Bognor Model Railway Exhibition

Bognor Model Railway Exhibition

An article from Bognor Regus Observer talks about the fact that visitors  to the annual Bognor Regis railway exhibition could travel back in time at its best layout.

The 1950s model depicted the narrow gauge clay pit lines on the Isle of Purbeck in Dorest. It’s authenticity earned its exhibitor John Thorne the Maxted Trophy from Bognor Regis Model Railway Club. This was awarded by the club’s chairman, Adrian Taylor, with deputy town mayor Cllr Pat Dillon.

Mr Taylor said: “Anybody from that location will instantly recognise it from this layout. Some other layouts here do that as well. But this one is that bit better. It is pure to its location even down to a little war memorial on an overlooking hill.”

The 009 gauge layout – 11ft long – contains rolling stock from the 50s as well as models of some of the original buildings on the lines which closed more than 40 years ago.

Mr Thorne said: “I’m delighted to win the award. It’s always nice when other people appreciate your hard work. This is the first time I have been to this exhibition but this layout has been around Europe and has been shown in France, Germany and Holland.”

Another of the 16 layouts which accurately recreated the past was Portsea by Bognor club members Paul Hopkins and John Wakeman.

“But what caught my attention in this article was the piece about the younger generation getting involved something the hobby is lacking …….”

The Bognor’s club Aldingbourne Central layout, at which young visitors can take the controls, was again popular with the likes of Joshua Hillman, six, of Lancing.

He said: “I’ve been on here an hour. I play on my dad’s model railway a bit but this is bigger. It’s good because I can play with the train and make it go faster.”

Young railway modellers also had diaoramas on show. Peter Nicolson and Johan Keijser-Petch were two of them. Peter, 12, said: “I’m proud of this diaorama. There’s a range of skills you need to build a layout – modelling skills, painting skills and creativity.”

Johan, 13, said: “You can let your imagination run free creating a layout.”


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Main Photo – Crowds at the event Photo by Kate Shemilt 

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