Chris & Sharon Hill have owned this unique model
funfair since Chris discovered it at an auction in Sherborne,
Dorset. UK, in May 2006.
Being sold by a lady from Glastonbury, she
explained to Chris that her Father had bought it from an ex-showman in the
North of England in the early 1960's. The ex-showman had been injured, and no longer
able to work he spent a lot of his time building the models, presumably from memory, as quite a few of the
models carry names associated with Fairs.
Who the builder of this unique model
funfair was, no one knows, but the clues to their origin are carried on the models
with names such as:- Dentons, The Pangbourne Flyer, Graham, Linda, and a set of juvenile swings
carries the name "Frank Unwin's High Flyers", a Foden lorry has the registration LRD 24,
and the Noah's Ark has the name "Richard Townsend".
Are these clues to the origin of this model
No one knows with any certainty!
But whoever built it had a detailed knowledge of
funfair rides, they are all built, and dismantled in exactly the same way as the full size rides.
Built from wood and metal, with the moving rides powered by electric motors, and illuminated, this
1/12th scale funfair replicates the full size exactly.
The hours of work involved are hard to imagine,
the gears on the showman's engines have been carefully hand cut from steel.
The collection includes:- Three abreast
Gallopers, Big Wheel, Chair-O-Planes,
Lighthouse Slip or Helter Skelter, Park Swings,
Skid, Strikers, Hoop-La,
Boxing Booth, Hall of Mirrors, and a Fair Organ
called "The Piper", Showman's
Steam Engines, Showman's Caravans, and various