Early layouts

Fast forward to 1982.  As I had some old Railway Modeller magazines, I had been inspired by P D Hancock (who I would get to know personally much later) and his "Craig & Mertonford Railway", and in recent magazines I had read about Dick Wyatt's "Dovey Valley Railway".  So I joined the 009 Society and a new start was made on my own first narrow gauge layout. 009 Society website
I made some baseboards up in the loft and originally intended to build the layout up there, but it was so inaccessible I gave up on that idea and built the layout in my spare bedroom.

The "Tregony & Newbridge Railway" it was called.  The total size was 7ft x 4ft and the track plan was an oval of track at one end, scenically containing a hill and tunnel, with two "tails" to the terminus stations of Tregony a small port in Cornwall and Newbridge, an inland town.
I did take some pictures of it, but with a normal old 35mm compact camera (so please excuse the poor images), the best are below:-

(Click on images to enlarge - if you dare)

This is "Newbridge". A continental station building and goods shed (second hand) kit was used, and in the station is a Liliput 0-6-0 with a passenger train made up of Mikes Models Tallylyn vehicles and a Dundas 4w coach.

This is the hill in the middle of the oval of track.  The white cottage was made by my wife using card covered with p.v.a a sand to get a rough cast plaster look.

This is the quay side at "Tregony".  The back of a modified Airfix-Dapol engine shed is on the right, the back scene had a warehouse building painted on, and the carriage shed behind the crane hook was scratch built.

Tregony village from above.  Airfix/Dapol station building and "White Swan" pub, Hornby thatched cottages, and a scratch built bungalow and terraced houses.  A Roco 0-6-0 tank has arrived with a passenger train.  Loco facilities and the sidings to the engine shed and quayside are bottom left.
Track plan for the T.N.R

I had four locomotives, a Liliput G Thommen 0-6-0, a Roco 0-6-0 tank, a Jouef/Playcraft Decauville and a Chivers quarry Hunslet with an Arnold chassis (which I found very hard to make).  The last two lasted until 2017, when I sold them.  Mikes Models Tallylyn coaches, Dundas 4-wheeled coaches, Dundas 4w goods vans and Snailbeach D.R coal wagons,  Colin Ashby sheep wagons, Roco  mineral wagons, and two Liliput vans.

1987: I wanted to build a new large layout with more "character", but the track plan I was thinking of using had lots of quite sharp curves, and I didn't know whether my stock would cope with them.  So, I built an experimental interim layout called "Pinnock"

"Pinnock" (another Cornish name) was my second layout, and was a village that the Tregony & Newbridge Railway passed through.  The layout was 5ft x 1ft 6ins with a village scene built in only six weeks almost entirely built from the dismantled T.N.R described above. It featured a long oval with sharp curves and three internal sidings for the engine shed, goods shed and rolling stock storage.

View across the centre of the layout.  The village street is on the hill above the railway, the station building (and engine shed) were built from card and brick papers with old Superquick windows.  The stock siding is shown at the front with a Mikes Models Tallylyn brake van and Colin Ashby wagons.

The goods yard and cattle pens are in the centre.  Behind the goods shed is the scratch built engine shed.  "Leo" a Decauville 0-4-0 is hauling a short passenger train.

The Chivers quarry Hunslet  "Lloyd"with Colin Ashby coaches runs past the white cottage from the hill on the original T.N.R

Plan for "Pinnock"

An article appeared about "Pinnock" in "009 News" March 1988

The Tregony & Newbridge Railway, Version 2.  

My 3rd layout (1988).
The larger layout that I had in mind when I built "Pinnock" was a stretched version of Plan P33 of the Peco "Track Plans" booklet.  It was essentially a "rabbit warren" layout, these were quite popular in the 1970's with involuted track plans and trains diving in and out of tunnels at various heights.  I liked them, but they did nothing portray an authentic narrow gauge line.  My idea was to stretch the plan to 8ft x 2ft, this would ease the gradients, give a longer length of run and make the layout look more realistic.
This layout had rather unrealistic scenery though, lots of cliffs and hills made from "Modroc" plaster bandage painted grey, a HUGE waterfall, a nine arch viaduct, castle, the lord of the manor's house with his own personal carriage shed, the "caves" entrance hut and two small stations.  It was fully lit with lights (L.E.D's) around the castle.  The castle halt, and the stations all had lamps and the line was signalled with modified Eckon N gauge colour light signals.  Many of the curves on this "fairy tale" layout were 7.5" radius and I think there was a difference of about 5" in height between the lower line and the upper line.

The T.N.R Version 2 under construction.

The T.N.R Version 2 under construction. The cliffs and hills are being formed.  The castle was made from 3 Heljan English Church kits with curtain walls made from balsa wood covered in Superquick stone paper..  Tregony Station is on the lower left.  The vertical white stripe became a gushing waterfall.

Liliput 0-6-2 "Lothair" running beneath the castle walls.

Another Liliput loco "Luke" on the lower bridges with an Eggerbahn tank wagon and a Mikes Models T.R. guards van.

Another second hand Liliput 0-6-2, never named, runs across the long viaduct with goods train.  Down behind the viaduct there is the entrance to "Tregony Caves".

"Luke" and passenger train about to cross the viaduct.

The Newbridge end of the layout.  The station building and canopy to the right was a white metal Woodland Scenics structure kit.  The Manor house (a Kibri kit) can be seen with the private carriage shed siding.

Hunslet "Lloyd" is seen with a passenger train.  Tregony Station was inspired by Corris station and the engine shed was made from one of the Heljan Church naves, the station building and canopy from other parts of the church kits.

F.R. Prince loco (a Gem kit I think) runs up the longest gradient which will emerge at Castle Halt.  One of the Eckon colour light signals can be seen near the bottom of the picture.

Another photo I found of the nine arch viaduct with "Luke" and short mixed train which includes my favourite type of coach, an Eggerbahn OEG bogie carriage.

A low angle view of Newbridge Sation with "Lloyd" running in.  Lamps at this station had grain of wheat bulbs which I ran at a lower voltage to extend bulb life.

Two trains at the Tregony end.  Roco 0-6-0 "Louis" tank runs into Castle Halt with goods train, while just beneath "Luke" leaves a tunnel to cross the viaduct.  Another one of the colour light signals can be seen near "Lukes" cab.

Plan of layout (with the end cut off)

An article appeared about the T.N.R in "009 News" April 1989