One of the first things that many doting fathers do when their son reaches the age of three or so, is to buy him a Scalextric motorcar racing set, not because son understands much of what’s going on, but because dad uses it as an excuse to revert to childhood and back to playing with toys. Probably in much the same way, Álvaro Noguera’s father bought him a beautiful set of toy soldiers for his third birthday in 1941, but whereas the Scalextric usually ends up in the back of a cupboard with wheels missing, that set of soldiers was the acorn that became the oak tree of the largest collection of minatures in the world, with over a million pieces.