Bekonscot in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, is the oldest original model village in the world. It portrays aspects of English life mostly dating from the 1930s.
Bekonscot was first created by a Beaconsfield accountant named Roland Callingham, in the 1920s. Roland developed the master plan for his miniature empire as an addition to his large back garden, drawing in help from his staff: the gardener, cook, maid and chauffeur. Together they developed the model landscape portraying rural England at the time. The swimming pool became the first “sea” and the undulating rockeries were built up as hills. Bassett-Lowke, the well-known large-scale model railway manufacturers, were commissioned to build an extensive railway network, which exists to this day.
Bekonscot was not conceived as a commercial visitor attraction but as a plaything to entertain Roland and his guests. It was only after 1930 that its existence became widely known, catching the imagination of the press and public alike.
Know Before You Go
Bekonscot is in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, and is easily accessible from London. It is just seven miles from the M25 and less than three miles from the M40 motorways. By car Junction 16 of the M25, northbound M40, leave at Junction 2 for Beaconsfield. There are brown tourist signs marked Model Village from the M40. On leaving the M40, follow signs for Model Village along the A40 and A355. Car Parking: Opposite main Bekonscot Entrance. Coaches: Please use the entrance off roundabout (Waitrose). By train Beaconsfield railway station is a 5 minute walk. Chiltern Railways run from London Marylebone High Wycombe Beaconsfield Banbury Birmingham. Info: 08705 165 165 or Chiltern Railways website By bus Buses: Several routes from surrounding areas. Info: 0870 608 2608 or Bucks Travel Info website