Coronavirus disruption to Normal Service

HMRS Society Update 11 October 2020

This page has been created to inform both members of the society and those who use our services via this website of our current situation. That is – what is likely to happen, depending on how the pandemic progresses and how the Trustees interpret the latest situation. Government advice changes and often depends on perceptions of risk. It would appear that the responsibility for minimising exposure to the risk of catching the virus has been devolved to local bodies and people themselves. We continue to be cautious because of our age profile. The Trustees keep the advice under review. The Butterley site remains closed to the public and will do so until at least the end of 2020. However some officers have returned to the site and the majority of the order backlog have been processed. The trading situation is not yet completely back to normal. Unfortunately the M&SC remains closed to the public and members and so no request for visits can be considered at this time.


As always the local area group leaders will continue to decide about their meetings within the overall Government guidelines taking into account the fact that many members are in the higher risk groups of society. For the rest of 2020 these are likely to be online ZOOM conferences. The Autumn program has been decided by the local groups and their leaders. For details see the What's on page. No public meetings or other events where close contact is inevitable will be held until 2021 at the earliest.


The Trustees will continue to use ZOOM for their meetings this year and have purchased a licence so that the 40 minute limit does not apply. We plan to use ZOOM to supplement our communications even when normal meetings resume at the M&SC, hopefully next year, as it reduces our overheads!




As stated above, the building remains closed as part of the complete closure of the Midland Railway Centre and this is expected to continue until the end of 2020. There will be no general member access booking available for 2020 so please do not turn up on the off-chance as you will not be allowed in to the site even if you are a member. The small number of officers involved in sales and ensuring the building is safe and secured do have access and so sales orders are nearly back to normal although delivery may be delayed and there are some issues with a few transfers - see the Transfer page and also a few entries in the photo catalogue - see Photo page.

If you have sent a surface mail item to the site address it may be awaiting collection from the a building not yet open so do not be surprised if there is a delay. If you are waiting for an item, we apologise but we are a volunteer society and do not have full time or even part time staff waiting to receive every order!



WEBSITE: Our current website is in the process of being renewed for the latest version of the software and a few new additional facilities should be available. We hope this will go live seamlessly later this year. The front page will be different but existing services will be there and we hope to be able to add more about our archive resources.


BOOKS: Our new book is ‘Southern Style: Southern Railway’ by John Harvey. This book is available for purchase on this site. We do have another title being prepared which we hope will be published in 2021.


Southern Style

The Southern Railway

Southern Style Southern

The three principal companies which formed the Southern Railway all had distinctive characters, and it took some time and experimentation for a new corporate design approach to be developed. This was undoubtedly influenced by the team brought in by the General Manager to give the company a modern image. After a period of stability, the appointment of Bulleid led to a new period of experimentation, only to be curtailed by the outbreak of war. Once things began to return to normal, Bulleid was able to continue his experiments and develop a new house style, only to have his work cut short by nationalisation. This volume takes up the story in 1922 and charts the development of the company’s liveries through this turbulent period on everything from locomotives to lamp posts, carriages to containers and wagons to signalling equipment. The author has made extensive use of contemporary written sources, the meticulous records kept by several observers, the vast number of photographs taken during the period and also original paint samples from a number of sources. It should prove an invaluable, authoritative source of information for the modeller of the Southern Railway and those restoring the artefacts of that company, as well as a permanent record of the liveries of the Southern Railway during its 25 year existence.

The volume includes details of the Lynton & Barnstaple Railway’s liveries from 1898 until closure and the blue Somerset & Dorset carriage livery of the 1920s.

Supplied with the book is a card containing 17 carefully prepared paint samples covering all the principal paint colours used by the Southern Railway.

ISBN 978 0 902835 37 5

Price £35.00 + p&p, HMRS members £25,00 + p&p


©Historical Model Railway Society 1996 - 2020.

Charitable Incorporated Organisation No. 1166144

VAT Registration No. (GB) 231 1977 75

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