Layout photography portfolio expands

September 30, 2013
Grangemouth (OO gauge) of the Falkirk MRC.

Grangemouth (OO gauge) built by members of Falkirk MRC.

I had the pleasure in photographing two Scottish based layouts for BRM recently: Grangemouth (OO Gauge) which belongs to Falkirk MRC, and Teesside Steel (O Gauge) which is exhibited regularly with RAF Kinloss MRC. They are quite different in style and theme but full of atmosphere and character. My thanks to the owners and clubs for allowing me to photograph them. They will be featured in British Railway Modelling in the near future.

A diesle scene on Grangemouth: the layout was inspired by the real location.

A diesel scene on Grangemouth. The layout was inspired by the real location and includes the wonderfully named Fouldubs Junction and signal box.

Teesside Steel-2

Teesside Steel is an industrial layout inspired by the steel industry on the Tees. Modelled in O gauge, it is highly detailed with many cameo scenes.

Teesside Steel-1

The layout was a pleasure to photograph, with its carefully toned down colours, interesting corners, nooks and crannies!

As a foot note, I am looking for more quality layouts (both privately owned and club layouts) to photograph for BRM, located in the north and Scotland. Contact:


‘Thomas the Tank Engine’ day at the Bo’ness Railway

September 25, 2013

On a fine Sunday, when I would normally be tackling a Munro or two, I decided to make a visit to the Bo’ness Railway, one of the finest heritage railway sites in the UK. It was ‘Thomas’ day and I delighted in watching a small blue tank engine sit in the bay with steam and whistles…

No, not really…it was a research trip and what I did find behind the diesel shed was a pleasing sight and something of a surprise…

The site at the Bo’ness Railway has sufficient expertise to allow for the inspection and fueling of main line diesel locos. Colas Rail Class 56, 56 105 was stabled on the Bo’ness for the weekend before returning to Grangemouth petroleum traffic.

The diesel shed with three Class 37s receiving attention…

Later in the afternoon, 56 105 departed Bo’ness for Grangemouth with 26 038 in tow. The latter was heading up the hill to assist with a charter train move. It was as good as a diesel gala – almost!


Well, I photographed a blue engine, as you can see, but not the steamer. Followers of my blog will be relieved to read that ‘Thomas’ did not come into the frame at all, except when he crept into the shot at the top of the article! That said, the line, station and the trains were packed, showing good support for the event. My thanks to the guys at the diesel shed for their friendly help and assistance on Sunday. By the way, was that ‘Percy’, the green engine in the back ground with 37 175?

Inverness Show this weekend…

September 6, 2013


Dudley Heath will be making a rare outing at the Inverness show this weekend – a weekend of playing trains for the pleasure of it! The show is held at the Mercure Hotel in the centre of Inverness, two minutes walk in a straight line more or less from the front of the station. The exhibition is open on Saturday (10 to 5) and Sunday (10 to 4).


There was the usual show preparation to do: Track cleaning and conditioning, wheel cleaning and maintenance jobs on locomotives and rolling stock. The rails are treated with Rail-Zip2 the night before the layout travels to the show. Rail-Zip2 conditions the rails preventing excessive arcing between wheels and rails, reducing tarnish and dirt build-up. It lasts long enough for a two-day show which (hopefully) removes the need to clean the track during operations.


Testing was completed following the layout’s relatively long period in storage – it has not been out since its outing to Peterborough last Autumn. The OHLE is yet to be ordered, built up and installed, so uncluttered photographic views like the one above are still possible to take. The down side is that the GF Class 350 and Dapol Class 86s remain to enter service.