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Old 07-02-2012, 09:49 AM   #1
Annenon
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Can anyone help with a childhood memory - please?

I was talking with friends yesterday about books we read as children, of course the old favourites such as Enid Blyton were mentioned. Then we moved on to slightly more obscure territory, such as Elisabeth Beresford's The Secret Railway and Helen Cresswell's Jumbo Spencer.

But one series of books got us all stumped as to the name or author. We remembered the books, but very little else. We wondered if anyone on this forum remembers the books at all?

What we can remember is they were aimed at nine to eleven year olds roughly and written, we believe, around about 1976, although they could have been written earlier.

The stories were in similar vain to the Borrowers series. However, this series was set in a garden railway and the whole network was run by little, tiny people. The only one who could see these people was the little boy of the house, whom liked to go and play with them.

I don't know if the books were released anywhere else, except the UK.

I know it's a bit of an obscure thing to be asking about, but it is driving us up the wall, so for the sake of our sanity, I thought I would ask (although our sanity is questionable at the best of times ).

Thank you in advance.
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:10 AM   #2
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The borrowers lived in a model railway themselves for a while I seem to recall. You're not thinking of that by any chance, are you?
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:25 AM   #3
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The Magic Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton also had a small railway in it;

"With shrieks and squeals of delight the girls and Dick pressed up the little ladder, through the cloud. A lantern hung at the top of the hole to give them light—but, lo and behold! as soon as they had got into the land above the cloud it was daytime! How extraordinary! The children stood and gazed round it. It seemed a very exciting land, rather like a huge amusement park. There were roundabouts going round and round in time to music. There were swings and see-saws. There was a railway train puffing along busily, and there were small aeroplanes flying everywhere, with brownies, pixies and goblins having a fine time in them."

“"And now, what about me driving that railway engine!” cried Jo, jumping up. “I’ve always wanted to do that. Would you all like to be my passengers? Well, come on, then!” And off they all raced to where the railway train was stopping at a little station. “Hi! hie!” yelled Jo to the driver. “I want to drive your train!” “Come along up, then,” said the driver, jumping down. “The engine is just ready to go!”"
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:31 AM   #4
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Perhaps The Littles, by John Peterson? (But I don't think only one boy could see them; they just mostly stayed hidden.)
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:51 AM   #5
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The book you're describing sounds very like "The Borrowers Aloft" - the 4th book in the "Borrowers" series. From Wiki:

Spoiler:

With the help of their friend Spiller, the Clock family have relocated to the miniature village of Little Fordham where they try to live in secret. They were discovered by a couple who own a rival model village and are kidnapped with the intention of being put on display as an attraction when that model village opens for tourist season. Imprisoned through the winter in the couple's attic, the Clocks are able to use materials they find to create a balloon and basket which lifts them out of a window and to freedom before they can be put on display.

Last edited by HarryT; 07-02-2012 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 07-02-2012, 11:31 AM   #6
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Could be Model Railway Men by Ray Pope
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Old 07-03-2012, 02:55 AM   #7
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Wow, what can I say?

Thank you so much to all who have come back with possible answers. However, MikeB1972 you have hit the nail right on the head.

As soon you mentioned the Model Railwaymen, I knew straightaway that you had the correct book. I have, just in this last few minutes, looked on Amazon and that has confirmed that you are right.

You have made some 'big kids' very happy and saved us a lot of head banging on walls!
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Old 07-04-2012, 05:38 AM   #8
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Oh,it seems that i had never read such kind books!Model Railwaymen?Very interesting for little baby ?
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Old 07-04-2012, 06:34 AM   #9
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I can certainly sympathize with the frustration of remembering something seen or read but which the person can't remember the title. I remember a book that I read yrs ago too that I can't recall the name of. Mine had to do with a pair of cat like aliens whose life form was the norm for their universe who went on a deep space time dilated trip to the end of their universe. I think it might be one of CJ Cherryh's books but I might be mis-remembering.
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Old 07-04-2012, 08:24 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by crich70 View Post
I can certainly sympathize with the frustration of remembering something seen or read but which the person can't remember the title.
Or even a lot of the plot... Only that you loved the book when you were younger. I have a book, where I only know that some young boy has an amulet, he is a slave or something (or stolen) and when he escapes, after some time, he find that this amulet of his is very important somehow...

Try a search for a book with things like that...

Some other books, I have finally found after a lot of searching, one by (coincidence?) Elisabeth Beresford (who I've never heard off, I never looked at authors when I was a kid ) and one by a Dutch author. Now I only need to find them in a readable form...
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Old 07-04-2012, 01:14 PM   #11
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I can certainly sympathize with the frustration of remembering something seen or read but which the person can't remember the title.
That's why we have the sticky Name that Book thread in the "Reading Recommendations" forum, for precisely the purpose of asking such questions.
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