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35018 British India Line

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by 34014, Sep 23, 2014.

  1. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    That is probably the paradox of his interest if his supposed view of the enthusiast fraternity is a dim one yet of course he is clearly a "railway enthusiast" himself, albeit with the means to build a satisfying private collection. I see nothing wrong in anyone pursuing their interests in such a way but I do not kid myself that there is any underlying philanthropy involved. The tangential benefit is we can take pleasure from seeing his trains in public and help offset the costs of ownership by paying to ride on them.
    The LSL way of doing things seems to be developing in a contrasting style which perhaps underlines the different motivations.
     
  2. 60017

    60017 Part of the furniture Friend

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    Whatever Mr Smith's view of enthusiasts is (my understanding is that he is less than complimentary about some photographers), there can be no doubt he has played a major part in the expansion of steam hauled trains since privatisation. He is running a business, not a train set and I don't care what his motives are for doing it.
     
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  3. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    I completely agree and is more or less the point I was making myself. It is why the outrage at the prospect of an historically incorrect livery being applied to 35018 is futile. His asset, his principles, his choice and every opinion offered here is utterly without consequence.
     
  4. Victor

    Victor Resident of Nat Pres

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    Eureka..........now there's an idea, get the tender used for advertising, sell the space to the highest bidder. Brilliant.
     
  5. Johnb

    Johnb Part of the furniture

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    Agree with that, he's a bit of an awkward b****r by all accounts but then so am I sometimes. He doesn't like photographers, fair enough, but he seems quite happy to accept the results of their efforts for his company's publicity material and website.
    Thankfully the other members of WC management are not in the same mould and as an organisation those who follow mainline steam have a lot to thank them for.
     
  6. jsm8b

    jsm8b Active Member

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    Just checked John F Clay's book 'The Stanier Black 5s'
    He lists the experimental paint jobs as 4762 in SR green, 4763 in LNER green and 4764 in GWR green but 45225 was painted LNWR lined black which was the chosen livery. So Froth even within the railway ?.

    My own preference is for BR authenticity, although as far as I'm concerned those whose money, time and skill keep the locos operational are the only ones with any right to make the decision. And anyway it's paint - it can change in time - or at least some loco owners think it can.
    44932 above was recorded at Carnforth in 1972 on the day of the first public excursions to Barrow, my first mainline run behind steam post 1968 was behind her about an hour later and my first shot of post 68 steam on BR was from the footbridge of 44871 leaving with the first train of the day.
    44 years later 44932 is back at Carnforth and both locos are still main line performers and 35018 will hopefully join them before long, something maybe a little more significant than the paint job.
     
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  7. 60017

    60017 Part of the furniture Friend

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    Aren't we all John !
     
  8. 60017

    60017 Part of the furniture Friend

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    What a proud day that was for the Steamtown volunteers and both loco's ran like sewing machines! Had 'the shed' continued as a museum, I'd still be there getting my hands mucky!
     
  9. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    You and many others probably. It is a great pity some way could not be found to keep Steamtown going as a preservation site with open access to volunteers and loco groups. That seems to be one of the guiding principles of the VT TOC plans.
    It is sadly ironic that the site of what was for so many years the public focal point of preservation era mainline steam should now be so much behind closed doors.
     
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  10. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    I agree that much of the positive stuff WC do seems to be almost despite the attitude of the Chairman. Nevertheless the legacy of his investment will continue to be enjoyed by enthusiasts for years to come.
     
  11. Henry the Green Engine

    Henry the Green Engine New Member

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    I'd formed the impression that it was the railway media he disliked, hence his silence when contacted by them. Some photographers also travel so, it isn't a black and white issue.
     
  12. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    He seems to be an essentially private person who happens to have a hobby and business interests that invite public curiosity. Obviously this can become a source of friction.
    Recent press coverage suggests relations may have thawed a little plus there was the open day in 2008. As you say there is always more than one side to every story though.
     
  13. Fred Kerr

    Fred Kerr Part of the furniture

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    I think you'll find that David Smith is a businessman who happens to be an enthusiast; unfortunately he has problems with enthusiasts trying to be businessmen by telling him how to run his business hence his attitude. Having had the pleasure of speaking with him in the past I can confirm that he is a true enthusiast and enjoys what he does but he doesn't enjoy being told how to run HIS business. He also likes to stay in the background and be judged by his achievements NOT his persona and is a man who earns respect but doesn't seek or demand it.
     
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  14. Fred Kerr

    Fred Kerr Part of the furniture

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    That is not David Smith's fault - look to the 'Elf & Safety brigade ! On a tour of inspection when Steamtown was a visitor amenity it was noted that engineering work was taking place on site. H&S stated that to continue as a visitor centre safety aspects had to be enforced - at a cost; the choice was either instal the necessary procedures or close the site to visitors and adopt workplace standards. Enthusiasts now know the choice made but are reluctant to accept the decision whilst the blaming the person who had to make the choice rather than the bureaucracy which forced it to be made.
     
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  15. The Saggin' Dragon

    The Saggin' Dragon Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator Friend

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    Several preserved railways give workshops tours, so blaming H&S is not the full story.
     
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  16. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    Fred, I was not blaming the closure of Steamtown on David Smith. It is simply regrettable that it happened, whatever the reasons, was my point.
    It would not be viable for a business of the type now run from the location to be open access. Blaming "bureaucrats" is a lazy analysis, however, because the two business types are simply incompatible.
     
  17. Bulleid Pacific

    Bulleid Pacific Part of the furniture

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    Moving the thread out of the yard and back onto the slow line regarding 35018. I'm not really a betting man (sadly, I could have won quite a bit if I followed my instincts a couple of times this year!), but there's probably no real rush to get it on the road. Therefore, I'd speculate February for trials and March/April for completion. The Joker in the pack is what will be used on the Winter Cumbrian Coasts if 46115 is out of action.
     
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  18. Fred Kerr

    Fred Kerr Part of the furniture

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    I understand that but I also understand that David Smith is often identified as "the villain of the piece" and - having met and spoken with him - I find that villification doesn't equate with the person I spoke to hence my response to "critical" comments. I do not seek to defend WCRC but I try to understand WCRC decisions in the context of its operating environment. As noted the 2 businesses are incompatible and, whilst noting The Saggin Dragon's comment that other sites allow workshop visits, understanding the layout of the larger Carnforth site makes it easy to see why visits are not permitted. I understand that when RM arranged the WCRC Carnforth Open Day in 2008 a lot of effort was made to make the site visitor friendly but at the cost of commercial work being slowed and whilst WCRC was happy to do so as a "one-of" it was not something that could be justified on a permanent basis.
     
  19. 26D_M

    26D_M Part of the furniture

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    He took, and continues to take, decisions in the interests of his businesses. That is his duty. The site was acquired for a new purpose and once that happened the old days were gone. I do not blame Mr Smith but I am sad that Steamtown and its founding principles ceased to be.
     
  20. Victor

    Victor Resident of Nat Pres

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    Not me.:p...............;)
    Back on topic and speaking only for myself.......Mr Smith has every right to run the Carnforth operation as he sees fit providing it satisfies the railway authorities. It's a business that he's running, not a sideshow for enthusiasts. Yes, it would be nice to get a bit of an occasional progress report but we don't, and it's not the end of the world. 35018 WILL appear up at Hellifield soon, and then we can all see what sort of a job WC have done. I've no doubt that it will be a top job..............and the man can paint it any colour he wants............Porterbrook Purple for me.:Happy:
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2016
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