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Crewchester

(UK)

Not a manufacturer; a British Institution.

Crewchester was the layout of the late Jack Ray. The layout was initially clockwork, from inception in 1952, but eventually converted to electric power, in 1981. Jack Ray was one of the founders of the Gauge 0 Guild, and first Chairman. Refer to YouTube for videos of Crewchester.


For the full story, Jack Ray's book is compulsory reading.

LMS 3rd class coach
Destination Board reads TRENTON (TOWN) CREWCHESTER JUNCTION HARTWICH (WILSONSTREET)

The Black 5 loco illustrated below was offered for sale via eBay, with the following description :

This is the superb Black 5 locomotove which ran on the Crewchester railway of Jack Ray, it has a compensated chassis and gives a superb ride for the trains it hauls, it is very powerful and has had some famous names working on it over the years, the mechanism was changed to a CrailCrest, (very powerful) by Barrie Walls. This locomotive has not been meddled with by myself and is authentic as it ran on Crewchester for those that it makes a difference with. There are videos available of this locomotive running at Crewchester and they really do make great viewing as Crewchester was an outside railway and natural light really does do justice to O gauge railways.


Crewchester Black 5 locomotive, 5397

Crewchester Black 5 locomotive, 5397

Crewchester Black 5 locomotive, 5397

Crewchester Black 5 locomotive, 5397

Crewchester Black 5 locomotive, 5397

Crewchester Black 5 locomotive, 5397

Since adding the above images to the site, the new owner of this loco writes :

I was the eventual buyer last year (2013) of the Crewchester 'Black Five' 5397. The gentleman who sold the model to me purchased it direct from Jack Ray. 5397 is in fact a Dawson kit which Jack bought from a Mr Bradley of Leeds in 1963. In 1969 Bob Lovell rebuilt the loco and fitted her with one of his special clockwork mechs. When Jack Ray went 2-rail standard scale in 1981, the clockwork mechanism went back to Bob Lovell and Barrie Walls fitted a new DC mech. A year ago Mike Williams converted the loco to 3-rail running for me using a Michael Pearse pick up under the tender. The loco can easily be converted back to 2-rail. Mike Williams used exactly the same method to convert the Crewchester LMS compound 1032 for me. Incidentally though both these locos were used to sweeping nine feet radius curves at Crewchester, they have no problem with the three feet radius Atlas track on my layout, which hosts seven former Crewchester locos, all in working order. Two still have clockwork motors.

The only items I own, ex Crewchester, are a pair of Dinky road hoardings, which have been repainted and adorned with posters suitable for the Crewchester layout. Note some letters are missing from the top of each hoarding. Each should read Crewchester Publicity. The letters appear to be Slaters.


Crewchester roadside hoarding, ex Dinky

Crewchester roadside hoarding, ex Dinky

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