Last weekend was the 7mm Narrow Gauge Association’s annual exhibition in Burton on Trent. I’ve been a member of the Association for over 2 years but this is the first time I’ve visited the exhibition.
I was impressed, the 7mm NGA certainly do things in sytle. The venue is the elegant Burton on Trent Town Hall, a lovely piece of Victorian architecture. They had organised a super selection of layouts in a wide variety of scales, gauges and geographies. There were a large number of traders, many catering specifically for the 7mm scale modellers, and the 7mm Association’s trade stands featuring publications, second hand items, new modelling goods and the specialist On30 stand.
The catering was very good and there is even a licensed bar (I guess you’d expect this in a venue built using donations from the Bass family!). I had a sausage cob and chips on arrival (to energise me after my journey), a pint of Doom Bar (to quench my thirst me after looking at the layouts) and a bacon and egg cob (to fortify me before my journey home). Modellers march on their stomachs – at least I do!
I enjoyed all of the layouts. Here’s a selection of photos of just some of them.
The Abbey Light Railway, O-14 by David Malton. A lovely layout of a real, but sadly defunct, line.
Also in O-14 Bunny Mine by David Rae. The inspiration came from a real location with a real gypsum mine. Yes, Bunny Hill really exists! I had a good chat with David about the techniques he’s used in the model. The wood came from strawberry punnets and the loads and ‘debris’ around the layout are real gypsum. David had to be careful the gypsum didn’t dissolve in the glue 🙂
Narrowing the gauge slightly, Ramma Woods in O9 by Simon Andrews. A very compact and well detailed woodland scene. David is building a O-6.5 layout at the moment, to represent a 10¼ gauge line, and I’m looking forward to seeing that develop.
Staying in O9, the latest layout from Christopher Payne, Pyn Valley Railway. Chris has really mastered the art of getting an operationally interesting trackplan into a very small space while retaining a spacious atmosphere.
The 7mm Narrow Gauge Association run a number of modelling competitions as part of their annual exhibition. I was very impressed by the standard of modelling.
A WW1 Pechot-Bourdon 0-4-4-0 loco by Jon Haworth. A Shapeways body mounted on two cut down 0-6-0 Piko chassis. A Pechot bogie well wagon, also from Shapeways, with a Duncan Models WW1 gun and figures by MK35. This is possibly my favourite model of the whole exhibition.
FR Hunslet Blanche 2-4-0 STT Blanche by Mark Noble. An EDM kit, on 14mm gauge. Note the full working Stephenson’s valve gear and sprung suspension.
NWNGR 0-6-4T Vulcan single Fairlie ‘Snowden Ranger’ by Keith Millard. Keith created custom tools to mill Romford wheels to create the distinctive Fairlie wheels..
Next year, on Saturday the 8th June 2019 is the 7mm NGA 40th anniversary exhibition. They say it will be the biggest exhibition they have ever organised. Definitely a date for your diary!