martin goodall wrote:
was a layout called 'Kingsmouth' by the then Bristol Area Group of the P4 Society. Unfortunately, they seemed to be unable to get anything to run on the layout without falling off - which in a cynical sort of way seemed to me at the time to sum up the fate of the P4 Society, once those of us who had founded or joined the S4 Society had left.
As one of the Kingsmouth team, I have to agree the early two outings were not good operationally. We were all on a steep learning curve and probably accepted exhibition bookings sooner than was wise and our enthusiasm overtook any wisdom that was there; there were so few layouts on offer in the "new gauge" and arms were being twisted. Several of our bods had never built an MR before in any scale and our star artistic wagon modeller set himself against compensation as too much trouble! Clearly if Martin had lived in Bristol, not N. London we would have tried EM wheels
Locos were compensated and some ran very well, two of these are still alive on Highbridge. We were also inexperienced at dealing with mobile baseboard joints so they were a challenge to wheels on rails.
I recently learnt that the Kingsmouth layout is still alive and running so it must have got sorted in the end, although I had lost track of it for 30+ years!
As an introduction to P4 modelling it served the purpose of getting us experience and attracting new recruits to the group. Several other exhibition layouts span off from that. The challenges also weeded out the few weaker brethren who reverted to 00 where they knew everything would fall off anyway with less effort
At least half of the original team are still active in P4 or have gone 7mm FS or S7