Rod Stewart refused to share a photo of his model railway
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Sir Rod Stewart has shared that he chartered two shipping containers to bring his model train set to his English home in Essex. The iconic singer also chartered specialist freight planes to deliver his beloved set from his Malibu home, which has not had an easy journey.
Due to delays with the Panama Canal, Rod is still reassembling his extensive display, which includes a detailed model of a city – influenced by his childhood home, as well as New York and Chicago.
He had hoped to have it delivered and reassembled by Christmas 2021, but it was not to be.
The model railway, called ‘Grant Street And Three Rivers City’ took over 20 years to complete and is 124 ft long and 23 ft wide.
The singer told BBC radio show Loose Ends: “It all got flown over here. It’s taken eight months, two containers on a ship that went through the Panama Canal and now we’re rebuilding it here in Britain.
“It really is a masterpiece even though I say it myself.”
Rod previously said he enjoys working on the scenery and structure, in an interview with Railway Modeller.
He explained: “It’s the landscape I like. Attention to detail, extreme detail, is paramount. There shouldn’t be any unsightly gaps or pavements that are too clean,” he said.
“I have to give it 110 percent. For me it’s addictive. I started, so I just had to finish.”
He joked: “But if I had realised at the start it would have taken so long, I’d have probably said No! No! Nah!”
In 2019, the 77-year-old donated £10,000 to Lincolnshire’s Market Deeping Model Railway Club after hearing that their exhibition had been vandalised.
He said he was “absolutely devastated” at the news. The display was worth £30,000 and took 23 years to build.
It was destroyed by four teenagers.
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Rod’s donation was made to help the club restore the display and he has since been made an honorary member of the club.
The singer said: “It took me 23 years to build my model railway so I feel their pain.
He added: “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.”
When Sir Rod first revealed his model train display some people doubted whether he had built it himself, so he spoke on The Jeremy Vine Show to confirm that he had.
He said: “I would say 90 per cent of it I built myself. The only thing I wasn’t very good at and still am not is the electricals, so I had someone else do that.”
“A lot of people laugh at it being a silly hobby, but it’s a wonderful hobby,” he explained.
Taking apart the kit and relocating it from Malibu to Essex is thought to have cost the rocker £70,000.
The display includes hand-built miniature skyscrapers.
Rod admitted that he is so dedicated to his passion, the model railway often accompanies him on tour.
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