The South West Area Group of the 009 Society (SWOONS) held their 5th Members Open Day at the Merryfield Hall in the small
village of Ilton, between Yeovil and Taunton in and for a change, there was neither snow nor floods to deter those who like their model railway events to be of the narrow, friendly and informal genre. A good selection of layouts were provided by both the members of the group and some invited guests who had travelled considerable distances in some cases to give their trains a run after the winter hibernation. Somerset
The word had obviously been passed around about what a good day out this one is, as the hall was packed out in the morning, and overall I estimate that there were about twice the number of visitors compared to previous years. I spotted many 009 Society members who had travelled over 100 and in some cases 200 miles each way in order to attend. If enthusiasts are prepared to travel considerable distances despite the extortionate fuel costs prevailing to be at a small village hall in the depths of winter, then the hobby is certainly healthy and those who could have come but decided that it was “too far” are certainly the ones who missed out on both a superbly organised, friendly, informal and enjoyable day, but also some exciting and not to be repeated bargains on the 009 Sales stand! Once they’re gone, they’re gone as they say!
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