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GWSR Broadway Developments

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by Breva, Aug 1, 2014.

  1. AndyY

    AndyY Member

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    It's excellent news that the railway have regained the use of that land.
     
  2. Andy B

    Andy B Member

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    An email has just released the 2019 passenger figures which stand at 125,000. Considering 2018 and the opening to broadway and a record 144,000 passengers its great news. People have talked of a 25% drop the year after opening new extensions On other railways so it’s good to see we haven’t dropped this far.
    2020 is going to be an expensive year with continued civil engineering issues along with keeping up with completion of things like the new mess block (looking mighty fine to be honest) and continued development of toddington yard and broadway station. Thanks for all of you that have visited us this year, we look forward to seeing you soon. In the meantime keep reading those blogs!!
     
  3. John Petley

    John Petley Well-Known Member

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    That's great news and a more positive way of viewing these figures is to consider that they are roughly 25% higher than the best year before the Broadway extension opened. It's good that now things have settled down after the euphoria of the actual reopening, passenger numbers are still so positive.
     
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  4. Chuffington

    Chuffington New Member

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    Hopefully there are some plans to prevent caravans taking over the garden centre car park while the redevelopment goes ahead, I would have thought that is the last thing they want on their hands!
     
  5. nigelss

    nigelss New Member

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    Does anyone know how the cafe at Broadway Station performed in the last operating period? I seem to recall that it was not going to be a cafe to start with and it took some jumping up and down to get that decision changed. I do hope it has been well used and hope to get there one of these years.
     
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  6. Breva

    Breva Well-Known Member

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    I believe the takings are above average, particularly since they got their alcohol licence. Custom is a bit feast and famine. Quiet between trains, a queue out of the door if a coach party turns up.
    They could do with more catering volunteers, if any one fancies helping.

    Since we got the garden centre site back, the opportunity for bigger retail space has shifted to Toddington. In any case it is agreed that the current shop will vacate the former booking office, so that we can restore it to its original function (and for which we purchased two crowd barrier columns in anticipation). The current ticket window on the platform is not authentic, and was put there in a plain window in the very early days. Behind it is currently the booking office, but in reality that should be the first class waiting room (unique along the line, probably aimed at Stanway House)
    I can't wait to restore that. We have however no idea what it was ever like inside. Stanway House can't help either. In my 8 years with the GWSR now I have only ever met one original person who remembers what the inside of a station was like. There not many such persons left now.
     
  7. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    I too am really looking forward to watching that come together. Given that by the time our line was built everything was being built to a standard design and it was fairly late on, I wonder if either the Swindon or NRM archives might have anything of help? Perhaps some photographs, drawings or descriptions, not necessarily of Toddington, but other similar designs. I guess knowing of other stations built to a similar design that also got a first class waiting room might be a helpful starting point too.
     
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  8. Breva

    Breva Well-Known Member

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    Can anyone help?
     
  9. toplight

    toplight Member

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    Yeah you should contact Chris Valkoinen at the NRM to see what they have. His email is chris.valkoinen@nrm.org.uk and also send to Copy.service@railwaymuseum.org.uk as it is the group email for search engine drawings part of the NRM. As a start ask him what they have and he might send you a list. I have got lots coach drawings from them over the years but not sure what they have for buildings. It may well be that there a drawings for other similar stations, if there isn't one for Toddington.

    You can take pot luck and just fill in their order form and order from the list or alternatively you can go to York and see them first, but you need to tell them a week in advance what day you are going and give them a list of what drawings you want to see, so they can get them out ready for you. I have only done that once but they have a nice room where you can look. Apparently you can take photos of them for free or its about £30 per drawing if you order. If it has been scanned previously then it is a bit cheaper I think.

    I would recommend you choose the option of a downloadable file rather than a paper copy of any drawing because then you can print it as much as you want and it is also a bit cheaper.

    At the steam museum I don't think they have any drawings but they do have quite a lot of photos of stuff that might be of help. Again you can arrange to go and have a look.

    I understand Network Rail also have a lot of drawings of structures as they still need them to maintain their network, but I have no idea who you would contact about that. Perhaps start with their website.
     
  10. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Apparently they do have some station drawings: "Included within the archive are the plans and drawings (around 3,500 individual pieces), including plans and drawings relating to locomotives, rolling stock, stations, workshops."
     
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  11. toplight

    toplight Member

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    I did go to the Steam museum years ago to look for coach stuff but they didn't have coach drawings, only photos, but the situation may be different with regards to station drawings, don't know. With the photos it was very much mostly loco and Swindon works pictures and most had already been printed lots of times in various books as I guess every author has trawled through before. Thing is to contact them to ask.
     
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  12. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    I've just read of the sad news of Bill Britton's passing: https://friendsofbroadwaystation.blogspot.com/2020/01/general-maintenance-and-sad-loss.html

    I regret our paths did not cross very often but on the occasions they did he always struck me as a generous individual. He was instrumental in rebuilding the site at Broadway, and, less often credited, starting up the network of blogs that report the activities on the GWSR so well. He's certainly earned his place in GWSR history, RIP.
     
  13. ghost

    ghost Well-Known Member

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    RIP Bill. It was Bill's blog at the start of the Broadway project that first caught my eye and I followed them (and Jo's worthy successor) ever since! The gwsr and Broadway in particular owe a great deal to Bill. Maybe a suitable memorial plaque could be placed somewhere at Broadway to remember his efforts?

    Keith
     
  14. Breva

    Breva Well-Known Member

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    We have tried to avoid plaques at Broadway, in order to keep the station authentic.
    Plaques can be included in the GWRT memorial building at Toddington.

    I too was attracted to the GWSR through Bill's blog, and followed it from afar until I was able to return to the UK and get stuck in. Bill facilitated a great atmosphere on the Broadway build. He was a gentleman too.
     
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  15. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    It was Bill Britton's regular blogs which got me hooked on the Broadway project, too. He sounds like a wonderful man.
    'Si monumentum requiris circumspice" should apply, for there could be none better.
     
  16. jnc

    jnc Well-Known Member

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    I've been thinking about this; I hope you won't be offended if I respectfully don't agree!

    I start with the thought that memorial plaques would have been something that one might have seen in a GWR station BITD (perhaps to staff who'd been killed in WWI/II; I don't recall offhand of an example, perhaps someone who knows more will know of one). Perhaps the GWR had a policy against plaques; if so, please ignore the rest of this! But if not, then a plaque would not be ahistorical (as in, something one would never have seen there BITD, like, say, an LED sign).

    If so, the only argument against it I can think of would be 'but there wasn't one there BITD'. But the stations did change over their lives, they weren't frozen in aspic. So again, making small changes over the life of a station isn't ahistoric. Am I missing an important point? If so, please enlighten me, because I can't see any others (although I suppose a lack of recognition of others who contributed greatly, who've since passed on, would be one - although perhaps the correct inscription could fix this).

    If one were resolutely against anything that wasn't there BITD, what about the kitchen and tea room? (I personally don't have any problem with them, mind; I understand the need for them, and the value - as long as the visible fixtures, décor etc are as they would have been BITD.) But they do serve to show that such decisions are trade-offs, with historical accuracy balanced against other factors.

    I understand, sympathize with and support the desire for historical authenticity. But the 'new' Broadway is a thing with a life of its own, and if GWR stations ever did have memorial plaques, I personally would like to see one to commemorate his massive contribution to the line (and here, in the middle of his greatest accomplishment, to educate visitors, not off at Toddington); to me, the trade-off of 'but it wasn't there BITD' seems to be worth it.

    Having read this, you perhaps will still disagree - which is fine. But if so, I'd be curious as to what your thinking is, as to what I have missed.

    Noel
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2020
  17. AndyY

    AndyY Member

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    BITD? An acronym too far.
     
  18. ghost

    ghost Well-Known Member

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    And to use it 6 times in one post must be some kind of record!!

    Keith
     
  19. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    BITD = “Back in the day” I assume.

    Tom
     
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  20. jnc

    jnc Well-Known Member

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    'Back in the day'.

    I thought it was a common enough expression that it didn't need to be expanded on first use (I'm too lazy to type all those chars) but I guess not; lesson learned.

    Noel
     

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