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Bluebell Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by Jamessquared, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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    It was the assumption that a lucrative seasonal event should lead to further erosion of individuality which caught my eye. The fact that the instrument of encroaching sameness was the over ubiquitous Mk. 1 was a bit less of a factor.. A lot of people actually prefer to travel in non corridor stock.

    Additionally, modern booking systems facilitate allocation of seats in trains of different capacity.
     
  2. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    But do so on the assumption that once the bookings are released, the seating pattern will remain constant. That gives a substantial operational advantage to Mk1s, where one is very much like another, over assorted earlier types, where the seating patterns vary much more.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  3. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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    Q.E.D.
     
  4. John Petley

    John Petley Part of the furniture

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    I can see the sense of using a diesel for presumably a fairly early ECS working to East Grinstead followed by a 10.15 departure for SP, but why could not the 4.45 SP-EG working be handled by steam? The crew for the loco on the B set would not have any longer a day than their counterparts on the A set and given that it's usually a smallish loco and older carriages on the B set, the marginal extra costs of using steam, even with these silly coal prices, should be fairly negligible. This would also result in the diesel crew not being required to hang around all day with nothing much to do for most of the time.
     
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  5. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    I still don't see why this make the Santa experience (for example) any different for the excited child - as far as I can tell it is you prejudice that we're talking about here, not their preference. Please explain why you see it differently!
     
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  6. Nick C

    Nick C Well-Known Member

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    Yes, that's the point. If the commercial department have sold 64 seats for a TSO, and that TSO has a problem, it can be quickly replaced by another TSO also with 64 seats, in the same layout. With older stock, you don't tend to have another vehicle to hand with the same layout or capacity, meaning you may well have to move people to a different vehicle, or worse, let customers down if the train is already fully booked.

    Much as us enthusiasts may not like things like Santa specials, Thomas, etc, they're the things that bring in a lot of money to pay for our hobby. Plenty of time the rest of the year to use the nice stock, smaller locos, etc...
     
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  7. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    For special duties, I would regard that as a plus point. For other services, you and I would agree that older stock should be used more.
     
  8. H Cloutt

    H Cloutt Member

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    The diesel crew would need be there in case they were required for a rescue.
     
  9. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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  10. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Just to tidy up a few misconceptions. Last year’s winter programme had three sets in operation. One was I believe all Mark 1s; one was mixed Mark 1s and Bulleids plus a van; one was the Mets + Southern livery pre-grouping carriages.

    The “vintage” set amongst those (Mets and SR livery set) ran the East Grinstead Santas. The other two sets ran the Sheffield Park Santas; the mixed Mark 1 / Bulleid / van set then did the SteamLights.

    The SteamLights set obviously had to have a brake carriage and a disabled access carriage in its consist. The vehicles chosen were all side corridor carriages, which by design could be marshalled with the corridor on the west side of the train, with all the illuminations on the east. Almost the entire train was compartment stock, there was one semi-open brake third in it with tables of four in a saloon.

    As far as I am aware, the whole Christmas service - whether Santas or Steamlights, and vintage or Mark 1, was based around selling compartments rather than single tickets; the SOBT in steam lights was sold as tables of four. Individual tickets weren’t generally on offer, which made sense for that type of service (but also followed on from Covid practice).

    The Mets are currently in use on one of our two normal service trains; indeed that have had very heavy use in the last three seasons. Interestingly, a scout along the train on Sunday showed that every compartment was occupied, and the Maunsell brake that was also in the train was empty!

    Tom
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2022
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  11. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    I’m not sure if that is quite so. We’ve managed sixty years without routinely rostering a standby engine, so I’m not sure why we need one now just because it can be fired up in 20 minutes rather than three hours.

    We do roster a spare crew (but not a spare loco) at weekends to provide relief and cope with no shows. That is dependent on having sufficient staff: personally, I’m not convinced that designing unattractive turns is a means to increase volunteer numbers. Also worth noting that in principle the 09 is always available as a thunderbird loco, and AFAIK the operations manager or his weekend cover are covered to drive it even if the spare turn driver isn’t diesel qualified.

    Tom
     
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  12. andrewtoplis

    andrewtoplis Well-Known Member

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    One would imagine that serious 'out for the rest of the day' loco failures are few and far between as well, those half hours lost to fitter attention can be worked round in the normal run of the day
     
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  13. D7076

    D7076 Well-Known Member

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    Visited today for the first time post Covid .
    Good to see the various recent sheds and all the stock travelled on was pleasant .
    Unfortunately though it appears whilst stock has benefitted from operation undercover the out of traffic locos have suffered from operation uncover .
    The loco shed contained 55,323,30583,Baxter ,473 and 592 beyond the buffer stops .96,178 and 263 were at the other side of the buffers along with lots of fresh air.NL tank ,30064,31638 and 92240 all dumped at HK (a reminder of Highley 20 years ago ),
    31618 at the south end of SP .No sign of 847,75027 or 3217 ( hopefully hidden in a shed somewhere) .34023 rusting away in SP bay platform next to 80064 (the only one under a tarp).
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2022
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  14. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    847 and 3217 (9017) are in the carriage shed at Sheffield Park. The “fresh air” at the south end of the running shed is because it is a running shed; generally the in-traffic service locos go there and in the winter are sometimes lit up there. Shed space is an issue though; I reckon we still need at least one more big storage shed for locos.

    Tom
     
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  15. 30854

    30854 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Pity Sharpthorne tunnel isn't exactly the driest environment! I know West Hoathly didn't want a station ..... but did they say anyhing about a storage facility? ;)
     
  16. 34002salisbury

    34002salisbury New Member

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    I'd like to hope that maybe one or two days this year the 33 could be rostered to work the entire turn. Was speaking to a few friends of mine who are very keen to come down for it but but I quote "don't really fancy 5 hours at Sheffield Park"
     
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  17. Glenmutchkin

    Glenmutchkin Member

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    Would it be a good idea to move the posts about coal substitutes to a separate thread called something like "Coal Substitutes in use"? This would make it easier for those who do not follow the Bluebell thread.
     
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  18. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    C&W update:
    One of Alex Morley's recent photos of Maunsell Hastings line brake 3rd 3687, now completely in final topcoat, with the droplights, and characteristic Maunsell large corridor sidelight frames going in:
    52042763118_6e863b6fb0_c.jpg
    The compartment side is already fully glazed. Beyond the sidelights, there is still a degree of fitting out to complete, mainly on door fixtures and gangway connections, before the carriage can be moved into the paintshop for lettering and lining.
    This should prove to be a very popular carriage, with its comfortable 3 a side seating in the attractive Green Jazz moquette.
    Here's a link to Alex's Flickr album:
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/admorley/albums/72157711393512197
     
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  19. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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    Perhaps the moral is that continuing care in avoiding the accumulation of ''stuff'' is just as important as a clear out at intervals
     
  20. DcB

    DcB Well-Known Member

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    Good to see the railway looking good in 1940s period in the new Amazon 10percent TV programme ep7.
     

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