In A Bit Of Estate

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Bilco
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:54 am

Thanks Peter - I might have to try that!

I've had a trial with the Layering Spray, with rather better results ...

Image

Certainly, more leaves have stuck, and the retention seems better. I shall have to see how they stick when all is dry, and maybe over-spray with some varnish - or will that hairspray work better as a holding agent?
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Tue Mar 28, 2017 12:54 pm

Mlle Étoil is quite disgusted at the Colonel’s behaviour with Su B. Way. She has come to take his interest in her for granted, despite his obsession with her date of birth – indeed, she has enjoyed teasing him with hints and herrings rouge about it.

But now she feels very neglected. And even worse is la femme américaine - that dress! No Parisienne would be seen dead in anything like that – the colour is quite wrong for a visit to the country. And even worse – Le Colonel is old enough to be her father – c’est très dégoûtant! Whenever she sees them together she ostentatiously turns her head away …


Image


She decides to cultivate the company of the jeune Monsieur Bees-Keet, who she has seen around the stable yard. He often seems to have a faint scent of créosote about him, although today that seems to have been replaced with a whiff of merde de cheval. Still, he is quite handsome – peut-être seeing her with Garee will make Le Colonel jealous …


Image


Ever since Lucy Larstick slapped his face and stormed off, Gari has been rather despondent. Now he is feeling rather non-plussed by this foreign lady’s attention – the people who work in the Hall consider themselves rather superior, and don’t usually have anything to do with the outside estate workers. Although, come to think of it, his mother had worked as a maid in the Hall before she married his father, who was just a stable lad. He wonders what the story is behind that …

Mlle Étoil favours Gari with winsome glances and the occasional flash of ankle – Gari begins to wonder if he dare ask her up to the hayloft one evening…
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:03 pm

A bit more experimentation. I thought that the contrast between the GWR Loco Green paint that the tree was sprayed with and the leaves was too marked, so I took another of the trees as it arrived, and applied the Layering Spray and leaves to that ...

Image

... which I think actually looks rather better.

I have 10 of these poplars - I got them from The Model Tree Shop https://www.themodeltreeshop.co.uk/ They were a multi-buy offer, so 10 was a good price.
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby lesmond » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:47 pm

I'm really enjoying the ongoing story, Bill, it certainly beats the Archers for intrigue.

The tree also looks excellent. Thank you for sharing your technique.

Les
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Sat Apr 01, 2017 7:38 am

CORRECTION ! CORRECTION ! CORRECTION !

The Reverend Duncan Donats has pointed out a corrigendum (or erratum) in the Berger Hall back-story I published in post # 52 of this saga.

In that post I said that he was granted the living of the Church of St Lawrence in the village of Much Bowsting. He asks me to state catagorically that this is not the case. St Lawrence’s is the Church of the adjoining parish and situated in the neighbouring village of Poking St Lawrence – Sir Macintosh also holds the advowson of that living as well as Much Bowsting, hence the confusion.

The Reverend Duncan Donats is, in fact, vicar of St Arbux, the Church in Much Bowsting. He has kindly prepared some notes about St Arbux, which I append herewith :

St Arbux was one of the more obscure Celtic saints, sent to convert the obdurate pagans in the region. He was martyred by the local chieftain in a particularly gruesome fashion – he was thrown into a large iron cauldron, with his name daubed mockingly on the side, and the cauldron was then filled with boiling water mixed with bitter herbs. Legend has it that the local people then saved the resulting brew, and used it as a cure for tiredness, saying that the par-boiled remains of St Arbux gave it body.

When the area was finally converted to Christianity (at the point of a sword) the little church that was built was dedicated to St Arbux -the story of the drink with healing properties resulted in his canonisation. After the original church was repeatedly plundered and laid waste by the Vikings and other marauding armies, the present building was erected in the 12th century.

The vicar who had the living after the Restoration was a student at Oxford in the late 1640s and became an enthusiastic consumer of coffee when the ‘Angel’ coffeehouse was opened there in 1650. So great was his liking for this imported beverage that, when he was appointed to the living, he decided to bring it to the inhabitants of his parish as part of his ministry to them.

The first time coffee was inflicted on the luckless inhabitants of Much Bowsting was at the Patronal Feast of St Arbux. Over the years the tradition has grown up that, after the service is over on this day, the congregation is served coffee in special St Arbux cups, with their names written on the side in memory of his martyrdom.

St Arbux was a contemporary of that equally obscure Celtic saint, St Evenage.

I wish to apologise to The Reverend Donats and our readers for disseminating incorrect information, and to thank him for giving me the opportunity to issue this correction.

By coincidence, today is the Patronal Feast of St Arbux.
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby chris stockdale » Sat Apr 01, 2017 9:19 am

I believe the traditional response is:

:D :D :D


Cheers,

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby lesmond » Sat Apr 01, 2017 7:30 pm

Please pass my thanks for the clarification on to the good Reverend, Bill.

:D :D :D :D

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Grum » Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:16 am

I was getting "in a bit of a state", as Saturday night TV has just not been the same since the dark (and brilliant) "Taboo" series finished, and I'm not a film fan much. So, what to do while my good wife adds some scenery to the village baseboard for "Longstone"? I know, I have a proper read all about Berger Hall and Sir Macintosh. I had read odd bits of this before, but didn't seem to take much in (I'm a bit dense).
Well, quite brilliant. As we know, it is one thing to design and build a layout, but to have a jolly interesting and humorous back-story too gives the model a new meaning. All in a space of 3ft x 2ft too! I especially like what you have done with the figures, and also the partitioning back scenes, I'm quite a fan of central back scenes etc.
That you for making my Saturday night so entertaining.

Graham

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Grum » Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:56 am

Ooops...that last line should read "thank you for making my Saturday night so entertaining"

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Wed Apr 05, 2017 1:22 pm

The inhabitants of Berger Hall and Much Bowsting are very pleased that their doings have brought you pleasure, Grum!
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Wed Apr 05, 2017 4:02 pm

At the Patronal Feast of St Arbux a few days ago the Rev. Duncan Donats posed with Sir Macintosh and some of the estate workers outside the church after they had enjoyed their cups of coffee ...


Image


... L-R: J. D. Wetherspoon, Graf Heinz von Pitze-Hütt, Su B. Way, Agnes Ramsden, Colonel Sanders, Arfur Biscuit, Sir Macintosh, Rev. Duncan Donats, Gari Biscuit, Letitia (Lettice) Berger-King, Harry Ramsden. In front is Sir Macintosh's youngest, Ambrosia, hoping to attract his attention, but his mind is on other things ...


But where is Mlle. Étoil Michelin? She took one mouthful of the St Arbux coffee and was horrified. Mon dieu, qu'est-ce que c'est? This is not coffee as she knows it - c'est horrible! She cannot bring herself to swallow it, and is looking desperately for a discreet place to spit it out. She does not want to offend le petit vicaire anglais, but ...



Image


The Rev. Duncan has seen her distress, but puts it down to the close attentions of Colonel Sanders that he has observed recently. He feels that he should try to advise her of the dangers that young ladies can encounter with much older men. He also feels rather attracted to her, and wonders if he might invite her to the vicarage for a small glass of sherry . Then he recalls with a shudder what happened to his predecessor - if word got out that he was consorting with a member of the Catholic persuasion, his Bishop's gaiters would self-combust. He sighs - best go back to his lonely vicarage for a cold shower and an improving book of sermons ...
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Wed Apr 05, 2017 4:16 pm

In the group photo just posted the sharp-eyed amongst you will have noticed two new figures - Agnes Ramsden and Ambrosia. These are repaints of more Lemax figures - in this case the 'Posting a Christmas Letter'

Image

This is the larger figure, with a little height from the base added, but still on the short side ...

Image

Igor supplied new hands. She is Harry Ramsden's wife Agnes, daughter of the Housekeeper at the Hall in Sir Sebastian's time, Mrs Lamb. Agnes is nursemaid to little Ambrosia ...

Image

A cruel close-up, about 10 times life size!
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby PeterH » Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:42 pm

:D I like the colours you have used.
Peter

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Thu Apr 06, 2017 6:03 pm

Many thanks Peter.

Now, in between fiddling with figures and dreaming up ever more improbable stories about B'ger 'All I've been working on those trees. After a spray with the GWR Loco Green I tried various adhesives for the leaves. Finally, I used 3M Spray Mount, but that didn't hold the leaves too well. In the end I used the dilute matt acrylic medium over the leaves. I used a 1:5 dilution, as weaker ones didn't seem to hold, and really soaked the trees. That fixed the leaves ...

Image

This is one of the poplars behind the loco shed - the one sprayed green.

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Here are two of the unsprayed ones, just placed at the other end of the stable yard. They'll be the start of a (very) short avenue to disguise the sharp curve and hole in the backscene.

Image

Last up are a couple of firs - just sprayed green, and placed at the left end of Temple Halt, again to disguise the hole in the backscene. There will be other trees to bulk that area up a bit.

Hours of fun ...
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:24 pm

The second phase of afforestation is now complete ...


Image


Temple Halt ...


Image


Stable Yard ...


Image


... and Cascades - well, perhaps "afforestation" is a bit of an exaggeration here ...


We have visitors coming to stay, so mai laidy waif has banished the layout back to the garage. I just managed to get this phase done in time. Now I have to work out a way to keep mice, spiders, and other critters out of Berger Hall ...
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby chris stockdale » Tue Apr 11, 2017 5:05 pm

I guess the mice etc. need to be kept in the courtyard, which I believe our German friends would translate as the Berger Hof...

Cheers,

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby PeterH » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:44 am

Bill, I'm impressed how this has turned out. Your colours are quite strong, yet harmonise well. I've not been able to achieve this. And I like how the shapes of everything harmonise too - the curves of the landforms, the massing of the trees and the rectangles of the buildings. Everything looks spacious and in its place.
Peter

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Thu Apr 13, 2017 9:31 am

Mnay thanks, Peter. It is looking a bit like the picture I had in my mind when I started ...
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Tue Apr 25, 2017 7:33 pm

Well, the visitors have gone - we had a sit-down lunch for 16 on Easter Monday! - and the bits of time I managed to escape have started to bear fruit.

First to finish is a sitting figure. I thought I would use up some of the bits and pieces in Igor's store before they start to smell too badly. This one uses the legs of one of the Italeri truck drivers - the sitting one, although I had messed about with them a year or two back, and then not used them. The upper body is from one of those Chinese Peiser rip-off figures, and the head and hat are from the ICM 'Henry Ford' kit ...

Image

... at some point the arms had been ripped off, so they had to be reattached, slightly repositioned for the pose I wanted. I also had to remove the briefcase from the vice-like grasp ...

... and this is the result, after much bodgement with Green Stuff ...

Image...

... from the front ...

Image

... and the side. I think I've spotted the reason for the pained expression on his face ...

So, allow me to introduce you to Doctor Atkins, the local medical man. He's a familiar sight around the locality in his hairy gingery tweed suit. He is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries, and has spent much of his spare time collecting local myths and legends, rummaging in the old records in the Church vestry and the muniment room of the Hall, and digging in old burial mounds. He tells me that he has some more background on St Arbux, and I have much pleaseure in appending it herewith ...

"The chieftain who martyred St Arbux was called Bixit. Bixit’s wife saved the par-boiled membrum virile of St Arbux from the cauldron when things had cooled down, and it was said to have magic powers to aid wives who couldn’t get pregnant. Bixit’s wife often used to say this while looking pointedly at her husband.

The member was passed down through generations of ‘wise women’, and when the area was converted to Christianity it was kept in the church as a sacred relic of St Arbux. The women of the village were told that, if they visited the priest late at night and were touched by the relic in a special ceremony, they would fall pregnant – experience seemed to confirm this.

Successive holders of the living were quite keen to preserve the Ceremony, but the relic was destroyed by Parliamentary iconoclasts during the Civil War."

I'm told that an attempt by Rev. Donat’s predecessor to revive the practice with young Mrs Curry came to the ears of the Bishop (probably from young Mr Curry), and resulted in his appearance before the Consistory Court and rapid defrocking. Much like what had been going on up at his vicarage, the old boys at the back of the snug in the ‘Leg-O’- Mutton’ used to chortle of an evening ...
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby PeterH » Wed Apr 26, 2017 1:43 am

Perhaps Atkins can be the local member of parliament, the sitting member; as opposed to the other one.
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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:19 pm

Peter - I think he would want a more comfortable seat than he has at present ...

Right, another short project finished. I haven't used those blobby Woodlands Scenics trees on the layout ...

Image

... this one. I took one and cut off the branches from the lower 2/3rds and stripped the foliage from the remaining branches. Then I added some extra branches from bits of florists wire (very appropriate) and gave it all a coat of acrylic Modelling Paste. Last step was to paint the trunk with greys and dark browns ...

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... left - added branches and Modelling Paste, right, after painting.

I took some dark green texture mat, cut into small pieces and teased out, and glued on some extra texture material to build up the foliage. The pieces were then glued onto the branches ...

Image

The final result ...

Image

... two views of the whole tree and a close-up of the base of the trunk - the gnarled roots come from another tree I bought but didn't use.

If you think that the tree might vaguely resemble a Scots Pine - in a dimly-lit room, with your eyes half closed - I shall be content. It will go on the other side of the right-hand Stable Yard gate, outside the wall, when I rescue the layout from durance vile in the garage.

I know of no scandal reguarding this tree ...
Bill



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Too soon old, too late smart.



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby KEG » Thu Apr 27, 2017 6:33 pm

Good to know that someone else is also depending on the help of an Igor to get some figures
assembled.
I hired one as well for the building of my growing 7 / 8ths population http://www.die-feldbahnsinnigen.de/forum/viewtopic.php?f=66&t=1488

I enjoy the development of the Bilco Estate. Very entertaining and lots of creative ideas.

Have Fun

Juergen

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby Bilco » Sat Apr 29, 2017 6:40 pm

Right, the last of the three visitor-hindered projects is complete. This is another bitza job, made from body parts various - in this case the legs are from another Italeri driver, and the upper body and head from the ICM Henry Ford kit ...

Image

... the mechanic's upper body and head is what I used for Sir Macintosh. I shaved the moustache off, and altered the flat cap into a grease-top ...

Image

... front ...

Image

... and side.

Allow me to introduce Lawrence Lamb, son of Mrs Lamb the Housekeeper at the Hall, and brother of Agnes Ramsden. He is employed as labourer on the railway, to do the more mundane tasks while Gari does the technical stuff. Lawrence worked for the Bowcester & Vayne Canal Company for several years, one of the team who worked canal boats through the Bowcester Tunnel while the horses went over the top of the hill. These canal workers pushed the boats through the tunnel with their legs, laying on their backs and 'walking' along the walls and roof of the tunnel, pushing the boat along. They were known as 'leggers' on the canals - back-breaking work and a lot of time spent underground.

Lawrence finally decided to give it up - he wanted fresh air and sun - and his Mum got him a job on the Berger Hall estate. Knowing what work he'd done before, his workmates call him 'Legger' Lamb.
Bill



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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby RoGNer » Mon May 01, 2017 2:40 pm

Absolutely superb work Bill.
I've just spent an age reading from page 1 up to date.
This has to be the most excellent bit of Gn' ing I have seen.

I doff my cap to you sir!

Roger

:shock:
Keep it on the Short and Gnarrow!

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Re: In A Bit Of Estate

Postby lesmond » Sat May 06, 2017 7:41 pm

Have you considered sub contract figure manufacture for less skilled modellers :) :) ?

Outstanding as ever, Bill, and the back story makes it.

Les
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