But that's not what this post is about.
With the opening of Lakeside Hobby I am now very lucky to have a truly Local Hobby Shop. In these days of internet shopping we all tend to go for where we can get the best deal when buying stock for our model railways and forget about how important the L.H.S. can be. Lets not forget that until very recently most of us bought just about everything from their L.H.S. Then internet traders with no premises and low overheads started to offer things at ridiculously low prices that the L.H.S. couldn't compete with. I've seen hobby shops nearby shrink to a shadow of their former selves in the last 10 years.
But the hobby isn't just about buying trains cheaply and running them on your model railroad. There's the interaction with like minded souls at exhibitions, clubs and hobby shops. Your L.H.S. owner is very likely a keen modeller too. You can probably learn something from him, he can learn something from you. Buying stuff at an L.H.S. is a social experience.
"Come in, take your coat off and pour yourself a coffee" is the sort of atmosphere Terry is after. I'm all for that. I might just spend more money that way.
Of course Terry can't supply me with much in the way of P87 bits and pieces but Loco's, Freight cars and scenic doodads can all come from there and they will. Track too, I want some Micro Engineering Code 7o flex track. Terry doesn't have any in only just having opened but it will be here on Wednesday. Fine no problems. It was a pleasureable experience buying it. Much more fun than inputting my credit card details into a screen on my computer monitor.
So go buy something from your local hobby shop over the holiday.