It is essential that we get the most historically important and fragile items of rolling stock in our collection under cover as soon as we can. A basic structure will be constructed to keep the elements off them. Currently working on our coaches in the open really is a case of two steps forward and one step back. This will be timber clad on the side closest to the platforms so as not to spoil the country station ambience of Ferry Meadows.
The building will be upgraded so visitors will be able to look round at the vehicles in store and restoration work can be carried out.
In the intermediate term, a seperate temporary building will be built to house the mobile post office and 2ft train.
The second building to be built will be the restoration shed. This will have enough space for two vehicles. The rear-most bay will be for heavy overhauls, whilst the front portion will be primarily used as a paint shop and for asbestos removal, though when not required for specialist tasks will be used as a multi-purpose area.
The Piece-de-resistance of the site will be the main museum. Capable of housing 6 vehicles, the building will take the scene of a night time station, complete with the hustle and bustle of loading that evening’s mail in time honoured tradition. Each vehicle will be spot lit. The whole concept will be much more of an audiovisual experience than any other railway museum in Britain.
On the second floor our extensive archives will be housed as well as a classroom. IRPS in particular have a large range of important material related to Wagons-Lits, while the TPO group have an equally important and historic archive. There will be a cafe on this floor too.
This will be by far the most expensive part of the project, and will need vehicles fully restored ready to be put into it. As such this will be the final part to be built.