Modelling of British and Worldwide standard gauge railways

Stand number: R19


At this year’s National Garden Railway Show you will have a chance to see Gauge 1 trains in action on the impressive ‘Anglia Roads’ layout which is owned and operated by the East Anglia local group of the Association.

There will also be an information stand close to the layout (R19) where membership leaflets, sample publications and locos and rolling stock will be on display and where you can chat to members of the Association and find out more about it.

What is Gauge 1?

Gauge 1 models run on 45mm track and many are of standard gauge but also 3’ 6” narrow gauge such as used in South Africa and elsewhere.

Models are constructed to 1:32 scale although for historical reasons many are also constructed to 10mm to the foot. Models cover as wide variety as the real railways, British steam, diesel and electric, European railways, American, Australian and indeed world wide prototypes.

Why Gauge 1?

The size and real ‘presence’ of Gauge 1 trains, especially when seen in action are what gives a special appeal. You sometimes can feel the earth move as a train goes by and with live steam models you get the heat of the loco and the steam and sound from the exhaust.

Many model locos are powered by steam and fired by meths, gas or coal but battery powered radio controlled models are becoming increasingly popular.

How to start in Gauge 1

If you have a 45mm track in your garden then Gauge 1 trains may be able to run on it – but the radius of the curves is crucial.  A radius of 4’ is the minimum recommended for smaller locos and wagons but carriages and large locos need at least 6’6” radius or more. Gradients need care but with radio control or track power of locos and reasonable loads behind them they need not be an obstacle.

Many skilled people build their own locos and stock from scratch but kits and ready to run locos and stock are available from several suppliers (some can be seen today at the show). Costs are usually more expensive than 16mm but are not unreasonable for what is offered.

Do I need my own garden railway?

Many people don’t have their own Gauge 1 railway but they bring their trains along to meetings held at the garden of members who do have lines. In Gauge 1 these meetings are called ‘Get-to-gethers’ (GTGs) and as in 16mm and G-scale these are an opportunity to run trains, chat, drink tea and eat cake!

How do I meet fellow members?

There are local groups of members in all parts of the world – it is truly international. Details of how to contact your local group are published in the quarterly Newsletter and Journal and on the Association website.

Find out more here:

Enjoy the show!