A LEGO collection with an estimated 30,000 pieces would be the envy of most children.

But for former mental health nurse Robert Clarkson, aged 55, it is a retirement hobby that allows him to travel the UK, exhibiting his work.

Mr Clarkson’s love of Lego started as a child and he loved helping his two children, Laura and Alexander, build the toys.

But due to work and family commitments his hobby was shelved until 2006.

Since then he has built some amazing creations, including a haunted manor house, which spans the width of a living room chair and is more than a foot high, a football stadium, which can seat 250 Lego people, a camper van and a model of Fred Dibnah’s steam roller, Betsy. Mr Clarkson’s collection includes about 30,000 pieces of Lego, 1,000 figures and 70 horses.

Mr Clarkson also created the window display at the Lego shop at the Trafford Centre.

He said: “I remember enjoying Lego up to the 1970s then I went into what I call the dark ages. I have been back into it since 1991 when my daughter was about three or four and had a Lego helicopter with lights and sound.

“It was seven years ago that I thought ‘there has to be other fans of Lego who are adults’.”

Mr Clarkson, from Breightmet, is an active member of the Brickish Association, which brings adult fans of Lego together from across the UK to exhibit their work.

Due to his ever expanding collection, Mr Clarkson has transformed a bedroom in the home he shares with wife, Sandra, aged 50, and Alexander, aged 22, into his Lego workshop.

He said: “We have a rule in the house that I have one room for Lego. I have seen homes where there is Lego all over the house and it is nice in a geeky way but you still want it to be a family house.

“I enjoy the creativity of Lego.

I worked for the NHS for more than 30 years and it is totally different from my job.”

Mr Clarkson will be showcasing his work at the Northern Modelling Exhibition at EventCity in Manchester on Saturday and Sunday, March 2 and 3. For more information about the exhibition call 01926 614101 or visit meridienn eexhibitions.co.uk/index.php