Award ‘a shock’ for model buff

Siblings Caesar (6) and Taika (3) Thompson enjoy the last day of the school holidays checking out a train display at the South Island Model Championship in Invercargill last weekend.
John Fenton with his World War 2 plane which won best model in display at the South Island Model Championship.

JOHN Fenton has been a model enthusiast since he was a child.

But in his teenage years, he started giving more attention to “girls and music” than his displays and his modelling passion was put aside for years.

Three years ago he reconnected with it and, on Sunday, he was rewarded for one of his creations.

Mr Fenton won best model in display at the South Island Model Championship with his display of a Hawker Typhoon Mk1B aircraft from World War 2.

Hosted by the International Plastic Modellers Society Invercargill, the event showcased the best in the region as well as commemorative displays of spaceships and Pearl Harbor at the Invercargill Workingmen’s Club at the weekend.

“I’ve been doing that for about three years now and this is my first award. I was pretty shocked, as the standards were very high, but I’m very happy with what I achieved,” Mr Fenton said.

He spent about two months, or 80 hours, creating the piece and the plane.

He had a bit of help from his children, but confessed he was into modelling more than them.

“I really enjoy doing it – it is a great hobby and good for de-stressing.”

Siblings Taika and Caesar Thompson spent their last day of the school holidays at the event.

Their mother Leeana Tamati said the boys loved the train display.

“I always try to bring them to these kinds of events as they love and get excited with models – especially trains.”

Club captain Paul Connell said the event was an amazing opportunity to showcase the talent and displays of club members.

It also created awareness of the club, he said.

“There are tanks, motorbikes, cars, Lego… There is a real variety for people to see.”