Samuel and Lego architect Steve Mayes
25 September 2017

A talented youngster has beaten off strong competition from scores of hopefuls to see his futuristic Metrocar design brought to life using Lego.

Eight year-old Samuel Kinsey, of South Shields, based his Metro design on the theme of the Lambton Worm.

To tie-in with the hugely popular #BrickMetro public Lego build at The Word in South Shields over the summer holidays, Metro launched a competition asking local children to design and colour in a futuristic Metrocar.

More than 200 children from across Tyne and Wear took on the challenge and submitted a creative and brightly coloured array of entries which were inspired by everything from football and farm animals, to famous landmarks, including the Angel of the North, the Tyne Bridge and St Mary’s Lighthouse.

And it was Samuel’s eye-catching design that won over the judges. It was then carefully recreated in Lego by the renowned local Lego architect, Steve Mayes.

Samuel said: “I felt really pleased and happy when my mam told me that I had won the competition.  I had great fun colouring in my Metro design.  I wanted my Metro to look like a snake-type creature as I think they look like snakes when they go along the Metro tracks.  I am excited to see my picture as a LEGO® Metro and to meet Steve.  Thank you for choosing my picture as the winner.”

Samuel’s dad, Alan, said: “I was over the moon when I found out that Samuel had won the colouring competition for the Brick Metro.  When Samuel started to colour in his Metro, he said he was doing a snake, so I suggested he do the Lambton Worm to give his Metro a North East theme.  Samuel asked what the Lambton Worm looked like and what it was, so explained the story and that it was a legend so was open to his own interpretation of what he thinks the worm may have looked like.  Samuel chose green and yellow for his worm, with snakes eyes and scales added to the design.  He was really pleased with his finished piece and excited to enter it into the competition.”

Samuel’s mum, Michelle, said: “We’re thrilled to bits that Samuel’s design was chosen as a winner and he’s been so excited to receive his very own version of his design!  Samuel loves to colour in and draw, and it’s lovely to see his artwork and imagination brought to life.  I’m not a fan of snakes so wasn’t keen on his ‘snake’ idea for the Metro, but his dad’s suggestion for the Lambton Worm brought to life Samuel’s interpretation of what the Lambton Worm would have looked like.  We’re very proud of him.”

Lego architect Steve Mayes – aka BrickThis – lent his support as a judge and selected the winning design, which has now been made into a custom-made Lego model and presented to Samuel as a prize.

Steve said: "I loved looking through the entries to the competition and it was a tough choice to pick a winner, but Samuel's entry was so imaginative that I couldn't resist trying to recreate it in Lego. I hope I have done it justice!"

Thirty seven years down the track after the first Metro appeared on the network, Tyne and Wear Metro, Steve and a host of young Master Builders helped build the 91st Metrocar – the first new Metro to be built for nearly four decades - as part of a summer holiday Big Build challenge.

Tickets for the #BrickMetro Big Build sessions sold out in less than seven hours and the completed LEGO® model of the 3m Metrocar is now on display at The Word. Entry to The Word is free.

Nexus is currently seeking to replace the Metrocar fleet as the central part of a £1 billion investment programme over the next two decades.  A detailed business case for has been presented to the Department for Transport (DfT).