(last updated on 16-11-2011

and dedicated to Melba)






     “Sikje” in Tynaarlo, Holland ’06                                                                                                                                                                                                            same Sikje” in’ 09


This is the story of a Phoenix rising out of the ashes – or in this case a brand-new layout appearing out of the old Zaanhoven/Trammelant set-up.


Being unhappy with the idea of 2 modules of 6 foot by 4 foot (or 2400mm x 1200mm in metric) and not really being able to finish them, Melba and I discussed the idea of building a totally new layout along 2 walls of one of the rooms in our house.


We decided that the new layout should be no wider then 2 foot (or 600mm) so that everything could be easily reached by both of us (she is 1.55m and I am 1.91m) rather then maintain the 4 foot width.


Due to having moved house twice in the last 6 months we also decided that the modules should be easily transportable and therefore no longer then 4 foot. This meant 4 modules of 1200 x 600mm, one of 1300 x 600mm and one corner unit of a later to be determined size.


Jack Waller, 80+ year old resident carpenter/handyman/jack-of-all-trades of our church was commissioned on 15 February 2009 to build the modules out of 30x30mm dressed pine and modules 1, 2, 5 & 6 were delivered early Saturday morning February 21.


The old groundplate of ZaanCS (2400 x 1200) was chopped into 3 groundplates for modules 1, 2 & 6 later that morning.



During that weekend various ideas were tried by laying some rails, points, roads and placing both the stations to give us a more concrete idea of our planned lay-out.



On Sunday 22, our 11 months wedding anniversary, Jack was given the measurements of module 3 & 4 – the corner unit – and we took delivery of those on March 5.



Over the next few weeks many changes happened, including turning both stations 180 degrees, a tram-line from Zaanhoven to the future TrammelanT Funpark/Museum, a mono-rails from ZaanCS to Trammelant, the addition of many tracks to ZaanCS and the shaping of the industrial where a large (Kibri) brewery will be build.




During the Easter 2009 school holiday we painted the walls of our house, after which the modules were bolted together, the rails glued permanently, several buildings also glued down and in the near future we will start the rest of the scenery and the landscaping. Look at movie 6 to see the difference the much lighter colour of the walls make and also for a look at the new acquisitions on the Graham Lees Wall.


The name change is now official as you can see from the title of the page.


The changes can be best seen by watching the following YouTube movies; Jack & Melba’s New layout 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 (type in hondekop3) and 6 -





During the September/October school holidays we moved to a new house and the lay-out’s transportability was well and truly tested. Despite some minor problems it worked well and on Thursday October 8, 2009 it was put back together again in the lounge of the new premises.


One major problem faces Zaanland – the room measures 3.5m x 3.5m while Zaanland measures 3.5m x 3.75m. Two solutions to this problem;

1.    shorten Zaanhoven by 25cm or

2.    insert an extra module so that the L-shape becomes a U-type shape.

How this works will be much clearer from the Youtube video


An extra addition to the lay-out was purchased on August 28 – a long desired European icon, the TEE from Trix.


Bought from the Dutch site Marktplaats via Geert Cuperus it arrived on September 9 and will be a fantastic addition to Zaanland. This icon of 80’s luxury in Europe maintained the connection between Holland and Switzerland and provided the most comfortable train ride of its time.





In January 2010 the new corner units arrived and the ground-plates were installed. This meant that a space came free for displaying some of the many goods wagons and some additional engines in a shunting yard. Zaanhoven also changed shape with the church in a different location, the VW dealership moved across the road and the 2 smaller houses closer to the station. The farm is now located closer to town, which leaves space for the new power station and the brewery between the farm and the shunting yard (click on for the video)


Next will be erecting the backgrounds and starting the landscaping;


and building the power station and brewery.


During the rest of January and most of February work on Zaanland steadily increased. Platforms were erected at both stations, much more landscaping was done, the shunting yard was made bigger and even street lights are currently being erected next to the main road from ZaanCS to Zaanhoven. Here are some more photos;




 and the latest YouTube video on


The landscaping progressed steadily throughout February and March 2010 and the following were added; the brewery (finally finished), another big villa, parking areas near Zaanhoven, ZaanCS and in the village, landscaping around the brewery and laying the asphalt in most of the Museum/Funpark. Many people have come out now since the bad winter of 2009/2010 has ended and spring finally brings some great weather;




And of course the link to the latest YouTube video;


Now, over 1 year later, there are a number of additions to the lay-out. Practically finished on January 20, 2011 here is a short list of some of the major additions;


1.    During the rest of March a field of 120 tulips between the church and the older villa and a field of roses between the new villa and the brewery were added.

2.    In May a start was made with a market square between Zaanhoven and the church.

3.    During July, aside from the ever continuing task of landscaping the long ago ordered DE1 (Rode Duivel = Red Devil), a 2 storey house under construction and a helicopter and tractor were purchased.

4.    During August a Karlsruhe tram and an NS steam engine were purchased. The little steam engine can now be found in the additional space of the museum/funpark.

5.    During October 2 lakes were formed, using some special wave paper and the landscaping around them added.

6.    During November a cemetery was added near the church with tombstones, hedges, paths and grass.

7.    During December fishermen, ducks and swans were added to the 2 lakes, although fisherman only fish the bigger lake near Zaan CS. The other lake near the Volkswagen dealer is just too small for fishing.

8.    In January, all the landscaping was finished and a jewel in the crown of the museum was added – a blue version of the NS 1000.


Of course the best way to view all this is by clicking on the following link to watch the YouTube video;





During the next few months a few more items joined Zaanland.

·       On May 22 we purchased a green Hornby R156 diesel shunter that will be changed to NS 500-600 with some paint and some transfers (although NS transfers are hard to find even on In it’s original state and livery in already has a place in the museum/funpark.

·       A Wiking Doubledecker longnose Buessing D38 was bought on October 30 as another curious object for the museum. It has no markings nor transfer but represents those double-deckers as were in service mid-50's in Germany.

·       One day later a wish came true – a brown 2400. This one was advertised on eBay from Korea at a very good price and now finds pride of place in the museum.


























So, what’s the future for Zaanland? Well here’s the wishlist;

1.    One more Dutch background behind the brewery

2.    More NS museum engines

3.    Connect the street lights to the power

4.    Automate the 2 mainlines so that the trains stop for 20 seconds at one station before the power is reversed and they leave for the other station (etc. etc.).


Thus, keep an eye on any updates, we’ll try and update more regular………………………….