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Cost of volunteer accommodation

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by lynbarn, Oct 17, 2022.

  1. lynbarn

    lynbarn Well-Known Member

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    Hi Guys I wonder if I can get some of you to tell me what the cost of voluntary accommodation is at your railway of choice and what would you consider a reasonable sum to pay for the following:-

    1 Just a Bed shower etc for the night

    2 Bed and Breakfast and the above

    3 Bed Breakfast and Evening meal and the above


    Colin Rainsbury
     
  2. Kingscross

    Kingscross Member

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    If I'm volunteering I'd hope for bed and shower to provided either free, or at cost. I wouldn't expect the railway to supply options 2 or 3.
     
  3. lil Bear

    lil Bear Part of the furniture

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    Swanage you can book a pit, which is £0 and has access to 1x shower, 1x toilet and a basic kitchen unit.
    There is the chaneging room that has an additional shower + toilet, plus the bothy with full kitchen facilities.

    Agree with the above, I've never expected any of the above though collectively as a group of volunteers we've taken it in turns to do meals.
     
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  4. Jeff Albiston

    Jeff Albiston Member

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    The volunteer accommodation at Penrhyn on the Ffestiniog consists of the following:

    x4 bedrooms, which can sleep up to 14 people. 3 of the bedrooms have x2 bunk beds.
    x2 shower units
    x3 toilets
    There is also a lounge & kitchen.
    Cost for bed & a breakfast is £7.50 per person & goes straight back into the FR Society.
    Penrhyn is mostly used by groups that are directly involved within the FR Society.

    There is another & bigger hostel at Minffordd, but not sure how much a night it is.
     
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  5. Southernman99

    Southernman99 Member Friend

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    Svr offer casual compartments that sleep 3 in the green SKs at Bridgnorth. The sleepers at both Arley and Kidder are similar arrangements. Bridgnorth has a toilet in each carriage, showers are being dealt with currently with a new block being built at the north end of the car park. Not ideal but the only place it could be sited.
     
  6. goldfish

    goldfish Nat Pres stalwart

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    I don't volunteer and know nothing of people's expectations, but wondered whether any railways work with local hostels/B&Bs/hotels etc. to provide preferential rates?

    I realise that if you've spent the day on the footplate or washing out a boiler, a hotel would probably want you to have cleaned up before you get there (and it sounds as though there's facilities to allow that).

    But I also know that the prospect of bunking up with other people, or staying in something called 'a pit' would be a serious deterrent to me spending a weekend on a railway, where a £10 discount a night at a local hotel or AirBnB would be appreciated.

    Simon
     
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  7. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    Some railways had/have agreements with local B &B for discount rates for volunteers. My first ever overnight was at Mrs Jones in Tywyn. Lovely lady, deaf as a post. £3 a night with icicles hanging from the taps... I even have a picture somewhere.

    Edit: I did not find the icicle picture but here's one of the output from that weekend. Cable ducts and drains. I am helping the shovel to stay upright.
    IMG-20221018-WA0002.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2022
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  8. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    On the Bluebell, there are showers, kitchen and washing machine in the lobby accommodation (at Sheffield Park). In addition, there is a converted cottage at Sheffield Park that has 12 beds (based on shared rooms), shower, kitchen, with a voluntary donation of £5 per night.

    Various sleeping carriages that previously served as accommodation are being removed as essentially life-expired.

    The cottage is a boon for me. After a local family accommodation option disappeared, from time to time before I'd stay at a local Travelodge etc, but cost of living crisis - even a £10 discount on £60 - £70 per night is still far too expensive if you need to stay 20 or 30 nights in a year - pace @goldfish

    I wouldn't expect food or travelling expenses to be provided by the railway - those are, like providing suitable uniform, a cost I'm prepared to pay for my hobby. But accommodation (and shower / kitchen facilities) I think is essential if you are also asking people to work long shifts and early book ons (or late book offs). It's not reasonable to expect someone to work maybe 10 - 11 hours with a 6:30 book on and also have an hour plus travelling at each end.

    Tom
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2022
  9. Dead Sheep

    Dead Sheep New Member

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    Sleep in a guard's brake in a sleeping bag and roll mats. I always used to. You can even use the stove in cold weather.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2022
  10. andrewtoplis

    andrewtoplis Well-Known Member

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    The IOW has five rooms each sleeping one or two people, plus a decent messroom with kitchen, TV etc which are free for volunteers to use. Sleeping on site is key for those of us who travel down, it wouldn't be feasible otherwise.

    Best thing about it is a strict clean rule, no dirty overalls etc are allowed, separate messrooms are available for tea breaks and lunchtimes
     
  11. StormChaser

    StormChaser New Member

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    At the Talyllyn there's Llechfan, the volunteer hostel. £3 night, although costs were waived when I was staying. Has:

    - 12 beds (bunk beds) in rooms of, I believe, 6, 4, and 2 people
    - 2x toilets and showers
    - washer and dryer for non-work clothes
    - sinks in the bedrooms
    - shared kitchen & kitchenware
    - board room/living room with books, dvds and such

    It's self catered but volunteers get discounted food at the cafés and such. I think it's very reasonable. I wouldn't really expect fed on the railway's dime, though if the option was there I'd pay up to £10 a night for accommodation + similar facilities + one good meal a day, as that's about the going rate in other hobbies I've volunteered in.

    They also sometimes book out a house for people to stay in, but I've not been and therefore can't speak to that.

    Sent from my 2107113SG using Tapatalk
     
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  12. Johnb

    Johnb Resident of Nat Pres

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    Not on a preserved railway but the support coach Hilton at Stewarts Lane is adequate for the little sleep we get, especially if it's a long run the next day, showers in the building are good. Better not mention Southall!
     
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