Extra details on a small layout sustain visitors viewing interest and it is heart warming for us to hear returning visitors say "Is that new?", when in fact a small detail they spotted had always been there! However, we should not over do it to the point where realism is compromised or it looks cluttered.
There is one scene we have not presented in this Blog so far that has been there from the early days and that is the railway staff cricket pitch. This has its own story based on fact but that will have to wait for another day to be told.
Some new details being discussed include more wild flowers, scratch built LSWR rolling stock, a train conveying Thornycroft J class trucks destined for France in WW1 (although whether or not they came this way is questionable, despite the factory being just up the line) and to move the layout forward 8 years to depict the station and rolling stock in Southern Railway livery. If we were starting again we would make the station platform and its tree line a replaceable module so that a SR version could be swapped in. Things that would be different include taller trees, SR station name boards, wire fence, SR staff and more vegetation. Currently, only the station building can be easily swapped for a SR green version.
One error that has just been corrected is the level crossing gate that was made too low and depicted 5 bars instead of 6. But, studying the real Cliddesden gate since remaking the model I noted it has 7 bars! I have seen pictures of other LSWR gates with 6 bars so, I'll not be changing it again. At least the height looks correct.
Spot the Difference