Sunday, 21 October 2018

1950s Talyllyn Railway layout

1950s Talyllyn Railway layout

On the return trip from Porthmadog a detour was made to take in a little Tal-y-llyn. Notwithstanding the obvious attractions, a quick look around the shop threw up the usual keyrings and books. A look upward to the top of the shelves gives you not only Gordon Gravett's Abergynolwyn in 7mm in its box, but the original roundy roundy 009 layout. This was built for the TRPS to take to events to promote the railway. and was featured in an early BRM. One train circled round through the scene powered by a motor bogie in the brake van. As can be seen it split into two for transport in a way that

I can't help but feel would not be acceptable now. Nevertheless, it has spawned at least one copy cat from yours truly and featured in the pages above.


  1. I assume this is the 'Fishtank' layout. As such, it was built in the early/mid 1950s and is 8mm gauge, not 9mm. The motive power is indeed in the brake van but is not a motor bigie per se as such things did not exist then. The motor was a Triang X04 and the original loco was No 3, Sir Haydn. Later a model of No 4 Edward Thomas was added. Both of these locos were unpowered.

  2. "RM Staff" also produced a clone which featured in their Plan of the Month in the Feb 1980 Modeller, pages 54 & 55, which also included illustrated construction details of the layout. I have a little bell nagging away in the depths with both the Greenwich guys and Dave Etheridge featuring as being at least connected with the provenance of the original Fishtank. Maybe one of the "elders" of the hobby at Expong this coming weekend may be able to throw more light on it?

    1. Mick, I'm delighted that you mention my name connected with this, but I must deny any connection. I think you may be mistaking my connection with Derek Allan's equivalent Dolgoch layout in 5.5mm scale of many years standing. This may still be in existence somewhere and was a very nice layout indeed. It used Gem kits (obviously) and on a three day exhibition the loco ran as true to form as ever, but the wheels on the coaches eventually wore the axlebox holes to oval shape. Such are the delights of continuous running.....

  3. "As can be seen it split into two for transport in a way that I can't help but feel would not be acceptable now" - I'm missing something. How is it split and why isn't it acceptable?