The Old Thomas

The original "Thomas" layout has served the group well and has attended many exhibitions over the last 8 years or so. But its been so well used that it is about worn out now and the time has come to built a new one. The new one should hopefully be an improvement on this earlier one. Although it will be the same 8ft x 4ft size it will feature a double track so that two youngsters can drive it at the same time, thus reducing the queueing that was often seen when this older one was being used at exhibitions. It should also see scenic improvements with some better quality buildings having been purchased for it. Also a better design of baseboard that will be much more rigid and quicker to set up has been constructed.

Thomas seen here at the March 2003 Heywood Model Railway Group annual exhibition which was held at Holy Cross College Manchester Road Bury.

The layout has been extended from it's original 6 foot x 4 foot size and is now 8 foot x 4 foot.
Click for full 1024 768 jpg

Click for full 1024 768 jpg Another view of the Thomas layout at the 2003 exhibition.
Thomas is still a big attraction with the children even though the TV series has now been running for many years.

Thomas was a small 6ft by 4ft round and round model designed specifically for use by children at Exhibitions. The layout has now been extended to make it 8ft x 4ft and this has made it look much better as well as giving a longer run round. It has proved to be a very popular feature with the children (and their Mum's and Dad's) having made many visits to the Heywood Model Railway Group and other Exhibitions.
The layout is controlled by a "Pulse Control" unit to allow slow running and the speed is also limited so that the loco's don't take off like a Scalectric racing car when an enthusiastic child winds the regulator fully open.
Two trains can be run, one in each direction and the point push buttons will not operate to change trains until both are parked in the station
After an interval of about 3.5 minutes the train will be forced to stop the the next time it passes the station platform and a "Time Up" lamp lights on the control panel.
The Children are then given a certificate from the "Fat Controller" to take home with them.

A new Thomas is now under construction and should be ready for our 2006 exhibition. It will be double track which should reduce the queueing when it gets busy. The baseboards have just been constructed and more details will be posted here along with some updated images when the track starts to take shape.

This page updated 11th August 2005