Coventry man builds a model of Ricoh Arena out of 45,000 toothpicks
A Coventry man famous for recreating iconic sporting venues out of toothpicks has unveiled his latest model – and it’s a little closer to home.
Shaminder Singh, aged 34, from Wyken has created a miniature version of the Ricoh Arena using 45,000 toothpicks.
It took the dedicated forklift driver around 900 hours over a six-month period to create the model – which is equivalent to five hours a day every day - and has been constructed by mainly using toothpicks and super glue.
Other materials used included plastic for the roof, electrics and lighting for the floodlights, and varnish. The signs were also made and imported from India.
Shaminder has hit the headlines in the past for his bold reconstructions of Wimbledon’s Centre Court, Old Trafford and a cricket stadium.
Impressed by what he saw, Lord Mayor of Coventry, Councillor Tony Skipper, approached Shaminder last year to ask if he would recreate the Ricoh Arena in time for the Lord Mayor’s Charity Fundraising Dinner for Zoe’s Place Baby Hospice, which is also a charity partner of Wasps.
Shaminder duly obliged, and even took time off work to complete the project in time to present it to Cllr Skipper at the fundraising dinner, which was also held at the Ricoh Arena.
“I drive past the Ricoh Arena every day on my way to work and I think it’s a beautiful stadium. I’m a keen sportsman, so I was more than happy to make this model,” said Shaminder.
“The time-consuming part when creating models such as these is getting the shape of the building as accurate as possible, as I had to study satellite images in great detail and cut each toothpick to various lengths to achieve this.
“I’m hoping to make more models in the future which can be auctioned off for charity – including the reproduction of some prestigious cars.”
Shaminder also received support during the build from Sikh Union Coventry, Coventry Mercia Lions Club and Coventry City Council.
The miniature Ricoh Arena model now resides at the real-life Ricoh Arena for visitors to admire after the Lord Mayor decided to donate the model to Nick Eastwood, the chief executive of Ricoh Arena and Wasps.
Cllr Skipper added: “Shaminder has proved what great artistic talent he has from the previous models he has recreated, and when I found out that he was from Coventry, I thought it would be fitting for him to do an impression of our city’s very own Ricoh Arena.
“His work and talent deserves to be shown to the world, and I hope the various visitors who attend the Ricoh Arena every year will get the chance to see the creation first hand.”
Nick said: “Shaminder should be applauded for his efforts - the model is incredibly accurate of the real life Ricoh Arena and must have taken a lot of patience to construct.
“To say thank you for his hard work, we have given Shaminder two Wasps season memberships for the 2018/19 season.”