The line, known as the Bergeller Bahn, would have gone from St. Moritz in the Upper Engadine Valley, passed the Lakes of Silvaplana and Sils, to the village of Maloja situated at a height of 1803 metres at the summit of the Maloja pass. The line then would have descended the pass, a distance of 22 Km, to the international frontier at Castesegna some 1100 metres below. It would have been quite a feat of railway engineering to conquer the incline without rack assistance. The line would have terminated at the Italian town of Chiavenna some ten Km beyond the border. The planning of the railway was stopped by the start of the First World War and again by the subsequent financial situation. The proposals were finally abandoned in the 1930s.
Having a large quantity of suitable Bemo locomotives and rolling stock, but no layout to run it on, I approached the executors, a deal was done, and Maloja was transported to its new home in the Midlands. Some parts of the layout were in a poor state of repair, the village church was missing and the scenery on the top of the layout had been flattened. What Andy had planned we will never know so I decided to return the layout, as far as possible, to its original state. I also discovered that the station building was missing. This had inadvertently been sold with the original rolling stock! A phone call soon had it reunited with the layout.
Ge 4/4 III No. 650, “Unesco” hauls the “Glacier Express” out of Maloja in the direction of Chiavenna
Page updated 29th December 2015
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Background and History