Saturday, 12 November 2016

Spalding Model Railway Show

November is always a busy month for me, and this year is no exception with lots of conference sessions to present and the usual round of sales deals on the go. I was supposed to be working in Helsinki this weekend, but a domestic emergency put paid to that. plan.  I can't say I'm sorry because I spent last weekend travelling back from Vegas and I'm away again next weekend.

Not travelling meant I could get to the Spalding Model Railway Exhibition for the first time since moving out this way.

I have to say it was quite a good show, though I didn't spend that long inside, a feat achieved by deliberately avoiding the trade stands. To be honest when a show has Pempoul and Gresley beat in the list of layouts you know it is going to be quite good.

Gresley Beat isn't my kind of layout, but remains a real crowd pleaser and you can see  why.

The usual cliched Pempoul shots

I think this is Eastwood Vermont. The layout lighting defeated all the white balance settings on my XE-1

Foston Mills

 Tony Hill's 16mm Melin Llechi



Red Hook Bay

Clay Cross

Black Road, 7mm track powered live steam

Ogden Fold

Fen Drove



  1. Damn and blast! I really enjoyed the last Spalding show I went to and The Gravetts were there too, with Ditchling Green, a much better layout than Pempoul, a scene I find about as interesting as any run down French village. But the rest of those layouts looked to be a cut above the rest usually seen at a show these days. And it's one show I can get to without too much fuss. Damn, damn, damn! Sometimes there is a good reason NOT to be kicked off forums.....but only sometimes!

    1. I like the village end of Pempoul

      As usual I've tried hard to find relatively flattering shots of some of the layouts, and I'm always aware of my own bias. I know Fen Drove is popular, for instance, but struggled to enjoy it.

      Once again there were too many N gauge layouts with visible tight radius curves, and too many modern image layouts with bright light everywhere despite it being daylight.

  2. Oh I automatically tune out of modern image and N gauge, as I also do with OO9 which I hate. But there still seemed to be some good stuff there.

  3. A great set of photos, which I spotted on Flickr. You have more than done justice to the show. I wish I had seen Tony Hill's 16mm slate mill layout, I like "Rough Pup" and that could well be Pen Garret!

    1. Thanks Ian. I'm always surprised that I get quite decent shots at exhibitions given how crowded they are and how little elbow room you get. As so often white balance was a major issue with some layouts - to the degree it was noticeable with the naked eye and not just the camera sensor. Tony's line was a challenge with the amount of shadow at the front. In an ideal world I would probably have merged a couple of exposures to cope with the dynamic range.