Get on track with Pembrokeshire Model Engineers
12:53pm Wednesday 18th September 2013 in News
A CLUB, which was formed more than 20 years ago by a passionate and prolific model engineer, is encouraging members of the public to hop onboard.
Pembrokeshire Model Engineers (PME) was the brainchild of the late George “The Fish” Thomas, the father of the present secretary, Trevor Thomas.
George built the first in a long list of model locomotives in 1952, and was a constant visitor to the Swansea track. He would take fish from Milford Dock to Swansea Market in his van, and once business was over he would head straight to the track.
A 1991 article in Model Engineer Magazine said: “It seemed impossible to picture George anywhere other than behind a railway engine somewhere. Indeed, sometimes it seemed to club members that it would need several crowbars and a screwjack to get him off the track once steam was up.”
George saw the need to build a similar facility in Pembrokeshire for enthusiasts just like him. He identified a site by the Meads in Milford Haven, which was a former council tip. He managed to negotiate leasing the land to build a raised-level model railway.
After development over the years, it now measures half a mile in length, includes an over bridge and caters for both five and three and half inch gauges.
Alan Taylor from PME told the Milford Mercury: “In the early days we used to carry fare paying passengers on the track but recently we have had to curtail this as there would have to be a considerable number of very expensive changes made to our rolling stock as well a huge increase in insurance liability.
“The club also used to have a portable track and joined in various events not least in Milford Haven itself. At the recent exhibition held in celebration of the arrival of the railway 150 years ago, one of the George Thomas locomotives raised a lot of comments from the many visitors who had ridden behind it, both at the home track as well as on the portable."
He added: "We would welcome new members whatever their particular branch of the hobby of model engineering is their forte.”
PME holds meetings at the Meads most Sundays of the year, as well as running days on the second Saturday of every month (weather depending). Visitors are always welcome and anyone wanting to bring a steam engine or locomotive will be required to produce the required certificates.
For more information contact Alan on 01437 890708 or visit www.pembs-me.co.uk