ONE of Carlisle’s quirkiest shops is looking to the future after weathering the coronavirus lockdown.

Mallin Models is well known as the city’s mecca for all types of vintage and collectable toys from tin plate Corgi and Dinky cars of the 1950s and 1960s, Hornby train sets, model kits of World War II tanks and everything in between.

It reopened towards the end of July after repeated requests from eager customers.

The shop has been on Abbey Street for about two and a half years.

Prior to that it was based in The Market Hall Carlisle for a similar period.

Owner Malcolm Ward said business is again picking up after the covid-19 interval.

He said: “In a normal year, during the Summer, you get quite a few tourists especially from Australia, America and South Africa.

“This year people have been a little wary but it’s coming around.

“We closed because of the Government directive as we were seen as something that was non-essential.

“It was difficult and I suppose the reason I opened was that people kept saying ‘when are you going to open’ and ‘what are you going to do with the shop’.

“The type of customers we get range from the kiddies to the retired.

“The things we sell come from a time when they had style, they were made well and before all the plastic stuff.

“The older ones come in to buy stuff because it reminds them of their childhoods.

“Things like the Corgi cars are what you call classic with die-cast bodies.

Of the models on offer the biggest sellers are World War II tanks.

Malcolm added: “We have all sorts in terms of the plastic kits, from tanks to airliners.”

“Model making requires patience and is a very definite skill, a craft.”

When the shop was in The Market Hall he showed his model making prowess with scenes such as D-Day in the window.

He said: “I used to do different things in the windows and for the D-Day scene I used mirrors to make the beach look larger.”

In the future Malcolm is also looking to sell a range of radio controlled models online on eBay

At present there are a number of covid-19 safety measures are in place, these include two metre social distancing lines on the floor, hand sanitiser, wipes, masks are to be worn and gloves are also available

The shop is closed Mondays and Thursdays.

Anyone needing information on what is in stock enquire in the shop or ring 07849 228412.


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