Every year for the past 20 years, secondary school teacher Michael Addis and his wife, Catherine, have built a giant Lego model in their living room. Something so big and bold that it almost touches the ceiling. Their latest creation is a 10ft-high replica of the 2012 Olympic mascot known as Wenlock. In previous years, they’ve built a giant Dalek, an oversized Victorian post box, even a replica of lego jokes for kids 10th-century church that’s a few miles from their home.
Olympican feat: Catherine Addis with a 100,000-brick replica of the 2012 Olympics mascot Wenlock. The regime is always the same. We start on my birthday, October 13, and we’re finished by December 1,’ says Michael. We work on it for roughly two hours every night. Because otherwise we’d just watch too much TV.
10 for 1 kilo, I walk away,’ he says. It’s an odd way for a grown-up to spend his time, you might think. But Michael is not alone in his Lego obsession. Up and down the country, there are people — OK, the vast majority of them are men — who devote their leisure time to the tiny plastic building blocks that most of us left behind for ever when we discovered members of the opposite sex, skateboards and booze. Lego’ — meet to swap notes and show off their latest creations.
There are warships, motor cars, football stadia, dinosaurs and spaceships. There are 40ft Christmas trees, working railway trains, architecturally accurate landmarks. The only thing the models have in common is that they are all huge. I know what you’re thinking: geeky men, no girlfriends, live with their mums. All the Lego enthusiasts I’ve spoken to are happily married, and many of them blame their obsession on their wives, who reintroduced them to Lego in adulthood. I hadn’t played with Lego since my childhood, but then, in my mid-40s, my wife bought me a large Star Wars Lego kit for Christmas,’ smiles 52-year-old Gary Davis.
And she’s been regretting it ever since. Lego fanatic, spending around 20 hours a week with his little bits of coloured plastic. The project took him five months and 20,000 bricks. The result is an extraordinary work of art.