Chris Leigh, Con­sul­tant Edi­tor

Model Rail (UK) - - Backscene -

My ‘Staines West’ branch line lay­out of­fered the prospect of a Western Re­gion branch ter­mi­nus in ‘N’ gauge with­out the need to use that hor­ri­ble ‘N’ gauge de­vice known as the ‘Rapido’ cou­pler. I only knew Staines West from 1962, by which time rail­cars and DMUS reigned supreme. Freight ser­vices had ended in 1955. If I mod­elled the sta­tion as I re­mem­bered it from 1962, with the goods yard derelict and over­grown, I could pro­vide all the trains with which I was fa­mil­iar – ‘54XX’ 0-6-0PTS on au­to­trains, GWR rail­cars, and – af­ter 1958 – Glouces­ter RC&W rail­cars (Class 122) and from 1960 Pressed Steel rail­cars (Class 121). Only the cou­pling be­tween pan­nier and au­to­coach would re­quire a Rapido, for the outer ends of both could have cos­metic screw cou­plings: ‘54XX’ 0-6-0PT and Au­to­coach: Far­ish ‘64XX’ and Hawksworth au­to­trailer (ig­nor­ing the small dis­crep­ancy in wheel di­am­e­ter be­tween the ‘64XX’ and ‘54XX’ 0-6-0PTS. GWR rail­car Nos. W20-32: Gra­ham Far­ish Class 121 and 122 rail­cars: Dapol Ideally, I could do with a Class 117 three-car unit for the rush-hour through-trains to Padding­ton, but that will have to wait. Mod­el­ling hours this month: At least 36. Note to self: The gar­den needs at­ten­tion...

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