After having the traditional Hornby set up in the late 70's and early 80's , I think it must have been my Dad who instigated the move to N gauge.
First loco was BR early crest 4P, and slowly collected a menagerie of stock including a rake of chocolate and cream suburban coaches, but eventually a lovely rake of maroon MK1s with a blood and custard one thrown in. The loco fleet expanded with a green 08 from a swapmeet, (repainted into General Grey livery many years later), and favourite at the time 34066 Spitfire Battle of Britain class. The 4P and BoB came from Tony's Models and Hobbies which was in the Old Police Station, Frodsham, Cheshire. Loved going into that shop, and seeing his N gauge model depicting the viaduct and junction between Frodsham and Halton. The catalogues of the early 80's depicting the 3 levels were inspirational to me, but I would have to make do with a flat but quite lengthy layout which my Dad and I built over a number of years.
First mainline diesel was the 47 in two tone green, with working headlights, but my interests started to become contemporary, so gradually the lesser loved stock got exchanged for modern day examples, and my first BR blue loco was 33012, followed by 40145. My favourite loco at the time was 50024 Vanguard bought from a swapmeet.
The introduction of sector liveries and modern wagons further heightened my interest, with a Swallow liveried HST bought from Photoworld in Llandudno (they always seemed to be cheaper than most advertisers in Railway Modeller).
When the class 91 was released, I wanted it, along with a rake of MK4s, so much, but the cost at the time, along with lack of catenary, and I'd decided to model the South West after a couple of visits to Westbury, meant I didn't get one. (Oh how I'd jump at the chance of a modern tooled class 91 now).
4 years at university followed by marriage and 3 children meant modelling was on the back burner for quite a while, but now I've got a decent sized modern tooled fleet, helped somewhat by selling my old models (no regrets).
Just need to pull my finger out and get a sizable layout to run them on!