SKIPTON & DISTRICT RAILWAY SOCIETY
Well, the Exhibition has been and gone for another year. Hard work but very enjoyable.
Skipton & District Railway Society's Annual Exhibition 2007 was held over the August Bank Holiday at Aireville School. From all points of view it was another very successful show, sponsored by Northern Rail, with whom we enjoy a good relationship, having built a couple of small layouts for their staff to use in demonstrating the dangers of trespass and irresponsible behaviour on and about railway property to school-age children.
We had present one Society layout (Wards End, O gauge), one Skipton Group layout (Whiteadder Junction, EM), and two Society members' layouts - David Seymour's new EM layout (Hubberholme) and David Shillito's (also new) OO gauge shunting puzzle (Bocstyn Sidings). In addition, we had five invited layouts: Burlington Central from Perth MRC, a very nice N gauge US layout on two levels with superb scenery and a quality of running that had to be seen to be believed; John Holroyd's OO gauge Cromford and High Peak, with its fascinating rope-worked incline; Steven Smith's Hasselhof, an HO German town centre tramway diorama that packs an awful lot of good stuff into a small space; Rochwood from Heywood MRC, a busy OO roundy-roundy (and every exhibition needs a busy roundy-roundy); finally, Roger Epps' Sodham Hall, another little gem of a layout, BR blue period, OO and beautifully modelled.
For the first time in many years, Society members and their WAGs did the catering, headed by Captain David Carter (steers big ships around the world when not organising the catering at our show). Thank you David, Nick, Caroline and Anne, Peter and Dorothy. We think they made a substantial contribution to Society funds and from now on, every time I smell bacon frying, I shall be taken back in time to Skipton 2007. Captain Carter's bacon sandwiches were what I lived on for the three days of the Exhibition.
The layout I spent most of my time behind (and under) was Wards End which was on its first real outing after being completely re-wired and having a lot of very nice buildings added. Geoff Holmes and I spent a frantic 7 hours on Friday getting the electrics to work properly and everything ran beautifully on Saturday. On Sunday, it was warmer and we began to get the not unexpected shorts about 2:30 in the afternoon. This always happens on new layouts' first few outings as the hall warms up, the rails expand and begin to touch where they shouldn't. We didn't find the cause of the problem by closing time on Sunday but we worked round it and kept things running, hoping that Monday would be cooler and the problem would sort itself. By opening time on Monday morning, we'd found the problem and put it right. A turnout actuator under the layout had pushed two of the bare copper wire busbars into contact. Easy to rectify.
We were packed up and done by 8pm and adjourned to The Royal Shepherd, our usual watering hole, for an enjoyable hour of chat about the Exhibition and our usual putting the world to rights session.
During Sunday afternoon, I got the chance to take photographs of all the layouts to post on the website. Unfortunately, I was using a borrowed camera that I hadn't had time to learn to drive properly and I had no tripod. I usually take pictures of model railways by forcing the camera onto its smallest aperture to get good depth of field and either using it on a tripod or resting it on the layout, using delayed shutter release in either case. I could do none of this with the borrowed camera and some of the pictures are decidedly ropey. For that, I apologise to readers of the website and the layout owners. I'll be better prepared next year.
Here are a few of the better pictures, one of each layout, in alphabetical order.