Gus and John Davenport built an OO gauge model railway in the 1960s. Once built, they tired of watching the trains go round, and so looked for other things to add to the layout. On one side of the layout was a cliff covered in nothing other than clumps of grass on the cliff face. This seemed the ideal spot to build a funicular, and that is what they did. I have included it on this website for personal reasons, and on the basis that a home made funicular is certainly a novelty! A film of the layout made by magician Harry Baron is also in the collection.
Growing up in the Davenport family, Gus was surrounded by magic performances and the manufacture and sale of magic. Fortunately, he embraced it. This short article describes Gus the man and the personality and skills that led him to particular styles of performing.
Some relate to magic or magicians. For example De Vere, and there are three versions of The T. Nelson Downs Palming Coin: one version has no word under the wrist, another has the word FOREIGN in that position, and the third has the word DEMON there.
Binkie has been in the Davenport family, probably since the 1930s or 1940s. Binkie lived at Ivydene, Lewis and Wynne Davenport’s family home. The photograph shows him sitting on the piano (which came from Maskelyne’s) at Ivydene in 1971 when Wynne Davenport was playing the piano for a young Roy Davenport in the drawing room. Binkie’s arms and legs are jointed and, in his youth, he used to growl. As a young child John Davenport was frightened of him – he was too loud and scary!