The Newcastle Model Railway Club Incorporated
The following document outlines the history of The Newcastle Model Railway Club Incorporated as determined by club records and archives including correspondence letters, recognition certificates and additional documentation.
The Newcastle Model Railway Club Incorporated is the result of two model railway clubs coming together from the Newcastle and Lake Macquarie areas.
The Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club (brief history)
The Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club had its beginnings in 1974.
Founding Members of the club included S. Wrightson, C. Minaham
The club operated from premises at Georgetown before moving to the location at Dora Road, Adamstown.
The first noted president of the Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club was Mr S. Wrightson in 1978. At this time, the Honorary Secretary changed from Mr C. Minaham to Mr G. Benney.
Newcastle N Gauge Railway Modelling Club (brief history)
Formed in 1976 the group first operated in the lower hall of the Baptist Church in Kings Street, Newcastle. This arrangement was at the good will of the Church that had a Minister Bob Richardson who was an N Gauge Modeller.
Meetings were held every two weeks and for quite a long time were just members discussions about altering the "N Track" specs of the day to suit the electrical products that were available in Australia at that time. Armed with some basic sizes several members began building modules and this led to the club holding its first exhibition which consisted of fourteen personal modules, this enticed about thirty people to have a look.
Several members who were RAAF members, were transferred and with the mice having a feast on any modules that were stored there, a suitable hall belonging to the Uniting Church in Queens Ave Cardiff New South Wales was found and after permission, the under-stage area was altered to be able to store the first exhibition layout which was a scale model of Waratah NSW.
The Newcastle N Gauge Railway Club became incorporated after movement to Cardiff in late 1988.
The group had continual searched for more permanent premises, seeking locations that included State Rail land at Cockle Creek and the Newcastle Show Ground, however a proposed rent increase for the use of the Uniting Church Hall resulted in the club holding discussions with the Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club.
Records indicate that on the 5th Nov 1990 the first discussions took place about amalgamation with the Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club at their premises in West End Park, Dora Road, Adamstown. However it wasn’t until the 7th Oct 1991 that a motion was passed at the annual general meeting to undertake the proposed amalgamation.
At this time the club consisted of only nine members. A 1988 club list from 1988 records 29 members , but the club minutes indicate that only nine were financial.
The Newcastle Model Railway Club Incorporated (TNMRC Inc.) was formed following the amalgamation of the Newcastle Model Railway Club and the Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club on the 11th Feb 1992. Prior to this time, each club had a separate committee, however both appear to have had limited members, with the Newcastle Model Railway Club having nine financial members and the Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club having four financial members.
In 1992 a new committee was elected to administer the now combined groups, consisting of; President Mr S. Magee, Vice President Mr B. Green, Honorary Secretary Mr H. Hessing and Treasurer Mr B. Edge, as well as committee members (R. Pollock, A. Roth and G. Benney). The Newcastle Model Railway Club Incorporated (TNMRC) being the adopted name for the now combined group. Since this time there has been a steady growth of members throughout the years, with a current standing of fifty members (as at May 2014).
On the 27th September, 1974 a request was placed by the Honorary Secretary (Mr C.J. Minaham) of the Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club, to the New South Wales Lands Board Office for the use of a site within West End Park, Adamstown. On the 8th August 1975, the site was reserved for a not profit organisation, titled the Newcastle and District H.O. Model Railway Club, with notification published in the Government Gazette Department of Lands. This reserve still stands today, with the current club still operating at Lot 3152, West End Park, Dora St, Adamstown.
On the 4th July 1986, the NSW Gazette noted the appointment of the Newcastle Model Railway Reserve Trust as the Trustee. Early trust members included Mr C. Agland, Mr H. Pelzer and Mr. F. Bennett. This trust still exists today, with an updated schedule of trust members appointed from 15th May 1998, published in the NSW Government Gazette.
In the early years of the TNMRC the primary focus of the club was the production and ongoing development of an N scale exhibition layout titled “Newenga Junction”. This layout made its first appearance in 1986 at the Combined Hunter Region Rail Modellers Association Exhibition. It made regular appearances at this exhibition between 1986 and 1994 as well as appearances at exhibitions held by Berrima District Model Railway Club, Taree & District Model Railway Club and the Holiday Coast Model Railway Exhibition.
The club currently has three layouts; however they do not have specific names, simply being referred to by the club members as the N-Scale layout, the HO-Layout and the upstairs layout.