On Saturday helped man the 009 Society stand at the London festival of railway modelling at Alexandra Palace. It's a long trip from Sussex needing a very early start and a late return, but it was good to see so much interest in 009. I'm sure the recent increase in the availability of ready-to-run has encouraged many to take an interest since getting started and building a decent layout is so much easier now. As well as the showcase, demo layout (which being a roundy-roundy at table height attracts the younger kids!), we had some copies of the 009 Society Handbook for sale - all had gone by mid-afternoon Saturday. There were lots of families, and it was also nice to see a range of ages showing interest, we may not see many younger (sub-40!) people in clubs but clearly they are interested in the hobby, one young man commenting that his generation couldn't expect to have a house in London but 009 looked suitable for a small space.
It's a big show but with two of us to man the stand we each had opportunity to look around, and it was good to see some old faces to chat to. Of course there are layouts for all interests, and I was pleased to find a few narrow gauge layouts. I didn't get a program so don't have all details.
Bunkers Lane in O9 is a new layout Bill Flude on the same theme as his Derwent Road layout (I last saw that at Fareham), inspired by the Leighton Buzzard Railway.
So a large and busy show, with some excellent layouts, and nice to be back for the first time post-Covid. If the train strikes reduced numbers it wasn't obvious.