Market Obthorpe

This page is currently under construction

Market Obthorpe is the name chosen for the club's current O Gauge layout. The location is entirely fictitious and based loosely on 'somewhere in the  north east of England' in a market town. This gives us the excuse to run a variety of stock as availability and the mood takes us. The layout has been under construction since at least 2015, taking the place of Blubberhouses which was never completed and has been 'retired'.


The following background information was compiled and supplied by Colin Brown, to whom we offer our grateful thanks.

Market Obthorpe is a small mining town in County Durham situated in the hilly area towards Tanfield. Gradients are steep thus meaning that fairly large locos have only a limited capability making short coal trains possible on a model railway layout.

Passenger Services are two fold – one a three train coach to/from the main line to Newcastle etc. with a reasonable frequency. The other service is a push/pull (Auto train) connecting with the Newcastle services but shuttling to and fro to the mining village which is not modelled but is in fact the fiddle yard

Coal traffic would be two or three trains per day, empties coming from east coast staithes and full wagons returning for shipment. This method is more realistic as both full and empty trains are operated without emptying wagons. Full and empty trains are switched in the fiddle yard.

MPD houses the push/pull loco and the loco used for the Newcastle service. Local freight is shunted by the train loco on arrival. This loco also takes freight to & from the mining station – the fiddle yard. Coal traffic is handled by larger locos which it may be possible to turn but can be serviced i.e. watered in the loco depot. Push/pull loco is not turned but the other would be turned.

Longer special trains would run annually for the miners’ gala. Special trains also would occur at times.

Resident locos would change approximately weekly to go to a main depot for boiler washout and on occasions a loco would be used as a running in turn usually very clean.

Miscellaneous traffic would be the arrival of a horse box and a special through coach.

Push/pull locos 0-4-4T G5 & G6, 2-4-2T F8
Newcastle service 0-6-0 J39, 4-4-0 D17, 0-6-0T J71 & J72
Coal traffic 0-8-0 Q6, 2-8-0 O6 & O7
Running in loco 4-6-0 B1

‘Foreign’ locos could be locos borrowed by main MPD and used if required but would still be applicable to the area such as 4-4-2T C15, 0-6-0 J36 and 0-6-2T N15