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FR Press Release

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by deetooefaress, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. faurpower

    faurpower New Member

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    :smt040

    The Vintage Trains website was updated on the 30/01/09 two days before the latest announcement. Some of the senior folk involved with Vintage Trains are also involved with the FR/WHR restoration so I would guess they know something the rest of us don't. :-k
     
  2. triassic

    triassic New Member

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    Wish I was pals with them, just see my own little TOC taking the happy punters up to see the birdies all summer. Tenner a throw and a free bag of chips when they get back to Gelerts Farm. Easy money. \:D/ \:D/
     
  3. faurpower

    faurpower New Member

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    It looks like everyone is to blame for the delay.
    Network Rail for Ertms delay and crossing work.
    64co for whatever.
    Port Town council for making trouble about Britannia Bridge.
    Welsh Assembly for not coughing up the dosh.
    Badgers for being, er, badgers?
    Call me stupid if you will but if you are short of resources to finish your project is it not a little bit silly to attack people who could help you be it the 64co or the Welsh Assembly?

    But when you are £10 million pounds over budget and 4 years behind schedule what difference does the odd 250k between friends make? =P~
     
  4. triassic

    triassic New Member

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    Does seem a bit odd that the Welsh Assembly have pumped untold millions into the project and now they are arguing over a petty (by comparison) £250k. The FR upset someone?
     
  5. faurpower

    faurpower New Member

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    Who haven't they upset?
    It's one thing bullying the 64co bigger organisations might not take too kindly to it.
     
  6. ipod

    ipod New Member

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    Many thanks for that Roger.... it's worse than I was told.. 8-[
     
  7. Ben Fisher

    Ben Fisher New Member

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    We're talking about two completely separate branches of the Assembly Government; the current issue is to do with the one that deals with Trunk Roads, and not the Wales European Funding Office, which has been the largest funder for Phase 4 (BTW "untold" = 5.5, IIRC). There are probably limits to how joined-up you can expect government to be... and thankfully WAG is neither a monolith nor a single pot of money.
     
  8. SillyBilly

    SillyBilly New Member

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    The main problem with running trains is getting from Snowdon Mill to Harbour, this needs signalling, WAG haven't coughed up so the money isn't there to pay for it, a loan isn't the best idea. You can run one off trains acroos town on some special agreement thingy but not regularly. Why not just run them to the outskirts you may ask, where do you run round and off load passengers(presumably this special would be top and tailed or somthing)? WHHR you may suggest, and I would ask where have you been for the last 1/2 a year!

    Whenever the WHR is opened fully people will flock, loosing one summer only pushes the years further ahead in the future so you don't really loose much income, just it comes in later on.

    *Awaits the laughter from the 'mature' lot!*
     
  9. triassic

    triassic New Member

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    I`m guessing one of the major probs at the FR/WHR at the mo is short term cash flow, hence selling the painting and not being able to bridge the £250k financial shortfall to complete the railway. Losing a summer could be the make or break of any tourist reliant business of which the FR or any other railway is not exempt. I think it goes further than not running through trains just to say you can, and that the railway is complete but the huge loss of income from terminating at a station in the middle of nowhere rather than at the cash cow of Harbour station. Tough times ahead methinks....
     
  10. Platelayer

    Platelayer New Member

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    Hello

    I'm fairly new to this forum and to WHR (C) and WHR (P) politics but that last line seems a bit strong. Presumably, to make such a statement, you have possession of hard evidence of bullying and not just opinion.
     
  11. ipod

    ipod New Member

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    Can you define bullying in British law?.... I doubt it somehow....
     
  12. nanstallon

    nanstallon Well-Known Member

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    It seems such a shame to lose a season of full line reopening over a relatively small amount of money. This year could have been a great year for the new line, with the shrinking pound making North wales an attractive alternative to the Costas. There seems a lack of determination to overcome the small obstacles, after having come so far.
     
  13. Christopher125

    Christopher125 Member

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    I dont think there's any lack of determination behind the delay, just a lack of time and funds to finish quickly enough arguably the most complex section of heritage line in the country.

    Chris
     
  14. Neil_Scott

    Neil_Scott Member

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    I am sure I am not the only one who sees the FR press release as an attempt to put pressure on the relevant body to find the money to pay the WHR Contruction company. It seems a rather simple and clever political trick to make a statement like this and hope that the money is found and lo-and-behold in July the first through trains will start running because the work needed wasn't as great as first assumed once the remaining sum of money was paid.
     
  15. Miff

    Miff Well-Known Member

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    I doubt it. Even if the money is forthcoming it is probably too late for the company to change their plans and timetables again. Can you think of any examples, in the heritage railway sector, where devious (if you are right) tactics of this sort have worked?

    It is clear from previous announcements about redundancies, selling paintings etc that the FR Co. is short of cash therefore cannot start certain contracts until the money comes in whether from the Trunk Roads Agency or some other source. If the agency is just slow at paying their bills then it is possible they might be shamed into action. However if they are questioning their share of the costs (and they might be right to if costs were higher than originally anticipated - this is public money) then the dispute will need to be resolved through the appropriate contractual or legal channels taking as long as it takes.
     
  16. ipod

    ipod New Member

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    I agree with you, but thinking about it, it's not really that clever. What it does show is that the FR have failed to obtain a payment from WAG and they now hove nothing to loose by telling the world about it.
    The FR call the work "flood damage repairs to a river bank" and WAG call it "the construction of a bridge abutment and associated work to carry a new railway." But as we are aware, the FR rarely fail to get what they want and if WAG don't back-down on this, I will be very surprised indeed.

    Ether way all this drama is publicity and the FR currently seem to have a target on how many mentions in the press they can achieve in any said week, good or bad news, it doesn't matter one bit.
    Undoubtedly, the media will be used for a specific purpose…. the FR need to get the WHR message across and what better tool is there than a bit of controversy?
     
  17. meeee

    meeee Member

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    On the contrary if the WAG have any idea how unpopular the WHR project (not the 64co i might add) is with the locals then they might well say no. It seems to me that the FRco is biting the hand that feeds it.

    Still i don't care if it delays the WHR it means we get one more summer of running a 3 train service on the FR before all our coaches disappear off to that railway that "will be of no detriment to the FR" \:D/

    Tim
     
  18. pete2hogs

    pete2hogs Member

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    It's unpopular with _some_ locals - the WHR always has been due to the fact that it was originally (part) funded through the rates and other such ancient history (and they don't see any difference between the 64co and the FR - if the 64co was building it they'd be just as unhappy). There are also those who were hoping to get the land for free...

    There are long memories around here.

    On the other hand, a lot of the locals are very much in favour of it and looking forward to riding on it when completed, as well as earning money from it in various ways. You only have to look at the numbers of locals on the Halloween and Santa trains to see how popular it is - unfortunately this is not a wealthy part of the world, and so their net contribution to revenue is small, but don't tell me they are travelling on it because they don't like it!

    Sniping at the FR for cost overruns etc is an argument from ignorance - there have been a lot of outside unpredictable effects from badgers to foot and mouth. The last issue alone cost about 18 months worth of progress.

    Dealing with the Welsh Assembly is very difficult, not least because it seems to be in a constant state of flux, and I know from personal experience that funds promised do not always appear, at least not at the time or in the form originally stated.
     
  19. SillyBilly

    SillyBilly New Member

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    What Tim says about the FfR being better off for traffic I also think is a good thing, these people will now be reading a proper heritage railway.
    In simples, Gwynedd Council attempted to repair the rataining wall, but it was clear to them that a much more substantial re-construction was needed, so they put some piles in and left it. The WHRCL needed it fixed to start building the railway, so they offered/were approached to do it at WAG's expense.
     
  20. Neil_Scott

    Neil_Scott Member

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    Sure, but the WHR is a great advert for tourism in Wales and if it is public knowledge that after the millions spent by the Welsh Assembly, that the completion of the railway is being held up by a dispute with TRA over something ,quite minor in comparison with the whole works, then it might put some pressure on the TRA to find the money and allow the WHR to be ready for the summer season.
     

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