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Hello and welcome to my twice reinstated and updated photo reports of visits to narrow gauge model railway layouts and events! Following the sudden and untimely cessation of Fotopic in March 2011 and with it the loss of my photo galleries, I started this blog in order to try to keep my "Roving Reports" available to those who enjoy viewing them. I have linked this blogsite to the old galleries which I originally rebuilt and posted in albums in Picasaweb. Once all the old reports had been rebuilt, I have continued to add completely new ones to cover my visits to events from April 2011 onwards.

In August 2016 Google blocked access to Picasaweb in order to force everyone to use their "much better" Google Images, so I had to do the whole exercise again. Thanks! .

Meanwhile......Because of the way this Blogspot works, the most recent postings appear first and the oldest ones last. Each report contains a link to the Google photo album plus captions for that report. The link will take you to the front page of the Google Album for this report. Left click on the first photo and it will open into a manually operated slideshow. A panel should open alongside the image on the right showing the number of the photo and the caption text. If it does not appear, click on the small white disk top right of the photo panel and it will open. Move forward or backwards by clicking the right or left arrows on your keyboard. When you have finished viewing, click the back arrow showing top left of the photo panel and this will take you back to the album opening page.

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Tuesday 22 August 2023

East Midlands 009 NG Modellers Group “Narrow Gauge Now”, Portland College, Mansfield 22 July 2023

Just in case you weren’t sure, Narrow Gauge Now means “North of Watford” and don’t complain to me, I didn’t dream it up, although I do think it is quite appropriate, as it has become a large narrow gauge specialist event and it is “north of Watford”!

So, 3 weeks after failing the sanity test and making a 300 mile round trip from home to Surrey, the prospect of a 400+ mile round trip and the cost of petrol etc would have seemed to have decided that having a day out at the Portland College just outside Mansfield was totally out of the question. However…… looking at the event preview and the online show guide (good idea guys – other exhibition managers please follow this example!) listing no less than 24 layouts, a good number of which were new to me, resulted in ignoring common sense, never mind the cost and the mileage, setting the alarm for Saturday morning 22 July to 4 am and off I went into the pre-dawn!

Good time of day to travel actually. Roads are quiet and Tony Blackburn’s Sounds of the 60’s on Radio 2 Saturdays from 0600 to 0800 is much more therapeutic than the moronic garbage that Radio 2 puts out at other times and days nowadays. The only downside was that Birmingham got in the way of a drive from South Wales to Nottinghamshire, but getting round the city and negotiating the M5 & M42 with all its roadworks and lanes “out” before the calmer stretches of the A42 and M1 was survived and I duly arrived to a warm welcome (much appreciated chaps), mug of tea and very well loaded bacon roll! Great stuff, suitably fortified, 24 layouts to get round so without further ado, off we go! By the time I got back home that evening I was truly suffering the effects of a very long day on my feet as well as the drive and it took about 3 days for the aches and pains to wear off – getting well into the 2nd half of the 7th decade of the mortal coil certainly comes with some downsides in the stamina stakes that’s for sure!

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