James May's Lego House . Built for the TV show 'James May's Toy Stories', a lifesize LEGO house constructed at Denbies Wine Estate in Surrey. I took the below pictures on a build day I attended to help with construction. .
This was being constructed just down the road from me so I thought I'd sign up to help. James' TV series takes iconic toys and creates something epic out of them. As well as the house pictured here the show has made a Meccano bridge over a canal, the longest Scalextric track in the world (also just down the road at the Brooklands historic race track) and the longest Hornby railway. James May's Toy Stories will be aired around Christmas-time 2009 on the BBC.
Building tables: Hundreds of people turned up (a lot of them TopGear 'fans' who were absolutely insane, proudly showing me pictures on their mobiles of the back of Richard Hammond's head) to help with the build at Denbies Wine Estate. The bit I was in was probably a garden centre the rest of the year, so people will no doubt be finding bricks in their plants for years to come. I even thought about going back and scrounging for leftovers, not that I'm sad an wanted to 'save' the lost bricks or anything...
Completed bricks made from Lego, er, bricks: This is what we were building, giant bricks which the house would be assembled from. A bit different from my usual large scale vehicles! I spoke to James (briefly) about how I thought he was going to get wet if it rained - as we all know Lego isn't water-proof (well none of my Lego ships ever floated anyway!) - I later found out my prediction of a moist May came to fruition when he used the shower; the water ended up in his kitchen!
Free-build tables: 3 million bricks to build what you liked for the house. Before moving on to making the bricks for the walls I had a go here, but it was actually not as good as it looks; the bricks were all the same (e.g. all the red bricks were 2x2s, all the white 2x4s etc) so it was difficult to build anything decent. Most of the items in the house look like they were made to order at a later date. The contents of the house are brilliant, and also look very 'Lego-y' using very basic bricks - great inspiration for future MOCs! There are some links below which will take you to detailed shots of the house interior.
James' bed: The finished bedroom complete with Mr. May. He seemed a bit bored at the building day (although maybe he's always like that!) - the novelty of 3 million Lego bricks soon wares off! He was also constantly harassed by TopGear fans (not car or Lego fans mind, just fans of the TopGear 'brand'), which kinda made me think how shallow the whole celebrity culture is; I'm quite glad I didn't ask for his autograph or anything.
I hope you've enjoyed looking at the pictures of James' house. I was just one of many pairs of hands used for the monkey work, but it was great to be part of such an inspiring project. The house has now been dismantled as they needed £50,000 to keep it. However, the bricks have been shipped to Legoland for use in challenges there. If you go you could be playing with bricks which were part of James' bed, shower or toilet in a previous life.
-The main and last photos were not taken by me and can be found on the TopGear website.
-Check out the flickr gallery for pictures of the build process here.
-And finally, check out Kevin Cooper's page here on MOCpages. He built some of the items which ended up inside the house, including the amazing Transformers centerpiece.
James May's Toy Stories will air in December 2009. Cameras were present throughout the building but I think I escaped getting filmed (I'll find out when I watch the show!). I won't be able to see the parts I built, but it's cool to know they're in there somewhere...
Thanks for viewing and Happy Building