Scores descend upon popular model railway exhibit in Fareham

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MODEL train enthusiasts steamed into Fareham in their hundreds to catch a glimpse of a popular exhibition.

The fifth annual Rotarail Model Railway Exhibition was held at Fareham College on Saturday.

From left, Rotary Club manager Chris Thomas and Gareth Hollis from Stubbington 
Pictures Ian Hargreaves  (170514-1)

From left, Rotary Club manager Chris Thomas and Gareth Hollis from Stubbington Pictures Ian Hargreaves (170514-1)

Twenty different railway layouts were on display for experts and newbies to enjoy.

The brainchild of Chris Thomas, the event was put on with the help of the Rotary Club of Fareham.

Chris said: ‘It’s been a great day. A lot of people have been really surprised to see the detail of the models.

‘They look at them and they say, “bloomin’ heck!” – some of the layouts this year have been absolutely brilliant.’

From left, Alvin Hale, Ian Gallagher, Mike Hammond and Colin Martin (170514-1)

From left, Alvin Hale, Ian Gallagher, Mike Hammond and Colin Martin (170514-1)

Model railway groups and traders from across the south joined the bonanza.

Among them was Gareth Hollis-Fox, 14.

He was introduced to the hobby by his grandfather, Allen Hollis, seven years ago.

But this was the Crofton School pupil’s first time displaying at the exhibition.

Mike Le Marie and his grandson Finn Le Page  (170514-1)

Mike Le Marie and his grandson Finn Le Page (170514-1)

He said: ‘This has been quite exciting.

‘This is something that you don’t normally get the chance to do.

‘You’re able to recreate real-life on a small scale.

‘Although I’ve only got quite a small layout people have really enjoyed it. The children seem to really like it.’

The event was raising money for Hampshire charity Flat Spaces that provides purpose-built holiday homes for disabled people.

Rotarian Pam Marsden said the day had been a great success and raised hundreds pounds for charity.

She said: ‘We’re extremely proud to have so many people exhibiting here.

‘For Fareham this is a huge exhibition. There are exhibitions across the country and it’s great that Fareham is able to host one as big as this.’