I'm back after a few days away...

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I've been away on a short cruise to Cork, Ireland: it looks like its been a busy few days here at Brickset and I'd like to thank bluemoose and grahame for keeping you all informed in my absence. To get me back into the LEGO 'groove' I've just ordered the Harry Potter sets and will be collecting them tomorrow evening! Nice one Tesco!

While in Cork I had the opportunity to visit Smyths, the largest chain of toy stores in Ireland. The LEGO aisle was absolutely fantastic: it had virtually every set that's currently available all neatly and tidily organised on the shelves, and there were even some pretty decent discounts on older sets. It put Toys R Us to shame. So if you're in Ireland, lucky you!

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By in United Kingdom,

Smyths is truly a great store, although I live in England, there used to be one quite near me until just recently; when it annoyingly shut down. :(

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By in United Kingdom,

For those of you in Birmingham UK, there is one in Castle Vale if your near by

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By in United Kingdom,

Most we've got in my hometown is a pretty poor Toymaster. But on the plus side, a Toys R Us is opening in town soon, so it's not all bad.

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By in United States,

Welcome back Huw, it sounds like Smyths was awesome, I may go there someday. Did you buy anything there?

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By in United Kingdom,

Huw i couldn't agree more....Smyths by far has a better range, more offers, and generally a more organised layout comapred to TRU...fortunately i have 3 Smyths within an hours drive of where i live in the metropolis that is Waringstown!

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By in Ireland,

Yup, I'm quite happy to have 5 Smyths' within 20 minutes. All we need now is a TrU somewhere in Dublin for those exclusive sets. Oh, and a brand shop would be nice ;-)

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By in France,

Cool! I'm from Cork - but I live in Paris nowadays - I must say I do like Smyths, I try to visit each time I go back. If anyone ever visits Cork by 'plane you can pick up (albeit a tiny range of) lego sets at the duty free on your way back(irrespective of destination) at prices a few euros cheaper - eg the new SW landspeeder for €23

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By in United States,

most of the deals in the lego store near me are pathetic.

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By in Germany,

Hah, lucky HQuiff and CommanderOrbit! ;) Welcome back Huw!

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By in Ireland,

Yeah Smyths are good for a lot, though you'll be waiting about 2-3 weeks longer for Minifig collectors series etc. Still I always prefer to go to TRU in Lisburn for my unique sets, and they tend to be slightly cheaper on most sets over a tenner.

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By in Ireland,

That's funny, I was in Cork a while back and I checked the smyths store too. Ireland can be good for finding old sets cheap but unlike the UK we don't have official Lego stores or toys'r'us for exclusives. So we have to either order online or go up north to Belfast. And some starwars sets are ridiculously priced, so I order them off amazon fr, de, or .co.uk to save a bit of cash ; ).
@Huw, Some of the most cheapest sets are prince of Persia which I believe are not sold anymore in the UK. Also you should have checked Argos in cork because they had some good bargains like the prince of Persia and the starwars AAT, just to let you know.

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By in United States,

If anyone's interested to know, a few days ago I went to my local Walmart and they had an entire shelf the length of the isle filled with ALL the new Lego sets! But they also had some older sets (back to January 2009) on sale. I was able to get both the AAT (normally 50$) and the mid-scale M. Falcon (normally 40$) for just 60$!

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By in Ireland,

yup...the smyths in cork is really great ;) the only problem symths really don't have any exclusive like the death star playset or cad banes speeder...but the prices are quite cheap compared to other places :)

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By in United Kingdom,

I've never been to Smyths before, might go one day :)

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By in United Kingdom,

Well done Huw on grabbing the Harry Potter sets from Tesco. I logged on to do the same and they´re all out of stock!

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By in Ireland,

Two Smyths near me too - and ones in the city centre in Cork or Dublin, handy if visiting those cities by public transport!

They must be wonderous for kids - floor to ceiling stocking (extra stock is kept above the ordinary shelves). It's always nice even for an adult AFOL well-familiar with Lego's current line-up!

They have almost the full range of Lego excluding S@H exclusives, but for Castle '07, Argos had an exclusive that year (Smyths stocked it the following year) and so far no sign of Lego Kingdoms. Argos also have other exclusives at times, and the Midi Millenium Falcon was exclusive to Tesco for a while. Still, Smyths usually stock once the exclusive period is over.

A pity there is no loyalty scheme for Smyths. Art and Hobby (usually pricier for smaller sets and only average on others) has a scheme where you get a €20 voucher for every €120 spent. Great value for regular purchasers who spend a fair bit over a year or so (the voucher is valid for ages too).

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By in United Kingdom,

@helpme1986, thanks. I went to the one at castle vale, i got the new city house and a new police bike because my first bike broke. And huw, i know, i was amazed at the rate of sets in castle vale in birmingham, and it was tidy unlike tesco's, who think that barbie belongs in the lego section!!

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By in Ireland,

I Live in Cork and purchase most of my Lego from smyths. They are absolutley fantastic for range & price. It is Technic I collect mostly myself and they can have great bargains. For example the Front Loader which Lego charges €100 for I got it in Smyths for €60. Most of their prices can be much lower than the Lego price. They had all four 2nd half 2010 Technic sets at the start of July. They still have boxes of the series one minifigures around too.

Another good store are the Art and Hobby shops. They are small and the range is limted but you can get sets that are hard to find at a good price. However as another poster said prices on newer, smaller sets can be high. For example in Douglas Art and Hobby in February 2010 I picked up the Technic Telescopic Handler (now quite rare) for €75 versus Lego €90. They also had the Technic 8275 motorized bulldozer (very rare) for €150. An even greater find was in Art and Hobby Belfast in April 2010 where I bought 7996 diamond rail crossing ( extremley rare) for €20. They had 2 left then and when I returned in July they had 1! Overall Art and Hobby can be great for finding rare sets but it depends on the store again. They all seem to have very different stock.

Other stores in Ireland would be Argos - good, Toymaster - not good and world of wonder - poor but you could get lucky. Overall Ireland can be a great place to buy Lego sets eccept exclusives. A Lego Store in Dublin would be fantastic and it would be a goldmine! The prices that Lego charge us online are very high. For example they charge us the most for the power functions receiver - €19. And they dont even give us the discounts when you buy in bulk like the much cheaper anyway UK. Im lucky though i have a friend in the UK that i send my orders too.

I went to Northern Ireland in late July on my holidays. I visited Toys r Us in Lisburn and I was dissapointed. They really only had the 2009 Technic sets which i found odd. No sign of 2nd half 2010 and only like 2 first half sets.

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By in United States,

I am jealous! I love their website. It is so colorful !!!

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By in Ireland,

I live in Dublin so I have a huge Smyths side by side with a Toymaster. Smyths has always been great, fully stocked and they're the first place I know of in Dublin that got the minifigs series 2 in today!

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By in Ireland,

I was in Dublin yesterday too and was delighted when i saw the minifigures at the counter. I was there armed with my barcodes sheet looking for the skier.I was getting some odd looks from the assistant! She asked though did they work and I was like Yep! Smyths are great though to get new products in quickly.

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By in Canada,

Never heard of Smyths!? But from the sounds of things they should come to Canada and remove the TRU Republic!

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By in United Kingdom,

Smyths is life saver for me because my lego store shut down, witch is a real pain. And if any of you's are going to the TRU at merry hill don't even think about it!! Go to smyths not TRU!!!

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By in Ireland,

Yep Smyths is cool and the biggest bonus my missus works in CS there and the killer is we are always broke because she goes nuts lol

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