Welcome To Britain’s Dollywood: The Eerie Warehouse That Hides 20,000 Mannequin Dummies
It looks like the set of a completely bonkers horror film.
Detached heads and dismembered limbs lie everywhere, and cold dead eyes look right through your soul.
You have gone beyond the valley of the dolls. You are now in a place beyond horror, beyond imagination. You are in… Fulbeck in Lincolnshire.
This otherwise unassuming village hides a very unique warehouse, one that is home to 20,000 dummies.
This is Mannakin, the business set up by Roz Edwards, 43, which offers dolls for hire to video shoots, films and adverts.
Edwards, from Newark, Nottinghamshire, returned to Britain after ten years in Malawi and set up a retail consultancy business in 2007. At that point, only a small part of the venture involved offering mannequins for hire, but demand became so great that she ended up creating her own “Dollywood”.
She has gathered her haul of dummies from shops which went out of business in the recession, and now provides them to TV shows and the biggest names in the music business; her dummies have appeared on The X Factor, Top Gear and in a Lady Gaga video.
She employs 20 staff at her warehouse and is busy with dummy demand from all over the world.
“I wanted to be the next Mary Portas, but people kept asking me for mannequins,’ she said.
“I didn’t actually have any at the start, but I quickly bought them up from shops which had gone under in the recession.
“Soon people heard about ‘that mad woman with all those mannequins’, and it just kind of grew until now I have over 20,000.
“It’s quite eerie when you drive into Dollywood and there are models – some without arms, or heads – piled up all around you.
“They are used in music videos, on film sets – some have been blown up by Top Gear.”
Edwards sells her dummies for about £40 or £50, and even supplied Lincolnshire Police with mannequins for target practice.
(Pictures: South West News Service)