Located in the city of Christchurch, the New Zealand Museum of Toys and Collectibles houses an eclectic mix of both new and old toys and collectibles.
In February 2016, curator and long-time toy collector, Alan Preston, channeled his personal collection into a public forum called The Toy Collector. The museum featured a broad range of toys that he collected over 50 years.
In December 2019, a new location and the creation of a charitable trust enabled the museum to expand in size and be relaunched as the New Zealand Museum of Toys & Collectibles. The Toy Collector remains as a retail shop.
The roughly 1,000 square foot location houses a series of permanent and rotating exhibits, including a G-scale model train set, 15,000 diecast model cars, LEGO, and a large cache of painted Napoleonic model soldiers. Other exhibits include restored Tonka toys, Pez dispensers, Barbie dolls, and Meccano models. With the expansion, Preston’s collection has been augmented with additional pieces donated or lent to the museum from other private collectors.
The New Zealand Museum of Toys and Collectibles also includes a dedicated party room that can be rented for events, an on-site café, and a play area for young children.