The Association of 16mm Narrow gauge Modellers is, without putting too fine a point on it – knocking on a bit! Certainly we have grown massively in the past thirty odd years, but no one has, to date, built a database of photographs, drawing and scans of catalogues etc. We are starting from scratch and it will take a while as my commercial publishing activities run down. While a history of the Association is in course of preparation, we need both information and digitised photographs to be held as an association resource. The idea is that this resource will be held in the cloud by not only myself, but by other Association Officers as well – just in case I get flattened by a number 17 bus, I run off to Brazil with the vicar’s wife and Church funds, or some other problem arises. This way, whatever happens, the resource will remain with the Association for the benefit of members.
The idea is that we may all contribute 300dpi scans of photographs (or they can be sent to me to be digitised then returned), be it of early events, the first commercial locomotives or rolling stock, members that have contributed to the association who are no longer with us, scans of early catalogues and advertisements and indeed, anything else that you consider may well be of interest. The copyright of the photographs will of course remain with the contributor and, if used in SMT or an association publication, the copyright holder will be acknowledged. Ian Pearse of Accucraft UK has very kindly handed over the Merlin archive, which I am currently digitising and he has asked that, if the photographs are used in a commercial publication such as a book or magazine, then a receipt for a donation to the user’s favourite heritage railway be passed to the Heritage Officer. The copyright must also be acknowledged in this case. This seems an eminently suitable way of proceeding for an association such as ours, and this is what I intend to do with any of the archive material that we collect.
I have a very large digital collection (and an equally large collection of slides) that I am working my way through currently, but it is a long slow job. I hope eventually to have a low-res watermarked on-line catalogue for members use, but meanwhile, email and hunt will be the modus operandi.
I may be contacted by telephone via the members list, email with any of mine that you have to hand, or directly via email@example.com. Your contributions will be very welcome and you will be helping to build Association history…
Tag Gorton, Heritage Officer