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Bekonscot Model Village

written by Frank Brown

Since opening to the public in 1929, Bekonscot has entertained over 13 million visitors and really is a national treasure on our doorstep. Located in Beaconsfield New Town [behind Waitrose], the village began as a hobby for London accountant Roland Callingham, who bought a field circa 1925, dug a pond in it, then added miniature houses. A friend, James Shilcock, helped design and build the model railway which today has a total track length of 438 yards complete with a working signal box to control train movements. The electric locomotives are mainly steam engine replicas, some dating back many years but fitted with new running gear. During the season [April - October] these little trains cover around 2000 miles apiece!

Every form of public transport crops up somewhere in the village - buses at the racecourse, trams, cable cars, and even an airport. Overall though its the genuine 'Britishness' of the exhibits on view that inspire, transporting one back to a more innocent age of England at work and play. Grown ups are reminded of working coalmines, windmills, visiting fairs with a helter skelter and swingboats, the end of pier bandstand, the list is endless. Children marvel at the railway, boats and [real] fish in the lake whilst trying to count [and touch] the animals in the zoo.

A fairly recent addition [1999] is a full size ex BR mkl coach which, after a considerable effort to get it onto the site and into position, doubles as the ticket office and gift shop. There's now also a big train offering children a little ride round, an all in all something for everyone at an entrance price of around £6 Adults/£3 Children. Don't put it off any longer — visit Bekonscot Model Village!

Fire at Bekonscot Model Village

Bekonscot Model Village
A stray spark from a steam roller caused substantial damage to one of the villages' thatched buildings on Friday 27th October 2006. Luckily the local fire brigade arrived quickly bringing the fire under control, thus allowing the nearby race meeting to continue unaffected. [On the spot reporting Frank Brown]
Bekonscot Model Village