The Royal Albert Bridge
This layout was formerly known as A Bridge too Far and was part of the “Tribute to Brunel” layout built by the Basingstoke Bodgers in the final of the inaugural Great Model Railway Challenge broadcast on Channel 5 and was designed to feature the representation of the Royal Albert Bridge which spans the River Tamar between Devon and Cornwall. The name of the layout came from the fact that of the three bridges on the Brunel layout, this was the one that we were unable to finish in the time allowed.
Except for the plate girder bridge sides, the bridge is totally scratch built from Plastikard, Plastruct, Microstrip, water pipe, card, paper and a Pringles tube. The higher level main running line over the bridge is N-gauge and the lower lines to Okehampton and in the dockside area are to 2mm Finescale standards.
The layout is not intended to be an exact replica, just a representation of the area due to the constraints of the baseboard size supplied to us for the Challenge. The buildings are a mix of scratch built, some adapted from kits and others from previous club layouts.
The points and signals are operated using servo motors controlled using MERG CBUS electronic components.
The layout is operated over two periods, from 1956-1961 with steam-hauled trains, and from 1968-1973 with diesels in early BR liveries.
An article on the construction of the bridge was featured in the March 2019 issue of Railway Modeller magazine.