Eddie Izzard to open Bexhill model railway layout

Bexhill Museums patron Eddie Izzard - will dedicate the museum's new model railway as a memorial and tribute to his late father Harold at 4pm on Friday September 28.

Bexhill Model Railway 1 SUS-180927-110357001
Bexhill Model Railway 1 SUS-180927-110357001

The layout depicts Bexhill over the snowy Christmas of December 1940. The 15ft by 7ft layout will form the centre-piece of the museum’s new World War II exhibition being created in readiness for the 80th anniversary next year of the outbreak of war.

Sidley-born Harold Izzard worked tirelessly for local charities throughout his life before his sad death aged 90 earlier this year.

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As a young man commuting to London he used to travel on the old Bexhill West branch line, featured in the war-time rail layout.

Bexhill Model Railway 2 SUS-180927-110650001

The new ‘N’ gauge model railway represents Bexhill and Sidley during one of the area’s hardest winters.

Supported and designed by Eddie Izzard, the layout is being built by members of Bexhill Model Railway Enthusiasts.

Also featured in the “Bexhill in World War Two” gallery is the large-scale map of the area on which former local estate agent Percy Webber logged every bomb dropped on the town as the war progressed. Museum volunteers have added additional features such as the location of the town’s air raid shelters.

The exhibition will include continuous playing of residents’ recorded reminiscences of Bexhill at war.

Land-mark local buildings such as Sidley Station, Central Station, Bexhill West Station and the De La Warr Pavilion – plus Harold Izzard’s old home at Laburnham Cottages in Sidley - have been faithfully modelled by retired architect Bill Hill.