Show season finally kicked off last weekend with Manchester’s Bricktastic taking place at the event centre known as Manchester Central. Being, as the name suggests, in the middle of Manchester, it is an awesome place for a show and has the added bonus of being but a short walk from the city’s Lego shop, which is great news for our collections but bad news for our wallets. The movement of folk from the show to the shop following close of day on Saturday is up there with the great migratory events of the natural world; indeed, the jostling for position that occurred on arrival at the Pick a Brick Wall has much in common with the nesting practices of certain birds; other customers looked on with what must have been a mixture of confusion and concern.
This year we bought not one but two of our massive creations, built collectively by partners James Pegrum, Jimmy Clinch, Dan Harris and Steve Snasdell. Also with us was Simon Pickard, who bought along his own collection of inspiring models. Our largest creation and star piece was a 7.4 x 1.95 metre depiction of Anglo-Saxon England, including island monastery, Anglo-Saxon villages, burial chambers, and of course, hordes of Viking raiders. Our resident lavatory expert James Pegrum also built another one of his finely detailed period toilets, which delighted both children and the resolutely immature alike.
Coming in a close second in terms of sheer scale was our 2.2 x 2.2 metre model of the Battle of Hastings, generously decorated with over 750 Saxon and Norman warriors. As I’m sure you know, this year is the battle’s 950th anniversary and we felt that waiting for its 1,000th anniversary might be tempting fate a bit too much. In this model the battle is just about to get serious, so King Harold is still in possession of all of his eyes and the creators of the Bayeux Tapestry are yet to secure their lucrative commission. Talking of the Bayeux Tapestry, we had a third but comparatively small model depicting some of its key scenes, medieval tapestries and modern Lego models proving themselves to be remarkably compatible mediums.
The show was a great success, attracting more than double last year’s visitors. With so many highlights it’s hard to pick a favourite, but Dan Harris was overjoyed to be able to ride Bright Bricks’ giant Lego dragon, he is after all, Welsh. We were also blown away by the reception our models got and it was wonderful to stand back and watch people point out all the little details we like to pack into each of our creations. As always, the weekend left us both happy and exhausted in equal measure, but our work wasn’t over yet…
Read more in tomorrow’s Blog to the Past.
Bricktastic is run to raise money for Fairy Bricks, a charity who provide Lego sets for sick children in Britain’s hospitals; it is an honour to be able to contribute to their mission.
BLOG TO THE PAST
On LEGO, History and other things by Brick to the Past