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“Hornby”

The Hornby Visitor Centre
Ranked #3 of 45 things to do in Margate
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Relive the story of Britain’s best loved toys. Come and see our fascinating displays, featuring rare products from the Hornby, Scalextric, Airfix and Corgi archives. Track the history of Hornby’s iconic model trains from Frank Hornby’s early home-made toys in sheet metal, through the development of Hornby ‘O’ gauge and Hornby-Dublo. Trace the development of Scalextric, the legendary slot car racing system, from its launch in the 1950s through to the latest detailed models. Follow the history of Airfix from the introduction of the 1949 Ferguson TE20 tractor kit through to the brand’s latest releases. Learn how Airfix models are made and see over 80 years of history, from the Mettoy tinplate toys of the 1930s to the high quality Corgi collectables of today. Experience our interactive displays, treat yourself to something in our retail shop and unwind in our Just The Ticket Café.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed 3 May 2018 via mobile

Brilliant centre. Friendly staff and so many memories to enjoy of my childhood. 100% reccoemended for gentlemen of a certain age!

Thank manslag j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HornbyVisitorCentre, Instore Consumer Activity Coordinator at The Hornby Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 8 May 2018

Thank you for taking the time to review the Hornby Visitor Centre. We are glad that you enjoyed your visit and hope that you come and see us again soon. Kind regards

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"model railway"
in 15 reviews
"airfix models"
in 14 reviews
"train layouts"
in 13 reviews
"train set"
in 11 reviews
"thomas the tank engine"
in 8 reviews
"local college"
in 7 reviews
"trains running"
in 6 reviews
"interactive displays"
in 4 reviews
"toy shop"
in 4 reviews
"thomas train"
in 4 reviews
"childhood toys"
in 4 reviews
"certain age"
in 8 reviews
"well stocked shop"
in 10 reviews
"brings back memories"
in 4 reviews
"rainy day"
in 14 reviews
"trip down memory lane"
in 13 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 14 reviews
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18 - 22 of 370 reviews

Reviewed 30 April 2018 via mobile

A good option for a rainy day but at £5 per adult it does seem quite expensive for what is only going to take an hour to visit. We regularly go to the model railway at New Romney Station and although this is a bit dusty and less modern there is more interest for pre-schoolers (more trains moving and more buttons the press as well as a cheaper entry fee!)

We are glad to hear the cafe is going to open again from the 1st May - this is great news and will make the visit last a bit longer.

It would be good to make sure that on the biggest layout there is more than one train running - today only Mallard was running - this was a shame when there is scope for so many more trains to be running on this layout. Also some more footstools for little people to stand on would be helpful.

We will of course be back - it is a good rainy day option.

Thank Lydia H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HornbyVisitorCentre, Instore Consumer Activity Coordinator at The Hornby Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 8 May 2018

Thank you for taking the time to review the Hornby Visitor Centre. I have passed your comments on to staff so that we can assure that trains are running on layouts. We look forward to seeing you again. Kind regards

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Reviewed 18 April 2018 via mobile

As a young nipper I always wanted to drive a train. I have always had an unhealthy interest in trains so was excited when the other half gave permission that we could visit this attraction. I was a bit taken a back by the entry fee but hey this is Hornby and I guess it’s got to be fun right ? Well maybe it’s me and I’ve lost the plot bit i didn’t find it that good. Sure there are cabinets of stuff from my childhood and the memories come flooding back. But naggingly that’s it the train layouts were not in great shape and not much trains or realism on any of it to be honest. It could be and should be so much better . I have to say I’ve seen better at local railway model shows in town halls. There is a great cafe area with toilets etc but the cafe wasn’t open no code or anything. I was in the factory that made most of my childhood toys but there could of been demonstrations of how things were made not just cabinet s full of stuff. It is I am afraid now just really a model shop sort of thing and now understand why Hornby are having a hard time ..... the price of some of the trains for sale a just amazing and not sure I would allow young kids to play with trains costing 200/300 quid a shot.... I’m sorry to say I was disappointed....

1  Thank Peter B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HornbyVisitorCentre, Instore consumer Activity Coordinator at The Hornby Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 8 May 2018

Thank you for taking the time to review the Hornby Visitor Centre. We are sorry that you left us disappointed. Your comments will be shared with management. The café reopened on the 1st May and is so far proving very popular with our customers. We constantly strive to make our customers experience at the centre enjoyable and appreciate your feedback. Kind regards

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Reviewed 10 April 2018

For someone who used to own some of the toys on display this was a most enjoyable visit. Even the youngsters were having a great time playing with the model cars and trains.Great fun.

Thank John187061
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HornbyVisitorCentre, Instore Consumer Activity Coordinator at The Hornby Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 17 April 2018

Thank you for taking the time to review the Hornby Visitor Centre. We are glad that you enjoyed your visit and hope that you come and see us again soon. Kind regards

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 8 April 2018 via mobile

We came to the centre today with our two children.
The staff were really friendly and helpful and we had a lovely afternoon looking at all of the train sets and models.
There are lots of buttons to press, so it really keeps the kids happy!
The Scalextric is really fun as well. My son didn’t want to stop playing with that.
We really do miss the cafe though!
Well worth a visit.

Thank lel1978
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HornbyVisitorCentre, Instore Consumer Activity Coordinator at The Hornby Visitor Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 17 April 2018

Thank you for your review. We are really pleased that you enjoyed your visit to the Hornby Visitor Centre. Keep an eye on our Facebook page for upcoming events and exciting news on the café! Kind regards

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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