Model railways have always been a favourite pastime for many people across the UK revoking memories of a bygone era.
Thousands of people will have no doubt spent long nights as a child constructing and then playing with their train sets. This was a golden age, a time before television and the internet and where a son and father could work together to create impressive sets in the spare bedroom or garage. While the UK is a much more digital place nowadays, for some there is nothing better than getting the old train set from the loft and rekindling their childhood once again.
Due to the wide variety of products currently available on the market people can build their own sets once again. They are ideal for either children or retirees which have a bit of time on their hands and some people have gone the extra mile to create some truly magnificent layouts. However, all the while, for the older generation especially, it can revive a time when the mighty steam locomotives patrolled the railways on a daily basis.
That is exactly what has happened at a care home in Quadring, Lincolnshire where residents have been sharing their childhood memories thanks to the visit of Spalding Model Railway Club. Member Graham Moorfoot believed that bringing an exhibition to Stonehaven Residential Home to rekindle a bygone era for many of the residents, Spalding Today reports.
Mr Moorfoot brought in a model of Billingborough station as it was in the late 1950s which he visited regularly to train spot as a school boy. It captured the imagination of the residents who told tales of train journeys to the seaside and also having their washing ruined by passing locomotives.
Speaking to the news provider, Stonehaven manager Michael Penfold hailed the day a success: "To be honest, when the visit was first suggested I was not sure how the mainly elderly ladies resident at Stonehaven would react. I thought they would probably not be interested in model trains. I couldn’t have been more wrong, the afternoon was a tremendous success.”
There are now plans afoot to have a similar visit next year due to the response that it achieved from the residents. Mr Penfold explained that it really sparked conversation between the women and even had those people that had not spoken much since arriving could not help but share their stories with fellow residents.
Mr Moorfoot was also happy with the event, telling the newspaper: "It was marvellous really the number of conversations which sprang up between the residents who came in and out of the room during the afternoon. One old gentleman had actually worked on the railways and he had some wonderful stories to tell.”
This demonstrates that a simple model railway can bring together all different types of people and evoke memories of years gone by. Whether it is a group of elderly people living in a care home or even famous enthusiasts such as Rod Stewart, model railways can really strike up a conversation.