 18th – it was sweltering. Saddle tanks were the order of the day, including one with tramway skirts fitted. Cavedale was being painted as landscape expanded. A first time visitor was soon helping to fettle baseboard joints by Nailbourne, where Robin balanced above the stairs repairing a point! Jig saws buzzed as ballast was titivated and the essential coffee mug shelf added under the control panel.

Barry got us out into fresh air under the fig tree, for very sticky biscuits and long drinks. Garth, in Australia, reported snow. He’s been busy making a level crossing keeper's cottage.