As this railway is supposed to be a fairly lowly affair, and yards rarely sported perfectly ballasted sidings anyway, I really wanted to 'bed' in the trackbed.
I took DAS modelling clay to build up the ground levels, and spent some time pressing it in all around the tracks, using a small old brush to tamp in between sleepers here and there. Once dry, this has been painted a mucky old grey colour.
I picked up some 'ash' scenic powder stuff at the Doncaster show (If I had a fire, I could have used actual ash.. and I suspect this is exactly what this is!) Anyway, a liberal coat of pva was applied, and the ash teaspooned over it. I found I really needed to pile it on to get good coverage.
Left it for a day and hoovered up the surplus.
A little filling in going on now, but after my initial fears that I had wrecked it all, I think it's starting to take shape.
In addition, I've put the platform in place, moving the station building along , which I feel balances the scene a little more.
The back corner and left hand side were bothering me, but I've resolved to have a grassy bank on both sides, rising up to a small wooden footbridge over the track in the corner. I know it's fairly improbable, but I'm hoping it will help to frame the scene too.
As I move along with various jobs, I'm puzzling over what to do with the area in front of the yard. At the moment I'm thing perhaps the edge of some allotments, or simply a fence, to break up the open space.