Bassetlaw Railway Society

by | 14 November 2020 | Hobbies, Retford, Worksop

This is usually the time of year when the Bassetlaw Railway Society announces the line-up of exhibitors and traders for its annual Model Railway Exhibition, held in the splendid surroundings of Retford Town Hall.
The November 2020 exhibition was to have been the 40th such exhibition the society has organised since it was founded in 1974 but the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in the cancellation of this and all other model railway exhibitions throughout the entire country.
Over the past several years, society members have had to endure a number of upheavals caused by remedial work taking place in the main clubrooms. These were based in the former First Class Dining Room and Refreshment Room on Platform One of Retford Station.
Although the modelling rooms further down Platform One were not affected by the remedial work, the loss of the main meeting room severely disrupted the normal weekly meetings and the monthly guest speaker night.
Despite the change to the East Coast Main Line franchise in 2019, some semblance of normality returned towards the end of the year when refurbishment of the new, more compact, club room on Platform One was completed. The result was the return of the monthly guest speaker evening and allowed the society to resume its normal weekly meetings.
In early March, the growing concern over the spread of the coronavirus led to the suspension of all society activities and with the present second wave spreading rapidly, it is doubtful whether society activities will resume before the start of the new year.
In the meantime, members who have model railway layouts at home have taken the opportunity to make repairs to or even build new layouts. Others have hand built new locomotives and rolling stock or made detail improvements to their existing railway stock.
Model railways encompass a wide range of skills and most members have used theirs to keep them occupied during the long months of lockdown and travel restrictions.