Recalling Diorama 惜景 言情


I’m very impressed on the following Hong Kong Models in John Prentice’s Collection, admired his dedication on recurring the typical views with trams.


This model was built in 00 scale (1:76 – 4mm to 1ft) by John Prentice, modifying a Tramalan white metal kit of a 1950s style tram with scratch built parts. It is of tram 163, the real tram being built in 1979. It is painted in the advertising livery of the Wing On department store as carried in 1981.

Built by John Prentice, this diorama in 00 scale is an impression of what Johnston Road in Hong Kong looked like around 1990. The “Wing On” car 163 and Lung Moon Chinese Restaurant, both have gone in 1991 and 2009. To the left of the scene, in the road next to the taxi, are two tram photographers who represent the model maker and a friend.



This model is of Hong Kong car 145. It was built to 1:16 scale (3/4in to 1ft). It is fully working (24volt DC) and was scratch built by John Prentice from wood and metal as appropriate. This class of tram was built in the 1950s. The tramcar used a Peckham P35 truck and originally was first class on the upper deck and third on the lower but were later one man operated, rear entrance – front exit, as shown on the model, being in the 1970s condition and till present.

The inner of 145 is mostly wood, the lower deck has longitudinal wooden seats, like the originals. The turnstiles are scratch built from metal and turnable. The metal doors also open correctly.



The smallest model on show is this plastic model of tram 38 in N gauge (1:160). It advertises Po Sum On Medicine and the model itself was produced as marketing feature for that company. They were sold by the 80M Bus Model shop in Hong Kong.

More details of tram modelling at

這個1:160的N gauge情景模型,38號電車披上保心安廣告,在80M巴士模型專門店有售,相信是比例最小的了。

Most has been gone or materially changed, only photos are recalling. Yet I hope the old memories can recur one day.


Hong Kong Tram Models 香港電車模型


The pictured model was done by cutting the outline to be same as the real car. (John Prentice)


I first saw this tram model in an exhibition, impressed by a motorized tram model under the background of the renowned Dried Seafood Street in Sheung Wan, however the price for an unassembled one is too expensive for me.

The 1:76 Hong Kong tram model is made by white metal and the body is designed with features of the 1950s style (the “Post-war” style) and typical adverts. It is definitely superb I ever seen.

As I was gripped by the recent tram 120 fever, I changed the livery of my model into 120s style!




最近掀起懷舊「120」熱,我更特意為我的模型換上當年120號電車的廣告 !



St.  Petersburg Tram Collection, Russia

This 1980 design tram model is, however, even more expensive than the TRAMALAN collection. I could not afford such an exorbitant price of USD300! It keeps me hesitating for a long time as it is a limited edition of 100 sets.

Finally, I decided to order for it. I ended up spending several months’ savings to buy it. The 1:43 model is made by metal with a bright red livery of “Double Happiness Cigarettes”. Detailed seats, staircases, handrails and turnstiles are made incredibly precise.

Nowadays, advertising liveries of cigarettes are no longer allowed in Hong Kong. This model, to me, refreshes my memories of the old days.

Recently the HK tram – Bachmann version has launched in February. Definitely a potential market!

俄羅斯St. Petersburg Tram Collection系列  




今年二月百萬城推出香港電車模型,這將會是一個潛在市場 !

Superb outline for Tramalan 120, whilst perfect inner cabin for Bachmann version!!

This might be a good example to HKT to making one set for the precedent and present tramcars..


All Photos: Joseph Tse