Miniatures News, March 1959

Playcraft Toys introduced several more miniatures in their excellent Corgi range last month. These additions (Nos. 200 to 206) covered Ford Consul, Austin Cambridge, Morris Cowley, Vauxhall Velox, Rover 90 and Hillman Husky, all in two-tone colour schemes, the price of each remaining at a modest 2s. 9d. Details of these models will be found in the Corgi Model Club Magazine which goes out quarterly to members of the Corgi Model Club, annual subscription 1s,  the address of which is 120, Mooregate, London, E.C.2. Another interesting Corgi model is a 2.4 Jaguar arranged as a Fire Department car. This (No. 218) one is 3 in. long and costs 3s. 6d.

Not to be outdone, Meccano Limited brought out new Dinky models of Singer Gazelle saloon (No. 168), De Soto “Fireflite” sedan (No. 192), Plymouth “Plaza” sedan (No. 178), a London omnibus (No. 291), and an A.A. road-scout’s motorcycle combination. The ‘bus is complete with Exide battery advertisements but lacks staircase or seats. The cars are beautifully finished, with windows, and I particularly like the miniatures of American cars, which offer a practical way of learning to distinguish the different makes of U.S. automobiles. The elaborate radiator grilles of the De Soto and Plymouth are splendidly depicted and the two-tone colour schemes and varying side flashes are well represented, while these American automobiles have very realistic wrap-round windscreens and rear windows. Moreover, last month saw the advent of a rather special Dinky Toy, in the form of a 4-3/4  in. long Rolls-Royce “Silver Wraith ” Park Ward saloon, finished to a very high standard. This even outdoes the real R.-R., having all wheels independently sprung! The price is 5s. 6d. inclusive of P.T.

The Motor Sport offices have recently been disrupted by a Victory Industries race track on which the staff have been able to indulge in races between electrically-driven M.G.-A and Austin-Healey 100-Six sports cars. This metal race track can be assembled to form divers circuits, it and the cars raced on it, are strong and durable, and too-ambitious “driving” can cause the cars to skid and even overturn. A set comprising two different sports cars. figure-eight track with fencing and fly-over and two controllers, costs £7 19s. 6d. inclusive of P.T. A more simple one-car layout is available for £5 12s. 6d. Details from Victory Industries (Surrey) Ltd., Barfax Works, Worplesdon Road, Guildford, Surrey, on mentioning Motor Sport. It would be very satisfactory to lay out a really elaborate course in the spare room.

We have referred frequently to the excellent car and other miniatures in the Lesney “Matchbox” series. It is enlightening to know that over 500,000 of these fascinating miniatures are produced every week, of which nearly 70 per cent. are exported. Over 500 employees and several hundred others employed in their own homes, make these Lesney miniatures, and in the assembly shops a dozen conveyor-belts are in operation. Packaging is automatic, even to shutting the box lid, and a conveyor-belt conveys the “Matchboxes” away for crating.—W. B.