The J.M.R.C. was formed in 1981 and first met in the woodwork classroom of a local school with the intention of providing guidance in the hobby. The association with the school lasted until 1984 when the Education Department said they wanted their classroom back to demolish it, we then moved to the Manse at St John, sharing facilities with the Karate Club.
During the 3 years at the school, several layouts were built. The first was an “00” gauge layout measuring 16feet by 8 feet. This layout has gone through several rebuilds and extensions and now runs for over 30 metres…..
The original “0” gauge coarse scale stud contact layout utilised the station from a member’s garden layout and this also metamorphosed to become quite a large layout. Since then, however, a new “0” gauge fine scale layout has been built and in typical J.M.R.C. fashion is growing year on year.
This period also saw the formation of an SM32 layout. Built mainly from scrap materials and second hand track, This is the only club layout that is the same now as it was in the mid 80’s except for a large bridge constructed from a Military model Bailey training kit obtained from the local territorial army unit.
During 1984, it became necessary for us to look for a more permanent home. In early 1985 through one of the members who was an estate agent, we secured the freehold on a former small chapel in the parish of Trinity called “Mitzpah Hall”. It was affectionately known as “Misfit Hall”, though due to the death of a revered hearing-impaired member it has been re-named “The Andrew Le Masurier Hall”.
The property was in poor state and needed extensive building work and renovation. This daunting task took 5 years of DIY and two sponsored contracts from Sports and Recreation committee to build a mezzanine floor which now houses the N Gauge layout and store and the installation of a toilet and drains, this year we also installed mains water and a new kitchen, now we have a pleasant, well equipped club room where members old and new can “play trains”, or use our workshop facilities and the expertise of other members.