1. Introduction

This blog is about my former model railway exhibition layout “Kyle of Sutherland”, which showed Culrain station in the former county of Ross-shire, Scotland, as it was in 1960 at a scale of 4mm to the foot with track and rolling stock to P4 standards. Trains are from the post-nationalisation period up to 1962 when the last steam locomotive left the far north of Scotland.

I started in 2001, helped considerably over the years by tutors on the railway modelling courses at Missenden Abbey in Buckinghamshire. Since 2011 I’ve had help and advice from members of the Devon Finescale Modellers Group, Pendon Museum tutors, staff and volunteers, and more recently local Area Groups of the Scalefour Society and EM Gauge Society.

Kyle of Sutherland was first exhibited as a non-scenic work-in-progress at Scaleforum 2012 (the final Scaleforum exhibition at Leatherhead) and, in revised form, at the Exeter Show in 2013. The first public showing of the scenically complete layout was in September 2015 in Culrain Village Hall just across the road from the real, but now much simplified, Culrain station. In 2017 it was shown in Skipton, North Yorkshire, for the first time as a complete, operational layout, and then at Railex 2018 with a full complement of trains.

The current focus is on further detailing and improvement of rolling stock, especially coaches (see 7. Where Next?).


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    The epic struggle to build a model railway exhibition layout at 4mm to the foot


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