Werdohl-Elverlingsen Power Station, Germany

I hesitated to tag this post as an Inspiring Prototype because coal isn’t exactly a well regarded power source these days. However, putting the politics aside and focusing solely on model making; a power station plant of any type is an impressive structure and quite a scratch building challenge.

Coal-fired power station, Werdohl-Elverlingsen, Germany by Dr.G.Schmitz – Own work,
CC BY-SA 3.0, View Image

The Werdohl-Elverlingsen power station is no exception. However, it does appear to have a relatively compact footprint for a power station and of more interest to modellers, a resident shunting locomotive and some pretty interesting track work…

According to Wikipedia, the “…Werdohl-Elverlingsen power station is a coal and gas fired power station in the state of North Rhine-Westphallia near Werdohl, Germany…”. It should really say was, because at the time of writing in February 2019, the station had been largely decommissioned.

Here’s a satellite view of the power station site:

The power station buildings, associated coal storage areas and railway tracks run north-south along the banks on the Lenne river at the bottom of quite a steep-sided valley. It’s worth zooming the map out and taking a look around.

Here’s an OpenRailwayMap track plan of the power station site:

The power station spur leaves the Ruhr-Sieg railway mainline (which runs between Hagen and Siegen) just before entering the 793m long Husberg Tunnel.

Werdohl Husberger Tunnel FFSN-4822 by Petra Klawikowski – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, View Image

You couldn’t really ask for a more perfect junction module. Steep, wooded valley slope behind the mainline. A tunnel portal as a scenic break at one end of the mainline with dense trees at the other end of the mainline and alongside the spur that follows the river.

Here’s the junction with module overlays. The blues squares represent single T-Trak modules (31cm wide x 35cm deep); the green square is a double T-Trak module (62cm wide x 35cm deep). You’d need to do a bit of selective compression to fit the scene on a single T-Trak module but it fits easily on a double.

The red square represents my original module design which is 105cm wide x 40cm deep. A much more comfortable fit, there’d even be room to build prototypical switches if you want to have a go at track building!

The spur to the power station then runs alongside the river Lenne, past some houses cut into the side of the valley before arriving at the coal unloading buildings and sidings shown in the map below:

If you look closely at the map you should be able to make out the shape of the unloading building over the central track shown in the photograph below.

Kohlekraftwerk in Werdohl-Elverlingsen by Frank Vincentz – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, View Image

Here’s how it scales up with same module sizes as before.

You could fit the entire unloading building on two single T-Trak modules (shown by the two blue boxes) or use two double T-Trak modules to replicate the entire building and some of the trackwork at either end of the building.

If you didn’t have the space for multiple modules how about creating a scene just like the photo below on a single T-Trak module (30cm x 35cm)?

Kohlekraftwerk in Werdohl-Elverlingsen by Frank Vincentz – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, View Image

The track work in this part of the site is similar to an inglenook so even just recreating the scene about would still be quite interesting. You’d be shunting cars through the unloading building, perhaps putting the empties into the storage tracks either side of the building while making sure one of these tracks is kept clear for trains that needed to pass further into the complex (off-scene to the right in the photo above) or for incoming locomotives to run around their wagons.

Here are the tracks further into the power station complex:

There are more ‘natural’ inglenooks around the various buildings that make up the power station and it looks like one of the tracks even runs inside one of the buildings although I’m not entirely sure what these tracks would have been used for. There’s also a further coal/ash storage area off the top of this map where wagons might be loaded or unloaded.

Here’s a close-up of the shunting locomotive that works the tracks in the power plant:

Kohlekraftwerk in Werdohl-Elverlingsen by Frank Vincentz – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, View Image

As far as I can find out it’s a Henschel WS2-GP P but that’s about all I can find out. I’m not aware of anyone producing this in N scale but there are plenty of small ready-to-run N scale diesel shunting locomotives that could believably stand in for this little locomotive.

It’s an interesting little site so if you are looking to build a power plant in a relatively small space it’d definitely be worth doing some further exploration before they start demolishing the buildings and lifting the tracks.

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