Bob Symes 6th May 1924 to 19th January 2015

Ambassador for railway modelling, inventor, engineer and TV presenter Bob Symes passed away yesterday, aged 90.

Bob, real name Robert Alexander Baron Schutzmann von Schutzmansdorff, was known for his avuncular, friendly, approach and charismatic personality and a willingness to always stop and chat.


Bob SymesDuring the 1970s, 80s and 90s he became a well known face on British TV audiences during with his own TV show Model World, regular appearances Tomorrow’s World and occasionally Horizon and co-presenting Making Tracks.


His love and enthusiasm for models, and trains in particular, shone through in his programmes and combined with his close involvement and attendance at numerous model railway exhibitions made him an inspiration for a generation of modellers, including myself.
Unlike many presenters, he had a genuine passion and real knowledge of his subject and was a skilled engineer having a Gauge 1 and later a 10¼ railway in his garden (which was occasionally opened to friends and fans) in Surrey. He was also president of Guildford-based Astrolat Model Railway Circle and set up the Institute of Patentees and Inventors.
Bob is survived by Sheila, and by his daughter, Roberta, from his first marriage, his stepsons, Matthew and Kester, and four grandchildren.


Bob Symes,
6th May 1924 to 19th January 2015.


Bob Symes on YouTube

Bob Symes’ Memories:

The Model World of Robert Symes pt1:

Bob Symes Green Dene Garden Railway

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.

Add Comment

Required fields are marked *. Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.