The Model Railway Club

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The Model Railway Club Blog

There's always lots happening at the Model Railway Club. Keep up to date by following our Blog. If you would be interested to edit a blog and you are an MRC member please contact the webmaster.

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Where to buy model railways in London?

Since originally writing this blog, another shop has gone. Meanwhile, WH Smiths has given up on Modelzone, with all the concessions closing over the last few weeks perhaps precipitated by Hornby closing most if not all of its concessions. Whilst it's sad to see any shop close, Wheels of Steel was perhaps the most restricted with its generally second hand range. So there are 6 shops left  - use them or (as we've just seen) lose them. TC Feb 17

 

You may be one of the hundreds of households that has received a Hornby or Bachmann OO model railway train-set for the first time this Christmas - perhaps even a Graham Farish one in N gauge. We hope you enjoy it.

Once you have discovered the fun of what is included, your mind (or certainly that of the child for whom it might be officially intended) may well turn to buying something else for it - whether that is a bit more track, another locomotive, coach or wagon. Or perhaps some buildings, kits, tools or paints. Perhaps the shop that sold the set doesn't sell much more than that set, so where can you go?

20-30 years ago, there was a network of shops across London selling a vast range of items which meant you didn't have to travel too far - depending on your age the names Beatties,  W&H, Hamblings, King's Cross Models, Blunts, Puffers, Engine Shed may ring a bell - all long gone. And most toy shops now have only the most basic of ranges from one supplier.

Of course, there are a plethora of websites you can use to order by post, but if you want to browse before you buy, or buy things like paints that can't be posted easily these days, where can you go? Especially if you want some advice. Well here are some suggestions of the seven shops we would call 'model railway shops' - ie that have a range of different products - that are still left in London itself. The views are those of the authors and based on last visits to the shops (which is a while ago in some cases), and they are in no particular order. But do use them - or there will be even fewer of them.

Posted by on in News
Ingatestone goes to the Palace !

A very successful weekend for Ingatestone at the London Festival Of Railway Modelling held last weekend at Alexandra Palace. After the safe delivery of the three boards (numbers 4 to 6), the "in progress" demo drew a lot of attention and positive comment from the show-goers. Over the weekend, all of the group took their turns helping out on the layout or with the stewarding. See above for a picture of the lads on the Sunday afternoon !  Next stop will be at the MRC Open Day on May 8th at Keen House. More information is at: www.themodelrailwayclub.org/events/viewevent/198-open-house.  See you there !

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Latest Library additions

Our library is one of the most extensive in the UK, with a wide range of prototype and modelling titles including back issues of some of the key historical magazines. Members and visitors are welcome to browse most Thursdays from 7-9pm (unless there is a lecture) and on our monthly open-afternoon.

Some of the latest books to be added to our catalogue include:

Tim Watson's epic trip to Brighton on Frederick

Our President, Prof Tim Watson, has successfully completed an 80 mile road-run with "Frederick", a coal-fired, steam-powered, 1/3rd size Burrell Showman's Road Locomotive, to raise funds for Parkinson's UK. Now he has recovered he writes:

 

We set off from St Albans at 0600 (delayed an hour by a leaking HP valve chest gasket) in the pouring rain on the 13th June, going up to London on the A5, where we had an unscheduled stop because of the atrocious road surfaces in N London.  

Posted by on in News
New in the Library

The MRC's library is one of the largest libraries of its kind, with a wealth of information for modellers. It is open on most Thursday evenings from 7-9pm, unless there is a lecture.

Some of the new titles that have recently been added to the library are listed below.