Great Fun For All Ages At Kerry Model Railway Festival This Weekend

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Billy Nolan and Brendan O’Brien with a Thomas the Tank Engine which will please younger visitors. It is resting on an old trunk dating back to the 1800s which is part of the exhibition. Photo by Dermot Crean

THERE’S an event on this weekend which is a must for anyone interested in trains — big or small!

The Kerry Model Railway Club’s annual festival has gone from strength to strength over the past few years, in fact, last year over 1,000 people visited the exhibition during the festival to see the model railways and antiques.

The event is on from Saturday, August 4 to Monday, August 6 and will see new Irish and UK model exhibits with model train enthusiasts on hand to answer questions, including Simon Starr from England who has been coming every year.

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Members of Kerry Model Railway Club looking forward to the festival this weekend. At back; Denis Murphy, Harry Kelliher and Donal Coppinger. In front; Chris Dyer, Billy Nolan, Leon Kelliher, Liam Freeman, Billy Horgan, Edwin De Groot and Brendan O’Brien. Photo by Dermot Crean

The model railway exhibit at the Blennerville Windmill Centre is a treasure trove of railway memorabilia with some great local photos from times past of the old Tralee to Dingle railway line as well as many donations from people including an old trunk dating from the 1800s with ‘Arthur Blennerhasset inscribed on it.

The local club has put a tremendous amount of time and work into the exhibit over the years since they set it up in Blennerville in 2013. The intricacies of workings of the models were explained when we called out on Monday evening and we also found out it wasn’t cheap to keep an exhibition like this ticking over.

One of the model railways in the exhibition.

Billy Nolan said people in the locality and beyond have shown wonderful generosity with donating memorabilia, especially old photographs of staff from the Tralee station over the years, which are displayed just inside the entrance to the exhibition room.

The Kennelly family of Kerry’s Eye have also been very good to the club, giving them large photos of trains taken over the years to display in the room.

A number of model railways will be operating in two rooms over the course of the weekend and with music and great spot prizes it’s set to be great fun for young and old with an interest in all things locomotive.

The price for entry is €7 for adults and €3 for a child. A family ticket is €20. Students and OAPs are €5.

Some of the photos of old locomotives from years gone by in Kerry on exhibit in the Blennerville Windmill Centre.

An old trunk dating from the 1800s which is part of the exhibit.

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