Back on track for festive display

G-Wizz model railway exhibition organiser Allan Judd with grand-daughter Gabby Neild at a previous Christmas display
G-Wizz model railway exhibition organiser Allan Judd with grand-daughter Gabby Neild at a previous Christmas display

A colourful festive model railway exhibition is back this weekend after a year’s break - to the particular delight of a teenager and her family.

The G-Wizz Garden Railway Festive Display event didn’t go ahead last year after the youngest member of its organising team, 13-year-old Gabby Neild, was diagnosed with a rare form of leukaemia.

Gabby, from South Shore, spent much of the following nine months in hospital in Manchester with her mum Jo at her side,

The pupil of St George’s School, Blackpool is now recovering and doing well - and the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, where she was treated is to be the charity beneficiary of Saturday’s event at the White Church, Fairhaven.

Allan Judd, Gabby’s grandad who leads the organising team, said: “It’s the least we can do to say thank you for all the hospital’s hard work.”

The show, supported by members of the model trade from across the North West and now in its 20th year, will feature garden and narrow gauge railway layouts among displays from all over the North of England and North Wales along with the Fylde-based G-Wizz Group’s own Christmas Layout as its centrepiece.

Allan added: “We are delighted that over the years, it has become an a key annual event in the Christmas festivities of the Fylde Coast and is designed solely to raise funds for local charities, with all of the exhibitors giving freely their time and travel expenses.

“After taking a break last year while Gabby was under treatment, all proceeds from this year’s event will be donated to The Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital cancer ward 84.

“We usually support Fylde coast-based charities but many youngsters from this area are among those treated at the Manchester hospital and we are delighted to do all we can to back the good work there.”

Gabby said: “I’m really looking forward to the show and raising money for the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital” while her mum Jo added: “We are so grateful for all the hard work and dedication of the doctors and nursing staff at Manchester, backed up by the Blackpool Victoria Hospital staff. The G-Wizz Garden Railway Team is very much a family-based group and all are relieved at Gabby’s recovery.”

A special display this year will celebrate the last tram journey from St Annes to Blackpool which took place 80 years ago. The display features many photographs of the old Lytham Trams as well as large scale static model trams by Allan and colleague Terry Daniel.

Saturday’s show in the Dawson Hall at the White Church is open from 10am to 4pm. Further details at www.gwizzgroup.wordpress.co.uk