Monday 24 July 2023

taken in mid 1982 all loops are still present and in the foreground the point leading into Taylor's Sawmill siding

Stroud Road is a small village located on the North Coast Line of NSW in the section between Dungog and Gloucester. It is located 9km away from the town of Stroud for which the station was built to service. The station opened in 1913 and very little of its former glory survives today. My research was done in the early 1980s. It was typical of small stations having a main line, passing loop and goods loop and later a transit loop was added. There were two sidings coming off the goods siding one to the south to the Gloucester Co-op Milk Factory and in later years a siding heading to the north east to one of Sir Allan Taylor's sawmills. Typical infrastructure - stockyards, goods shed, 5 ton gantry crane, cream shed, out of shed, fettlers shed, combined gents toilet and lamp room. To the south was 120' steel truss bridge crossing the Karuah River and reliable water supply. 

The Karauh River Bridge

A pump house and water tank provided watering facilities in the steam days. There was a station masters house possibly of J1 or J2 design which was replaced around 1979 with a rather plain modern hardiplank building. To the north was a timber road over bridge which was replaced in the mid 1980s with a concrete structure. A large electrical substation was located on the western side of the line between the SMs house and the station buildings. The station platform had timber facings and was 285 feet long. Trees and shrubs were planted along the platform surrounded by garish painted rocks typical of many stations of the 1950s and 60s era winning many station garden awards.

Stroud Road goods shed a shortened G2 and first commercial kit made under the "Wood N Iron Structures" banner

The original good shed was a G2 36' x 16' building and the goods siding had a slight kink in it. My theory is the kink was to provide adequate clearance for the gantry crane after the transit loop was installed.  When the siding was added to Taylor's sawmill the gantry crane appears to be relocated slightly north (according to railway diagrams). This necessitated shortening of the goods shed.

The yard can be built in a 5 metre long space and lends itself well as a modelling subject. The are a number of 24'  timber openings on both sides of the Karuah River bridge particularly on the south side.

I am building loosely between 1972 to 1979 so no 4 letter codes, red wagons, candy colour schemes although reverse may have just snuck in. During this period we saw a number of railway logos, a change from 2nd class to economy and metrification. I am proposing to run 43,44,45,48,442 and 80 class locos. Major trains will be the North Coast Daylight, North Coast mail and maybe Gold Coast Motorail. Most trains are bogie wagons and I don't intend running many 4 wheelers - trains will be bulk steel, container, perishable goods, block fuel and odds and sods trains. 

Date not recorded post 1985 CTC in and fully operational, Transit loop and old butter factory siding removed

Pump house at south end of yard

The timber road over bridge now partially demolished and new concrete one in place

1982 the new SMs house on the right built around 1979/80

taken in 1982 probably been some time since the yards have been used

A very lucky shot my father and I were on a motorcycle trip and just happened to spot the water tank being removed while riding through Stroud Road probably mid to late 1980s


Thursday 6 July 2023

Camden is undergoing some major modifications on the Campbelltown side of Elderslie to facilitate better space utilisation and create wider aisles for the walk around layout. There will be some compromise on the length of Narellan yard and the coal loader will be reduced in depth. The layout will be supported by frames and brackets leaving clear space underneath to build a second layout  - Stroud Rd somewhere between 1975 and 1980. A new tab has been setup to show Stroud Roads progress which is mainly accumulating appropriate rolling stock locos etc to operate the layout. I left my run way too late to purchase much of the impressive NSWGR wagons and locos from SDS, Auscision, Trainorama ,On Track models , Austrains to name a few. I have been fortunate to purchase a number of out of production wagons from modellers on various Facebook sites and the odd shop. My thanks to many who have assisted so far.

I will be adding to the Stroud Tab in the next week or so  - Its a site I spent a lot of time measuring in the early 1980s and actually started building it bad sadly had nowhere to put it and it was abandoned until now.