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O Gauge Club Layouts

Grindley Brook (Our Exhibtion Layout)

Track plan of Grindley Brook

The (provisional) track plan of Grindley Brook [sketch by: Gary Kerr]

42774 exists the tunnel

42774 exits the tunnel at Grindley Brook [Photographer: David Brocklehurst]

Our new layout was been designed to fit a long curve into one side of our existing test track. The new section will make the existing test track into a large D-shape some 34-feet by 17-feet.

It represents a two-road through station based on London North Western Railway (LNWR) practice, with a goods yard to provide opportunities for shunting. The existing fiddle yard which has eight roads will be utilised.

The name was selected by looking at an old map of the area in which we wanted the layout to be set and choosing a place which had the correct topography, including a canal. This proved to be adjacent to the ex-LNWR line running between Whitchurch and Chester at a place called Grindley Brook.

No station was shown but, having chosen the name, we subsequently discovered that at some time a halt existed; so what we are constructing will assume that considerable rebuilding has taken place.

Platform paving

Brian and David - Painting the platform paving [photographer: Peter Storey]

By choosing LNWR origin it is hoped that it will make it easier to construct the station buildings as, in reality, these were modular. We are hoping to make patterns of the various panels and have them cast. Assembly should then be relatively easy. This will allow more time for the more complex buildings. Club members also have existing stock suitable for this location. Discussion is ongoing as to whether a change should be made to DCC and if so the best way of resolving the problems involved in converting existing stock.

Scenic touches to the station end of the layout

David, Colin and Peter installing fencing around the station building [Photographer: Gary Kerr]

When the track was laid and wired up, test running of various locos and lengths of trains revealed the odd minor problem that needed resolving. After these changes were made attention was made to weathering/painting the sides of the rails, landscaping and platform construction.

The layout is essentialy complete and has appeared at numberous exhibitions. As part of their series of showing layouts appearing at the 2019 Great Electric Train Show, the October 2019 issue of Hornby magazine has an article detailing how Grindley Brook was planned and constructed. Whilst they were taking photographs they also produced a video of the layout, this can be seen at HM148: Grindley Brook layout feature on their YouTube channel. It has 'onboard' and trackside shots.

There are more photographs and videos of Grindley Brook on our Layout Photos page.

As part of the Railex 2021 virtual exhibition, we were asked to give a presentation on the construction of Grindley Brook. This presentation can be seen on YouTube.

Grindley Brook in Railex Virtual Exhibition

Grindley Brook was due to appear at Railex 2021. Unfortunately the physical show had to be cancelled, however they did hold a virtual exhibition (Railex Virtual Model Railway Exhibition, 29th May). As part of the virtual exhibition, we were asked to give a presentation on the construction of Grindley Brook. This presentation can be seen on YouTube.

O Gauge Test Track

Inspecting the running of the coaches through the points

Coaches getting a closer inspection as they pass through a set of points [Photographer: Peter Storey]

The test track consists of four ovals of track. One of the straight sections having a passing loop for each oval so that trains can be made-up without interfering with the running locomotive. One of the ovals can be operated using DCC. Its been operating regularly on the second Thursday of each month. On occasional Saturdays, (typically on a school holiday weekend), the test track is available for public use on our running days, see our home page, for dates.