14:27 Wednesday 28 May 2014

SLIDESHOW: Call for help to save Cambridgeshire model village is answered

Written byADAM LUKE

A widow whose popular model village fell into disrepair after the death of her husband has been inundated with offers of help.

Two weeks ago, the News revealed that Pat Bullman, 80, was seeking support to prevent the labour of love rotting away in Wicken, following Oliver’s funeral two years ago.

And since the appeal was made, numerous people have offered their skills to spruce up the village, which Pat and Oliver devoted more than 50 years of their lives to creating in their Church Road front garden.

Pat said: “I am absolutely delighted – even a couple of younger lads have offered to come up and help repaint the buildings. I am really hopeful that it will be restored to it’s former glory.

“I had decided that I couldn’t do anything to save it but luckily somebody up there is keeping an eye on me.

“The village is very important. It’s been there for so long that it has become a real feature of Wicken. I want to attract the children and families again so I’m hoping we can bring it back.”

The attraction

Pat and Oliver started their display with a windmill which they built for their daughter Shirley when she was a young girl.

They went on to add a fire station, railway station, hotel, fish and chip shop, and a church, among many others models.

Binmen used to bring the couple toy vehicles when they found them in people’s rubbish.

Oliver, who worked as a digger driver, was still making new pieces for the village when he died from cancer aged 80.

Among the helpers to have come forward are two doll house makers, a shop owner who is donating paint and another who is offering wood.

If you can help Patricia save the village, call her on (01353) 721640.

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