Guildford Model Engineering Society



Passenger-Hauling Railways - 3½, 5 and 7¼ inch gauge

Photo of passenger trains on the raised and ground level track

For the dates and times of our public events please see our events page.

The main activities of our society revolve around the passenger-hauling railways. We have two main tracks, both in the form of continuous loops. The raised track is a combined 3½” and 5” gauge line of 1405 feet in length. It is raised above ground level to improve the comfort of drivers and passengers and to increase stability. The ground level track is 7¼" gauge and is 990 feet long. It runs round the outside of the raised track. We also have a short, raised, test track of 2½", 3½" and 5" gauges.

All tracks are serviced by off loading points, sidings and steaming bays, each of which is supplied with a water point, 12-volt electricity and compressed air. An excellent engine shed backs on to a separate passenger carriage shed. There are two stations for use on passenger carrying days and both railways are controlled by electronically operated signals.

The society owns three 5” locomotives and two 7¼” locomotives, all are used for driver training and passenger hauling on public open days. Members can use these locomotives at other times by arrangement with the Chief Mechanical Engineer. Both raised and ground level tracks are available for member’s own use unless otherwise reserved, as advertised in our published programme.

Visiting drivers are welcome but should note that for all boilers having a capacity above 3 bar-litres, a valid boiler and annual steam test certificate will be required to be shown. If passenger hauling, it is a requirement of the Society that spark arrestors or deflectors are fitted.

GMES Site Plan showing track information

Coupling, locomotive to passenger rolling stock, all gauges

Driver's vacuum brake control and connections, all gauges

On the raised 3½" and 5" track the minimum curve radius is 50 feet and the maximum rising gradient in the usual direction of running is 1 in 110.

Diagram showing clearances and other information about the raised track

On the ground level 7¼" track the minimum curve radius is 68 feet and the maximum rising gradient in the usual direction of running is 1 in 60.

Diagram showing clearances on the ground level track Please note that since it was laid, ground movement has caused the anti-tip kerbing to be up to 25mm above the top of the rail in places. This is not normally a problem but you are advised to check the current situation if intending to run a wide locomotive with small wheels and outside cranks.