AFTER seven years of meticulous research and painstaking effort, a miniature version of a rural railway station has opened to the public.
The doors to Stansted House opened to railway enthusiasts at the weekend who were keen to see Rowlands Castle Railway in action.
Lucy Wood, the marketing manager at Stansted House, near Rowlands Castle, said: ‘The fully-functioning railway depicts the village during the Second World War, showing tiny trucks, army tents and trains in astonishing detail, alongside villagers reading the paper, digging their allotments and hanging washing on the line.
‘The area around Rowlands Castle was one of five main marshalling areas for troops assembling and preparing to leave for the beaches of Normandy.
‘Around the edges of the track, mini soldiers can be seen relaxing outside their tents, preparing ammunition or buying eggs at the post office.’
Rowlands Castle Heritage Centre raised the funds to buy it earlier this year from creator Peter Goss.
Mr Goss joined members of the Rowlands Castle Association to reconstruct the replica before it went to its new home at Stansted House.
The railway takes up most of one of the ground floor rooms.
The railway will remain on display at Stansted House for the whole of the summer.
Members of the public are able to view the railway during regular opening hours at the house.
Friends and donors to Rowlands Castle Heritage Centre will be invited to open viewing evenings.
For more information go to stanstedpart.co.uk.
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