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Some impressions.....

Having spent all of Monday at the Fair I began to doubt the wisdom of allowing the general public in.... many were clearly expecting to see more and to be able to buy. This is a trade fair, not a show, and is geared towards members of the trade. Some stands were very eye-catching, Marklin and Fleischmann in particular, but a large amount of the area is taken up by hospitality units for their customers.

I was struck by the rather down-beat atmosphere. The show lacked the "buzz" that you would have expected and many manufacturers were clearly re-trenching their ranges and consolidating. Marklin have been very conservative but in the wake of a 60 million euro loss last year I can't say I'm surprised. Fleischmann have done a cunning launch of the S10 / BR17 - it required a lot less re-tooling than might first appear! LGB had some interesting pre-production models on show and the Hornby International stand made you quite proud to be British! The best stands (IMO) were Preiser and Faller (I loved the kart track).

Rumours continued to circulate about the fate of Roco and the consensus was that unless the Fair produced a flush of interest and orders the administrators would pull the plug.

I did, however, enjoy getting to the DB museum (for the first time, amazingly) - the highlights of which were the Crampton and the KBay 4-4-4, King Ludwig's saloon and the wonderful models (I also loved the Sushi Bar with its LGB train!).

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