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History of The Model Show

As far back as 2009 conversations had been taking place between a few avid enthusiasts, suggesting a new event at which a diverse range of modellers could come together and present their work in one format i.e. by scale. So you could look at each genre upon an equal footing, discuss and learn skills from each other and present to the visiting audience the best attributes of each. Novices and long standing modellers alike might then take away a renewed interest, new directions or methods and skills to help develop their own modelling. . Enquiries were made as to timings costs and locations and Poynton Leisure Centre was subsequently chosen and booked for December 2013. For our first year we drew exhibits from the local area and known contacts in the national Model Railway and Plastic Kit modelling worlds. From the outset it was agreed that such should not be a ‘toy show’ so to speak, but a bringing together of the best available examples and participants of each subject and that it should not feel a need to apologise or play down the attributes of quality modelling, in the firm belief that there is nothing wrong in being good at what you do and that good modelling is a sufficient inspiration for novices or existing modellers in its own right A more in depth description of the shows ethos may be found near the bottom of this page titled ‘what is modelling’.

Since the opening event The Model Show has expanded year on year to around 12,000 sq ft of exhibition space, plus a swimming pool! Alongside the core of local club stands, exhibits and specialist demonstrators are brought in from the four corners of the UK in an ever widening breadth of subjects. Subsequently the costs increase yearly. It is organized by “the friends of the model show” which comprises a small core of volunteers who work during the intermediate periods to gather exhibits, publicise the event and prepare the signage, equipment and plans to permit its swift and smooth assembly and operation from the build up day, right through to breakdown and packing away. Allied to these are a further national group of modellers and associations who provide occasional exhibits, added publicity and equipment. Putting on an event which encompasses so many different genres of modelling; some of which have never exhibited publicly before and the majority of which has its own ideas on what, how and why to exhibit, is a complex process and has meant many discussions to come up with an operational methodology and an overall presentational style which best suits all, and this aside from the day-to-day organizations and planning. The whole process eats up an immeasurably large amount of voluntary time, it is our hobby and we enter into such willingly, confident that the event can play a significant part in supporting and perpetuating modelling as a whole for all our futures. We are not a business; we are professional in our approach however and expect everyone to do their level best to see our show provide a high degree of participant and visitor enjoyment. Those who organize, exhibit, steward or pay at the door to enter, are all supporters of the event and we thank them equally, without which we could not continue this worthwhile enterprise. The show does not look to make a profit; it is budgeted and runs on a break even scenario whilst allowing for its annual expansion and improvement.

The Model Show or TMS as more easily remembered, is a national calendar event with a reputation for professionalism, care for the visitor and exhibitor alike and a ‘can-do’ attitude when it comes to supporting innovations, new genres and ideas. We are committed to both increase the numbers and the inter genre communications of; modellers in the hobby and to stage an exhibition which annually asks of itself, what it can do better? Accordingly we were one of the UK’s first children free entry modelling shows and the first to offer a serving UK Forces and Service Personnel discount. We provide free downloadable programmes (around 7 days before). We have a ‘late afternoon reduced rate’ for those wanting a quick or cheaper visit. Our show includes a range of possibilities for visitors to try out various modelling disciplines and in some instances, to take home the results. Wherever possible we support the smaller independent and specialist traders first and choose these carefully to ensure a good mix of stands whilst ensuring they have some chance of a financial return. Our 2016 show will see the start of what will one day be a truly 2 day programme of events and bring opportunities for national clubs and association to hold low cost mini-exhibitions or meetings and allow individual modellers to sell off any unwanted items. It will also mark us as being the first modelling exhibition in the Uk to go completely paperless, removing the laborious and non modelling use of our valuable times in filling out countless forms emails and letters, to everyone’s benefit!

The The Model Show team (2016)

    Mark Henshaw – Exhibition Manager
    Keith Ware – Trade and Accommodation
    Ray Parrish
    Emily Parrish
    Edward Parrish
    Dave Wheelton
    Richard Dallimore
    A Cubbon – Website engineering


    • The Association of Large Scale Railway Modellers
    • Armorfast Models
    • Gripping Beast – Wargaming figures



      • Modelshops directory.co.uk
      • Merseyside IPMS Group
      • Airfix SIG IPMS
      • Etherow Model Boat Club
      • Brit modeller forum
      • Poynton Railway Modellers
      • Arrow business centre Poynton
      • SK Area Group NGS
      • Association of Large Scale Railway Modellers
      • International Plastic Modelling Society
      • Scale Four Society
      • Scale 148
      • N Gauge Society
      • N Tastic shop/county rollingstock
      • 3mm Scale Association
      • The 2mm Scale Association
      • RM Web.co.uk
      • N Gauge Forum
      • SK Area Group NGS
      • New mills and district railway modellers
      • Rainhill Model railway club
      • Poynton Leisure centre
      • Peco publications
      • Tomlinson Parbans Ltd
      • Yahoo groups
      • Graham Beckwith
      • Mike Rush
      • Brian Davies
      • Richard Brady
      • SMTF model shop Poynton
      • Brookside miniature railway
      • National Association Road Transport Modellers
      • 7mm Narrow Gauge Association
      • Todmorden Model Supplies
      • British Bulldogs
      • British Model Soldier Society-Manchester Group
      • Copper Mine Miniatures
      • East Manchester Historical Games/Mailed Fist Wargames Group
      • 580 Modellers


      What is modelling?

      The Oxford English Dictionary suggests that modelling is: The activity of making three-dimensional models. This is a question we have been asking ourselves since we started this venture: in wanting to be able to define what the show should include and more recently, to place onto this page a narrative that will explain such to the uninitiated and qualify the questions of ourselves and other modellers.

      By modelling, we are suggesting: any three dimensional facsimile of a fictional or real item in a scale greater or less than its original size, e.g. an expanded scale model of an item as commonly used in manufacturing and scientific study to aid clarity of minute details. Or a reduced scale model such as may be used by architects or town planners to permit large items to be presented in the office or home environments. This latter option being that most commonly seen in modelling today e.g. a 1:10th scale model of a Route-Master bus etc. To explain our reasoning here: was’ the bus’ a sketch, painting or computer model; or a full size three dimensional copy? Then it would not be a model. Expanding the theory further it might be argued that a 1/4 size or 1:4th scale model of a Toby Jug would be a model (even if made from clay, in the same manner as the original) whereas, were it a full size example it would be an example of pottery and not modelling. By this conclusion a host of full size and artistic subjects such as painting, needlework, basket making, woodturning and pottery to name but a few are concluded to be arts or craftwork and not modelling. This accepting that these methods of construction; may be used in some way within our models.

      Next we refine our modelling parameters. Here we are saying that we expect the displays at The Model Show to be the work of the individual or group presenting them and that they have either: altered a proprietary item to give greater accuracy, representation of another item, or improve the detail and level of finish; assembled their models from proprietary kit or components; created it from scratch using pre-formed or raw materials. In some instances some or all the previous suggestions may be employed into the model? We accept that in some instances the use of specialist professional services for design, casting, machining, and finishing of, components or whole models, may be included. But we retain the desire that ostensibly the modelling undertaken will be the work of those displaying it.

      The Model Show is therefore a bringing together of modellers and their work into one venue, encompassing as many genres of modelling as we can muster. Taking the above paragraphs into consideration we have over time learnt that it is far easier to conclude what isn’t modelling than what is and that despite our wealth of knowledge and experience within the modelling world, we are presented with new and innovative modelling examples upon a regular basis. Ensuring us that the diversity of the shows content will be expanding for some time if not forever? Additional to which we occasionally include some mediums to a lesser extent; which do not specifically meet our requirements for modelling, but which have great merit regardless, as either introductions to the wider modelling world, or as they suggest a wealth of knowledge and skills which are worthy of understanding by modellers. I.e. Landscape painting, Lego, Meccano; Computer Aided Design or CAD; White Metal or Resin Casting and Three Dimensional or 3D printing.

      A final point for the existing modellers consideration is the benefits that may be had by looking at genres of modelling you have not been interested or involved with before, in essence ‘modelling is modelling regardless’. We have since the first show had modellers telling us how useful and interesting it has been to see at first hand the various modelling mediums and to have been able to discuss with experts in each filed the materials, methods and skills each employs. As modellers ourselves we whole heartedly recommend that; even if for no other reason? You should attend the event to benefit from the boundless opportunities presented to develop your own modelling.

      Although this website is our primary source of instruction and updates, we may also be found on Facebook and Twitter, or on one of a countless number of internet modelling forums and specialist modelling Facebook groups. On this site are examples of our flyers/hand bills and posters which may be downloaded and placed in your local model shop, clubroom or anywhere you think may attract visitors to the show and for which you have our thanks. If you can assist in the distribution of flyers to a specific event or group we would like to speak to you. We hope that this page has been informative and that it settles some of the questions we have been presented with. If you have any queries or can assist in any way with content, contacts, assistance, sponsorship or suggestions? Please feel free to contact us via this websites email facility. TMS