The National Railway Museum in York hosted the event yesterday and on Saturday to showcase designs by some of the biggest names in modelling, including Hornby, Bachmann and Dapol.
A total of nine operating layouts was on display. Organisers hope to make the model railway weekend an annual event there.
The museum's festivals and events officer, Rose Lindsay Smith, said: "We were really looking forward to the new event and it was a huge hit with adults and families alike.
"Visitors were able to see an array of wonderful moving models and detailed life-like layouts, as well as discovering some hidden model rail gems in our warehouse and other collection pieces inspired by this popular hobby. It proved to be a must-see spectacle for anyone who enjoys model railways."
Organisations at the event included the Alsager Railway Association and Manchester Model Tramway Association.
The 16mm Garratt Owners and Operators' Association created a live steam layout and there were also demonstrations from the Lancashire and Yorkshire Signalling School.
A competition was held to give modellers the chance to submit photographs of the most lifelike sections of their layouts.
The winner, who has yet to be named, will receive a City of Truro working model in 3440 livery and a boxed set of West Yorkshire region Co-operative wagons.
They will also win a year-long subscription to Model Rail magazine and railway books and DVDs worth 100.