Make your own Culham station buildings

Over the years a number of people have visited Culham station in order to measure or photograph the ticket office as they plan to make a model of the building. This website already contains much information which is of use to the potential modeller but we thought it would be useful if we were to develop some sheets for making a model of the Old Ticket Office itself and maybe some of the other features of the station from around 1930-1960. This web page will be expanded from time to time to include anything we may produce.

All images, plans and construction sheets referenced (unless otherwise specifically noted) are our own original work for which we retain copyright and associated intellectual property rights. Private individuals may however freely download and use any data sheets linked from this page for the purposes of making their own model. They should not be re-published in any form or amended in any way without our express permission.

If anybody has any feedback or comments, or would like to share the results of their labours we would be very pleased to hear from you via ku.oc.noitatsmahluc@ofni

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Our downloadable sheets

Each PDF file linked to below consists of an individual A4 sized page. Care should be exercised when printing so as not to scale to fit media, but rather to print actual size. Also, ensure that the paper orientation specified in the PDF printing app is set to that of the selected sheet i.e. landscape or portrait. Get either of these wrong and the sheet will not be printed at the intended size. To access a full sized sheet simply click on its thumbnail to open it on a new tab ready to print or save onto your computer. All sheets have been saved as high quality PDFs, so some of the download files are quite large and may take a while to transfer over slower internet connections.

Whilst every effort has been made to maintain accuracy, a certain artistic licence has been required in places, for example, to compensate for the variations in ground level around the office. Datum has been taken from the forecourt elevation, the platform being several inches higher.

Unscaled sheets

The following sheets are not produced to any particular scale, but are intended for information purposes only. Content will be shown correctly proportioned where applicable.


Dimensioned plan
Ticket Office plan with main dimensions
Cast iron canopy support brackets
Cast iron canopy support brackets

Scale sheets

These sheets are drawn full sized for each indicated scale. As with any similar building sheets they are intended as a starting point rather than being a complete kit, depending upon the amount of detailing required. For example doorways and windows could be cut out to provide depth, as in the real building, with extra copies used to build up layers to suit. They are listed in more or less the suggested sequence of construction.

Ticket Office

00 scale model of the ticket office made with our sheets

Scale 4mm:1ft, 1:76 for '00' scale model

Canopy underside and valances
Later canopy underside and valances
Canopy underside and valances
Earlier canopy underside and valances
Gutter layer
Gutter layer
Flat roof layer 1
Flat roof layer 1
Flat roof layer 2
Flat roof layer 2 and spare valances
Main office walls
Main office walls
Bay and other walls
Bay and other walls
Canopy beams and brackets
Canopy beams and brackets
Small gables and roofs
Small gables and roofs
Large gables and office roof
Large gables and office roof
Chimneys
Chimneys
Display base
Display base

Scale 2 1⁄16thmm:1ft, 1:148 for 'N' scale model

Canopy and flat roof layers
Canopy and flat roof layers
Ticket office walls, brackets and beams
Ticket office walls, brackets and beams
Gables, roofs and chimneys
Gables, roofs and chimneys

Down platform building

00 scale model of the down building made with our sheets

Scale 4mm:1ft, 1:76 for '00' scale model

Canopy underside and valances
Canopy underside and valances
Gutter layer
Gutter layer
Roof layers 1 and 2
Earlier lead roof layers 1 and 2
Later tin roof
Later tin roof
Walls
Walls
Canopy beams, brackets and chimney
Canopy beams, brackets and chimney
Canopy beams, brackets and chimney
Display base

Scale 2 1⁄16thmm:1ft, 1:148 for 'N' scale model

Canopy and flat roof layers
Canopy and earlier flat roof layers
Canopy and later tin roof
Canopy and later tin roof
Ticket office walls, brackets and beams
Walls, brackets, beams and chimney

Some guidance on construction

We don't intend to produce detailed instructions for making your own model as trying things out is part of the fun - you can download and print our sheets as often as you like. However whilst developing these sheets and having several attempts at making them up a few lesons have been learnt. They may seem fairly obvious, but we thought they may be useful so we share them here.

  • Using good quality pure white paper is important as any colour cast will affect the colour of the printed image. Don't be tempted to use glossy photographic paper as the coating can crack and sometimes break away when folded. Matt paper is not quite so prone to this, but it does depend on the coating so some experimentation might be worth while, although it is pretty expensive when compared with other papers.
  • We have used a combination of woodworking PVA (slightly diluted when applying by brush to large areas) and tissue paste (as used by aero modellers).
  • Using different weights of paper can be useful. A thicker (160 gsm) paper will be more durable when being handled and provide a bit more strength to details such as the valances. Thinner paper (the more normal 80 or 90 gsm) can be folded more easily but can become fragile, tearing easily and stretching when glue is applied. This can prove useful however, especially when covering the tapered canopy support beams.
  • Don't get glue where it shouldn't be as it can dissolve the ink and ruin a print, also you can leave finger prints on bits - not good.
  • Using different thicknesses of card can make life easier. We used two thicknesses of cereal packet when making the lead roof bits (take care as really shiny printed surfaces won't stick very well), really thick card for the gables, toilet wall and canopy support beams, and medium thickness for the walls. Suitable off-cuts of mount card, they don't need to be very big, should be available from your local friendly picture framer if you ask.
  • Gutter layers need to be pretty thick, either very thick card or laminated to make it up to the thickness of the gutter. Cut the card full size, but bevel the edge all round by at least 45 degrees to form the gutter shape.
  • Flat roofs are made up of several layers. We know that there should be a slight slope on the lead roofing but it is so slight that we chose to ignore it. We found it easiest to make the flat roof first, then add the main building walls followed by the support beams and cast iron brackets. It is a whole lot easier to do this upside down, then turn the model the right way up to glue it onto the base (if you are using our base) and carry on with the gabled roof and chimneys as appropriate.
  • Don't cut each printed piece out to its exact size. Allow extra for folding over where applicable. Also, some corners may need to be trimmed to fit, as with the gutter.
  • When cutting the card backing for walls we tried cutting each piece to the correct size then bevelling the ends before gluing on. This then allows the walls to be folded giving neat sharp corners in theory. It proved a bit difficult to get the mitred edges accurately cut, so maybe butt joints are easier (allowing for the thickness of the card of course). Whichever way you go it is a good idea to fold the walls up first. This enables a really crisp corner to be made and helps with the positioning of the card backing.
  • When making the ticket office adding the big chimney to the gable is a bit tricky as it sticks out either side, a bit more on one side than the other. After much experimentation we decided the best way is to make up the chimney (a bit too long to make handling easier) and make the gable wall, then cut a slot in the gable to just below the lowest roof level to accept the chimney. Trim the chimney to the correct length to fit the slot and then glue it in place so it sticks out either side. The slate roof panels can be trimmed to fit round the chimney before gluing them in place.
  • Use acrylic or model enamels for touching up (for example the cut edges of the support brackets). Felt pens are a disaster as they soak into the paper and card making a horrible splodge.
  • Finally, having made your model it may be worth giving it a coat of something to protect it and help fix any little loose bits. As with felt pens, some sealants will simpy dissolve the ink and ruin a lovely model, so experiment with a spare printed sheet first. We use matt artists spray fixative - it is expensive but it is designad to coat prints and drawings. Spray cans of matt car laquer and even hair spray can be used to good effect - but test first! A spray is by far the easiest and quickest way of doing it as you can get into all the nooks and crannies, using a brush can damage delicate details.

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Some useful links

In late 2017 a number of original drawings were specially scanned in for us by Network Rail Corporate Archive. The full set of images can be seen on their Culham Station Gallery where they may also be purchased.

Another useful source of drawings are those accompanying planning applications via South Oxford District Council.

In its May issue from 1974 Railway Modeller carried an article On the broad gauge, early GWR architecture which included photos and 2mm scale drawings of the Ticket Office at Culham.

Whilst all these scale drawings are a good reference and do provide useful detail, they each contain errors which can prove confusing. They certainly confused us when first planning our attempts at making a model. It would seem that old drawings might have been used for the basis of some (thus perpetuating errors), or that assumptions were made in the drawing office when trying to fill in gaps and join things up. There is nothing like being able to visit and seeing things in real life, which is where we have something of an advantage.

Please note:

When visiting the station members of the public are not allowed onto the old Platform 2 due to safety and access prohibitions. The station itself is operational with trains passing throughout the day, so sensible care must be taken at all times to ensure one's own safety and that of others. Children should always be kept under adult supervision.
All visitors to the Old Ticket Office do so at their own risk and no responsibility will be accepted for any loss or injury howsoever caused.