Friday, March 18, 2016

Basingstoke Train Convention

So last weekend Junior and I took off to yet another convention. This time one that is quite local to us and very close to his current after school location.

We had appeared at it last year with the same warning as we had this year.. which was seeing the signs stating that there was something about trains happening on Saturday and Sunday :) Seems I am too oblivious on how to keep an eye out for such things at the moment to be more better at planning for them.

Same location as it was at last year. And the layout for it is quite good as it takes over the many halls available within the school that they sat at here in Basingstoke. Split over 3 fairly large gym rooms along with the cafeteria on top of it all. The above shot showing the main hall that you walk into from the entrance section.

Most of the place is covered with fairly large train displays as that is the primary aspect of the show. There are of course a few sellers sprinkled throughout the show, but nothing really struck my interest or needs.

Junior was having a good time checking out all the trains. He, nor I, was particularly hooked to any train type in particular, but the scenes and how they built them all was of more interest to both of us. Junior kept on trying to understand where the trains would go when they went into a tunnel and left the board.

I hope that this curiosity of him continues later on in life as it was great to see him jump around and run to the back to see where the trains went. And ask questions on what is happening, and why they do this or that...

And displays like the Carlsberg one above was great. So many moving points throughout the display. Not just the train, but the grain being pulled up to the storehouse, the barrels being loaded onto the trucks, the horses moving about, the lights flickering... I think we spent 10 minutes just watching everything and checking out all the details throughout this set up here trying to see what else was moving or happening on it.

We only spent 2 hrs in this convention mostly due to the lack of interaction that most of the train owners had with regards to talking to the convention goers.. that and it was Sunday.

I do like the fact that although many are trying to make the scenes utterly realistic, you could see some that were not so much. Like the peat moss display above that was built on a toilet seat but fully worked.

The biggest display was the above set there which could easily be used for a game of Bolt Action since it was in 1/56 or there about scale. If not a bit larger, but still would be fitting well enough to play a game on!

We did see a board that was going to be quite major, though was still in the beginning stages. And it prompted me to try to find the club members of Basingstoke Hampshire Train Society to ask more details about their club and if it was truly local. Seems that they are, and meeting up to 4 times a week based on projects that are being worked on.

Having a decent conversation with Dave from the club that is part of the team working on a 1/72 scaled set up that is quite easy to move ( from the look of things ) and understanding how they split up the groups. Everyone has a specialization to put towards the project. Something that I need to think about and see if I can find time to maybe make it down to their club to see how it goes, and what happens. Especially with my desire to build something bigger that could be taken to shows as well. So let's see if that happens.

For now, I will leave you with what I thought was my favourite display due to the levels placed within it, and the sheer tiny size of the overall set up. Hopefully you can see why I think that ( and how well it would play for maybe FOW? )..

In the meantime, enjoy the weekend!


  1. They sure know how to make terrain. Makes you envious!

    1. Very jealous here.. hence why I might try to get down there from time to time to understand how they go about designing their layouts!

  2. While not a train fan it is very nice to see the layouts.

    1. Am in the same boat Clint. Considering how little chance I have to own a permanent place in this country, the chances of doing something like these are slim. But if I can gleen a bit from them that would make some of my other smaller projects all the more better I suspect.

  3. Absolutely stunning layouts, I'm very envious.


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