I hadn't expected to find much of narrow gauge interest - continental modelling is surprisingly popular here in Scotland in my experience, much more so that south of the border it seems to me - so I was delighted to find an excellent little OO9 layout called Bachdale and Dibley Level.
It's not large - in fact so may call it a 'rabbit warren' - and it's completely freelance, basically running anything which will fit inside a loading gauge which makes the original FR seem generous.
What impressed me, though, was the high standard of execution in everything to with the layout, especially in places that you can't ordinarily see into.
The engine shed is a case in point.
The interior has been modelled in exquisite detail, but you won't see any of it unless the operators are kind enough to remove the roof for you.
Among the items of rolling stock which caught my eye were these four wheel carriages.
As far as I can tell they've been made from plastic kits which are readily available, but they've been finished with a beautiful teak-effect scumble.
I clearly wasn't the only one impressed because, quite deservedly, it was voted the best layout by the visitors.
The other thing which really pleased me was to get my first proper look at one of the new Bachmann Baldwin 4-6-0 tanks.
Previously I'd only seen them in a display case so this was an opportunity to hold and examine one and see it running.
(And it was a case of only seeing it because it ran almost silently.)
The level of detail and finish is extraordinary - like nothing that's ever been seen in 009 ready-to-run before.
Bachmann haven't just raised the bar, they've shot it into orbit!
It's only increased my excitement for receiving the 590 version which we have on order, and I can't wait to see what sort of job they do on the Quarry Hunslet tanks.