Early History

The Australian Model Railway Magazine Issue No. 65, which is the March/April 1974 issue Vol 6 No. 6 states on page 26 that :-

'...Half way through 1973, after lengthy negotiations with the Executive Council, we formed the Railway Modellers' Club of Queensland (RMCQ). It is a 100% club, that is, every member must be a member of S.C.M.R.A. which in turn automatically entitles him to attend the club as a member. The only difference this makes to our operations is that all monies handled by us are in the Club's name, and not in Sunshine Division's, as previously was the case.'

The RMCQ had its foundation over 40 years ago. Since that time our Club members have built and displayed layouts at most model railway Exhibitions around South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales. The major problem encountered was that the various pieces of the layout were stored at different Members' homes and that the logistics of transporting and assembling the Layout was most difficult at times. The need to store all sections of our Layout in one central location became very apparent.

At an unknown time since 1974, most probably in the late 1980's, the RMCQ ceased to be a 100% club, and members did not have to be members of S.C.M.R.A. to join us, although quite a few members still remain members of S.C.M.R.A.

In the early days Members would meet each month at individual Members' homes and whilst this played part in building strong friendships between Members, it did not allow the effective construction, display or running of the Club's Layout.

R.M.C.Q. became incorporated on the 11th November, 1991.

Bald Hills

The November 1994, Vol 3 No. 11 'The Semaphore' states that '... the clubrooms become vacant in late October. We have taken possession. The Club layout has been set up. Tours of the clubrooms will occur on 12 November at 1:00pm before adjourning to Ross Goldspink's place to conduct a meeting...' This of course referred to the old Bald Hills Post Office, on the corner of Ana Street and Bald Hills Road. This was the RMCQ's first semi-permanent home.

Back in 1994 and 1995, we were under the impression that the clubrooms may be a temporary enhancement, due to the then owner being of a well matured age, and RMCQ not knowing if we could afford to continue paying rent for them. At various times since 1994, members have been on the lookout for alternate and possible more permanent clubrooms. Well I guess our initial fears were unfounded.

However after the old Bald Hills Post Office changed hands for the second time in about 12 months, we were being evicted from our former clubrooms on the 6th June 2002, due to these being sold as a vacant possession. To put everyone in the picture, we had a tenancy of these premises for over seven and half years. So we had quite a run. In that time we had only one rent rise. The RMCQ was able to meet all its financial obligations under the stewardship of a number of very competent Executives and the Club continued to grow and develop.

Just before the above events unfolded, The RMCQ Executive were in negotiations with the Pine Rivers Shire Council for a lease on a parcel of land large enough to go one step further and larger, and construct a permanent base for our activities. This land turned out to be Buckley Park for which our Members will be forever grateful. The eviction from the old Clubrooms occurred just a tad too early, as we did not have a home to house our then assets. As a consequence, these were spread far and wide for a short period.

Buckley Park

By July 2002, our Club's energies were concentrated on developing these Clubrooms to achieve compliance with our Building Permit. This was undertaken to the detriment of some of our modelling activities. After signoff, our energies could then be refocused on building new and improved HO and N scale Clubroom Layouts and new HO and N scale Exhibition Layouts, as well as increasing the skills of our members in areas foreign to them but within their reach.

To summarise the Club's achievements since July 2002 and March 2004, our negotiations with Council were finalised, we re-zoned the Park for a purpose compliant with our activities, and we erected our Shed. The sewerage and water were connected. Electricity has been connected - a much needed commodity in the Model Railway realm. We have also fenced and landscaped our parcel of land. We have also with the assistance of the Gambling Community Benefit Fund, provided the all weather driveway and the completed the landscaping projects.

Over the last few years the RMCQ has had a number of achievements that it can be justifiably proud of. These include:-

  • Almost 16 years of publishing our monthly magazine - The Semaphore,
  • Since June 1996, the RMCQ has managed to have at least one monthly workshop or clinic on our meeting day, with sometimes up to 3, resources permitting,
  • Produced a 300+ page Workshop Manual for our members to refer to, to assist them with different facets of this great hobby,
  • Keeping up a presence on the Exhibition Scene for over 30 years around Northern NSW and South East Queensland through a number of Exhibition Layouts constructed by members,
  • Organised 2 Buy and Sell events each year for about the last 9 or 10 years with the co-operation of the Bald Hills Uniting Church Community,
  • Undertaken 7 very successful Model Railway Exhibitions ourselves for the enjoyment of the local community and model railway enthusiasts alike.

We are always on the move and regularly exhibit our layouts at the AMRA Show at the RNA showgrounds, as well as supporting other clubs at their exhibitions, of recent times; we have been to Toowoomba, Sandgate PCYC, Pine Rivers Seniors Expo and Ipswich Railway workshops to name just a few.

In 2007 the club received a grant from the Gaming Fund and used this to extend the existing facilities to provide additional workshop facilities, and parking for the trailers we use to transport our club display layouts to other club's shows and expos throughout the South East Corner. We also put in a 3m awning at the front of the shed.

2007 saw the first Pine Rivers Model Train and Hobby Expo which the club has instigated to showcase the hobby community in the Pine Rivers Shire. This replaces our previous Model Railway Exhibition in a larger and hopefully more diverse manner.

Our plans for 2008 included the wish of the completion of our shed to permit the construction of a new HO layout replacing our 20 year old faithful layout. The new layout will incorporate the latest technology to ensure that we have a system which is as future proof as we can make it.

In February of 2008 we saw the club start work on extending the front of the clubrooms by another 3 metres of enclosed space and another 3 metres of awning, all at the front of the shed. This allowed us a larger meeting area for members. We also put a large concrete slab in front of where the trailers come and go into the shed down the side.

The end of 2009 and beginning of 2010 saw the HO fellows build a brand new exhibition layout which was shown for the first time at the AMRA Show of 2010. The N scale fellas were also busy with a big revamp of the N scale exhibition layout.

In 2010, the club's wish of extending the clubrooms to allow for a new HO layout to be built were granted. The club received a grant from the Gambling Community Benefit Fund that allowed us to put up a new 12m x 12m extension to our shed. This extension was started in July and completed in time for Christmas of 2010. In January of 2011 we were able to move our old faithful HO layout into the new extension and start planning on the new layout as well.

The beginning of 2012 saw the beginning of building of our new HO layout in new extension as well as the building of six new modules for the N scale exhibition layout.

Since the club established its clubrooms at Brendale membership has grown by 30% with over seventy people now involved in various levels of membership.

40th Anniversary

On the 8th of June 2013 we celebrated the club's 40th anniversary.