The Penny Salon Micro-Gallery at Ongar Station

Free admission! Gallery open whenever trains are running!

The Penny Salon Gallery Award winning Malcolm Root Painting


The Penny Salon has re-opened!

Latest Exhibition

Esoteric Steam

Part 1 of the Esoteric Steam trilogy features the London area with 'The Beginning 1961 -1964', and continues with the 'Metropolis' theme in colour from the 1990s to the present day. The action then switches to 'The Eastern Counties', with both 'Main' and various heritage lines featured, to which Geoff had special access, as his specialist charter company "Sentimental Journeys" sponsored several events at several of his favourite railway locations.

Other specialist areas from Geoff with steam in the Eastern Counties comprise 'Just a Station on your way', and his favourite 'Off the Beaten track'. It culminates in 'And the Night comes on' and finally 'Nocturne - The Dark Curtain'. Geoff found it was possible to continue with the 'super-scanning' and the printing of his favourite images, that now span over six decades, during the lockdown resulting in over 80% of the A3 size and above framed enlargements on show not being featured in The Penny Salon presentations previously.

Esoteric Steam at The Penny Salon

The exhibition is open on all Railway operating days until the end of October. 

Future Exhibitions

An interesting and entertaining programme of presentations is planned for the future. Watch this space or our news pages for further details.

At North Weald station, you can see a further ‘taster’ display of Geoff’s railway photographs. Also on display is the print of the painting by Malcolm Root FGRA depicting the Ongar ‘push-pull’ steam train at Epping station in the early 1950s.

Malcolm root painting of last push pull service at Epping

The Gallery

The Epping Ongar Railway opened the ‘micro-gallery’ at Ongar Station on Saturday 27 May 2017. The gallery is in the Ladies Waiting Room at the station. A railway volunteer and professional photographer who specialises in steam photography, Geoff Silcock, has worked alongside the Epping Ongar Railway Volunteer Society members to transform the room into a place to display photographs and pictures. Mr Silcock has worked with local photographic and historical societies to bring a programme of interesting and relevant exhibitions to the Railway.

Penny Salon ExhibitionThe free bijou exhibition area has been named "The Penny Salon" and will be open whenever trains are running to provide interest for passengers.

The output of "The Penny Salon" consists partially of the well established work of Eastender Reg Batten, who achieved his 100th birthday before he passed away in 2014. Reg spent much of his leisure time from the 1930s until he was well into his 80s, recording images from the now bygone world around him, especially from around Essex; Malcolm Batten is the custodian of his fathers work, and continues the family tradition, with countless photographic images published in magazines, plus several articles to his credit, and with published books on related transport subjects; and Geoff Silcock, with well over 50 years overall involved in the pursuit of his passion for especially steam trains, including  its related photography and railway journalism content, with over 100 published articles in specialist magazines over the last 25 years... Plus he assures everyone that he also found the time to spend over 45 years in the photographic "D&P" profession from the early 1960s...

The inaugural month through to 18 June 2017 hosted The Essex Monochrome Society with Black and White images mainly from in and around Essex, including steam trains. This was followed by an exhibition by the Ongar Historical Millenium Society titled "The Railway Comes to Essex". "Bygone Essex" was the third exhibition to be held in the gallery, and a further selection of Reg Batten's iconic images will appear in a future exhibition. The 2017 season concluded with a selection of images from by long- time steam photographer, troubadour writer, and former Sentimental Journeys charter organiser Geoff Silcock, entitled Steam in the Frame, taking viewers on a journey from 1961 right through to the present day Epping Ongar Railway. 

Why "The Penny Salon"?

The name "The Penny Salon" is taken tongue in cheek from the c. 1865 built station rooms other use as its original Ladies Waiting Room.

Fry's Chocolate Cabinet

The c.1890s "Frys Chocolate" glass cabinet,that was gifted to the Epping Ongar Railway, and refurbished by Malcolm Batten forms an important part of The Penny Salon's presentation of artefacts allied to the main displays.

Fry's Chocolate Cabinet