Bognor Regis Model Railway Club


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About Bognor Regis Model Railway Club

Meeting in its current form since 1985, Bognor Regis Model Railway Club occupied various premises before settling down at its current location in our own clubroom a few years ago - this being situated on the grounds of Aldingbourne Community Sports Centre, Westergate. Starting off in a small hut, this became uninhabitable so we then moved into the recently restored Barnham Signal Box, which is just up the 100 metre path from our previous clubroom. Along with the signal box, we also restored a barn that was used to house goalposts to become a working area with test track and storage - this was then needing to be christened a railway building, so was given the title of 'Goods Shed' - it was also painted into Southern colours along with the signal box to give a complete railway feel.

In the beginning of January, Bognor Regis MRC holds its annual exhibition - this has been at Felpham Community College for a fair number of years now. This allows us to get the new year off to a bang as a club and is always very successful, bringing in layouts and traders from around the country. As well as holding our own exhibition, Bognor Regis MRC is regularly out on the road, exhibiting at shows put on by fellow model railway clubs that we have been invtied to. These go across the south of England, and we have members who exhibit their own layouts on behalf of the club that go all over the country flying the Bognor Regis MRC flag. Attending a large amount of exhibitions, the club activities centre around construction of the layouts to take on the road, along with maintaining and preparing those going out to a show within the very near future.

As well as the main membership, we have a small but very enthusiastic junior section, also known as the "kids club" - they meet on the last Saturday of every month. The kids club was started following a successful model railway building course held by the club, run over 12 weeks during 2011 - this was possible through the funding kindly given to us by Arun District Council. Following this course, the kids club has kept going growing stronger every year. Between them, they now build their own exhibition layouts (e.g. Troutbeck Bridge - see club layouts and below for more information), as well as dabbling in other areas of the hobby, such as weathering and kit building. The kids club also help operate layouts when out at exhibitions as well as offering any assisstance they can at our annual exhibition held in January.

As a club, we have two layouts designed and built to to and get the younger generation involved in the model railway hobby - Aldingbourne Central and Troutbeck Bridge. Aldingbourne Central was designed and built specifically to allow the general public to operate the layout, introducing them to the world of railway modelling. This is to appeal to anybody, both young and not so young, as to the enjoyment railway modelling can bring to anybody and everybody. Troutbeck Bridge was designed and built entirely by the kids club with input, advice, guideance and assistance from the more experienced adult members of the club. Debuting at our 2012 annual exhibition, the layout is designed to demonstrate to those with a train set can move onto having their first, fully fledged model railway layout. Additionally, the layout uses both DC and DCC, so can show how either way can work and the best choice for everybody individually.

To see what our junior members in the kids club have to say both about Troutbeck Bridge and the club as a whole, take a look at their dedicated page here.

As well as the general membership and the kids club, Bognor Regis MRC also has various subgroups within the main membership - these consist of groups of people with a certain gauge or country they prefer modelling in, producing stunning layouts for the exhibition circuit but also as layouts for members to enjoy as permanent fixtures to the club. These gropus consist of:

- N gauge group - they have a semi-permant layout in the "Ford" shed, which although is kept and used in there, can be exhibited elsewhere in the country.

- American Railroad group - they have a part-built permanently fixed layout that is for the membership to enjoy, and for any club members to run American HO rolling stock on.

- G gauge group - normally meeting on the Saturday mornings, the G gauge group have an outside railway down one side of the signal box. As well as meeting regularly, local and distant fellow G gauge groups can hire out the track for them to use for meetings and outings to run their stock on a decent size circuit.

Members of the club also go on outings to various railway venues, events and preserved railways throughout the year, both for exhbitions of the club layouts as well as their own, but also just for the enjoyment of it. Those members will sometimes ask if others want to join, and this can then become a club outing. Examples of this are the Didcot Railway Museum and the Crewe Direct Rail Services Open Days in previous years.

 

Prospective Members

Meeting on a Tuesday evening from 7pm till 9pm (although we are often there past 9), the Bognor Regis MRC club rooms can be found on the site of the Aldingbourne Community Sports Centre - when you come in the gate, turn left and you will see the Barnham Signal Box standing tall and proud - when you see that you have found us.

You are more than welcome to a free cup of tea, coffee or hot chocolate. For a small charge, you can also have soft drink (we stock various brands such as Coca Cola and Pepsi), as well as a packet of crisps or a chocolaye bar.

For your first few visits, you can come and see us for free - this allows you to come along, find out more about the club and not feel that you have to pay for membership straight away should you want to find out more before committing to a year of membership with the club. If you would like to find out more about the club prior to coming for the first time, just drop us an email through the Contact Us page.