A freelance route circular in structure, rural in nature, double tracks with several stations and sidings for goods and mixed traffic working. No particular time period, but it does lean towards the steam era due to the inclusion of turntables. Running from a small country town via villages, a tunnel and river, passing a large docks complex and then onto the seaside where engine turning is available, or alternatively through traffic. This would move your train back into countryside and another two stations, both with good capabilities there or close by. Highly detailed so ideally requires a high spec PC, but if Detail Level and Draw Distances are reduced and Daytime Fog effect put to Full, then it should run on most machines.


The first effort at this route, again fairly highly detailed and circular in make up with moderate MPD facilities at Cranby with a modest 4 track station. A double track circle with a crossover much like many Hornby layouts, including town and country working. Running from Cranby to either the crossover (so attaining the opposite direction) or staying on the main line, the user has both passenger and freight to contend with. A freelance route allowing a wide operational scope with many small industries dotted around and the readily available option for expansion. Names may sound familiar, but are not meant to convey that location. Scope for updating.


The next attempt at this route was to increase its effectiveness as well as running interest. Detail has been upped quite a lot, so a good PC is desirable, but as with Compton Magna, by decreasing Detail Level and Draw Distances and introducing Full Daytime Fog Effects, a better frame rate is attainable. The main station is Cranby New Town with a large MPD with turntable and passenger facilities. The track layout concept of Cranby Town has been retained, but there are significant improvements and building work in this route. A medium small ship and barge double basin has been built near the main town and the smaller towns and villages have also been upgraded, just like real life, the population has expanded! Scope for updating like putting in more multi-industries and shipping routes.


The modern route from Paddington through Reading and out as far as Ufton, including Theale station and yard. While modern, I have not included the overhead, (a) to keep running speed up and (b) I am not sure how it is set up, so in that case I felt it best to leave well alone. A very highly detailed route which needs a fast PC. Frame rates can be improved by decreasing Detail Level and Draw Distances and introducing Full Daytime Fog Effects, almost obligatory anyway. I feel that as we cannot see for infinity it is better to introduce some restrictions on a Trainz route. This is a huge section and needs over 1600 assets. Some will be built-in, but a First Class ticket would help with the many Custom objects needed. Many of these have been especially made for this route and are all on the DLS. There are some that are not on, but only a few, some Polish fence I think, but most will be available from the Download Station. Run TrainzObjects to find the web sites. However, it will be necessary to click the Pre SP3 square when searching the DLS. There will be follow-on sections running through to Penzance (already started) but as they take a considerable time these will be slow coming, the first section took 14 months. Plenty of scope for updating.


This rural and very pretty route ran between two main line connections, one at Robertsbridge, the other at Headcorn, both Southern Region metals. This allowed the route, although only of moderate length, to have full potential for running options allowing for all kinds of train (consist) configurations as most were found here, from full freight to single coach passenger and everything in between.. The countryside varies from the hop fields of Kent to the grassy downs of East Sussex with many rivers and tributaries interspersing fields and so breaking up an otherwise solid section of land and inducing many tree lines that help mask other sections of the line and so creating small scenarios. The route is basically single line working with some stations having passing loops. The main loco depot was at Rolvenden, but Tenderten Town also had maintenance facilities. This is a highly detailed line, but more can be added if this is desired, but it also demands a reasonably fast PC. To run it otherwise please reduce the Preference settings by moving the Detail slider back about half and both Draw Distances likewise. Also add full Daytime Fog Effect and so limit the view distance to a greater extent.. So start her up and enjoy the ride through some of southern England's wonderful and pleasant countryside and soak up a bit of the past.

You can see more on Angela's Trainz routes on her website and download them direct without using the DLS



My interpretation of the network of Main and Branch Lines that have existed in these English county's during the last 100 years.

These counties featured a wide range of railway operations; from the massive marshalling yards at March to the isolated fenland freight only branch to Benwick; from the legendary express trains on the East Coast Main Line to the two coach Push and Pull services on the many branch lines; from the heavy industrial freight (Bricks from Peterborough & Coal to the south via March and New England yards) to the agricultural freight of the Wisbech & Upwell (fruit) and Wissington (Sugar Beat) Railways.

In my mind, the route is set sometime between 1950 and 1965. But the track plans for the stations are much older so any period since 1920 would be acceptable.

It is not an exact copy of the route. It is built for my own enjoyment rather than specifically for the DLS (so the detail will not be as high as my other routes, 'Skinners Lane' and 'Little How'). I want the station layouts to be as accurate as possible based on the track plans I have. But the distances between stations are not prototypical. I've chosen the best matched buildings available on the DLS for the stations and other buildings on the route.

The whole route will be released in different phases. There will be no set order in which I build the will just be a case of whatever takes my fancy. Although the bigger centres like Cambridge, March, Wisbech and Peterborough will probably come last. But it will probably be something like this to start with.....

Phase 1, 'The Grunty Fen Express', features the branch line from St. Ives to Ely.....although it doesn't actually include those two 'larger' stations yet. FINISHED & SENT TO DLS

Phase 2 'Branch Lines to Ramsey' will include most of the main line from St Ives to March and the branch lines from Somersham to Ramsey East and Holme to Ramsey North. The later will include a small part of the East Coast Main Line. TRACK LAID

Phase 3 (no name yet) will include St Ives and Ely stations, South of Ely to Chesterton Junction, just north of Cambridge and perhaps a bit more of the ECML. NOT STARTED

Phase 4 (no name yet but something to do with Jam!) will include the Cambridge to St. Ives branch, St Ives to Huntingdon Branch and definitely some of the ECML. NOT STARTED


The Grunty Fen Express is my representation of the St.Ives to Ely (Cambridgeshire, UK) branch line. The branch starts about a mile north of St Ives station leaving the Cambridge - March main line at Needingworth Junction. Bluntisham and Earith Bridge are just normal branch line stations but Sutton is a little different.

Sutton was the original terminus of the Ely to Sutton Railway before the line was extended to St. Ives. The original terminus was converted to the Goods Yard and a new two platform passenger station was built.

Next to the Goods Yard is the Drakes Forage Works. As I understand it, this took in hay and straw via road and coal via the railway. The horse food (Forage) it then made was taken out via rail.....The railways being a major customer for this product.

The siding which runs along the side of the Forage works to the coal staiths should be accessed via a wagon turntable. But unfortunately a suitable turntable is not available so I put in a small head shunt. This siding should be shunted by horse only. Hopefully a suitable horse for the task is included when you download the route!

Between Sutton and Haddenham is Haddenham Brickworks. I have no idea what the Brickworks looked like and only had an old O/S map to go on. So I guessed! Not really sure how happy I am with the final outcome.

On the other side of Haddenham station is an old clay works that has been taken over by an engineering business.

Wilburton & Stretham are normal branch stations and the branch joins the Cambridge to Kings Lynn main line at Stretham Junction about half a mile south of Ely.

Regular passenger services were handled by an LNER F7, and occasionally a J69 or J15, on a two coach push and pull set. Basically any 0-6-0 Tank or Tender Engine would be acceptable if you didn't want to purchase the above loco's.

During the summer 'Summer Saturday Specials' ran to the coast at Hunstanton and Great Yarmouth. Plus there was also 'Race Day Specials' to Newmarket and Great Yarmouth again.

Freight services were usually handled by 0-6-0 Tender loco's (J15 or J17) although I've also seen photo's of a green class 31 working the branch in later days. Again, any suitable branch line loco would do.

As well as the typical daily pick up goods I also add in the following freight services:

- Coal & empty wagons to Drakes Forage Works and Haddenham Brick works from St. Ives. - Empty coal & loaded wagons from Drakes Forage Works and Haddenham Brick works to St. Ives. - Empty Vans from Ely to each station ready to be loaded with fruit. - Van loaded with fruit from each station to St Ives and onto the Jam Factory at Histon.

There are aspects of the route I'm unhappy with. It's a bit untidy around the edges but I'll clear all that up as I issue the different phases of the C&H. There is also some track work I'm not happy with. But I feel a bit loathed to play around with the trackwork at this stage.

As I said, the route is not perfect, and the track purists may not like it, but overall I'm reasonably happy with it so far.


Little How is another shunting/switching layout, and was built especially with Michael Whiteley's excellent GER G15 Tram Engine in mind. Although it's even smaller than Skinners Lane, I'm hoping the challenge will make the layout interesting.

The layout can only take loco's with an 0-4-0 wheel arrangement. I've already mentioned the GER G15 Tram Engine but I've also worked it a lot using Paul Hobbs little 'Jane' loco. I've used the green Class 01 and 02 diesel shunters as well when I felt like a more modern approach..

The challenge is to sort the six wagons (seven if you include a Brake Van) into the six sidings/locations in the yard. To make sure the challenge is always different I randomise the destinations of the wagons using a card system.

Five Siding, or destination, cards are shuffled and laid face down. One (or two if you so wish) of these cards is then removed.

[If a coal wagon is part of the consist it is always destined for the 'Coal' siding.]

Each wagon also has it's own card and these are then laid on the siding cards to provide a destination. To add difficulty, Brake Vans must always be at the rear of the train when leaving the yard.

I've used a number of 'systems' to randomly allocate the wagons to a destination. This includes rolling dice, which is quicker than creating cards.

I reckon it should take between 15 and 25 minutes to shunt each train.

You will also need to adjust the 'Set Trigger Radius' to 1mtr in Surveyor before going into Driver. Unfortunately this setting is not saved with the route for some reason so has to be reset each time.


a small shunting layout set in the BR Corperate Blue period. But it could easily be set in the early diesal or steam periods if you wish.

This yard has to be worked by two loco' it's Gronk city!!! The UKBL 03 will also be ideal when it's released.


I start with empty wagons on each of the sidings, ready to be shunted into a train for departure, and a train waiting to be shunted on the arrival line at trackmark Yd1. The portal is set to issue trains randomly every 30mins. Obviously this means you have half an hour to get things sorted in the yard and a train away before the next one arrives.

To add interest I vary the consists on the portal list. I also have some of the smaller mainline diesels (20, 24, 25, 26, 31, 33.....even a 37) rather than a (shorter) shunter bring the new trains to the yard!. I guess you could decrease the time between trains if 30mins doesn't challenge you.

The two sidings closest to the viaduct (STORAGE 1 & 2) are for storage of old wagons waiting to be cut up. I also use a few grey 16T mineral wagons to take away scrap metal. These sidings can also be used for 'overflow' to get wagons out of the way.

The middle siding, that goes into the warehouse, is for Mitchell Metals. They make a small living by breaking up old wagons. Wagons waiting to be cut up are shunted into the building and then disappear. This siding also has a position for a coal wagon right next to the door. This can add to the shunting difficulties. It's also a 'Head Shunt' to access the other sidings!

The siding on the right, along side the platform, is for Spencer & Sons Storage. Pretty much all Vans.

At the other end, nearest the arrival line, is Hart Engineering. I use mostly SpeedlinkVans and VAA's with the occasional open wagon for the covered bay.

The last siding is for Browns Imports, and I use THE BR 20T Continental Van in that siding.

It doesn't really matter which wagon 'types' you allocate to each siding though. The viaduct is purely a scenic break and I just set trains travelling to and from the portals.

It's been reported that there is some missing content. The first two are wagons....which is somewhat surprising because I checked the route and they dont appear in the version I have on my system! Still, they are Jonny211's excellent PAYWARE BR 12T Van and his freeware BR Grey 20T TOAD Brake Van. Both are available for download at although not essential to the route.

The next is Dock Leanto (Logging Saw Mill) by Narrowguage which I'm certain must be available here at

The remaining missing assets are Himmel (German1) by Niffi, which is the sky I used, and Cz_coal (Czech Republic) by Bald which is a Groundtexture. Unfortunately I have no idea where either of these came from!

I enjoy shunting more than I do just steaming through field after field so this layout works for me. If you dont like shunting then i doubt you'd get much enjoyment from it. Eventually the layout will appear as part of a larger route, but it wont be the 'Shunting Challenge' I hope it is now.

PS - You will also need to adjust the 'Set Trigger Radius' to 1mtr in Surveyor before going into Driver. Unfortunately this setting is not saved with the route for some reason so has to be reset each time.



This layout was inspired by some of the images used in the TV series (Joan Hickson version) rather than the newer version.

Re-reading the Marple stories and an interesting biography 'Agatha Christie's Miss Marple', by Anne Hart, Harper-Collins.

I then made some 'educated guesses from the references as to the location for Miss Marple's village of St Mary Mead (SMM) - a couple of miles from the county town of Much Benham, 12 miles from SMM. the port of Loomouth also about 12 miles away and 20 miles from a second seaside resort of Danemouth. References also indicated that St Mary Mead was on something of a branch line that ran from Much Benham via Barnchester to Paddington (suggesting a GWR line). Trains from Much Benham to (and this is an example of the inconsistency in Miss Christies' stories) either Waterloo, Cannon Street, or Victoria (either way suggesting a Southern line). In one story (Nemesis) Miss Marple travels from St Mary Mead to Alton - 'decides to use Inch (chauffeured hire car) rather than having to take the train and change at Much Benham'.

These references gave the basic geography - allowing for the inconsistencies, which provide a degree of latitude in the interpratation.

The description of Market Basing, I have taken from a Poirot book.

Agatha's Country I - deals with this basic geography, Phase II will take the line to Loomouth, Danemouth and Melbourne Abbas and complete the loop from Melborne Abbas back up to Chipping Cleghorn via Andover (another Poirot reference - 'The ABC Murders').

I have taken the liberty around Much Benham and St Mary Mead to make reference to other classic police and detective stories - How many can you identify?



Somewhere in England, a light railway similar to those built and managed by Colonel Holman Fred Stephens runs from the village of Dukes Denver to the small cathedral city of Fenton. On the outskirts of Dukes Denver can be seen the remains of a short branch for goods traffic only which used to connect to the main British Railways network.

Dukes Denver, my first attempt at building a Trainz route, was based on a convoluted plan by Cyril Freezer for a light railway in a room measuring four by three metres. Using the unlimited space available in Trainz, this was expanded to a straight, end-to-end route with five stations on seven by one baseboards - the equivalent area in British OO (4mm to 1 foot) would be 10 x 70 metres, too large for the average modeller!

The name Dukes Denver comes from the Lord Peter Wimsey detective stories by Miss Dorothy L Sayers - Lord Peter was the younger brother of the Duke of Denver - and it is the name I used for a number of small N gauge layouts in the seventies, eighties and nineties.


A one-board layout using only TRS2004 built-in objects: no downloads needed. Can be enhanced after downloading by using custom objects as replacements, and also extended . Based on an 8' x 6' plan by Cyril Freezer in Railway Modeller November 1956 - hence the name. For my thoughts on using model railway layout plans, but taking advantage of the space available in Trainz, see

RM1156 France

Similar to RM1156, using the same track plan but set in France. This is not confined to built-in content.


A non-scenic layout with two underground and three surface stations showing how my representations of the Paris Metro in days gone by can be used. This uses my Metro stations, track, tunnels etc. and an ajs dighole, otherwise anything else used is TRS2004 built-in.


These are station-only modules (no landscape or scenery) intended to be used on their own or assembled in any appropriate order with one or more blank baseboards between stations. Station layouts - based on suggestions by Cyril Freezer - are typical of UK practice.

Albury - A double-track, three-platform urban terminus to UK standards, passenger only, for intensive commuter traffic using tank engines, push-pull trains or DMUs. One baseboard.

Burhill - A single-track, one-platform rural terminus, passenger and goods. One baseboard.

Cranleigh - A double-track, two-platform through station, pasenger only. Two baseboards

Denmead - A double-track, two-platform through station, based on Cranleigh but for both passenger and goods traffic.

Elstead - A large urban through station with four platforms, goods shed, engine shed and carriage sidings. Two baseboards.

(Fulton - A double-track, five-platform urban terminus. Two baseboards. Two double-track and one single-track exits. Fulton was not complete before support for TRS2004 ended and was never uploaded to the Download Station.)

(Greenwood - A large, five-platform through station based on Fulton. Two double and one single-track exits in both directions. Greenwood was not complete before support for TRS2004 ended and was never uploaded to the Download Station.)

All the above, except Greenwood, have been revised for TS2010 and named 'Albury revised' etc., with different KUIDs.


My current project is a recreation of the West Norfolk Railway which ran from Heacham, on the King's Lynn to Hunstanton branch, to Wells-on-Sea (sic). This is a major project, covering over eighteen miles of track, and progress will be slow as I tend to concentrate on creating virtual models, especially buildings.


These are examples of 'playing around' with ideas in TRS2004 but not taking them to completion or uploading. They show how easy it is to be distracted by new ideas! Cardale - a tram museum on four baseboards (almost complete). King's Acre to Bramley - a fictitious, end-to-end branch line on nine baseboards (almost complete). Short Line USA - dabbling for a change in USA practice (about 50% complete). Eight baseboards. Canley Meadows - end-to-end commuter line, track and stations only, on fourteen baseboards. Cathedral City - trams on one baseboard. One-board NG - 24" quarry line on one baseboard (complete). And finally - Dukes Denver on one board. An attempt to include the elements of Dukes Denver (seven baseboards) on only one - but still the equivalent of 10 x 10 metres in OO rather than the original plan for 3 x 4 metres. (Successfully completed, but overtaken by the withdrawal of support for TRS2004. I ought to revise it for TS2010! - and probably will.)