The 2016 Warley National Model Railway Exhibition went past in a flash. It seemed that no sooner had we arrived on the Friday afternoon to set up that we were packing up again to head for home – the two days in the middle were a blur.
The Warley show isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but for the Hornby Magazine team it is a brilliant and intensive weekend which is non-stop from the moment we arrive to the closing of the van doors on Sunday evening. It is our chance to meet readers, catch up with modelling friends and, this year, the opportunity to debut the latest creation from the Hornby Magazine workshop – Grosvenor Square.
However, there is one aspect which everyone is itching for – the new announcements and product showcases – and it is always a thrill to see what comes back to the stand next for photography.
This year was no exception and there was a constant stream of products coming in for their pictures from Hornby, Heljan, Dapol, Revolution Trains, Locomotion Models, Realtrack, Bachmann, TMC, Kernow Model Rail Centre, Hattons and more. The variety was incredible too – everything from compact GWR ‘1361’ saddle tanks in ‘OO’ from Kernow through to the giant ‘O’ gauge Class 45 from the Heljan stand.
Its a tough job to pick the highlights, but here is a small selection of what really caught our eyes:
Hornby’s new Class 87 – newly announced at the show for ‘OO’, along with the Stanier ‘Duchess’ and ‘IEP’ units, the Class 87 is a great addition to the Hornby range and one which expands the potential for West Coast Main Line overhead layouts.
Hatton’s ICI hoppers – the first engineering samples of these new hopper wagons were revealed at the show. Mike jumped on them with a pre-order straight away!
Hornby ‘H’ first sample – The first running sample of the Wainwright ‘H’ 0-4-4T for ‘OO’ showed great potential and delicacy too. This is one to watch.
Heljan ‘O’ gauge Class 128 – We weren’t expected to see a full pre-production sample of this model just yet, but Heljan has delivered it quickly. This will open up new possibilities for compact layouts in 7mm scale.
Bachmann’s Brighton ‘Atlantic’ – The ‘OO’ gauge ‘H2’ 4-4-2 has been eagerly awaited and it finally broke cover at the NEC. First impressions are that the wait has been worth it.
Bachmann ‘Coal Tank’ in colour – You can have the new LNWR ‘Coal Tank’ in any colour you like, so long as it is black. This Victorian 0-6-2T is looking great and is due to arrive in March/April 2017.
Dapol Class 122 – Decorated samples of the Dapol ‘OO’ gauge Class 122 caught our attention, not least for the fine appearance of the model and the detail differences between vehicles.
Heljan L&B 2-6-2T – This ‘OO9’ steam locomotive is breaking new ground for British outline models and is reported to be gaining great momentum with Heljan’s retailers.
TMC 22ton bolster and plate wagons – The Model Centre revealed it was working with Bachmann to produce the LMS/LNER 22ton double bolster and plate wagons in ‘OO’ for release in 2017 with some interesting departmental versions on the cards too.
Train-Tech signals – New versions of its popular ‘OO’ scale colour light signals are coming in 2017 including versions with feather and theatre indicators. Plus we had a demonstration of Train-Tech’s new ‘Layout Link’ system which holds great potential. Full reviews and coverage coming soon.
Of course there was so much more to see at the show and this is just the tip of the iceberg. You can read our full report on the Warley National Model Railway Exhibition in HM115, January 2017, which goes on sale from December 8. Plus, this next issue comes with a FREE DVD compiled exclusively by the Hornby Magazine team. Don’t miss it!
I hope you enjoy the blogs and if you have anything you would like to comment on, drop us a line to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The new series of blogs from the Hornby Magazine Editorial team give you an insight into the people, the projects and more. Hornby Magazine Assistant Editor Mark Chivers’ next blog will be live on January 6 2017 and you can expect more from Editor Mike Wild on December 16.