The Warren, Bredgar, Sittingbourne, Kent ME9 8AT. Tel:01622 884254.
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Published:- March 2008
The winter closed period is over and the first open day of 2008 has passed with the model behaving fairly well. Over the winter period we sorted out some of our electrical problems, but the first open day raised a few more minor issues to be resolved.
The mountain range mentioned as being complete in the previous report has been modified. It came in for some criticism from one of our live steam friends who felt that the back scene was too bland. That spurred us into some drastic action and a large section on the mountain backscene was hacked out, just as well it was made of cardboard and polystyrene. The pictures show just how much was cut out.
Either side of the gap was then rebuilt in our usual manner to form two mountain peaks with a level area in between. This level area will be ideal for some form of building or industry. Some thought will have to be given as to how best to make use of this area. This modification had not been planned for the winter so not everything on our 'to do' list has been completed.
We did, however, complete the step-up for our smaller visitors. When not in use the step-up is pushed flat to the front of the layout leaving room for manoeuvring the cars that share our shed.
The funicular railway has now got a bottom station as well as a name - the 'Eeryie Bahn'.
The river has been completed, greenery laid and all the track ballasted, some new trees have also been planted. Some comment should be made about these trees. The trees made for the initial build of the railway were made from wire and sisal string, dipped in glue and liberally coated with green sawdust. The new trees came from a tree, an old artificial Christmas tree which was falling apart. Each branch of this tree formed a scaled down fir tree, all that was need was for them to be planted.
The old modeller's adage is true - 'never throw anything out, it may have a use'.
Our backscene critic was kind enough to lend us a tram and the only place that we could run this was the valley floor. The track was duly laid, it comes out of a tunnel, passes the front of the funicular station and runs up the valley to the river. The tram is controlled by a module which automatically reverses the electric current at each end of the line and also causes the tram to wait at the station for a short period of time, this means we can switch it on and forget about it.
At the terminus station a river side picnic park has sprung up complete with a tea bar, tables and benches and umbrellas. Even a swan has made an appearance and this is being fed by some children. This whole area adds a touch of colour to the layout.