Events in 2004

Ted Polet

Rail 2004

On 12, 13 and 14 November 2004, the 009 Society flag was shown at the big Rail2004 exhibition held in Leiden, Netherlands. Apart from four Dutch Group layouts, Robin and Susan Winter attended the show with their Manx layout Port Foxdale. The Dutch Group turned out with Bryn Goch (Jaap Stuurman), Castle Rock (Henk Wust), Stichting Behoud Leemspoor (Bert van Rhijn) and Rae Bridge (by myself). Permanent operators were René Boers, Arjan Straathof, Jan van Mourik and Derk Huisman, with other members and my son Axel pitching in when available. Rail2004 is a very busy show and although 4mm scale narrow gauge layouts tend to be small when compared to the others, we drew quite an audience and gave away our entire stock of flyers by Saturday night. Also on Saturday we had a Chinese dinner together with Robin and Susan which we still remember with pleasure.

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Expong 2004

The Dutch Group was present (again) at Expong 2004. Henk Wust had brought his German forestry layout which was much appreciated by the public. Support was by Jaap Stuurman and myself. The Reinier Hendriksen Trophy was awarded to John Bruce for Lower Peake Wharfe.

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Valkenburg 2004

On 28 and 29 August 2004 the annual model railway show was held at the Valkenburg narrow gauge museum near Leiden, Netherlands. As usual there were many layouts on view both from Holland and the UK. This show is well-known for its friendly and informal amosphere and many Dutch Group members came round, either to give a hand or simply to enjoy being there. Apart from several layouts from Britain we had several visitors who had flown in to take part in the show. I myself was most ably assisted by Ian Turner of the Wessex Group, who operated Rae Bridge for much of the show. Bill Luty and Garry Whiting ran a small Society sales stand and even Andrew Burnham showed up to my surprise.

On Saturday we had the usual layout competition followed by a Chinese dinner and a trip over the 70cm gauge railway outside. The latter event was followed by a derailment of the locomotive during shunting in the yard. The O&K well tank stubbed its toe on a point blade and had to be lifted out of the ballast.

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Exbury Gardens 2004

In June, 2004, Ian Turner had invited my brother Marcel and myself to Narrow Gauge in the Gardens at Exbury in the New Forest. Rae Bridge was jammed into my small Skoda Felicia - it just fitted - and we travelled across the pond and to Ian's home in Southampton, where we were treated to a huge meal by Judy Turner. The following day we went to Exbury to set up Rae Bridge. It was a pleasant two-day show with a good number of layouts by Wessex members and some from further afield. Outside the steam trains ran through the beautifully laid out gardens. We still remember that trip with much pleasure.

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Dutch Group meeting 2/2004

On Saturday 21 February the Dutch Group had its first meeting for a long time at the Valkenburg NG Museum. Although the Museum was officially open to the public, probably due to the early Spring holiday having started hardly any visitors appeared, so we had the place to ourselves. A number of Museum volunteers who were at work overhauling the rolling stock looked in though, and one or two visitors including our good friend Otto Schouwstra who had driven from the far north to see us. If I counted correctly, 12 members appeared which was an excellent turn-out considering some of us have to drive over two hours to get here! Four layouts and two dioramas were set up as follows:

In addition, models were shown by Kit Kittle, Martijn Bolderdijk (Eddy Bolderdijk's son), and our new member Dick van Beek. Kit had brought a number of 009 models including an interesting match between a vintage Minitrains Baldwin saddle tank body and an N gauge 0-4-4-0 Mallet chassis. Martijn really is a bit out of line because he has taken a fancy to 0-16.5 modelling, but the results are very good indeed. He brought an 0-4-2T, a Heisler and a Garratt. Dick van Beek then was a new member from Haarlem who specialises in all kinds of tramway type rolling stock. His diesel tramcars are reminiscent of Belgian Vicinal practice. Very neat modelling indeed as the photo shows - he had a huge line-up of models on a table. Jaap Stuurman and René Boers had set up a Talyllyn information stand including a Welsh flag and Talyllyn models by Jaap, but as hardly any public showed up they decided to simply float around and enjoy themselves.

Bert van Rhijn ran two new steam locomotives on his brickworks layout, including very finely built Corris type carriages. Rob Reinders had his new layout Hollenstein running, with modern Austrian H0e stock and some very commendable scenic work in progress. Jan van Mourik had the harbour extension to the Mouburg tramway in operation. His harbour station building and more ship models had been completed, including a mooring pontoon for the steamer he is at present engaged in building. Finally, my own Rae Bridge layout was in operation for much of the day, running various C&DR trains and playing host to models by Dick and Jan.

We all had an excellent time, running each other's models over the various layouts, and before we knew the day was over. By 4:30pm we started clearing away our things and within an hour most of us had departed for home. A word of thanks is in place for the Museum's hospitality and several huge cans of coffee which they supplied us with.

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