Nice show. Excellent layouts, actually, really excellent layouts. Trade OK, perhaps a few too many RTR in boxes for me, but there were one or two real gems too. They certainly took a few quid off me over the weekend. And I'm still wondering why I bought a set of Wall-E figures...
There were nice friendly people surrounding us - hello to the guys with Willesden Junction, hope you had a pleasant journey back home. In fact lots of nice friendly people were to be found both sides of the barrier. Lots of time was spent chatting and even a little learning. I now know that Jo Brand worked at Hellingly before embarking on a career in stand-up comedy. A little before the time I modelled it so there's no chance of adding a celebrity figure to the miniature population.
The show itself is held in a sports centre converted from an old aircraft hanger. The inside is nice but the outside is just a little bit uglier than you imagine it could be. Having said this, both here and just around the corner from out (excellent) accomodation there were some buildings that have given me ideas for future projects. More of this at the weekend.
The traditional "Layout Phil would like to build" prize goes to Quai:87, a finescale HO industrial model featuring 2 swing bridges, a sector place and turntable. Some mightly fine modeling and the weirdest shaped baseboard ever. It was on casters too ! There was some suggestion that the operators should wear cumberbunds decorated to act as a backscene...
Sadly, the first nice weekend of the year meant that the crowds were a little lighter than normal. If you live withing striking distance of the show and didn't go, then you missed out. Both this year and last, the quality has been far higher than you might expect from a provincial show. I'd certainly not have been diaspointed to have paid to come in.
In fact, the last word on this should go to our final visitor, Jo. He appeared to be around 5 years old and was a bit tearful at approaching the end of the day. His Dad explained that he had visited all the layouts very methodically. Twice.
A few photos on Flickr.
Official Trainwest website