From reports in back issues of Model Engineer it would appear that the first Society was inaugurated as early as 1904 or 1908. The earliest recollections of the Second society centre round an Exhibition in March 1922, where amongst other items A large ‘O’ Gauge layout was on display. After getting involved with the wireless craze of the period the Model Making part of the Society fizzled out in 1925.
The Society next appears in 1934-35 as the Coventry Society of Model and Experimental Engineers. For the first year or so they held regular meetings in the Reference library, Derby Lane. Then in 1937 came a change of name to the Coventry Model Engineering Society, and a change of venue to premises over a shoe shop in East Street. Sadly following severe damage during the Blitz these premises were vacated and machinery was either sold or distributed to Society members to avoid further losses.
In 1943 a few members held a reunion and as a result monthly meetings were resumed at the Ragged School. Then in 1948 the meetings moved to the B.T.H. Social Club and an ‘OO’ gauge railway was established in a cellar there. This group eventually broke away to form The Coventry Railway Society based at the Coventry Canal Warehouse in Leicester Row. When this venue closed in 1963 the Society transferred to a schoolroom in Wheatley Street School, only yards away from the where the original Society had met some 60 years earlier. On the move again, in 1970 the Society moved to the Maudsley hotel and it was here on the 12th February 1975 that the Coventry Model Engineering Society was formerly wound up and formed into a limited Company - The Coventry Model Engineering Society Limited.
During it‘s life the Society has built and operated three tracks. The first was in the Memorial Park, the Track was officially opened in 1952 and ran for over 27 years until it was finally closed in 1980.
For some time the Society had been looking for a new site which would allow for larger radius curves to accommodate some of the visiting clubs locomotives. A new site was eventually acquired at Stoneleigh Abbey and Public Running on this site commenced in 1981. Sadly when the Abbey was sold the Society, once again, found itself looking for a new track site.
This led us to our current location at Ryton Pools Country Park - our latest home - which looks like being the biggest and best yet!