Well, we do have our problems in this group. The plan, yes we do try to have one, was to go to Ron's so that others could see the progress that he has made with his layout over the last winter. He had to go into hospital for laser treatment on his retina and when he came out he found he couldn't see at all so plan B, yes we had one, meant we went back to Askrigg. Ian was so pleased with how his layout had performed that he wanted to have another operating session.
When I finally arrived at Ian's, by myself, Ron and his carer, Patsy had already arrived, as had Stuart. David Dredge was in hospital for a planned operation and we heard later in the day that all had gone OK. Griff was traveling back from the deep south and was not certain that he would make it or not. Chris King had hoped to attend, his first meeting since he had had to have a couple of hospital stays, but for various reasons he did not make it. I had stopped off at Kirkby Stephen East station, to drop off some posters, and was offered a free ride on their train as it was an operating day. Well who could resit the offer, especially as it was in the guards compartment. It was a very worthwhile journey as I found out about some of the future plans that are still 'commercial in confidence'.
It being a nice day in Askrigg we made the long walk to the pub, two doors up from Ian's house, where we were able to sit in the sun out in the back garden. The locally brewed Askrigg bitter was in excellent condition. They had a new chef and the reports about the food being very good were confirmed by us all.
Unfortunately for Ian the layout did not perform as well as he wanted. He had worked hard on a track prolem but there were problems with derailments. Turned out that the track gauge was nearer 18.5mm rather than the 16.5mm that it should have been. More tweaks to the operational sequence had been slotted in as well.
Tea and scones were taken outside, as the sun was still shining.
Next month we travel to visit Mike Norris and operate his Preston layout. Enough said. At the time of writing we have a couple of vacancies if anybody from another group would like to join us.
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