The Model Railway incident

This is another treasure I brought home once, the Brittania class 70 steam locomotive “Owen Glendower” made by Trix UK in 1958 which I bought at the Warley National Model Railway Exhibition in Birmingham.

I can’t find much information about this model but two things strike me as odd: it’s in the European H0 scale rather than the in the UK commonly used OO gauge and the name plates are red instead of the usual black.

When I went back I had serious troubles with this loco as it set off the hazardous substances sensor in the x-ray monitor because the carbon collectors were pulverised and made the alarm go off, a red flash light and a slow whoop siren.

They immediately came with a trolley with a heavy lid on it in which they put my bag and it was towed away. In the mean time they led me away in between four heavily armed guards and I was searched and a lot of questions asked. In the background I could hear “Mr. Van Gemeren, you are delaying the flight” on the PA speakers and it scared me beyond believe that I could be seen as a terrorist as the police officer told me.

But then another officer entered the room and said, it’s alright, it’s just an old toy train you can let him go. They made me run for my flight but when I came to the gate they already had unloaded my suitcase and I begged them to put it back in the hull. After a bit of communication between the attendant and the pilot I heard a crackling “Put them luggage back on we don’t want to have a stiffy on our hands” because they saw me gasping for breath (slight heart condition and I told them I had trouble breathing).

Of course I had to apologise to the pilot and into the aisle to the passengers or else I wasn’t allowed on board and in the back I got oxygen and a cold water to drink. Back in Swampyland it was straight to the cardiologist the next day but no harm done, he just adjusted the medication a bit for a few days.

So, that’s the story behind this treasure, and the fact that I was on a black list for that airport for two years following this incident.