Motoring in Miniature – the Toys of Your Childhood

Motoring in Miniature display in the Museum
Motor Race board game

From 4th July 2020 visitors to the National Motor Museum will be able to see a new exhibition, Motoring in Miniature – the Toys of Your Childhood.

Visitors will be able to relive the joy and excitement of their favourite childhood toys with the exhibition showcasing more than 800 toy cars and pedal cars to celebrate miniature motoring memories and much-loved playthings of the past.

The exhibition will be packed with toy cars of all shapes and sizes from the 1920s to the 1990s, from tin plate and wooden toys to die-cast and slot cars. See pull-alongs and pedal cars, radio control cars and scale models, motoring board games, jigsaws and computer games. No matter if you are five or 95, these are the toys of your childhood.

Be amazed by historic pedal cars loaded onto their own car transporter. From exciting racing cars and glamorous sports models to rare veteran cars, the iconic Austin J40 and even Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, all manner of period-perfect pedal cars will take pride of place.

Take a closer look at Lord Montagu’s own childhood pedal car, modelled on a vintage London bus, while a child-sized replica of the Golden Arrow Land Speed Record breaker will be parked up alongside the real machine. See more of these pint-sized pedal-power autos lined up in Jack Tucker’s Garage, waiting to be serviced, while in Palace House find the motoring toys of the Montagu family on display.

Follow the giant roadway packed with toys by much-loved favourite brands including Corgi, Dinky, Scalextric, Matchbox, Hot Wheels, Triang and many more. See these miniatures displayed decade by decade, showing how they developed from crude toys to sophisticated replicas, then a peek through the child’s eye-view window at larger toy buses.

Remember your Green Cross Code and look left and right before stepping along the roadway’s zebra crossing, then see nostalgic displays of slot cars, tinplate roadways, I-Spy and Ladybird books and annuals, motoring-themed travel games and period-perfect artworks. Spot emergency services-themed playthings on show, as well as construction classics such as Airfix, Meccano and Lego, as well as scale model caravans and campervans in the Caravan and Motorhome Club showcase.

Motoring in Miniature  is included in the general admission ticket to Beaulieu

If you would like a copy of any of our images, please visit our dedicated Motoring Picture Library website