It was to be a 1990s diesel depot (mainly I think because Mark knew I hated diesels!) He named it 'Wellham Green' and prepared a suitable track plan. Well, I'm a carpenter and so built the baseboard for him which then lay gathering dust until I laid the track for him. It then lay gathering dust until I wired it up for him. This went on right through the layout's construction but at least this time I can truly say, hand on heart that he got the kind of model railway he really wanted.
Once built, true to his word Mark not only operated the layout, but even began detailing locomotives and stock to a standard where even Dad was impressed. All went well until three things happened to dramatically alter Mark's perspective on life. The cars were not a problem, neither was his new found love of beer. But with the best will in the world, there was no way model railways could possibly compete with the ladies. Thus he is now otherwise occupied and I'm left with a layout which neither of us wants!
However, there is a silver lining to every cloud and at last I find myself free to get on with building a new layout for myself and thus my tale finally arrives at the present. Those of you who know me will have heard banging on about the wonders of the Settle/Carlisle railway and my intention for years to represent it in model form. Work has now started on what will be layout number six which will indeed try to replicate a section of this lovely line as it would have appeared in 1957-61. Now you will say 'hang on a minute, this guy is an ardent follower of the LMS, so what's he doing in the BR period? Well this was the lad's parting shot before he lost interest: 'Why don't you model the line in BR days? It's much more interesting' and I have to agree he's right. Problem is now, not only am I building a layout but I'm building or re-building locomotives and stock to run on it! Oh well, if nothing else you have to admit I certainly ring the changes. So far I've modelled LMS, GWR, BR modern and now BR steam. Life is certainly never boring in this house.