Model Railway Enthusiasts Devastated After Exhibition Destroyed By Vandals
A community of model railway enthusiasts are devastated after vandals broke into an exhibition and destroyed all the models, causing thousands of pounds of damage.
People from the Market Deeping Model Railway Club who had organised exhibits for the show in Stamford, Lincolnshire arrived on Saturday to find their beloved train sets in a shambles.
Show chairman Peter Davies told the BBC: "I've never experienced anything like it. A hurricane would have done less damage.
"Models that were made over years were trodden on and thrown around. It's a total wanton destruction of the highest order.
"Can you imagine your life's work wrecked? One guy spent 25 years on his work and it's wrecked, it's just horrendous. We will never have the time to build the sort of layouts again, that's where the anger comes from."
One locomotive alone is estimated to have cost up to £8,500 and it's now in pieces.
Police have revealed there have been four young people arrested on burglary and criminal damage offences.
While this is obviously devastating for the people who had spent years on their project, as well as the fans who were planning on travelling miles to visit the show - there is a glimmer of hope.
A JustGiving page has been set and planned to raise £500 for the victims but that's been absolutely smashed.
A whopping £37,000 has been pledged so far - a casual 7397 percent more than the target.
Market Deeping Model Railway Club Secretary Brian Norris said on the page: "Market Deeping Model Railway Club needs your help to rebuild. We have held our annual show in Stamford for the last 12 years.
"Months of planning goes into the show and years of work goes into building the layout. Imagine our horror and grief when we were greeted by this scene of absolute devastation on the morning of 18th May 2019.
"Some of the models on display are irreplaceable and whilst money cannot possibly replace the hours of painstaking effort that has been so wantonly destroyed, we would ask that you make a donation, no matter how small, to help us get back on our feet. Please accept our thanks in advance."
While the funds won't bring back their train sets in an instant, it's a start. Hopefully this will help the guys and gals who were affected by the vandalism and the show can be put on again in the future.
Featured Image Credit: Market Deeping Model Railway Club