Saturday, May 4, 2013

Sometimes the Gods Smile on us

Over the last 5 - 10 years or so I've been keeping a lookout for details I can find out about the parts of the Mudgee line that I am modelling. Thankfully, whilst employed by my previous employer, I was fortunate enough to check out the remains of the Portland Cement site, as well as Portland being the subject of one of the Byways editions. Mudgee on the other hand has been a different kettle of fish, John Parker has been a great help with some of the Mudgee information & especially with regards to modelling the station at Portland and I've made the road trip up to Mudgee a few times but unfortunately whilst the Station & goods shed are still there, the loco depot and all it's infrastructure, except the Seller turntable, have been demolished, and while there are a few photos floating around there was not, to my knowledge, any 'decent' photos that are 'suitable' to help me with what I am hoping to achieve. That all changed a little while ago.

So lets step back in time a few weeks.
I recently attended the SCMRA conventions put on by the Epping club at their Dence Park centre (I've been to a few of these before and find them well worth attending & I hope to get to more of them), during one of the talks I heard a bit of banter about the coal stage at Mudgee between John Parker (one of the presenters) and a couple of guys in the audience & thought to myself that I need to get in touch with the guys having that discussion. About a week later I got some contact details from a mate (thanks Marcus) and then made arrangements to meetup with one of the gents who was involved with that discussion.

The contact details I was given was for a gent named Tim Stewart (who was involved with the Abeckett's Creek layout many years ago) who Marcus said is building a layout based on the areas between Capertee & Mudgee, I rang & introduced myself, explained what I was hoping to achieve and asked if he had any photos or other details of the Mudgee area, mainly the loco depot and especially the surrounding railway buildings (loco inspectors office etc), Tim said yes he did have some research material that might be useful & invited me to go to his place to see what he had. So I toddled off there one day after work, all I can say is WOW - not only did he have a good selection of research photos & plans, but also what a great layout, there was Mudgee in all it's glory (and certainly done better than I will be able to as I don't have the length to do it 'properly'), as well as a couple of other stations. After a great night discussing Mudgee, the real thing and the layout, Tim pulled out a photo album chock a block full of photos and a few plans, and said I was welcome to copy whatever I needed. Tim's photos date back to the late 1980's and a smattering of photos from the 1970's - more than what I had and a goldmine of details showing what was there.

I've included a few photos from Tim's layout (with his permission) and while they can't do it justice (I took them with an iPhone 4s) I hope they convey the atmosphere of this layout somewhat.

Capertee Station

Capertee Goods yard

Mudgee Station, Looking towards Sydney

Mudgee Station from the turntable (it's a scratchbuilt Sellers) thru to the Station area.

Level Crossing just on the down side of Mudgee station.

I'm not sure if there any plans for it but I hope that the AMRM covers this layout in the future.

So until next time, Ciao.

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