Ariel view of layout

Sometime around 1970, triggered by some program I saw on television, I decided to build a model railway layout.

 “N” gauge was just coming out making it possible to build a small layout a quarter of the size it would be using the more common “Double-O” gauge.

Braefield Station
Goods Yard

 Previously playing “Trains” was a major exercise as the layout had to be first assembled as it was too big to be left ready for use.

The proposed design was to be small enough to be left permanently assembled (36 by 18 inches) and be glass covered to avoid it becoming a dust trap.

View over quarry to Braefield village
View over bridge toward Braefield  village

As N gauge was so new, parts were hard to find and most of what was available was German. I used to scour the local model shops for anything I could use in the layout. The only criterior was that the pieces must be vaguely in keeping with the “Derbyshire” feel I was aiming for.

As the layout would be completely covered the layout had to be electrified.

The track was divided into different sections so power could be selectively supplied to different areas allowing the two engines to be controlled independently.

All the points must be solenoid operated as did the strategically placed un-couplers.

Although not the old style semaphore signals I would have liked, at least the led signals I did use worked.

Lastly, working street lights, station lights, etc. were added for effect. The whole exercise took around 6 months.

Although not part of the original goal, once built I decide to contact the Railway Modeller magazine to see if they would be interested in an article. They were.

The original pictures I sent were not quite right for printing so I re-shot the photographs, drew the layout maps, wrote the article (reworked and improved by Mum) and re-submitted the article.

I got an acceptance letter and something like 8 to 10 months later the article appeared in the October 1971 edition of the magazine.

Railway Modeller Front cover
Braefield article - Page 2
Braefield article - Page 1
Braefield article - Page 3 Braefield article - Page 4

Although the model has not been used for years (the control unit is somewhere in the loft) and suffered slight damage during the various house moves it has been through, it still makes an attractive display in my lounge (well, I think it does).

[Model Railway]


06 April, 2010 


Fri 28 Sep 2007

Wed 12 Sep 2007

  • Reworked for Family Only Area.
  • Various corrections.