Track Tricks

The following articles explain in greater detail how we’ve built up Hornby Central over the years.


This is a small device at the end of each item of rolling stock, which fades into insignificance in comparison with the precision and detailing of the latest coaches and wagons. Having said that, it is probably the most important part of the model - if it fails to operate correctly it will ruin your fun.

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Laying the Track

You may think that railway track is just two parallel rails placed on a board. Not so. Track is, in fact, the most essential part of a model railway. The smooth running of the trains and the enjoyment from operating them depends totally on the track. It also plays an important role in creating the scene.

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Coaching Stock

If you are starting a model railway today, you have a choice of the most perfectly realistic coaches ever made for the ‘00’ enthusiast. In 1970 we didn’t have that luxury, but we had one range that we believe was even better. Not perfectly scaled, not perfectly detailed and they had wheels which were more suited to roads rather than rails, but they had charm. We would go so far as to say they were even artistic. As a rake of five, six or seven, either corridor or suburban, they were a joy to watch and, even today, everyone who remembers them stands and stares in admiration.

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Trucks and Wagons

Our model depicts the 1950/early 60s period. The railways of Britain were not at their best, run down after the war, lacking investment and direction. The future was not a priority, survival and repair certainly were and the question, should we stick with steam hauled trains or, like Europe, progress to electric powered trains, meant an intermediate solution was required, which would be diesel.

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Use of People

The last ten years have seen incredible growth in the model industry. It came about when model cars and buses were eventually produced to the same scale as the trains, in effect bringing three hobbies together. This created even further interest in landscaping, in architecture, town planning, country-scapes and social habits. Now that was a long way round to get to the use of model people wasn’t it?

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There are two ways of approaching the business of landscaping. The first is to design a landscape that you are going to run your trains through. The second is to wrap your landscape around your train layout.

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Upcoming Exhibitions

Sorry, there are no upcoming exhibitions. If you’d like us to attend an exhibition you’re organising, please contact us.

Explore Hornby Central

How we make the trains run

Remaking History

The Making of Princess Anne

The Making of the Layout

The Making of our Steam Specials