If you are looking for somewhere to run a backyard garden layout, and have a bit of cash to spend on a house, this place has 220 ft of track.
The line is used to run gauge 1 live steam locos. It is a real shame that the trains don’t come with it, but at least you get the track.
I found this a fascinating backyard railway and the pictures show some fine models.
Here are details of the property for sale.
By Brian Claridge For The Mail On Sunday
Published: 16:03 EST, 17 October 2015 | Updated: 19:54 EST, 17 October 2015
The purchaser of Wainsford Farm in Essex will not only get a Grade II listed country farmhouse that dates from the 15th Century, but also a 220ft model railway track in the back garden, where steam trains can run.
The Gauge 1 track, which rests on steel poles about 4ft above the ground, weaves its way around the garden in a loose oval shape.
And when the trains are in use, owner John Judson equips the track with accessories such as station buildings, models of passengers, railway bridges, a turntable and railway signs.
Realistic: A train stops at a station on the elevated 220ft model railway track in the back garden of John Judson’s house in Little Bardfield, in Essex
There’s a facility to switch trains from one track to another and even a mini-footbridge that you can actually walk over while the trains pass underneath. The trains run on methylated spirits or coal and produce steam, emitted from their funnels.
John has been interested in model railways since he was a boy and started with an electric train set in his loft. ‘The excitement of owning and running model railway trains has never left, and I have had my Gauge 1 model railway track for 15 years,’ he says.
‘It’s a constant source of enjoyment not only for me but also for family and friends. The track is left out all year round and simply needs a bit of maintenance every spring to make sure everything’s working properly.’
John is a member of the Gauge One Model Railway Association and holds open days on which he runs the trains for people who live locally, as well as for model train enthusiasts. All the money raised goes to local charities.
Each of the trains, which are hand-painted, is precisely to scale, and the miniature pressure gauge in every engine has to be spot on before the train is ready to go.
The track is included in the £1 million price tag for the five-bedroom property, but not the trains nor the accessories. Should the buyer not wish to have the track, John says he will remove it at no cost.
John Judson is a member of the Gauge One Model Railway Association and holds open days on which he runs the trains for people who live locally, as well as for model train enthusiasts
HOUSE AT A GLANCE
Price £1 million
Location Little Bardfield, Essex
Unique features Grade II listed farmhouse dating from the 15th Century; model railway track in garden included in price of property
The model train track lies in 1.3 acres of grounds at the property, which also contain a paddock and a double garage with office above, as well as a single garage, log shed and garden machinery store. Solar panels on the garage roof help to reduce electricity bills.
The garden may have a unusual feature, but things are more traditional inside the main farmhouse. The kitchen, which has views of the surrounding countryside, is fitted with a range of wooden kitchen units with granite surfaces and has a tiled floor with built-in Aga.
The two-floor house, which is in the village of Little Bardfield, has a large sitting room with original exposed beams, as well as a drawing room and spacious dining room, which is used by John and his wife Lizzie for family meals and dinner parties. The room has an original brick fireplace, and French doors open out on to the garden.
There’s another sitting room with a wood-burning stove at the back of the house that the couple refer to as their ‘snug’.
In the master bedroom, there is a vaulted ceiling and an en suite bathroom and separate dressing room. There are four further bedrooms, a family bathroom and separate shower room.
‘We fell in love with the house the moment we saw it, as it has a lovely garden and lots of land,’ says Lizzie, a former dressmaker. ‘We also loved the large farmhouse kitchen and the way the house has retained many of its original features.’
The two-floor house, which is in the village of Little Bardfield in Essex, is being sold for £1million
John used to be an industrial auctioneer for Henry Butcher & Company. He travelled around the world selling plant and machinery from factories that had gone into administration. He had the idea for the railway in his garden after seeing a friend’s outdoor track and decided to do the same.
‘It’s been up for 15 years and is still as good as the day it was built,’ he says. It took three people to build the track, which has fencing around it to prevent trains falling off it.
John built all the accessories himself, and it takes him an hour and a half to set up them all.
The couple’s main reason for moving is to downsize. ‘We have lived here for 40 years and have three grown-up children who have left, so we don’t need as much room,’ says Lizzie.
‘We shall miss the tranquillity and the beautiful views,’ adds John.
Nearby towns to Little Bardfield are Great Dunmow, Saffron Walden and Braintree, with Chelmsford and Bishop’s Stortford further away. The property also offers good access to the M11 and Stansted Airport.
The property is being sold by Strutt and Parker at http://www.struttandparker.com/ or 01245 254600