AN historic model railway shop has been saved from closure after its original owners stepped in to save the business.

Frizinghall Models & Railways has been open in the district for more than 60 years, but looked set to close after its current owners chose to retire.

The business has now moved to Discovery House in Baildon, where it being operated by John Ayrey Die-Casts.

The Ayrey name will be familiar to model railway enthusiasts in the city, as it was John Ayrey and his father who originally opened the Frizinghall shop in 1950, followed by shops in Leeds, Huddersfield and Manchester, as the Bradford Model Railway Centre.

When Mr Ayrey’s father died in the 1970s, the Bradford shop was sold to X Wilson, who changed the name to Frizinghall Models & Railways, and it his son Stephen Wilson and his wife Elaine who owned the store up until their recent retirement.

The shop has now come full circle, and will be based at the same address as John Ayrey Die-Casts in Baildon, but will be a separate shop on the first floor, with its own entrance.

It has left its original premises as the lease on the building has come to an end, and the new premises offers more space, easier access, and parking.

Heather Hinchcliffe, from John Ayrey Die-Casts, said: “The shop is on the first floor of a new warehouse building, but a lift is available for the less able of our customers.

“It is air conditioned, a customer toilet is provided, and a seating area is available for non-enthusiast partners!

“All the existing staff, except the previous owners Stephen and Elaine, have transferred, so most of the faces will be familiar to regular customers.

“All the same product lines, plus some new ones are being stocked, and all the Hornby International ranges are also coming into stock soon.

“Stephen will continue to be involved with the ‘Model-It’ range, and will continue to run the Meccano shop.”

The new store is on a new industrial estate near the Halfway House in Otley Road, which Ms Hinchcliffe said isn’t on most sat-nav systems, and is open from 9.30am to 5.30pm daily except Wednesdays and Sundays.