Great Model Railway Challenge What I Learned

Great Model Railway ChallengeI was glued to my TV last night watching the first episode of Great Model Railway Challenge. Here’s one great tip I picked up.

Did you see it?

Channel 5’s Great Model Railway Challenge is a fun and enjoyable series showing the activities of groups of modellers as they compete to make a model railway. It’s on My5 TV and here if you missed it – for show times see here.

It skips on the details of making and building a model railway but then it is for the TV masses. I did, however, learn one thing.

3D Backscenes

I’m a huge fan of back scenes and have written about them before. I’ve also written about forced perspective – the technique of using different scales in models to achieve the impression of distance.

What I hadn’t considered however was combining them both so your back scene has multiple layers, with objects of different depths protruding from it to create a 3D effect and using forced perspective to create a feeling of depth.

I’ll certainly be incorporating this into my next project. In the meantime, I’ve ordered myself a copy of Paul Bambrick & John Ellis-Cockell’s authoritative book Creating a Backscene.

Update: I’ve since received my copy and it doesn’t disappoint. It’s packed with ideas and tips and inspiring photography. If you haven’t already, get yourself a copy soon.

If you don’t have a model railway but the programme has tempted you, I’ve collected some of my best articles to show you how to get started.

Founder of ModelRailwayEngineer, Andy Leaning

Andy is a lifelong modeler, writer, and founder of He has been building model railways, dioramas, and miniatures for over 20 years. His passion for model making and railways began when he was a child, building his first layout at the age of seven.
Andy’s particular passion is making scenery and structures in 4mm scale, which he sells commercially. He is particularly interested in modelling the railways of South West England during the late Victorian/early Edwardian era, although he also enjoys making sci-fi and fantasy figures and dioramas. His website has won several awards, and he is a member of MERG (Model Railway Electronics Group) and the 009 Society.
When not making models, Andy lives in Surrey with his wife and teenage son. Other interests include history, science fiction, photography, and programming. Read more about Andy.

Afflliate disclosure:The links on this page may take you to carefully selected businesses, such as Hornby, Amazon, eBay and Scale Model Scenery, where you can purchase the product under affiliate programmes. This means I receive a small commission on any orders placed although the price you pay does not change. You can read my full affiliate policy here. I also sell my my own ready to use, pre-made and painted buildings and terrain features. browse the range.
One comment
  1. I just want to say that I’m so pleased that there are many younger people interested in model railways not just the retired. Thanks it has me more interested in trying to pursue this as I hobby now. Good job channel 5.

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