'Extraordinary' model railway collection that never made it on to track to go under hammer in Scarborough

A model railway collection amassed by a Yorkshire enthusiast over a period of more than half a century, is to go under the hammer in an auction in Scarborough on Friday March 22.
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The collection includes more than 300 steam locomotive models but what makes it exceptional is the fact that that Andrew Carmichael, the enthusiast who

amassed the hoard, never had even a single loop of track in his train room.

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Not one of the locomotives has ever had a pootle round a tabletop layout!

Holly Hammond with LNER locomotives Bantam Cock and B5 engine 1686.Holly Hammond with LNER locomotives Bantam Cock and B5 engine 1686.
Holly Hammond with LNER locomotives Bantam Cock and B5 engine 1686.

Alice Cullen, of auctioneers David Duggleby, said: “Andrew’s wife, Evelyn, has told us that his passion for railways was ‘hereditary’.

"As a small boy in the 1950s he spent holidays with an uncle who was the stationmaster at St Neots in Cambridgeshire, a station on the East Coast Mainline.

"The love of steam locomotives, particularly the famous A3 and A4 Pacifics that he saw hauling the express trains between London and Edinburgh, would last a lifetime.

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“Andrew’s interest in model railways followed on but his take on the hobby was really unusual in that whilst he spent decades acquiring locomotives, building many of them from kits, some even from scratch, he never had any interest in running a train set.

Close up of the Bantam Cock and B5 engine 1686.Close up of the Bantam Cock and B5 engine 1686.
Close up of the Bantam Cock and B5 engine 1686.

"The large basement at his three-bedroom semi-detached home in Wakefield that became the train room and workshop was lined with glass cases and shelves displaying hundreds of locomotives but there was never a circle of track - ever.”

The room lay undisturbed for nine years after Andrew’s death but a move to new home has prompted Evelyn to make the decision to let the remarkable collection go.

It is to be sold in 104 lots in the auction in a sale devoted entirely to the Carmichael Collection.

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Alice, who has been preparing the auction, said: “The 300 locomotives going under the hammer are all steam with the exception of a couple of little diesel shunters that somehow managed to sneak into the collection.

“Just over a hundred of the locos are models made by the leading names including Hornby, Bachmann, Mainline and others.

“However Andrew’s great passion was building locomotives from kits.

"The auction includes 188 that were made from the kits produced by various renowned specialist model companies such as DJH Models of Consett, County Durham, Millholme Models of Nottinghamshire, Nu-Cast and others, plus a dozen locomotives that he scratch built using mainly Hornby parts.

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“He was a trained engineer, a time-served motor engineer who spent his working life in the automotive components industry, and his hobby interests over the years included vehicle restoration, classic cars and even a canal barge, which gives some idea of the skill that he brought to model railway locomotive building.

“It is an extraordinary collection and it is attracting a lot of interest in the model railway world.”

The pre-sale prediction is that in total the Carmichael collection could make over £8,000.

The auction viewing sessions are taking place at the Vine Street Salerooms in Scarborough throughout this week and on March 22 from 9am until the start of the auction at 2pm.

Visit www.davidduggleby.com to see the catalogue – the sale is to be live on the Internet.