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North West Group

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Since 2004, a small group of L&B members in the Lancashire/Cheshire area, including the conurbations of Liverpool and Manchester, with a common interest in supporting the L&B Trust and spreading knowledge about the line, have got together informally to organise events.

Compared to some other local L&B groups, we have comparatively few members - about 60 within reasonable travelling distance. During that time, we have tried different forms of activity. We have held informal discussion meetings over tea and cake in people’s homes, we organised a few evening lectures on the L&B and related narrow gauge topics at a room over a pub in Stockport, and we have arranged visits to local preserved railways. Thanks to the kindness of Paul Lewin, General Manager of the Ffestiniog Railway (and a keen L&B member), we had a guided tour of Boston Lodge works, and a chance to inspect progress on “Lyd” the L&B replica loco being built there.

We tried to arrange a weekend of volunteering in Devon as a group, but the logistics of arranging travel over such a distance and accommodation, made it too difficult.

From our local members, we can usually get 10-12 to attend an evening meeting.When we advertised evening lectures locally, we got 12-25 people (including some non-members and friends of members).

We raise funds for the L&B Trust by sales of products produced by members, such as the Photo Database CD and Index to L&B Magazines.

We have had most success providing an L&B Display Stand and Sales Table at a variety of local model railway exhibitions, to promote knowledge of the L&B line, and to generate interest from potential new members.

We have put together a professional-looking display stand, and we hold some stock of L&B-related books and gifts from the shop at Woody Bay to sell to visitors. Usually, we also provide an L&B model – part of a member’s layout, or perhaps a 16mm scale live steam loco – as a focal point.

From our current stalwart volunteers, we can provide a rota to man our stand at exhibitions, with each person only committed to a half-day, or one day’s attendance. We generally do about two or three such exhibitions per year, and could do more, or tour around different exhibitions, with only a small amount of extra volunteer effort.

Our membership covers a wide age range.Inevitably, the younger members have jobs and families, and their free time is limited.The retired members are enthusiastic supporters, but are sometimes reluctant to take on an organising role.

Our costs are minimal, using Email for correspondence wherever possible, so we do not charge our members to participate in the NW Area Group, nor do we make any financial demands on the L&B Trust or Railway Company.Our activities are supported by occasional donations (in cash or in kind) from individual members.

Anyone (current L&B member or not) in the North West is most welcome to make contact, and find out about events.Even better, we would like to hear from anyone who would be willing to help organise future events.

Get in touch. - you will be most welcome!

News, Stories and Forthcoming Events for the North West Group

The L&B at the Manchester Christmas Model Railway Show


The L&B North West Group will for the first time have an L&B model railway layout (Bob Barnard’s Chelfham Diorama, as featured in the Railway Modeller magazine), display stand and sales table at the very popular Christmas Model Railway Exhibition on 7 and 8 December 2019, in central Manchester (with good public transport connections).

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

A Day Out in Wales


We had booked to travel on one of the two special trains drawn by LYN on the Welsh Highland Railway on Sunday 14 April 2019, and subsequntly the decision was made to distribute some L&B literature to passengers on the trains. So, this was a mixture of pleasure and NW Area Group work!

A few photographs are provided for others to enjoy:

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

Two L&B Talks in the North of England


After having stands at two separate shows during March 2019, the North West Group's next events are to provide talks to two separate railway groups at opposite sides of northern England.

Monday 8 April 2019

“The Lynton & Barnstaple Railway – Then and Now”

Talk to Rainhill Railway and Historical Society, Rainhill 19.30 at Rainhill Village Hall, L35 4LU. See for details.

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

2019 009 Society Narrow Gauge Railway Show at Rainford


This was the L&B's third visit to the show associated with the 009 Society's AGM, where modellers from all over the country gather.  The venue alternates between North and South, this year taking place in Rainford, St Helens, Lancashire on Saturday 30 March 2019.

Bob and Sue Barnard, Peter Ainley and Ron Dumbell were in attendance during the day.  Having used the L&B's corporate banners at a couple of recent events, we revived our usual display stand for this show, updating the pictures on it to help us explain our Phase 2A extension plans to visitors.

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

Taking the L&B Message to Yorkshire


The L&B's North West group achieved a first on Saturday 9 March 2019, by taking their display and sales stand across the Pennines to Pudsey. We had realised that it would be desirable (and feasible) to travel the fifty or so miles to West Yorkshire, given that the L&B already has over fifty members there, but no local area group covers the area.

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

The L&B at Narrow Gauge North, Pudsey


Saturday 9th March 2019, 10.30 to 16.30
Pudsey Civic Hall, Dawsons Corner, Pudsey, Yorkshire LS28 5TA

The Lynton & Barnstaple's North West Area Group will be attending Narrow Gauge North - a one-day show in Pudsey - for the first time.

The exhibition showcases narrow gauge layouts in all scales, traders and society stands. We will have Bob Barnard’s Chelfham layout together with the L&B display and sales stand.

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

L&B North West Group at Rainhill


The NW Group attended the 009 Society/Rainhill Model Railway Club exhibition at Rainhill, St Helens, Lancashire on Saturday 24 November 2018.

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

North West Group at Rainhill Show 24 Nov 2018


The L&B NW Group is attending the 009 Society’s Narrow Gauge Railway Modelling Show on Saturday 24 November 2018.

The details of this one-day event are:

Rainhill Village Hall (Teak Room), Weaver Avenue, Rainhill. Merseyside, L35 4LU

Times: 10.00 – 17.00

We will have an L&B display and sales stand and "Raleigh Weir” - a brand new L&B layout showing the line under construction in 1897/8. 

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

NWAG - Towards the Next Stage


Around two-dozen people gathered in central Manchester on Saturday 6 October 2018, in spite of a Northern Rail strike which may have deterred a few others from attending, to hear about the process of specifying and designing Phase 2A of the rebuilt L&B line.

The meeting was organised by the Manchester Centre of the Stephenson Locomotive Society (SLS), who warmly welcomed around ten local L&B members.

Posted By Bob Barnard read more

NWAG joint meeting with the Stephenson Locomotive Society


The next L&B North West group meeting will be a joint meeting with the Stephenson Locomotive Society, hosted by the SLS as the opening meeting of their 2018/19 session.

The talk is called “The Lynton & Barnstaple Railway - Towards the Next Stage” and will be at the Friends’ Meeting House, Mount Street, Manchester, M2 5NS (the same venue the L&B have used in the past for meetings, but this time in a much larger room) at 14:00 on Saturday 6th October 2018.

Posted By Bob Barnard read more


Corporate Supporters - Where to Stay

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