One of the Milland Valley Railway Modellers* layouts
*MVRM is one of the Liphook U3A’s & Midhurst U3A’s afternoon special interest groups
Layout construction photos are being added progressively into this section- keep on coming back to see which photos have been added. We hope to show this layout or parts of it at the Liphook U3A Open day on Monday 4th March 2019 and the Liphook & District Model Railway Club’s 10th Annual “Model Trains in the Valley” event on Sunday 17th October 2019.
EAST HANTS LINK
A fictional light rail system in real places
In the initial proposals for the “sustainable new town” of Whitehill-Bordon in Hampshire, much was made of linking the area to the nearby Bentley railway station, using the old track bed of a long closed branch line.
Once consultants got hold of it, the scheme became a hugely expensive set of proposals, one of which was to move one of the nearby main lines to serve the area. Not surprisingly the light rail proposal got lost and in reality we have a “sustainable development”, which is rather perversely, entirely reliant on the motor car!
So this is another “might have been” model railway layout.
On the layout we have linked the area to both nearby main railway lines, the Waterloo/Alton and the Waterloo/ Portsmouth line and in so doing have also improved its transport links to the large village of Liphook and the intermediate villages of Lindford, Standford and others. The scheme also shows the potential light rail gives to improve the local environment and reduce traffic problems, caused by school and shopping trips, without intrusive road expansion. Your attention is drawn to the pedestrianised areas created around Liphook station & The Square.
There are five “scenes,” representing how a light rail link might look in Liphook (Railway station and The Square); Crossing the A3 bypass; Whitehill-Bordon and at Bentley railway station, based on systems in mainland Europe and in some UK cities.
The layout is built to N scale using ready to run Japanese tram models to a scale of 1:150 and British kit and scratch-built models of buildings & road transport vehicles scaled at 1:148.
As a means of “selling” new local transport plans, the role of an operational diorama is rarely seen. Many UK citizens have never ridden in a modern tram or seen them in a UK town. They can’t imagine it in their town, so they easily can dismiss it as a viable option.
The “Baseboard”- Original intention
Each scene built into one Ikea type Toy Box.
Each scene to have a plan area of 700 x 300 o/a. The back-scene height will be a little under 300 .The overall plan area required for 5 modules in a “U” shaped arrangement will be 1400 x 1300
The following descriptions refer to the scheme as envisaged for the tram layout. There is no real life scheme for the changes shown on the model or for a light rail line, so no “Stop the Tram Groups” or letters in the local press please!
There will be maps accompanying the modules to explain the scheme, when exhibited.
Module A- Liphook Railway station
Model layout plan- the plan will be updated shortly to show the new station building and retail and residential development
Tram platform adjacent (at right angles) to the up platform alongside station building
There will be a low relief model of the station facade facing into the station yard. The tram stop is a simple modern structure with a long covered low platform. I have obtained a kit of one from Japan- it is very similar to those in Europe and on British systems.
Module B- Liphook Square
Street running through pedestrianised area past the Royal Anchor
Cars will disappear from these views with large traffic free area in front of Lloyd’s Bank and the Royal Anchor- The model will assume both premises have converted to residential use at least at the upper levels with some commercial use at ground level
Model Layout Plan
Module C- Crossing the A3
Model layout plan- original proposal- found to be too much for one box and bridge type changed
Module D- Tram depot/stop/ Park& Ride at Bordon/ Whitehill
The tram depot will be a Peco diesel loco shed kit or similar with pits etc. Multi-storey car parking, bike racks,bus interchange. Shopping units, Office buildings and Industrial units.
Model layout plan
Bay platform on down side (as used originally for Bordon branch line trains)
The station building as seen from the bay platform will be modelled in low relief. The footbridge will be replaced with lifts or ramps.
This picture was taken some time after the branch line closed and the track had been reclaimed. The area is now quite heavily wooded. (temporary photo)
The track level for the new tram system will have to be somewhat higher relative to the platform, as the trams have a low, virtually step free access from platform/street level
Model layout plan
As such a line would be operated by modern European/ Japanese designed stock the scale chosen for the model are Japanese (N) 1:150 which is extremely close to British (N) 1:148. This will enable me to mix & match with British building kits, model vehicles, road signs & main line railway stock
Feb 2017 I have ordered a two car set from Japan to see how it works out. This is my first exercise in purchasing direct from Japan & my first try at N scale (I’ve just got a new pair of glasses so should be alright!)
Late March 2017 Subsequently have ordered and received from Osborne’s Models in the UK another similar two car unit.
Mid April 2017 This is one of two proposed layouts selected for building by the writer and followed by the Liphook U3A Building A Model Railway Group 2017. An additional Ikea type toy box has been ordered to complete the 5 required.(see August 2017 note)
11th May 2017 Received Kato tram stop kit from Japan- this or part of it will be used at the Liphook terminus
30th May 2017– Simple form of “Automatic” tram control we may use on this layout http://www.gordonstrams.net/ATSpage0.htm
30th July 2017- after a break- too hot in the garage/railway room is one excuse-I built 2 Ikea toy boxes- (modules 1&2) Module 3 was built previously –see photo at top of page so, I should be able to build the remaining two tomorrow. One of them is a non-Ikea copy so hope it lines up!
By late August 2017– All five “boxes” structure complete – Three are ex Ikea with one side panel omitted; One ex Ikea with one side panel to be cut out; One non-Ikea with more substantial material forming side panels and dowels and screws used to join main frame together (Ikea -screws only).Unfortunately it also has slightly different dimensions so will be used for Module 3 to keep some semblance of symmetry.
A CHANGE OF DIRECTION
I found building a layout into the confines of the boxes increasingly difficult, particular in getting close alignment between each “box” to lay track across. A complete rethink was required.
I had unused two 1200 x 500 and one corner unit in conventional baseboard frames, constructed in CLS timber. With only an extremely small additional section to construct, this provided a similar overall size but with only 3 baseboard sections to contain the 5 scenes and a much easier prospect for track laying and transport.
The Ikea style boxes will be used for one off diorama scenes.
Work on track laying can commence shortly.
We have Facebook pages covering
Milland Valley Railway Modellers https://www.facebook.com/LiphookBAMRG/
Tramway and Light Railway Association- for UK national club for Light rail & tram modellers in all scales.They also have a Facebook page http://www.tramwayinfo.com
Progress photos of scenic work on A3 over-bridge added 25.10.2018