H0, Vegebanen, Sweden, 8 @ 4 foot




Before starting a layout I like to check the route is practical and research potential traffic. Possibly because my father came from a pit village and/or lovable eccentricity I’ve always been keen on coal traffic. For my new Swedish H0 layout this has been a problem as coal mining has never been a major industry in Sweden being largely restricted to Scania in Sweden’s South West. There mines often extracted clay and coal leading to the development of a ceramics industry that has survived the closure of the last mine in 1994. Coal mining lead to Sweden’s first railway in 1798 when a horse-drawn and wooden railed line at Höganäs in Scania was built to link a coal mine to the harbour. Web searching came across a combined coal and clay mine at Valinge that operated 1872-1979.


Vegebanen is imaginary private railway from Valinge 14.8 Km/9.2 miles along the Vege Valley to a junction with the Swedish State Railway [SJ] at Bjuv. Coal and clay traffic is the mainstay of the line with mineral trains running as required. On route the Vegebanen passes the rural villages of Strövelstorp, Hasslarp, Nyvång, and Hyllinge which produce limited passenger, parcels, and goods traffic – mostly inbound fuel and outbound vegetables, milk, & timber products. In steam day’s passengers and goods traffic would be handled by three mixed trains daily. Dieselisation improved the service to four passenger trains daily and goods trains as required. To add interest in both steam and diesel days the summer bring a through train of Vegebanen loco and SJ  coaches. Additional services will be added as soon as I find a reason. Like most minor lines the Vegebanen tends to buy second hand stock often from the SJ.


The layout is set post war with stock for steam and diesel operation. In the early period steam rules the roost with a G class hauling mineral trains & the through train and two A class tank locos working mixed & local passenger trains. In the diesel years the mineral trains & the through train are worked by a pair of V36s meaning they have to be cab to cab, single V36s haul local passenger & mixed trains and an industrial four wheel shunter does everything else. Passenger stock is SJ bogie coaches & a four wheel parcels van for the through train and four wheel balcony coaches for mixed and local passenger trains. Mineral traffic is moved in coal and clay wagons and other freight traffic is largely carried in private owner wagons.


The layout depicts  Välinge were a siding serves a charcoal works and the railway crosses a dry tributary of the Vege River. The photos follow a mixed train on its way to Bjuv. The layout is built using the continental H0 scale (1:87). Track plan as with real Swedish Light Railways has been kept to a minimum