Interview: talking with a Meccano collector

25 July 2011
imports_CCGB_meccano-big_65047.jpg Interview: talking with a Meccano collector
David Boxall chats to collector John Terry who reignited his love of Meccano later in life and has now amassed a very impressive collection. ...
Interview: talking with a Meccano collector Images

As an eager and aspiring engineer, John Terry first became interested in Meccano at the age of eight. He recalls that his initial encounter with this construction medium lasted for about four years.

It was many years later, in 1998, that the spark was rekindled. John was at a toy fair and saw a cross-hatch blue and gold No 4 set in mint condition. He remembered it well from his boyhood days and just had to buy it.

He continued to buy loose Meccano and became sufficiently interested to seek out some of the supporting reference material and, in particular, the Meccano System by New Cavendish Books. After a period of further pondering he decided to try and collect all the sets listed.

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Over the many years of his association with Meccano, he identified his favourite purchase as the collection he bought from a local enthusiast. “It took me two years to dismantle the models, clean and catalogue all the parts,” he recalls. Despite all the time spent on this purchase, his best buy of all was a mint condition No 10 set.

John’s ‘hunting grounds’ have not changed a great deal over the years. He continues to network with other collectors throughout the South West, and attends toy fairs and Meccano conventions. He reminded me that the majority of households throughout the land will probably have some Meccano in the loft or garage and, consequently, Meccano can become available when you least expect it – often through friends, neighbours and even the chance encounter at a car boot...

PICTURED: Top right - A selection of sets on display.
Bottom - The model and 'real' things, a small Cat model and counterpart.

This is an excerpt of the article 'A master of Meccano' first published in Collectors Gazette's August issue. Find out more about the Collectors Gazette here.