Don’t miss a rare chance to see huge Burntisland model

The model is over 13 metres long
The model is over 13 metres long

People with an interest in the history and development of Burntisland are being invited to take a rare opportunity to view the station and docks as they appeared in 1883.

Over this weekend (October 6- 7), ‘Burntisland 1883’, a 13-metre long model of part of the town and its railway will be exhibited by the East of Scotland 4mm Group, which has members from Edinburgh, the Lothians and Fife.

The award winning model has been exhibited in towns and villages throughout the UK and this will only be its second visit to the town.

The special event is being hosted by Burntisland Heritage Trust as part of its 25th anniversary celebrations.

The intricate model will be exhibited in the Burntisland Parish Church Hall and will be open to the public on Saturday and Sunday, from 10am to 4pm on both days.

Everyone is welcome to view this unique record of the history of Burntisland, and admission is free, although a donation to the Burntisland Heritage Trust is encouraged.

Ian Archibald, convenor of Burntisland Heritage Trust said: “The model was last exhibited in Burntisland in the Upper Library Hall in 2010 when it drew much praise from the local public as a definite must see.

“Since then it has been expanded to include the former Round House.

“I can’t think of a better way of celebrating our 25th anniversary than having it back on display in the town.”

Prior to the opening of the Forth Rail Bridge in 1890, Burntisland played a key role in the transport network of Scotland, providing passenger and goods ferry services across the Forth as the Southern railhead for the NBR’s lines from Aberdeen to Edinburgh.

It was at Burntisland that the world’s first roll on/roll off ferries entered service in 1850, designed by Thomas Bouch, later of Tay Bridge infamy, crossing to Granton on the southern shore of the Forth.

The layout has been built in three distinct phases over the last 15 years andis built to 4mm scale. The third phase, consisting of the visually impressive loco shed or roundhouse and the associated wagon works is now approaching completion.

The chosen period has resulted in a requirement for considerable research, undertaken in close liaison with the Burntisland Heritage Trust. Almost all of the features modelled have long been swept away with various redevelopments of the docks throughout the years. However, the station building is still in existence, having been sympathetically restored in 2010 as a business centre.

Most of the features and stock have had to be built from scratch, and the model boasts a unique collection of architecture, track, rolling stock and ships. The layout incorporates working features such as the train ferry and coal hoists and has involved many hundreds of hours of work by the group members.

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