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 Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe

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Paul Stainz Holt



Location : North Wales

PostSubject: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Sat Nov 08, 2008 6:46 pm

I was talking to a fellow Continental garden railway modeller today, and during the conversation, he said that the whole railway modelling hobby (all scales) is held in much higher regard in Germany than in the UK.

Is this also the case in France and other European countries ?
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Carl Hibbs
Admin


Location : Haute Normandie - visitors welcome

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Sat Nov 08, 2008 8:09 pm

Depends really what you mean by higher regard?

There are certainly different attitudes to the hobby.

I can point out a few Anglo-French differences.

The main focus of interest here is HO and they are very proud of this. There are hundreds of small artisans producing high quality and expensive models for every prototype.

O and N are next in popularity but G scale IIm is slowly getting more popular each year.

There doesn't seem to be the pedantic rivet counting and nit picking as in the UK.

Also in France the whole railway scene is different with the system of secondary railways and tramways being separately run from mainline trains and the once vast metre gauge network.
Everyone seems touched by 'la Micheline', (the affectionate name for all railcars).

And there's not so much 'jobs worth' attitude here either. If you want to stand in the middle of the track to take a photo of an oncoming locomotive you usually can!
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pjti



Location : Galizano, nr Santander, Nth Spain

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Wed Nov 19, 2008 7:04 pm

Can't say much regarding the situation here in Spain. There are a couple of shops in Madrid that I like to visit, they sell from z up to "G", the Aristo stuff is very expensive, I have only ever seen one person buying LGB but both shops do carry a stock of large stuff. There must be a large Scale following but there is no info to be had. I had heard that there is a G1 group over in the East side (of Spain). There is an amazing array of continental manufacturers represented here and it all looks like quality stuff-not cheap either. Someone somewhere must be buying it.

The big emphasis here is with slot cars, seems that everywhere has a slot car shop nearby. Not so much trains.

To quote a young lad of 11 from Spain who visited us in Ireland (translation) "Dad, what kind of man (grown up) plays with trains ?"

Talking of Ireland, I was told by a local model shop that TT scale has a big following over there. They sold lots of Roco stuff.
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dtsteam



Location : Preston, England

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Thu Nov 20, 2008 1:42 pm

My understanding is that hobbies generally are treated with respect in Germany. They take the idea of a healthy work-life balance seriously, and a hobby is a good indicator of that.
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Paul Stainz Holt



Location : North Wales

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Fri Nov 21, 2008 8:26 pm

One of the reasons I asked the question is due to a comment from a fellow G Scaler - he said that the attitude which seems to prevail in the UK is that a lot of lay people regard model railways as toys, and have little respect for the dedication and skill that is abundant in model railways of all scales.

Mind you, as a former racing cyclist, a similar disrespectful attitude exists in the UK towards cycling - perhaps it has changed a little since the olympics.
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dtsteam



Location : Preston, England

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:41 pm

I think that attitude applies in the UK to any activity that does not involve heavy drinking, celebrity worship and television soap operas.

Such are the depths to which we have sunk.
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PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Mon Nov 24, 2008 3:21 pm

paul stainz holt wrote:
...........as a former racing cyclist, a similar disrespectful attitude exists in the UK towards cycling ........
Post withdrawn.
I'm not getting in a row on here.


Last edited by John on Mon Nov 24, 2008 3:32 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Post withdrawn and limping away   Mon Nov 24, 2008 3:25 pm

I had a tricycle once, it had lights and a bell which went "ting ting"


Last edited by GeoffW on Tue Nov 25, 2008 5:27 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Carl Hibbs
Admin


Location : Haute Normandie - visitors welcome

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Mon Nov 24, 2008 8:37 pm

I think we ought to keep this subject to the title. I think Paul was using cycling as example rather than championing the cyclist's cause.

Some things have gone down the pan big time in the UK but it's not all bad.
France has it's downside to.
Wait till you hear French people arguing to the point of near death over the most ridiculous tedious detail about something completely trivial. I could write a book over such nonsense.

If you want see the diffrence in regard for the hobby the best way is to visit shows on both sides of the 'English Channel' (or 'la manche' to avoid another 100 years war). Razz

I will be speaking to people from the UK like Peter Smith from Warley MRC at the weekend and it will be interesting to get their opinion and views comparing the Warley show last weekend to RailExpo.

I will let you now.
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PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Wed Nov 26, 2008 11:44 am

dtsteam wrote:
I think that attitude applies in the UK to any activity that does not involve heavy drinking, celebrity worship and television soap operas.

Such are the depths to which we have sunk.


Never was a truer word spoken, we should add to this list the culture of "want it NOW" and seemingly unlimited credit availibility
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mikeyh



Location : Dordogne France

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Thu Nov 27, 2008 4:47 pm

I guess its 'horses for courses'. My friends are fascinated by my obsession with trains.They thnk I'm an 'Anorak' They are the same friends who thnk I'm cool still gigging and 'rocking 'at 61! A lot of them are golfers so I think they're mad!! ITS a funny old world!!

Mikey
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Carl Hibbs
Admin


Location : Haute Normandie - visitors welcome

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:58 pm

Where the hell did this stupid word 'Anorak' come from...?

Anyway...nice to have you back Mikey, anorak or not. Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:11 am

Comes from all those train watchers and bird twitcher's standing in the pouring rain with there "Anorak's" (usually green!) On waiting to take the ultimate Picture...............
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GWhizz



Location : Charente, France

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Mon Dec 01, 2008 2:33 pm

Hi

New to this forum but thought I'd add my twopenny worth on this thread !

Compared to UK there seems to be genuine respect and interest from the French neighbours that have seen even my early collection of G scale and earthworks in the Jardin.

There also seems to be a large and growing enthusiasm for the hobby judging by the attendees at the recent Rail Expo in Paris.

I also get the impression that there is a generally younger base of interest in France.

Just personal views, but I hope worth adding!

Cheers

Brian
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French Chuffed



Location : Droitwich UK

PostSubject: Re: Regard for the hobby in mainland Europe   Mon Dec 01, 2008 6:04 pm

GWhizz wrote:
Hi

New to this forum but thought I'd add my twopenny worth on this thread !

Compared to UK there seems to be genuine respect and interest from the French neighbours that have seen even my early collection of G scale and earthworks in the Jardin.

There also seems to be a large and growing enthusiasm for the hobby judging by the attendees at the recent Rail Expo in Paris.

I also get the impression that there is a generally younger base of interest in France.

Just personal views, but I hope worth adding!

Cheers

Brian
Welcome to the forum.
My French neighbours are fascinated by my construction in the garden, but I think I am assisting with there preconceived Idea of the crazy Englishman at the end of the village.
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