A year ago today Neo Classic Space was born - not the name, and certainly not the building style, both of which had been around for several years - but the website.
It was originally envisioned as a place for a small group of builders to hang out. They had been building Neo Classic Space models and wanted a place to keep track of their LL Registration Numbers. There was talk of adding in models by other builders, but that was as far as it was expected to go.
However, before long they had some pretty cool stuff on the site and they thought it would be nice to share it with the rest of the world. Someone suggested holding an event to launch it, but what sort of event?
Then someone asked when exactly did LEGO first release the original Classic Space sets? Expert archivists were consulted. The first catalogues showing Classic Space were from 1979. Back then the catalogues and new sets always came out at Easter, usually sometime in March (you may see references saying 1978, but the main release was certainly 1979).
Celebrating 30 years of Classic Space seemed like the perfect occasion to launch the site. But how? What better way than by building tribute models? How about one for every year Classic Space has been around? How about one for every day in March?
We started inviting all of the best Classic Space builders around the world to take part. We had an excellent response, and pretty soon we had thirty builders lined up. However, agreeing to build something and actually turning up with a model are two very different things, and we had quite a few people who weren't quite ready in time, and a few who got caught up with real life and weren't able to finish their models.
Fortunately a lot of people were caught up by the spirit of the event, and we had a lot of requests from people wanting to join in. We were lucky enough to be able to fill in a lot of the gaps in our schedule, and we had very quickly started adding "bonus" models. We ended up featuring nearly a hundred models during the month, and some quite amazing ones at that. In fact one or two of the finest models the month produced came from people who hadn't heard of the event before the month started.
Since March there has been quite a lot of Neo Classic Space activity, though at a much slower pace. The arrival of Space Police 3 has provided a fertile source of new material and parts, and we're very much looking forward to future space themes. There has also been very vibrant series of microscale Neo Classic Space models from a number of builders that have proved very popular.
So put on a party hat, have some cake (the above cake was made last March by Hilary Dade), and get ready for another year of exciting Neo Classic Space.