Milton Keynes is not typically renowned for its love of steam engines but this month will see it celebrate model railways.
Shenley Brook End School is set to host the 2014 edition of the Milton Keynes Model Railway Exhibition, hosted by the Milton Keynes Model Railway Society, on February 15th. It is a chance for people from all over the town to come and learn about ways to improve their own collection while being able to view some of the best layouts created by other societies from around the region.
The group will be looking to build on the success of the 2013 event which proved a huge hit with the locals and thousands of people turned out over the weekend. This year is expected to be bigger and better than ever before with a whole host of layouts and demonstrations for visitors to admire. Everything from the Z scale to the EM scale to the OOn3 and 009 scales will be on display.
There are some very special layouts due to be unveiled on the day depicting the UK's sprawling countryside. A notable appearance Wayne Webb's Dentdale layout which is an N gauge model which depicts the Settle and Carlisle railway line. This is often voted as being the most picturesque stretch of railway in the UK with many people travelling on this route simply to gaze at the scenery.
Nigel Adam from the Luton Model Railway Club will be bringing a special diorama presentation of the Great Train Robbery. The 1963 event was depicted in a BBC drama and Mr Adam will be bringing this to life in his layout. However, he maintains that it will not be a glorification of the actual crime but more of the historical importance to the region.
These are just some of the highlights that will be in the main hall but that is not all as traders from all over the region will be travelling to Milton Keynes. Names such as East West Rail, Model Sounds Limited and Model World will be on hand to provide advice to modellers. Whether it be to people who want to expand their collection or those that simply want some pointers about how to get the best out of their layouts.
People will have the opportunity to purchase various accessories that will take pride of place in their crafted layouts. There will also be the chance to buy specialist models ranging from the classic steam train to the modern day London Midland trains that are regular sights at Milton Keynes Central railway station.
Speaking about the 2014 event, Milton Keynes Model Railway Society exhibition manager Terry Silver said: "We were delighted with the success of our 2013 exhibition which was attended by a record 2,100 people. Shenley Brook End School proved to be an excellent choice of venue and we are pleased to be returning there in 2014. We will be expanding our exhibition space again this year to offer visitors more excellent layouts, traders and demonstrations."
Admission prices are £5 for adults, £3 for children and £10 families. Those travelling by train can get a discount with a valid rail ticket.