Sussex Border Railway.
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This little line represents a nostalgic look back at Southern England in 1930. The line was built to connect the Kent and East Sussex Light Railway at Northiam with the Southern Railway at Rye, passing through the mythical town of Marlingate. The Weald of Kent canal was intended to connect the River Rother in Sussex with the River Medway in Kent, but it was never built, not until now of course, where it follows the route of the railway.

The railway operation is based on Colonel Stephenson's practice with the use of light Tram engines, and other small engines transporting small loads, occasionally bigger trains pass through due to diversions, excursions and engineering.

The small blue steam engines are a favourite for the children as they like them to Thomas the tank engine. The layout incorporates a busy market town with local dry dock for canal boat work. A local Gypsum mine is nearby, as well as scenic countryside for couples to lose themselves in.

All stop for sheep.
The station gets ready.
The express arrives.
Plan of scenic section.

A layout plan.

1 - Cattle Pen, 2 - Station, 3 - Freight Shed, 4 - Coal Yard, 5 - Packing Station, 6 - Forge.


One man, Gordon Webb, built the original layout, in two pieces, but added a third when he ran out of room to model on the original, making the layout 9 feet long with two small turntables at each end to turn stock. The area group took ownership on his retirement from modelling as it would have been a shame to let it disappear.

The layout has now been modified to allow through running by replacing the turntables with a continuous configuration, now making the layout 15 feet long by 2 foot deep, but at no point have we modified the scenic sections.

The trackwork is Peco finescale, all the signals and points are mechanically operated, using a spoke system from the front of the layout, as it was originally a layout in a bedroom on a side unit, not designed for exhibition. The buildings are all scratch built and scenery hand painted.

At the moment this is the groups main exhibition layout, it has been shown all over the Midlands, including Warley, Gordon's 'finest hour' as he put it, but it did leave the circuit for a couple of years. The groups aim now is to get it back on the circuit but extend it to new eyes and area, so feel free to contact us if you want to know more about the possibility of it appearing at an exhibition you run or know are looking for a layout.

For more info about the creator, click this button. Bio for Gordon Webb

Richard busy playing trains.
No room at the dry dock.
The local railbus gets put away.
Heavy coal diversion.