Area Groups

For information about Area Groups, and to update your Area Group information, please email info@emgs.org

Cardiff & SE Wales Area Group

Following the success of the Modelling Workshop and AGM held at Nantgarw recently Gwynne Chivers is looking to start an area group in the Cardiff Area.  A number of members spoke with Gwynne at the event and also we met with some others who although Gwynne knew they were modellers he was unaware that they were members of the Society.  With this in mind Gwynne is hoping to get some regular meetings organised to help promote the Society within the South Wales Area.  Suggestions for activities include running sessions on existing or new layouts, talks from various people on both railway and modelling matters, visits to other exhibitions/groups within a reasonable distance and possibly the involvement of running an EMGS information stand at some local shows.  Meetings can be arranged at first on perhaps a bi-monthly basis, but that will depend on what is suggested by possible group members.

Gwynne can be contacted at g.chivers@btinternet.com and would welcome members in the South East Wales area to contact him to start to get an initial meeting arranged.

Craven & Ribble Area Group

The Craven & Ribble Area Group covers quite a wide geographical area to the north of Manchester. Indeed we were formerly known as the Manchester Area Group, but the change in name a couple of years ago more accurately reflects the composition of our current membership. We have around twelve active participants, with a majority, though not all, working in EM. Our usual meeting night is a Thursday, generally monthly between September to May. Several of our members have operational, home-based layouts and running nights at these various venues are our most regular activities. These include Tony Stoker’s GWR Empire, Nigel Hopwood’s Hunslet Road, Andy Innes’ ‘Arthington’ and Karl Crowther’s “Kentside MkII”

 

The summer period tends to feature ‘away days’ to other locations: for example in 2016 we were invited to participate in operating sessions on both Mike Norris’s ‘Preston’ layout and Steve Hall’s ‘Drighlington for Adwalton’, and we visited an open day at Roy Jackson’s ‘Retford’. A notable highlight of the calendar is Nigel Hopwood’s famed garden party which is usually held on a Saturday in July, then in October we hold our one-day ‘Expo-Bowland’ in collaboration with the Fylde Area Group of the Scalefour Society. This is an afternoon event at Newton-in-Bowland Village Hall and features a mix of small-sized layouts and various displays/demonstrations. A small charge is made to cover the hall hire and the cost of the excellent catering.

In addition to our ‘home-based’ layouts, we also have several exhibition layouts from amongst our group – for example, Nigel Hopwood’s ‘Three Score Vale’ (from the EMGS 2015 layout challenge).

 

We are always happy to welcome and encourage new members from the local area, whatever your preferred scale/gauge. Norman Pedley is the local group contact. Please contact him for more details. Email: normanjohnpedley@gmail.com  Landline: 01200 445142

Clydeside Area Group

This group consists of Dave Franks who is occasionally helped at shows by a couple of other members. We know that Scotland covers a huge area, but there are 29 members there. Think it would be great if people could contact Dave and make things a bit more formal.

Dave can be contacted on 01698 821272 or by email:-
davefranksemgs@aol.com

Cornwall Area Group

Since the sad passing of David Curtis, this group seems to have completely dropped off the radar. The Society records show that there are over 20 members in Cornwall. These are mostly in the TR and PL postal code areas, with a few in the EX area.

Is there a member in the area that would like to take up the challenge? Whilst during Lockdown physical meetings are not appropriate, then perhaps some thought could be given to holding a ZOOM or SKYPE call with interested members, or just having a WhatsApp group.

If you would like to accept the challenge then please contact Peter Rigby.

Peter is the Area Groups Coordinator and can be contacted on 01629 582598 or by email: – areagroups@emgs.org

Chilterns Area Group

The Chiltern Area Group convers parts of Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire. 

Typically the group meet in Bedford or Harpenden. Meetings are either during the evening or around lunchtime. See entries in forthcoming events for date and location of the next meeting.

Contact for the group is Tim Easter on 01582 768467 or chilterns.areagroup@gmail.com

East Dorset Area Group

East Dorset Area Group is a small group centred around the Wimborne area and is a mixed EM and P4 group.

Meetings are held on the second Monday of the month, in the Wimborne area. Please check with Peter Watson for the location.

The groups main layout is ‘Flintcombe’ which is based at the end of a fictitious spur running south west from the S&DJR line to Sturminster Newton. The name and location are derived from one of Thomas Hardy’s novels about life in 19th century Dorset, but the layout portrays the picture as it might have been in the late 1930’s. The scenic aspects attempt to represent the chalk terrain typical of the supposed Dorset location, while the main railway buildings have been based S&DJR examples from different parts of the S&D system.

On the technical side, trackwork is a mixture of scratch-built (ply sleepers & rivets with C&L cosmetic chairs) and C&L flexible. Layout signals are constructed largely from MSE components, with auto coupling coming from the same stable, using 3mm scale version of the ‘Sprat & Winkle’ modified in the way described by Philp Hall in MRJ issue 0.

The control system provides a signalling/switching facility between operators, with all the trains leaving the fiddle yard under the control of the main layout operators, while all trains moving to the fiddle yard are controlled by the fiddle yard operator.

Other members have home layouts and offer “running powers”.

EMGS Exhibition Stand

Further details of the group may be obtained from Peter Watson at grump1watson@yahoo.co.uk or phone 01202 247287.

East Hertfordshire & West Essex Area Group

Our small group was founded on 24th of May 1982 with seven members by Ken Morgan and Don Field.

Generally we meet on the second Friday evening of each month at members’ homes. Members model in a very wide range of scales, ranging from 2mm to O gauge, and including all the variations such as 7mm narrow gauge and Scale 7 etc. The recent Covid pandemic did interrupt our meetings but we continued to be in contact with each other on a regular basis using eMail and ‘phoning each other. Being an ‘ageing’ group of retirees it has been found that evening meetings are becoming less practical and alternative afternoon get togethers may be the future.

We are very much a “Show and tell” group, and even if no actual models are brought to the meeting there is always discussion along the lines of “How do you? ” Or “I am having difficulty making/getting…”

Some members have layouts but it is not always practical to operate them at our meetings.

One of the strengths of the group is the huge amount of experience available for the asking. Discussions include just about every rail related topic, both model and prototype you can think of, ranging from historical right up to present day, and we also discuss a huge range of non-rail related items as well!

On a few occasions we have made visits as a group to locations such as the Didcot Railway Centre, Pendon Museum and the Epping-Ongar railway, which is very near to us. We have also attended talks at the Stevenage Model Railway Club covering “The Network Southeast Story” by Chris Green, and another talk at the same venue for “ The InterCity story” also by Chris Green.

New members are always welcome. The contact for the group is Doug Fairhurst. eMail – doug@thefairhursts.com

Essex Area Group

The Essex area group has members spread across Essex and into SE London including Woodford Green, Loughton, Basildon, Rayleigh, Chelmsford, Braintree  and numerous places in between. We meet on the first Wednesday of every month visiting different members’ houses as well East Ham Model Railway Club and Mid Essex Model Railway Club. Our meetings are very informal and normally comprise the opportunity inspect and operate the host’s layout and to bring along models and projects for discussion, praise or helpful advice. Regular attendance is not good for the waistline as most hosts offer excellent refreshments of the non-slimming variety.

 Whilst we have a programme for the year this has to be kept under review and frequently changes at short notice. Anyone interested in coming along should contact the area group co-ordinator, Bob Page, (email robert.page94@yahoo.co.uk ) who will then include you on the group mailing list.

 As well as our regular meeting we organise occasional visits to locations of interest and we also supply demonstrators to man the EMGS stand at various local exhibitions.

Fenland Area Group

We meet bi-monthly and number about a dozen. Meetings are usually at Littleport, other  members homes or the Market Deeping clubroom.

 Our area covers roughly Stamford (Lincolnshire) down to St Ives (Cambridgeshire) and east to Bury St Edmunds. We mostly chat, show what we are working on and play trains. Also occasionally visit other people’s railways. Why not give me a ring on 01353 861126 and I will explain more about the group.

 Thanks for reading this. Brian Wakeling.

Heart of England Area Group

The Heart of England Area Group had its inaugural meeting in July 2017 and is broadly centred on Coventry, but currently with members from a wider area extending to Bidford-on-Avon, Leamington, Warwick, Kenilworth and Congerstone. While primarily an EM gauge group, members’ interests also include S4, 2mmFS, and O Gauge. Members have a variety of prototype interests including GWR, BR(W), BR(S), and the Cambrian Railway.

 Meetings
Meetings are held on the 3rd Wednesday of the month, normally in members’ homes but occasionally in a suitable pub. All are very informal and usually include a “Show and Tell” session. At some meetings a member’s layout may be available to view or operate.

 Layouts
Between us we have 2 layouts which are essentially finished (if one can use such a term!) and are occasionally exhibited, and a number of projects under construction.
“Llawryglyn” portrays a small Cambrian Railways branchline station and was built by Richard Loydall (his first layout in EM). It was featured in BRM Sept ’17 and has been regularly exhibited.
“Swaynton” represents the Southern Mainline between Southampton and Bournemouth in the summer of 1960, and was built by the late Douglas Smith, author of many articles in the Model Railway Journal, a significant contributor to the Society Manual, and a past secretary of the North West Surrey group. It is now owned by his son Richard and is exhibited from time to time with the assistance of members and friends of the NW Surrey group.

 We are always keen to welcome new members, so please contact Richard Smith by email: platform9.75@btinternet.com or phone: 01676 523540.

Kent Area Group

There is a group in Kent, but not very active and would welcome new members. We have over 60 members in the county, but I am aware it stretches from the Greater London boundary right down to Dover. The group is centred around the Medway towns, and Kevin Bays would be happy to hear from anyone wishing to join the group. Kevin can be contacted on 01634 220091 or by email:- kevinabays@yahoo.co.uk

Additionally there is scope for another group to be set up to cover perhaps a different part of Kent? Maybe based along the coast or the Tonbridge/Tunbridge Wells area?

If this appeals to you please contact Peter Rigby. Details below.

 

Leeds/Harrogate Area Group

The Leeds and Harrogate Area Group was formed in 2013 with 6 members. We now have 17 active members and regularly have 12-15 at a meeting.

 Meetings are held in North Leeds either at my home in Alwoodley or at Alwoodley Methodist Church Hall. Our current membership is spread across West and North Yorkshire from Thirsk in the North, Keighley and Skipton in the West and Normanton/Pontefract in the South East.

 Our meetings usually take the form of a discussion or presentation on specific topics, followed by a showing of members’ current activities, news and information. Topics covered in the past have been:

Split chassis loco construction

Couplings

Templot

Suspension Systems

And many others.

These meetings offer a chance for members to share their experience as well as adding to their own knowledge.

 The exception to this are our project workshops which are held at Alwoodley Methodist Church  Hall and involve each of us working on our own projects and circulating to see what others are involved in. We have 3-6 of these meetings a year which prove very popular.

 Finally all our meetings finish with refreshments and socializing.

 We also have organized visits to private layouts and demonstrations. We have a good relationship with the local West Yorkshire S4 group (several of our members are members of both groups) and sometimes visit each other’s meetings.

 Any or all of the above can and will be repeated from time to time as new members join our group

 We will welcome any new members or visitors if they would like to contact me.

Contact

Chris Batchelor:

e-mail: chrisbatchelor17@hotmail.co.uk

Phone: 0113-414-5431 

Mid Devon Area Group

The Mid Devon Area Group.

The Mid Devon Area Group. are an informal group that meet quarterly in Devon, usually in members’ homes. (Not just Mid Devon).  The Group includes members that work in 3mm, 4mm, 7mm and S Gauge.

There are a number of members layouts in the group including Tiverton, Ashburton and Dulverton.
Further details of the group can be obtained from David Smith (The corresponding member) at david.m.smith@hotmail.co.uk or phone 01363 773146 or David Dornom the Group Leader at dornom@eclipse.co.uk or phone 01363 84385
North East & Borders Area Group

The North East & Borders Area Group of the EM Gauge Society has been in existence for the last 8 years. The idea came from Keith Smart, who felt that a group should be formed for EMGS members in the area. From just a handful of members who met up in someone’s living room once a month, our numbers are such that on average, some 15 – 20 of us get together using local village halls as a suitable venue. Members come from the North East and Scottish Borders, SW Scotland, Cumbria, Midlothian, and further afield.

 Over the course of a year we manage to put together several modelling skills demonstrations, including Workshop Wise every October, a couple of practical days where projects are brought along and worked on, and even the odd group day out. Meetings are generally held during the afternoons on the 4th  Sunday of the month, and catering is provided by everyone just bringing along a plate of something to share. Two exhibition layouts have been built by members, the first being Kielder Forest, and then Middle Peak. This latter layout was a finalist in the EMGS 60th Anniversary layout competition held in 2015. Presently, a further small layout is being planned with the idea being that skills can be tried out, and help and support is there when needed.

 Summing up, we are a friendly crowd and always welcome newcomers whatever their interests and skillset. If after today you would like to come along and find out more (even if you are not yet an EMGS member), please contact myself – Keith Smart (Area Group Co-Ordinator) either by email – keith.smart06@tiscali.co.uk or telephone 01670 737572, or any other member of the group.

North West Somerset Area Group

We are a group of finescale modellers located in North Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire. This is an area known locally as ‘CUBA’ (The County that used to be Avon).

Although some of us work in different scales and gauges, we have all modelled to EM or P4 standards over the years.  We meet up on the third Thursday of each month either in members’ homes or in a room we have access to.  Our meetings usually consist of talks, slide and film shows, reviews of individual projects or visits to members’ layouts, occasionally hosting a guest speaker.  Our more skilled and experienced members are always willing to share their knowledge with those venturing into finescale standards for the first time.

As a group we usually provide manpower to assist members who attend local exhibitions with their layouts.  We aim to promote the Society and finescale modelling in general by attending exhibitions as demonstrators and with the EMGS display boards.

 New members or visitors to the area are always welcome. Contact – Tony Gomersall on 01454 615685 email a.f.gomersall@gmail.com

North West Surrey Area Group

The North West Surrey Area Group is a small group centred on Woking, but including members from a wider area extending from South West Surrey to South East London. While primarily an EM gauge group, members’ interests include S4, S Scale and larger scales, including narrow gauge variants. Members have a variety of prototype interests, mainly BR(S), the Southern and its constituents, but including BR(E), Midland Railway, GWR and “modern image” electrics and blue diesels.

 Meetings are held, usually on the second Thursday of the month, in members’ homes. Meetings are informal and usually include a “Show and Tell” session. At some meetings, a running session is possible on a member’s layout.

A group member is the custodian of “Metropolitan Junction”, one of the first EM gauge layouts to be described in the modelling press. It represents the Southern Railway in the late 1930’s. It is erected at some meetings and (provided the electrical gremlins can be kept at bay) offers running facilities for visiting stock.

Other members have home layouts and offer “running powers”.

“Swaynton”, representing the Southern Mainline between Southampton and Bournemouth in the summer of 1960, was built by the late Douglas Smith, author of many articles in the Model Railway Journal and a past secretary of the group. It is now owned by Richard Smith and is exhibited from time to time with the assistance of group members.

The group holds a EMGS  exhibition display board and provides a stand at some exhibitions to publicise EM gauge and demonstrate rolling stock construction and conversion of ready-to-run items.

We are always keen to welcome new members, so please either email Richard Stevenson at richard.w.stevenson@btinternet.com or phone 01932 342481.

North Wiltshire Area Group

We are a small group, currently of only 5 members, although with a wide spread of interests including both UK and overseas prototypes.

 As only 2 of us actually have operational home layouts, we usually meet at 8 pm on the first Wednesday of each month in the lounge of the Angel Hotel in Chippenham for what is essentially a “show and tell” session.

We do occasionally have meetings where we visit the working layouts for running sessions, but these are dependent on the other commitments of the various members of the group.

 Further information can be obtained from the group co-ordinator Iain Hunter on 01249 655441.

Oxfordshire Area Group

We had the inaugural meeting of the Oxfordshire EMGS Area Group on Wednesday 28th April, by Zoom. There were six of us and we all agreed that we would like to meet bi-monthly. So, I am pleased to say that we are now active!

These are early days, and given our small numbers currently, organisation will be to a minimum for now. I am hopeful that we will pick up a few more members as time goes on.

Please do contact me, either by email at oxpipes@gmail.com or by phone on 01865 731787.

Paul Rhodes

Sarum (Salisbury) Finescale Group

We are a mixed group of  EMGS and Scalefour Society members who meet at a private establishment near Salisbury. We number about 15 members, many of whom belong to both Societies, but at present those who are inclined towards EM outnumber P4 members. We are always pleased to meet fellow modellers who are simply ‘passing through’ or who live in our area. .

Our venue has strict security on entry. As a result, any new visitors must establish their identity. Therefore any visitor or prospective member should contact Joe Newman at jcn.tanglewood@btinternet.com or by telephone on 01722 328922 before they attend.

 Meetings
We meet fortnightly from 7.30pm on alternate Monday evenings, with members taking it in turn to provide tea and cakes.

Our individual modelling ranges from pre-grouping, through post-war ‘big four’ and early British Railways, to blue diesels. We are also interested in today’s railway in both current and preserved forms.

We try to have a varied programme, some of which is devoted to trying to improve our own modelling skills. As with any model railway club, there is usually someone who has a method of carrying out a modelling procedure that works for him. So we encourage mutual help.

Group Layouts
We have two layouts and a test track.

Navigation Road is our new EM layout which is currently active on the exhibition circuit and was shown at expoEM Spring in 2017.  It features blue diesels on local and inter-regional freights, together with a small loco depot and a canal.

Woolworth Road, our P4 exhibition layout, was awarded a ‘commended’ in the Scalefour Society 1883 Challenge competition in 2005.  Designed to meet the requirements of the competition it is currently undergoing major track modification and improvements to the fiddle yards.  It represents Southern Region third rail and loco hauled freight in the 1950s.

Test Track
We have a new 14′ x 10′ test track.  This features circuits in P4, EM, OO, and N gauges.  The inclusion of OO gauge enables proprietary 4mm locomotives to be run in prior to conversion to a finer scale, while the N gauge track is used by those members who also have an interest in the smaller scale.

South Hants and West Sussex Area Group
The South Hants and West Sussex Area Group is an independent within the South Hants Model Railway Club although meetings are often hosted by the club. It covers the South Hampshire and West Sussex Area, from Romsey to Chichester and Portsmouth to Winchester. We function as the Area Group for both the EMGS and Scalefour societies and aim to encourage finescale modellers in every scale.
Our meetings are open to all local modellers, whatever scale or gauge they follow.
There are no plans to build a group layout, as we have several clubs represented in the group which cover this interest.

One of the main functions of the group is to have bi-monthly meetings of like minded modellers to discuss and learn about UK railways and models thereof in a sociable environment. We offer an informal get-together where modellers living throughout the area can have the opportunity to meet and have a natter.
We plan six meeting per year, usually on the second Tuesday of every other month (but Christmas messes things up). Members are encouraged to bring models to join in a ‘Show and Tell’ session after the tea break and before we go to the pub.
We are always keen to welcome new members in the local area, so please either email ray.hodson@sky.com or phone 01329 315641 (h) or  07710 591511 (m)

South Somerset Area Group

We are pleased to announce that the South Somerset Area Group is now active. EM  Gauge members of Yeovil Model Railway Group welcome members to join the group. When things permit we will meet at our clubhouse, where we have a large permanently erected EM Gauge layout called South Junction that first hit the exhibition circuit unfinished in 1982.  Although long completed, it is still being improved and upgraded, and even occasionally exhibited nearly forty years later.  Visiting locos and stock will be offered running rights, and on a scale mile circuit quite a gallop can be achieved. It’s a scary thought, but it has just occurred to me that our little gang has over a hundred years of experience in EM Gauge between us!

Anyone interested can contact me, Steve Smith, via email at rainsford.smith@gmail.com or call me on 01749 343924.  The YMRG website at https://yeovilmrg.org has a lot of interesting content with EM Gauge themed web pages on South Junction, my work on a model of Verwood, and some of our recent EM Gauge conversions of rolling stock that include a full length HST.

Uxbridge & Harrow Area Group
The model railway group of the Ickenham and District Society of Model Engineers (which includes EMGS area group members) meet from 7.30 on Monday evenings.  We are predominantly a small group with several EM/finescale modellers.  Members have two EM gauge layouts as well as N, 00 and  4mm narrow gauge.
Our evenings comprise of members working on their latest projects.
Guests welcome.
If you decide to join us on a regular basis we will ask you to join IDSME.  You will benefit from the opportunity to attend the weekly Friday night programme of talks during the winter and have access to the extensive workshop facilities.
Graeme Vickery is the local group contact. Please contact him for more details. Phone No.  01895 676282  Email  vickerygraeme@gmail.com
Virtual Area Group

The Facebook group is a forum for any EM gauge modellers wherever they are in the world, contributors do not need to be members of the EMGS, although there are a few of us already contributing to the group.

As “virtual” area coordinator, one of the FaceBook groups administrators will take on the role of area coordinator producing periodic updates for inclusion in the EMGS Newsletter. Reports will be a summary of the activity of the Facebook group without any specifics or names.

The Facebook group is a private group and relatively small but has regular postings sharing experiences and opinions of modelling in EM gauge. In common with many other Facebook groups there are rules, the main rules being EM gauge only and keeping it fun.

So if you fancy coming along to a “virtual” area group “meeting” then pop along to Facebook and take a look, you may be asked a couple of questions before being allowed in but we only do that to protect the group members.

If you don’t have a Facebook logon then go to:-
https://en-gb.facebook.com/
and it is a simple process to register.
Once registered go to the search box and enter:-
EM gauge modellers group
Then Join the group.

Alan Durham – Virtual Area Group contact

07780 942564     bodmin16@hotmail.co.uk

Wrekin Area Group

This group is currently inactive. Should any members in and around the Telford, Wolverhampton, Shrewsbury areas wish to revive this Area Group, please contact Peter Rigby the Area Groups Organiser on 01629 582598 or by email:- area groups@emgs.org

Perhaps renaming it Worcestershire or Shropshire Area Group might be a more appropriate name?

Records show there are 18 members in Worcestershire and 20 in Shropshire.

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