OO9 Mini-Exhibition

The OO9 Group of the Farnham and District MRC held its first Open Day on Sunday 15th August 2021 at the Club’s premises at the Wrecclesham Community Centre.

As well as the 009 Society Sales Stand  the following layouts were present.

Straight and Narrow (Farnham and District MRC) is the Club’s medley of individually-owned boards designed to interconnect and operate in any order and built to international physical and electrical standards. Some 8 boards will be shown in a linear configuration at the Open Day, involving cuttings, station halts, sidings, slate-quarry and WW1 scenery, all either individually or collectively (end to end) controlled against a blue-sky backdrop.

Coleford (John Wilkes) is based on a real railway in the Forest of Dean. I used to run between Coleford and Monmouth as a narrow gauge plateway (Monmouth Tramroad) to the River Wye. The model assumes it served the gold processing industry, chocolate and fashion clothing. Click here for a video of it.

Garreg Wen (‘White Rock’, Matthew and Helen Kean) is set in Snowdonia in the Victorian period around 1880, and represents the modest upper terminus for passenger working of a former horse tramway, converted to steam about a decade or so previously. A quarry extension leaves the back of the station to the foot of an incline located ‘off set’, but due to the gradient and the threat of runaway slate wagons, the passenger platform is on a separate line. Note the quarryman’s terrace with individually built slate rubble walls, vertical slate slab fencing typical of the Corris area and hand built plain track ballasted above the rail base in contemporary Victorian fashion.

Kaninchenbau (Iain Morrison) is a new fictional model that has been built using ready-to-run stock (RTR) from various European manufacturers and is based upon the prototype lines that are seen in the German/Swiss/Austrian borders area with the presumption that rolling and stock and locomotive power is lent between operators. This swapping of stock enables the layout to run various combinations that, whilst not seen on the prototype, looks interesting and provides variety and interest to visitors. Kaninchenbau has been designed with 2 levels that interconnected in the hidden sections of the layout which provides variety as trains will not always appear from tunnels in the expected order nor from the expected tunnel mouth. This is especially interesting for younger visitors who try to guess where the train will appear and are surprised when they are incorrect with the guess.

River Crane Mill (John Thorne).  A mill and its feeder stream in a very rural backwater. Served by a narrow gauge branchline. A new layout, featured in the May 21 edition of OO9 Society News.

Ryedown Lane (Patrick Collins) is small layout depicting part of a rural narrow gauge light railway in the 1930s. Although freelance, inspiration comes from the narrow gauge and light railways associated with Lieutenant Colonel Holman F. Stephens.
Construction is of conventional methods. Buildings are mostly scratch built, based on or inspired by structures from various Colonel Stephens railways. Rolling stock is built or adapted from a variety of well-known kits. Ryedown Lane featured in the January 2015 issue of Railway Modeller.

Somewhere in France

Somewhere in France (Peter Capon) tells a story and shows some of the conditions endured during World War 1 based on the narrow gauge railways operated by the Royal Engineers Light Railway Operating Companies behind the lines in France and Belgium in 1917 and 1918. The layout was featured in the June 2019 issue of Continental Modeller and also won the cup for Best Layout, voted for by the public at the Christchurch Model Railway Exhibition in Bournemouth in October 2019 and Best in Show at Tolworth Showtrain in November 2019.


Whimsy (David Harrington) is a flight of fancy – a Disney-esque village complete with witch’s cottage and broom-runway, adjoined by a small-town. Both locations are served by a narrow-gauge line. Serving a station “Whimsy – change for Sober and Uprite” and a freight dock. One for the children of all ages.

Photos from the day by Richard Harris:

Hall Overview

Coleford by John Wilkes

Gareg Wen by Matt Kean

Kaninchenbau by Iain Morrison

River Crane Mill by John Thorne

Ryedown Lane by Patrick Collins

Somewhere in France by Peter Capon

Whimsy by David Harrington

Overview of Straight and Narrow