The Ramsgate and District Model Engineering Club
About the Club
The club was founded on the 24th of June 1947, by enthusiasts keen to promote model making and model engineering in Thanet.
The first meeting was at the County Works in Dumpton Park Drive, Ramsgate. There were eight sections devoted to such diverse activities as arts and crafts, miniature railways, radio, architectural models, locomotives, boats, and yachts.
When these premises were demolished in 1956 the club moved to Effingham Street where members worked with model steam locomotives of various gauges from 2.5″ to 5″ and 00 gauge electric layouts.
In 1961 the first portable track was constructed with the idea of running live steam locomotives. For its first outing, the track was taken to the Preston Flower Show, marking the start of a successful career in operating portable track events. In 1969 a permanent, elevated, 3.5″ and 5″ gauge railway track was erected within the historic Ellington Park in Ramsgate, which is still in use today.
With the move to the Water Board premises in Southwood Road in 1968, members had more space. The premises consisted of three parts, behind the house was a workshop, a pump room, and a small shed. There was a library and a 00 gauge layout in the bedrooms of the house, with holes knocked through the walls for the track to pass between the rooms.
In 1981, the club moved to the other side of the road into what was the BBC Radio building, this being in front of the water tower. At that time the club lost the 00 gauge railway and the library and instead concentrated on live steam locos and general model engineering.
1998 saw the club move to small premises in Manston and it stayed there until moving the meetings to Crampton Tower Museum in early 2004. Due to Covid-19, the club didn’t hold any weekly meetings once the pandemic began and we gave up Crampton Tower as our meeting venue… We currently meet in the café in Ellington Park…
Today the club has members that have built, or are building 2.5″, 3.5″, and 5″ gauge steam locomotives and 5″ gauge electric locomotives. The club also has members who have built, or run, traction engines of various scales.