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Author Topic: Averingcliffe  (Read 3953 times)

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Offline dannyboy

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Averingcliffe
« on: January 07, 2019, 07:56:17 PM »
I have mentioned in a few posts my layout 'Averingcliffe', so I thought it was about time I gave some information.

The layout is approximately 12 feet in length by 2' 6", with the last 2 feet at either end extending to 4 feet. Basically there are two loops and each of the 4 feet pieces at the ends will have a length of track that goes....er....nowhere really. Actually, the one at the left goes to a little seaside halt, whilst the one at the right goes to a harbour, but I have that side set up so I can attach cassettes.  Inside the two loops to the front, there will be lines to a station with two, (three?), platforms, a head shunt to the left and a line to a turntable and workshops etc to the right. To the rear, there will be a line from the inner loop which will feed a 'Royal Mail' depot and a dairy. Before you all ask, no there is no track plan, although this was what I originally envisaged.



Things have changed a lot since then! That is one big advantage of using Kato Unitrack - I have changed the layout quite a bit since the plan was first formed about 2 years ago.  :o. One of the biggest changes is that there are no tunnels in the corners. There is a large mountain at the rear, just over 4 feet in length, which rises between 2 roads, with two single track tunnels. Travelling clockwise, both loops rise and the outer loop stays at that level through the mountain, whilst the inner loop drops to road level when it exits from the mountain. Talking of roads, they have been changed a lot as well!

What I intend doing is showing my layout 'in bits', together with a bit of history of the area, which is set 'somewhere in England', in an indeterminate, (Rule 1), era.  :-\

The first bit is as follows, ( with some poetic licence) -

This is a photograph of the original dairy on my layout ‘Averingcliffe’. The photo’ was taken in 1909, a few years after the dairy was opened by the two brothers Daniel and Edward Wakefield, in 1903. As you can see, the building is in need of some repairs, including the re-covering of the roof. The brothers were just about managing to run the dairy, with milk being brought in by horse and cart from local farmers and by rail from some of the outlying stations – many of which were nothing more than little halts on the line. Cheese and butter were the mainstays of production. However, within five years, things were to change big time.



Prior to the outbreak of WW1, Daniel and Edward met two sisters who had come to the UK at the turn of the century as teenagers. The sisters, Maria and Sofia were from Italy and met the two brothers at the home of a mutual friend.  Maria and Sofia had worked on the family farm near Naples, so had some knowledge of the dairy industry, although Maria had more business acumen than Sofia, who was always ‘hands on’ on the farm. Daniel married Maria in 1912, whilst Edward married Sofia a year later.

Because of the First World War, there was a huge increase in the demand for condensed milk which increased the Wakefield Dairies cash input enormously.  In 1915, the British Government started issuing condensed milk to troops as part of their emergency rations. This further helped to increase revenue at Wakefield Dairies, with the Government awarding a lucrative contract. Due to the Government contract, the workforce was increased with some workers being brought in by train to a nearby small station, with the Wakefield’s paying for a tunnel to be constructed, connecting the station to the dairy. The Wakefield’s had to fight off a strong challenge from the American company Nestlé, who tried to buy them out, having acquired numerous companies and who also had a supply agreement with companies in Australia.

Due to the profits made by the Wakefield Dairy, plans were drawn up for a new dairy and production facility to be built a short distance away. Work started on the new buildings in 1919.


I will release part 2 of the 'Wakefield Dairies' story shortly, when the electrician has done some more work, (I am awaiting some fibre optic cable!). Thank you to those who have read to the end.  :thumbsup:
David.
I used to be indecisive - now I'm not - I don't think.
If a friend seems distant, catch up with him.

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2019, 08:02:20 PM »
I really like the story and the building. The rickety roof is really good.
So......is the layout finished or is it still under construction?
If it looks right then it most probably is right.


Offline dannyboy

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2019, 08:07:07 PM »
I really like the story and the building. The rickety roof is really good.
So......is the layout finished or is it still under construction?

Thank you for those comments.  :thumbsup:
Q: "is the layout finished or is it still under construction?"
A: Why do you think you are getting the story in bits?  :smiley-laughing: :no:. Now that I am retired, hopefully the progress will be, (a bit), quicker than it has been these last two years.
David.
I used to be indecisive - now I'm not - I don't think.
If a friend seems distant, catch up with him.

Online Train Waiting

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2019, 09:22:07 PM »
Very interesting story and a good picture.

Many thanks.

John
'Why does the Disney Castle work so well?  Because it borrows from reality without ever slipping into it.'

(Acknowledgement: John Goodall Esq, Architectural Editor, 'Country Life'.)

The Table-Top Railway is an attempt to create, in British 'N' gauge,  a 'semi-scenic' railway in the old-fashioned style, reminiscent of the layouts of the 1920s to the 1950s.

Offline cornish yorkie

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2019, 10:45:08 PM »
 :hellosign: Really like the story, love the old dairy building & looking forward to your next update
    regards Derek

Offline dannyboy

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2019, 03:15:29 PM »

Part II
The new dairy buildings were completed in 1923. The two following photographs were taken a couple of weeks before the official opening, which occurred on 30th June. The weather was fine and dry, with temperatures reaching 73° Fahrenheit according to the local newspaper report. Numerous dignitaries from the county attended, along with the workers, who were given a days wage. Many people from the surrounding villages were invited and travelled in charabancs provided by Daniel and Edward. The new buildings were officially opened by the Lord Lieutenant of the county Sir Theodore Saurus, known to his friends as ‘Theo’. Sir Theodore was a man of many words; in fact, it took him nearly half an hour to officially declare the buildings open! Unfortunately, no photographs of the official opening survive due to bomb damage during World War II, (more details to follow in a later episode).

The new buildings were much larger than was required for the current workload and work force, but the Wakefield’s rationale was that this course of action would allow them to expand the business at a later date, without incurring too much expense. This was to prove an astute move, as later events will show. The loading bay on the side of the building facing the old dairy building, was used for loading horse drawn carts with produce and, increasingly, by the relatively new motorised vehicles. Daniel and Edward decided that it would be more prudent to run a second private siding, between the original siding and the loading bay, to facilitate extra movements. This was finally built in 1929 and as no service was provided by any railway company, they were informed by their lawyers that the provisions of the Railway Act 1921 did not apply.

Edward and Sofia had a son, Robert, exactly nine months to the day after their wedding, which did cause a few raised eyebrows, although Robert was a true ‘honeymoon baby’. Daniel and Maria’s first child, also a son, who they called John, was born three months later. This pleased both sets of parents, as it meant the cousins could grow up together. Daniel and Maria had another child, a daughter, Mary in 1917, whilst Edward and Sofia had a daughter, Margaret, in 1920. It was a real family occasion at the official opening, although the children were in the care of their respective Nanny’s while the parents mingled with the visitors.


The two surviving photographs -







David.
I used to be indecisive - now I'm not - I don't think.
If a friend seems distant, catch up with him.

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2019, 07:11:21 PM »
Great photographs - being B&W really creates the period feel.
And I love the back story which helps to build a believable picture.
Keep up the good work.
Thanks
Martin


If it looks right then it most probably is right.


Offline cornish yorkie

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2019, 12:18:23 AM »
Hi by by
Great photographs - being B&W really creates the period feel.
And I love the back story which helps to build a believable picture.
Keep up the good work.
Thanks
Martin




:hellosign: Totally seconded   :thumbsup:

Offline dannyboy

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2019, 08:04:03 PM »
Here is what I plan to be the penultimate chapter in the history of Wakefield Dairies. (It is a bit long winded!).

Part III
Shortly after the new buildings were completed in 1923, it was noticed that the re-roofing of the old dairy was looking a bit worse for wear. The Wakefield brothers were quite astute businessmen but as Daniel remarked to Edward one day,
“Well we did employ Messrs R. Rogers and W. Earp along with their young helper Billy. We should have known better”. It was decided that the builders who had been responsible for the new buildings, Messrs Taylor Woodrow and George Wimpey, would be called back and asked to re-roof the old dairy building.

Daniel and Edward were good employers and apart from generous wages, the workers were given paid holidays and an extra payment for any work done on a weekend. The brothers basic business premise was i) the welfare of the workers, ii) make high quality affordable dairy products and iii) where possible, make a profit. This was in direct contrast to a lot of employers who put profits before workers. In 1935, John, the son of Daniel and Maria, along with Robert, the son of Edward and Sofia, joined the company.  In 1937, at John’s behest as Estates manager, Wakefield Dairies built 28 cottages near to the dairy, to be rented out to the dairy workers at very reasonable rents. A playground for the children of the workers was also provided.

Shortly after the new dairy buildings were completed, the Wakefield brothers decided to concentrate solely on milk products and production of cheese and butter ceased. In 1939, war broke out in Europe. Wakefield Dairies was again tasked with providing increased supplies of milk products. However, fresh dairy milk was rationed as from November 1941. This did not unduly worry the brothers, as they had, again, received a Government contract, this time to provide ‘Dried Machine Skimmed Milk’, which was for general consumption, along with ‘National Dried Milk’, which was intended for babies.

It was mentioned in Part II that there were no photographs of the official opening of the new buildings by The Lord Lieutenant, Theo Saurus, a man of many words. During the spring of 1944, the Office Manager, Sylvia Overend, was asked by Robert Wakefield, who had been given the job of Accounts Manager, to compile a history of the company. One evening in April, Sylvia took a number of photographs and negatives home – she lived in one of the workers cottages, along with her husband Thomas. The following day, a German bomber pilot, for some unexplained reason, jettisoned his load of bombs whilst flying over the dairy. It was thought that the dairy may have been a target, but this has never been confirmed. Fortunately, in one sense, the dairy, which was running at full capacity, was totally unscathed by the bombing. Unfortunately, many of the bombs fell on and around the workers cottages, totally destroying 18 of them and causing enough damage to necessitate the demolition of another 6. There were no fatalities, as most of the occupants were working in the dairy, but 8 persons, including 4 children, received injuries. The occupants were found new accommodation in nearby villages and the original ‘workers train’, which had stopped running when the cottages were built, was reintroduced.


Picture of the new roof on the old dairy.



The new playground



Boiler just fired up



Aerial shot of the site



The final chapter and photographs will be along in a few days. Thanks for reading.

Addit: The tarmac is grey - honestly. It looks blue because of the light I was using.


« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 09:34:52 PM by dannyboy, Reason: added a bit! »
David.
I used to be indecisive - now I'm not - I don't think.
If a friend seems distant, catch up with him.

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2019, 09:48:13 AM »
That's looking really good, David. Did you Photoshop the smoke or have you fitted a smoke unit in the chimney?

Online weave

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2019, 10:04:39 AM »
Hi,

Great pics and story. Looking forward to more.

Cheers weave  :beers:

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2019, 10:07:31 AM »
Lovely pictures and I like the backstory which helps to paint a picture.
Oh and great modelling too.
This is coming along really nicely.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 10:10:14 AM by port perran »
If it looks right then it most probably is right.


Offline dannyboy

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2019, 10:26:42 AM »
Thanks for the comments Gents, the final (?) Wakefield Dairies chapter will be along soon when I have done a bit more research.
@Newportnobby the chimney has a small smoke unit inside Mick. Part of the rim of the unit can just be seen in the last picture.
David.
I used to be indecisive - now I'm not - I don't think.
If a friend seems distant, catch up with him.

Offline Milton Rail

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2019, 11:25:32 AM »
Great set of pics and great back story :)  my list of threads to follow keeps getting longer!

Offline dannyboy

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Re: Averingcliffe
« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2019, 12:53:05 PM »
Okay, the final part, (for now). Must get on and do some more modelling.  :)

Part IV
At the end of the war, nobody in the dairy management team could decide what to do with the bombed workers cottages site, so the site was levelled and a garden area created. Before too long, the workers themselves were asked to vote on proposals for the site and it was agreed that things would remain as they were – the workers were settled in their current locations and many did not have to travel too far to get to the dairy.

Wakefield Dairies came to an agreement with Express Dairies to lease a number of milk tankers for easier and quicker collection of milk. Whilst this was satisfactory, Daniel, Edward, John and Robert decided that, in the long term, it would be cheaper to buy their own wagons. This was agreed and three tankers were subsequently ordered. The tankers are currently with a sign writer having the required painting done.

Edward and Sofia’s daughter, Margaret, married Jack Allen in 1939, just before the declaration of war. Jack served in the Royal Engineers and rose to the rank of Captain. At the end of hostilities, Jack was asked to join the dairy in a post that was loosely called ‘Site Engineer’. He agreed to this, on the condition that a great friend of his, Patrick O’Shaugnessy, (he was from Ireland!), who was also an engineer, could come with him. Jack was brilliant as an engineer and designed a system whereby milk could be pumped from the tankers into the old dairy, which was now basically a holding area. After a while, Jack remarked to his father-in-law that there was so much milk in the old dairy that it was “past your eyes”.  Jack then devised a system so that milk could be pumped direct from the old dairy into the new building which saved time and effort as, prior to this, small vats were manhandled across to the new building. Eventually, the dairy was receiving so much milk from outlying suppliers that an agreement was made with Express Dairies for them to buy milk from Wakefield Dairies at cost, plus a tiny premium. Everybody gained by this arrangement, the milk suppliers were still able to sell all their milk, Express Dairies were saved the cost of collecting the milk and Wakefield Dairies were not making a loss. Jack altered his pumping system so that milk could be pumped into, as well as from, the tankers.

Wakefield Dairies continues to be a family run business to this day, with every single generation being represented.


The last selection of photographs. There is very little life shown, as the photographs were taken on a sunny Sunday afternoon, (apart from the night shots of course).

This shows Jack's pipework



Jack doing some welding, watched by Patrick



Night photo'



Overhead night photo'



Looking over car park to play area

« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 12:55:32 PM by dannyboy »
David.
I used to be indecisive - now I'm not - I don't think.
If a friend seems distant, catch up with him.

 

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