Warley Model Railway Club

Railway modelling in most scales and gauges


Warley Model Railway Club, Unit 1F Pearsall Drive, Oldbury, West Midlands, B69 2RA

Registered as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) Charity No: 1153792

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Halston Junction was in the planning stages for 2 years before baseboard construction started in 1997. The mandate was for a continuous circuit or circuits – based on the period between 1948 and 1967 – but with the flexibility to run full length trains of the BR Midland and Eastern Regions of British Railways, something like the Leeds area where, at any one time, it was possible to see locos and stock from either Region.

The result was the layout you see today – no actual location in mind but spectator and operator interest the criteria. There are four main circuits – Up and Down Main, Up and Down Relief - with Up and Down Freight loops, a Branch Line and Exchange Sidings thrown in for good measure. The four main circuits are independent with an operator assigned to each plus additional operators to cover the Branch and Iron Ore Exchange Sidings. Three separate control panels are used – Up lines, Down lines and Branch/ Exchange Sidings with the facility to drive any train from any one of the six controllers if necessary. Most trains can be seen with the loco emitting smoke from the chimney

With this layout, we have tried to eliminate many of the problems that we have encountered in the past. Other than for the support legs, soft wood has been eliminated from the baseboards – plywood has been used throughout for all the construction. Separate support legs for the layout are a thing of the past – all the supports fold up inside the baseboards for transport. Metal plates fixed inside the baseboard frames coupled with machined bolts are used for bolting adjacent boards together to improve track alignment across the baseboards. All electrical leads are linked from board to board and to the control panels using 25-way ‘D’ plugs and sockets.  On the main viewing area, all the track is SMP Code 75 with turnouts hand-built to suit the track configuration, operated by ‘Tortoise’ motors – for reliability and authenticity. Trackwork in the Hidden Storage area is standard Peco Code 100 – the standard Peco turnouts were originally fitted with Peco point motors, but subsequently changed to use the 12 volt ‘Tortoise’ motors.

Layout Details


Gauge : 00 using Code 75 rail section on the viewing side

Overall size: 30ft x 14ft 6in (nominally 10m x 5m)

Total operating space required: 30ft x 14ft 6in (10m x 5m)

Power points required: one 13 amp 240v socket

Power is required to cover the following:

    12 – 240V 60 watt bulbs for layout lighting

    8 - 16 volt transformers

    3 - 12 volt transformers

    3 - 5 volt transformers

The layout is self standing but 2 – 4’ x 2’ (or 1 – 6’ x 2’) tables are required for holding stock

Insurance value of layout/stock - £10,000

Number of operators: normally 10

Expenses required: we have to hire a long wheelbase van from a Friday through to Monday morning. The cost for the van plus insurance and fuel being approximately £220 (2009) – depending on the distance travelled. Plus transport for operators.

Halston Junction: OO Gauge