The Buckley Model Railway Club was started in 1994 with a Model Railway Exhibition held in the Church Hall of St John’s Church on the Top Common in Buckley.

A notice was put on the door asking those interested to put their names down and about 20 people signed up. The club got under way, initially creating high level storage space over the door and starting to build layouts.

A second exhibition was planned for the following year and the club created a 00 Gauge GWR branch called “St John’s”, a GWR Branch Line, for that exhibition.

A second 00 gauge layout was also started which the then junior members could participate in.

After some years, the Church started to look at development of its assets and were debating the demolition of the Church Hall and building new. The club members felt that this was a good time to look for permanent premises and eventually obtained access to the “Old School Meals Centre” at Broughton.

The building was not in a good state and the club banded together to make it habitable. The space available allowed for several layouts to be left erected and developed without the interruption of constant dismantling.  The club name was changed to “Buckley and District”  due to the location.

The N Gauge layout of Dent on the S&C was built in this clubroom. The 00 gauge  “Corwen East” was developed from its original concept and an 8 ft traverser fitted.

Again, after some years, the Church decided to realise some of its assets and the building was demolished.

The club equipment and models were put into storage and the club met every Thursday in one of the member’s workshops. After a while it was decided to build a permanent 00 gauge layout in the workshop and so Ledmore Junction was created.

An attempt was made to move the club to Barrow Hospital, however this did not finally happen.

The Broughton Clubhouse in the early days.

Photos - John Rutter

Buckley MRC in St John’s Church Hall. Left to Right: General View, Storage Facilities under construction, Showing Railway Videos

Ledmore Junction under Construction

One member then found the premises in Neston on the Wirral

The club name was changed to suit, the rooms prepared and the layouts moved in. We remained there for 12 years, unfortunately the relationship between the club and the Church became somewhat distant and the members decided that it was time to move on again.

The club then found premises at Greenfield where a room was created within an existing building. Work continued with Dent and Corwen East was further developed.

Unfortunately, the arrangement was found to be less than satisfactory and the club, once again, repaired to the member’s workshop. This time Ledmore Junction was expanded to a full continuous run around the walls of the Workshop giving a scale 1.25 miles and some serious inclines to clear the workbenches and equipment.

The  180 degree transition curve on Corwen East under construction at Greenfield

Visiting Locos haul an excursion train up the long drag on the Ledmore Junction Model

The search for new premises which suited our requirements was tortuous and we had been feeling that no such suitable places were available when one popped up unexpectedly over the border in North Wales.

Meetings were held with the authorities and a mutually satisfactory agreement was reached. The club equipment was moved on 29th and 30th April and work commenced to arrange the premises to suit the club requirements.

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