Southon Yard is the motive power depot of one of the Welsh narrow-gauge lines. The yard features a 25-foot turntable, a two-road engine shed, and a workshop for maintaining the line’s engines and rolling stock. Locos enter and leave the yard via the line behind the engine shed, they are turned if required, coaled and watered. You may also see shunting of coal wagons and supplies to the works. The turntable may seem unusual on a line such as this, but the Ffestiniog and the Lynton and Barnstable lines had similar ones, as did tramways such as the Glyn Valley, as the locos usually ran cab-first on tramways. In fact, this line has some tram engines so it may have been originally built as a tramway.
The layout was designed and built to fit into a shoebox for a competition at EXPO-NG in 2004, although I do have large feet which helped! The lighting and back-scene remove for this, as was allowed in the competition rules. It was also designed to be a setting for displaying my growing collection of 009 locos, and can be placed on a shelf. The design and construction of the layout had to be carefully thought out because it is so small. The turntable is motorised through a set of gears and shafts, the motor is in the workshop!
It was great fun to build this layout for the competition, even though it was designed and built within a tight 5-month timescale! I managed to use some buildings from a previousl layout that was never completed, but even so there was a surprising ammount of work for such a small layout. The icing on the cake was that I won the competition!
More pictures can be found at:
The Future of Exhibitions
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