‘Devastated’ Sir Rod Stewart to donate £10k after Stamford model railway exhibition destroyed
Sir Rod Stewart has said he is “absolutely devastated” following the destruction of a model railway exhibition in Stamford.
The singer (74) a model railway enthusiast, has announced he is donating £10,000 after the show was completely trashed by vandals.
BBC presenter Jeremy Vine has also said he has donated.
Sir Rod, who built up his own model railway over more than 20 years, is urging his fellow musicians to dig deep following the vandalism.
Stands were overturned and layouts were destroyed at Queen Eleanor School on Saturday where the Market Deeping Model Railway Club was holding its annual show.
The club said months of planning goes into the exhibition, adding some of the models on display were “irreplaceable”.
Speaking about the model railway owners, Sir Rod said in a statement to the Press Association, “I feel their pain”.
He said: “I was absolutely devastated to hear that vandals had destroyed what was to be a lovely show by the Market Deeping Model Railway Club over the weekend.
“The collection was priceless and I am donating £10,000 to help compensate those affected and asking fellow enthusiasts Jools Holland, Roger Daltrey and others to do the same.”
The Do Ya Think I’m Sexy singer added: “It took me 23 years to build my model railway so I feel their pain.”
The star is said to be the proud owner of a model of New York’s Grand Central Station, complete with talking conductors and air-conditioned skyscrapers.
“All the little guys in the engines are talking. It is unbelievable. It really is,” he has said, but warned: “Don’t say it’s a ‘train set’. It is a scale-model railway.”
Club chairman Peter Davies, from Northborough, told the Peterborough Telegraph: “This morning I had an email from a lady in Canada who is sending us a cheque for $1,000.
“I’ve had offers of stock, offers of trade, offers of skills to rebuild - it’s just amazing. I’ve never seen anything like it.
“Between the exhibition manager, secretary and I we’ve had well over 600 emails to offer us a variety of things.
“A lady from North Carolina wants to send us her father’s locomotive stock. We’ve had offers to help from Brazil, the Netherlands and elsewhere - it’s just been unbelievable.
“People who are not modellers are contacting us full of empathy. It’s just so humbling to know there are all those people who share our horror and can put themselves in our place. It’s truly amazing.”
Mr Davies also thanked the academy for its support after the vandalism.
The crowdfunding page to raise money for the exhibition has gained nearly £60,000 in donations, hugely over its original £500 target.
Four youths were arrested in connection with the incident but have since been released on conditional police bail pending further inquiries.
Lincolnshire Police were alerted to the incident by a local resident when noises were heard coming from Queen Eleanor School shortly before 4am.