Hornby Hobbies Visitor Centre

Type:Heritage / Visitor Centre

Westwood Industrial Estate, Margate, Kent, CT9 4JX

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Tel01843 233525

Hornby Hobbies Visitor Centre

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Relive the story of Britain’s Best Loved Toys at the Hornby Retail Shop!

The Hornby Retail Shop is open to the public and offers an extensive range of Hornby, Scalextric, Airfix, Humbrol and Corgi Products, perfect for those searching for unique gifts, collectors or those wanting to relive their childhoods. Also onsite is the Just the Ticket Café, where you can get hot and cold food and drinks, all freshly prepared to order.

Whether you remember Hornby toys from childhood or not, fans of fun and creativity will love learning more about the company’s founder and the history of the toy industry. The Hornby story began with Frank Hornby who applied for a patent in 1901 and this led to the establishment of Meccano in 1907. Meccano has since gone on to become a much loved and well known product, as have Hornby’s trains and other products. The brand continues to make toys to this day, so even the younger visitors who have yet to experience the joy that Hornby products bring can enjoy toys featuring their favourite characters and interests.

Hornby is completely accessible to anyone who wishes to come and visit us.
With complete wheelchair and mobility scooter access ,you can see and do everything that we have to offer. Our displays and layouts are at the correct height to be able to see them if you are in a wheelchair and there is a wheelchair in the shop that can be reserved for those that need it.

In the car park, you’ll find two parking spaces for Blue Badge holders which are closer to the front door of the visitors centre, should you arrive and find the two bays taken, please speak to a member of staff and we will arrange alternative parking for you. 

The Shop and Café do NOT have an admission charge and the Museum is full of lots of exciting things to do and see including:

All Aboard!
This exhibition allows you to track the history of Hornby’s iconic model trains from Frank Hornby’s early development of Hornby ‘O’ gauge and Hornby Dublo to innovations such as ‘Live Steam’. Don’t miss the spectacular railway layouts.

The Fun’s off the Scale!
Follow the history of Airfix from the launch of the 1949 Ferguson TE20 tractor Kit through to the brand’s latest releases. Learn how an Airfix model is made and look at some realistic Dioramas.

Take a test Drive!
 Trace the development of Scalextric with this interactive exhibition. The display covers everything Scalextric, from its launch in the 1950’s through to the latest detailed models of today. Learn how a Scalextric model progresses from design to production and take on your friends and family as you test your racing skills on the Scalextric Digital Circuit.

Making the Great Small.
See over 80 years of history, from the Mettoy tinplate toys of the 1930’s to the highquality Corgi Collectibles of today, including some of the greatest die-cast toys of all time. This exhibition is an absolute must for collectors and those who love the toys of the past.

As well as the regular events that take place at the museum and shop, during the year, the Visitor Centre also holds many different activities and events for families including Make’n’Paint, Scalextric Race Days and Birthday Parties for all different ages. The Hornby Visitor Centre also has one large exhibition room for hire, perfect for a range of occasions, if you’re looking for somewhere to hold your event, please do speak to a member of the team.

You can find a full list of events and activities online on our website and keep up to date with the latest news by following us on social media.

Guide Prices

Ticket TypeTicket Tariff
Adult£5.00 per ticket
Carers (With full paying ticket)Free
Child (ages 5-15)£2.50 per ticket
Concession (60+)£2.50 per ticket
Family (2 adults and up to 4 children)£12.50 per ticket
Student (with valid ID)£2.50 per ticket
Under 5'sFree

Note: Prices are a guide only and may change on a daily basis.



  • Accessible to Wheelchair Users
  • All Areas Accessible to Disabled Visitors
  • Autism Friendly
  • Parking Areas for Disabled Visitors
  • Ramp / Level Access
  • Toilets for Disabled Visitors
  • Wheelchairs available

Map & Directions

Road Directions

We are on the A254. If you have a sat nav put our postcode, CT9 4JX and follow its directions to us. Excellent road links with the M20 and M2 motorways from London. Helpful route planners are: www.multimap

Public Transport Directions

By Bus.

The Thanet Loop runs from Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate. The Loop will drop you off outside the Hornby Building. Local bus information Stagecoach Tel: 08456 00 22 99 for information on specific bus times or journeys.

By Car,

Excellent road links with the M20 and M2 motorways from London. Helpful route planners are: www.multimap

By Rail.

There are frequent trains from London Victoria and Charing Cross to Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate. Journey times are approximately 1 hour 50 minutes (Victoria). National Rail enquires: www.nationalrail.co.uk Tel: +44 (0) 8457 484 950 Textphone +44 (0) 845 6050 600

High Speed Trains.

Take the new High-Speed Train Service from St Pancras International Station, London to reach Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate in about 80 Minutes. For times and ticket information visit www.southeasternrailway.co.uk

The Eurostar passenger Terminal in Ashford can connect with trains to Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate (Journey time approximately 20 to 40 minutes). Eurostar international service run to Ashford and London from Brussels, Lille and Paris. Tel +44 (0) 8705 186 186 www.eurostar.com

Opening Times

Season (1 Jan 2020 - 31 Dec 2020)
Monday - Sunday10:00 - 16:00

* Museum and Cafe close at 3:30pm
Shop closes as 4pm

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