Report on the TCS 2010 Leicester Get-Together held at Trinity Methodist Church, Leicester on 6th November 2010
Words by Bob Leggett, photos by Dave McCarthy
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This year I decided to leave early and set the Alarm for just after 5am and arrived at Trinity Hall Leicester by 7.30am. I even beat some of the locals! As usual Paul Draycott has a variety of layouts and displays together with the usual assortment of dealers selling low cost trains (me!) to quality new and used tinplate.
We were welcomed at the door by members of the Church and as a member only paid £1 to enjoy this friendly event.
In the lobby Tony Stanford and Rod Hannah were manning the TCS stand.
Peter Wright, David Posselthaite, Dave Collinson and Eric Wardle ran the club bring and buy sales stand.
It was a busy day and over £450 worth of items was sold giving the club 10% of total sales. There was some nice Tri-ang TT and Trams that sold well. A Hornby Dublo breakdown set did not however manage to find a buyer at £285.
Also selling in the lobby was John Ridley, Peter Corley, Albert Chaplin and Phil and Thomas Goater. John and Pauline Foreman were also selling some of the last bits of John’s surplus tinplate O gauge and I was pleased to pick up a nice Hornby gantry signal for £40. John’s prices were so fair that he commented that he was tempted to buy his own stock!
Alongside Andy Hyelman was showing his superb Kleinbahn layout and I was particularly impressed with the Shell Fuel installation ( bit of a theme this year – see later) and the catenary which was even in the engine sheds.
I did also notice a herd of Kangaroos looking lost on the layout, well have you ever seen any in Austria!! Two interesting Seuthe accessories were also shown to me by Andy and Steve Knight , these were a searchlight and a revolving ac powered Radar which worked by heating up carbon particles which then vibrate and cause the mechanism to turn!
As we move into the smaller of the two halls we come across Pat Hammond’s excellent display. He had an Eddie Stobart scene and the Hornby Christmas set.
However my favourite was a Hornby Spamcan painted in Starlight Express livery. Apparently this is one of only two produced. The other is owned by the Queen and was presented to her when she visited the show.
Pat also had on show several locos that were never put into production as well as examples of the Silver locos presented to staff when retiring from Hornby.
In the corner Brian Arnold had his excellent Trix layout and had help from John Brown and Keith Scranage.
While I was passing Keith’s rare German 1938 Pacific was pulling a rake of Continental coaches. As usual the layout ran AC and DC stock.
Opposite, Paul Brookes had a mouth watering display of wooden buildings and accessories.
I loved the Hugar boxed Oil Installation (just needed a couple of Shell Pectens!)
and the Menzies Kiosk (unknown make)
There was also a very interesting Hugar Office block and an OO gauge row of low relief terraces c 1940s.
George Beardsmore and Rod Sharpe were operating an O gauge layout using ACE, Darstaed and MTH (British Outline stock). This is the first time I had seen MTH British stock and I was very impressed While I was there an MTH Duchess of Sunderland and an A4 Merlin by ACE were doing their duties.
Frank Kane was selling the latest stock from Darstaed.
As we enter the main hall we pass the Club display stand run by Davis Ramsey who was also selling some surplus items . This year’s theme was Goods Engines and over 26 locos were on display. I noticed a Big Boy and several Hornby locos.
On the Stage David Knighton with help from Jonathan Ward and John Boyd were running MTH on Atlas O Gauge track and celebrating the 30th anniversary of MTH. I was particularly taken with a Sante Fe Nickel Plate Berkshire that was hauling a long goods train while I was there. I also enjoyed the huge backdrop of the Ocean on the horizon.
Picking up on my earlier theme the MTH Shell Oil installation was probably the best one I have seen.
As we go round the outside of the hall we come across Bob Fleming who stepped in for Malcolm Pugh (who has fractured his wrist) to run a neat Tri-ang OO gauge series three layout.
Malcolm was helping but let Bob do all the lifting etc.
Bob was particularly pleased with his working level crossing- how many of those do you see working nowadays!. I was impressed with an M7 running a two coach push-pull train backwards without any hiccups. This was a lovely layout and would give encouragement to anyone thinking of displaying a layout at a show. It does not have to be large however a couple of interesting accessories and a variety of stock and hey presto you are an exhibitor! Later on when I had another look at the layout a rare Scalemaster Blue Streamline loco (on a Tri-ang Hornby Flying Scotsman chassis) was attempting to pull a rake of coaches.
Dave and Peter Peasant had one of my favourite layouts. Their O gauge set up with stock from ACE , Bassett Lowke and Hornby
is just lovely with the superb scenery. The Salvation Army band looked brilliant in the church grounds and the Triang Minic vehicles with related buildings create a superb scene.
Peter Berry had one of the most unusual displays ever seen at the show- OO/HO naked mechanisms ! Peter had taken the bodies off 56 locos from his vast collection stock from 1936- 2008. As many people commented, they are all so different.
I could not help notice how much the Trix Portsmouth EMU mech filled its body to the quite simple Ever Ready Underground mech. A really unique display.
Peter was also selling a variety of stock and parts.
Chris Smith was also displaying a range of locos some handbuilt for outside third rail operation and I was particularly taken with a Southern tank. Chris was also selling a few items surplus to his requirements.
Allen Levy and Len Mills were selling ACE and had on display four of their fantastic Spamcans and a prototype of the Schools loco which will soon be available for sale.
Allen had just returned from China and said the factory was swimming with Schools and Castles!
Michael Foster was showing the latest model from ETS which is a L&Y Pug which will retail at £189. The prototype was on display and I am sure the orders will flock in.
A Skytrex Class 37 was also for sale at £375.
The centre of the hall was mainly traders and included Mick Mobley, Stephen Knight selling kits and other accessories and promoting the Kitmaster Club which will be reviving its magazine very shortly.
Mike Fowler was continuing to sell his quality stock and accessories from his display layout.
Bob Leggett with a variety of affordable trains and toys. Kevin Garratt with some inexpensive trains and stock as well as a battery Christmas Train set running at the back of his stall.
This show is famous for its excellent Christmas lunch and once again the cooks did not disappoint. For £5.50 we were able to enjoy a superb three course meal ( main course with all the trimmings) and a cup of tea,
Surely one of the best value meals in the country. It is always enjoyable to be able to have lunch with fellow enthusiasts and I was able to share the enjoyment of the meal with Dave White, Dave Angell , Tony Penn and John Foreman.
My thanks to the catering team of Karen Clements, Ian Draycott, Adam Draycott, Margaret Lunn, Audrey Foulds, Janet Tilley, Diane Johnson, Daphne Sargent, Margaret Walter and Carol Ireland.
I hope I have not missed anyone out. My final thanks to Paul Draycott and his team of helpers for another excellent and friendly show which I know we all look forward to. Roll on next year.
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