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Gorleston man's model job

PUBLISHED: 09:23 31 January 2010 | UPDATED: 16:29 30 June 2010

Andrea Teasdale and Debbie Balfour-Hurren with Jazz, centre, from Tanner's Hair and Sunbed Studio of Caister

Andrea Teasdale and Debbie Balfour-Hurren with Jazz, centre, from Tanner's Hair and Sunbed Studio of Caister

AFTER becoming yet another victim to the recession, a model enthusiast's skills have helped him pay the bills and set him on the path to fulfilling his dreams.

AFTER becoming yet another victim to the recession, a model enthusiast's skills have helped him pay the bills and set him on the path to fulfilling his dreams.

When Roger Silver began renting a tiny space at a photo gallery shop in 2008, in which to display his carefully crafted miniature creations, he never thought his hobby would become a full time business.

Having worked at Great Yarmouth Heating for 30 years as a storeman, he had no reason to believe his lifelong job would be anything other than that. Then came the credit crunch and increasing competition, and the 48-year-old found himself redundant with three others in a “streamlining” operation last October.

Roger, 48, knew his collection of miniatures in Unique, on Broad Row, would provide the way out of the unemployment.

And now, under the name of Cobholm Miniatures, his space in the shop has trebled in size due to a demand for the miniatures, 80pc of which are made in his workspace at home.

He said: “When I lost my job it was a bit of a shock but I had been expecting it, what with the downturn. But my business here has been growing and I had the chance of expanding so I bought an extra recess and now my wife and I Christine work on the pieces. In five years time I would hope to have a larger space in Unique or have my own shop, that is the dream, ultimately.”

Roger has been fascinated by constructing things since he was a boy, when he would use his skills to create airfix planes and Meccano models, but his passion dimmed as he grew into adulthood.

It was fortunate then, that he met Christine, 45, who had been interested in dolls houses since her childhood. The pair reignited each other's interest, and 25 years of marriage later they are as keen as ever, with Roger spending anything from a couple of days on a tiny table to six months on a replica courtyard garden.

The demand is not just coming from fellow enthusiasts. Just recently, he completed a scene of Lowestoft beach that included a fishing rod and newspaper for the nearby The Mariners Tavern.


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