The Bristol M Shed exhibition went ahead as planned, and was a terrific success for the club. From the moment the doors were slid open at 11:00am, the public flocked in to see our displays. It was very rewarding to see so many people with smiles on their faces as they saw the models in action. Rough estimates put the footfall at over a thousand. Such was the interest that we could not close the doors at 4:00pm, but had to eventually usher people out at nearly 5:00pm.
Michael Edwards did a marvellous job entertaining youngsters as they first came through the door, with the ‘hands on’ models. This included the ‘exploding ship’ which must have been sunk a hundred times.
John Day’s Orrery worked fine all day. Many parents were seen explaining to their children how it showed the workings of the Solar System. Intricate and educational!
Next to it he had a crane set in pristine condition which looked far too nice to actually use.
Steve Briancourt’s giant USS Missouri wowed the onlookers both old and young. So many people wanted to ask questions and see it demonstrated that he never actually got to sit down for a rest during the entire event. The ship is now in the final stages of the build to be ready for 'Skegex' this June.
Sam Medworth brought a variety of planes as a static display, plus his Sopwith Camel which was slung below a frame. This demonstrated the effect of engine torque on the handling of an aircraft. He also had a Mecccanograph for producing patterns.
Martin Arnold ably supported us by bringing his Meccanograph which was in constant use, demonstrating the type of patterns that it could produce. It was so popular with everyone trying to produce their own pattern that it needed quick repairs three times during the afternoon.
Greg Worwood brought two of his larger models. The first was the magnificent illuminated Eiffel Tower, deliberately positioned front and centre of the entrance, so that it could be seen from afar. This was clearly an eye catcher that worked.
Also being displayed at the back was his Stephenson’s Rocket and carriages, and his ‘Cuthbertson’ tracked Land Rover.
Greg also displayed a sail boat made from plastic Meccano, which bobbed up and down as if riding the waves.
On the next table, John Day displayed a windmill, and his ‘Ping Pong Ball’ bouncing machine. It’s actually a bit mesmerising to just stand and watch it perform!
Chris Bates brought his dockside crane and barge. Well obviously, as the real thing was just outside the door!
The green loco is the 'Henbury' which is also one of the steam trains which runs along the dockside track.
A real hit with the youngsters was David Miller’s hockey game. It only needed some care and attention to keep it operational all day.
We also had a few tables devoted to ‘hands on’ plastic Meccano. This proved to be a huge hit with children. This was supervised all day by one of Steve’s daughters Mandy, who travelled down from Macclesfield with her family especially for this occasion. She did a brilliant job of keeping order and helping children to build ‘freelance’.
Permission to appear in these photos was granted by the parents of all children shown in close up.
Alan Perry arrived to help with whatever needed to be done, which was very welcome for those who needed a break from behind their tables. Philip Bond visited from Devon with his family to show support for the day.
A special thanks goes to Dianne who not only supplied some delicious cakes, but also kept us all supplied with drinks throughout the day. We also have to thank the staff and volunteers at the M Shed for facilitating the exhibition, who were very accommodating and helpful at all times. We all agreed it was a really enjoyable day for us, and really good for club exposure. We may even have to do it all over again sometime!