Our model railway is freelanced to allow us some poetic license and avoid the inevitable issues that arise with a prototype layout when we just want to have a bit of fun! It is inspired by the pioneering spirit of our forebears, like my father Tom Pate, now a fit 89 year old, who worked as a young man in the timber industry along with his brothers Arthur and Bob, cousin Wally and to be father-in-law Percy Adams. Logging naturally became one of the major themes for our model railway. The ‘backwoods’ logging theme lends itself well to small to medium sized layouts and gives plenty of scope for running some interesting ‘geared’ locomotives through the scenery and for scratch building using scale timber. An unexpected and very pleasant aspect of the hobby is the research and discovery of facts about my father’s early years and the area where we lived until the mid 60’s.
We chose the name Britannia Creek as that was the name of the road where Tom’s mill was located. Interestingly, whilst doing some research on the subject I found that over 60 mills of various sizes have existed at one time or another in the area and a significant wood distillery plant called Britannia Creek had operated nearby in the 1920s. We are not trying to model this plant as such but it lends itself to some interesting features that may be included.