A MODEL railway club at risk of closure is ‘desperate’ to find a new home.

Founded in 1982 by Jim Etheridge, the Christchurch Modern Railway Club was created to bring train fanatics together.

In 2021, Jim passed away and now his wife has decided to sell the land where the clubhouse currently stands.

Now, the club is desperate to secure a new home to continue their railway enjoyment.

Bournemouth Echo:

Exhibition manager, John Caines, said: “Since Jim passed away two years ago, she's decided that she's going to sell the bit of land that the actual clubhouse is on.

“I’ll be gutted if we have to close, a couple of years ago, I nearly had a nervous breakdown so my wife went online and found this club and it must have been about six years ago because I’ve been at the club for six years.”

He added: “We go into the club on a Tuesday night for a couple of hours and we just play around with a club layout and do alterations on it and have a good chat.

“It's also a good way of becoming sociable as well and talking to people.

“We have been looking around but at the moment we can't find anything because we need a clubhouse which is at least 30ft by 20ft.”

Pete Witcher, a member of the group, said: “We have always been a small club, averaging around a dozen members who meet every Tuesday in a purpose-built shed built in Jim’s back garden in Christchurch.

"We have supported many events over the years, including hospital fetes, school open days, and other exhibitions in the Wessex area.

“We also hold an annual Model Railway Exhibition at Bournemouth School for Girls which will be our 41st annual exhibition.

“The mayors of Christchurch and Bournemouth usually attend and our show has become a popular regular event among both model railway enthusiasts and families.

“We are desperately seeking a new home - we ideally need secure, dry accommodation big enough to house our club that we can use exclusively and regularly for a very modest rent.”