What was I to build as my first layout for may years, it also had the added complication of being my first adventure with P4 modelling? What ever it was, it had to fit the following parameters:
1) Be part of the overall Grogley project so stock could be used on subsequent layouts.
2) Be smaller than my original proposed, but abandoned, Boscarne Junction layout.
3) To be achievable as a first project in P4.
I'd been avoiding building a model based on the Wenforbridge branch due to it being a 'goods only' line. I then realised this might be an advantage. With the speed at which I work and time I have available a goods only line does reduce the stock requirements considerably. So I thought how about combining the two images into a fictitious wharf on this branch? Recollecting that Tresarret Wharf had a siding removed in 1932 .... eureka .... If I created a Tresarret style loop at Helland and add a siding this might make a small starter layout with a little bit of shunting interest.
Tredethy Wharf is a very simple track plan which I’m hoping will convey a spacious feel. This layout is my first for over 30 years and has been built primarily as a test track to give me good grounding and experience in modelling to P4 standards.
The inspiration for Tredethy Wharf came from two photographs, one was of a Beattie Well tank crossing the road at the Hellandbridge, the second was again of a Beattie Well tank but shunting wagons at Tresarrett Wharf. Both locations were on the goods only Wenfordbridge branch of the Bodmin & Wadebridge Railway. When the line was first constructed the Wharf sidings were provided for the distribution of sand from the Camel Estuary onto the surrounding farm land.
Traffic was very basic along the Boscarne to Wenfordbridge section of the line, consisting of china clay from the Wenford Clay Dries at Poley’s Bridge, general goods to the wharf sidings along the line as well as to the terminus at Wenfordbridge. Some timber was transported which was sourced from the woods along the Camel Valley. There was also stone traffic from the De Lank Quarries, which had a rail connection to the sidings at Wendfordbridge.
Why the name Tredethy Wharf?... My alternative history is that the owner of Tredethy Manor held a large number of shares in the Bodmin Wadebridge Railway during the early years of the line. This enabled him to use his influence to the have a wharf siding constructed the other side of the river Camel where the railway crossed the road between Tredethy and Helland. These sidings where initially use to receive wagon loads of sand for the distribution onto the surrounding farm land. I have set the model at Hellandbridge, but used modellers’ license to move the wharf siding from behind the cottage to the other side of the road and added a loop like Tresarrett Wharf.
The layout is not set in a particular time frame, as most of the line did not change much from opening in 1934 until 1970 when most of the wharf siding where closed. The line finally closed for china clay traffic in 1983. This will give me an opportunity to, eventually, build a small but varied locomotive and wagon fleet.
Track is hand built using plywood sleepers, plastic chairs and steel rail to a gauge of 18.83mm. Locomotives are converted proprietary which either a drop-in wheel set or completely new chassis, wagons are a mixture of kit built or converted Bachmann. Both buildings are modified Wills kits. Trees are mainly constructed using florists wire with a few commercial trees purchased.