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This show, out of the many I have visited over the years appeared to embrace a broader spectrum of layouts than many others I've been to, with everything from 2mm finescale (2FS), 3mm to the foot, depicting Brunel's 7 foot(!), P4, S Scale, OO, N, 0 gauge and so on, with a little HO thrown in for good measure. As I write this, I don't think I've ever been to a show with so much variety on the scale/gauge front ever - apart from maybe The Warley Show at the NEC.
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Earl's Court, illustrated here is just one of those layouts, it depicting a 'could have been' LMS/GWR joint 'overground' terminus in West London during its final years - a most unusual GWR branch line terminus! Having lived in the capital for many years, it has all those key features that shout 'West London'; the rundown cramped location, much of it still showing signs of wartime damage from 20 years prior with the yet (and never) to be replaced canopy, a mix of Western Region diesel multiple units, a little mixed WR/MR steam and some 4 rail activity, milk tanks, parcels stock and so on. Despite run down location there are is a hint of modernisation, with new fluorescent platform lamps contrasting with much wrought iron from the turn of the century, the old century that is.
With a model as well observed as this, the gauge, scale, flange width or the code of rail is totally unimportant. Don't worry I'm not anti the 'correct gauge' thing, but I do think that maybe all those other less obvious things that make a layout 'real' should also be looked and maybe greater emphasis on design, composition and colour should not be forgotten. The key to that, is looking at the real world, whether it be first hand, photos in books, or the internet, then throw away the calipers and absorb the atmosphere. For me, all that was missing was the smell of disinfectant, the pong of a bad sewerage system and maybe the smell of that new Chinese restaurant that's just opened next to the coffee bar with Radio Caroline playing on that new new fangled battery powered transistor radio.
Visit Earl's Court's (the model) website here http://ecmr.webs.com/