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Lynton and Barnstaple - Operations and Development

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by 50044 Exeter, Dec 25, 2009.

  1. MellishR

    MellishR Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    Meanwhile we need to make our personal decisions whether to help EA to acquire some more trackbed, while it is available, by buying shares. It looks very straightforward for those who are already shareholders from the Bratton Fleming fund raising or before, somewhat less so for anyone who is not already a shareholder.
     
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  2. ianh

    ianh Member

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    Decision made BACS it is then.... fortunatly setup for the Bratton Fleming Purchase
     
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  3. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Just to let you know, Ive just emailed EA, summarising what has been discussed today, and requesting they open a charitable arm, as they are losing potential donors. Be interesting to see what they say
     
  4. Meatman

    Meatman Member

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    Three of EA's directors have been involved with this railway for 30+ years,firstly when it was an association and then as it became a trust,they were instrumental in putting into place the purchase of Woody Bay Station,laying the running line to bridge 67,getting bridge 67 built by Nuttals at no cost to the railway and extending down to Killington lane,all with very little money available to them at the time,in fact they have been involved with the purchase of all the stations now owned,after getting the railway down to Killington lane they decided to take a back seat from the day to day running of the railway because of the commuting distance from the south east, but to carry on with the already set up Exmoor Associates ,which was always intended to be a quiet little company ticking over in the background raising funds for trackbed purchases along the length of the line but subsequently,at the request of the trust,only concentrating south of Blackmoor gate,however,one of the earlier land purchases was trackbed between Killington lane and Parracombe lane with the hope that it would be used to extend the railway down to Parracombe halt some 14 years ago,obviously the current directors of the L&BR had bigger plans to go to Blackmoor in one big push,something we are all still waiting for.
    Meanwhile EA has been ticking over in the background,selling shares so that one hundred percent of what they make is used for purchasing the all important pieces of trackbed as they come on the market,that is until Bratton Fleming Station came on the market,EA approached the Trust asking as to whether they would be looking to purchase the site to which their answer was NO,so EA was put in a position where they had to try and raise a serious amount of money in a very short time for the purchase and this was achieved with the generosity of so many of you and others but it did also deplete the coffers of EA when making up the shortfall necessary for the purchase,on the back of this we were offered the stretch of trackbed in question that we are trying to raise funds for,whilst many of you would prefer a simple click and go option such as just giving it does incur a handling fee and because its a donation its also liable to 20 percent tax which in the case of Bratton Flemings 'just giving' fund could be in the region of 5k, whereas every penny put into buying shares can be used.
    The purchase of BFS is the biggest that EA has made and has highlighted the fact that the company has to and is looking at ways to move forward but this will take a little time to get right,its a little saddening that some of you cant spare 5 minutes to set up a bacs payment,after all its not just EA who will mist out on a donation simply because there is no 'quick click'option,its also the railway itself
     

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  5. Breva

    Breva Well-Known Member

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    Well said, hear-hear!
     
  6. ross

    ross Member

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    Sorry if this is delusional....
    Sometimes a spare £100 is not manageable. I see on Mr Meatman's attached screenshot that one can pay in instalments, which might solve that. There is still the question of those folks who are generally supportive of the L&B, and would right now, chuck £10 or £20 quid into the pot, but are unlikely to ever hand over £100 to Exmoor Associates.
    Might there be a way that the L&B, which I believe benefits from charity status, could have a virtual "bucket" to collect funds with which to buy EA shares. Would that be a way to accommodate the impulsive purchasers, still claim the tax back, and remain within the law?
     
  7. Old Kent Biker

    Old Kent Biker Member

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    Another small step forward for the L&B, NDC has granted planning permission for volunteer accommodation at Chelfham. See http://dlvr.it/RrBQpf
    The new facility will replace an existing dilapidated building - Just as well, as I seem to recall, last time I saw it, there was a tree growing out of the roof!
     
  8. MartinBall

    MartinBall Guest

    This indeed should be a way forward but, as some of you may have read between the lines of Mr Meatman's message, there is not fully cordial relations between the two entities (though much better than was once the case). If EA won't consider this, then treating JustGiving (or equivalent) funds as donations towards shares (and letting all donors know that in advance) to be held by a nominated individual who is approved by the Directors is another way round the problem. For, not only may many donors not want a share or want to commit to £100, but JustGiving does not give details other than names of donors, so one cannot contact them anyway about shares or anything else.
    For all those "if you really supported EA you'd take the time blah blah", all I can say is, like it or not, you'd be losing a whole big chunk of change if you disregards the one-click donors ....
     
  9. Old Kent Biker

    Old Kent Biker Member

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    If EA were so minded, and the wording on the JustGiving page was clear that all monies would be donated to EA for the specific purpose of purchasing this trackbed, but if the deal did not go ahead, any funds would be used for a specific alternative (unallocated EA shares for future trackbed purchase, maintenance funds, reconstruction, or whatever) so there is no problem with the need for donations to be traced and repaid, it should be possible to set this up quite quickly, but that would have to be for EA directors to decide. As you say, this could raise a considerable amount for EA funds, as was seen with BF.
     
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  10. Breva

    Breva Well-Known Member

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    I understand they are looking into the charitable angle, they are listening, but these things take time.
     
  11. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Quite. The principal issue seems to be that before any such changes could take place, the company would need to obtain a consensus from the existing shareholders first.
     
  12. The Dainton Banker

    The Dainton Banker Well-Known Member

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    As a "one-click donor" I have to agree with Martin. I am quite happy to contribute something towards the project, as many of us did with the BF appeal, but my available funds are limited and, in any case, I have no wish to become a shareholder.
    I am not clear on why there is now a problem here. When the possibility of purchasing BF came up EA made an appeal for funds, which we responded to rapidly, enabling the company to clinch the deal. Of course the collecting agency takes a small percentage but this should be costed into the appeal in the beginning. (And, in any case, is it not tax deductible ?) What is different this time ?
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2021
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  13. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    I don't understand how EA were able to benefit from the Just Giving page to the tune of £25.5K for BF station, but somehow it is no longer possible to do the same for this piece of trackbed. What has changed? Could someone involved with EA or the L&B please explain the situation?
    Even if JG takes 10% that's still nearly£23K that they wouldn't have had otherwise. Whatever a JG page would raise, surely 90% of that total is better than 0%
     
  14. Penrhynfan

    Penrhynfan New Member

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    Don't donations have the benefit to EA that they pay the costs once (the JG percentage) but a shareholder costs money to support with copies of accounts and other legal stuff?
     
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  15. The Dainton Banker

    The Dainton Banker Well-Known Member

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    My thoughts also. There are ongoing costs to servicing shareholders every year whereas donations are a one-time cost (if any !). One of the reasons I prefer not to take up shareholdings.
    Probably a good case for discussion on a separate thread as it crops up on many railways from time to time.
    Mike
     
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  16. ross

    ross Member

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    The L&B, and EA have a reputation for being good with money. They have managed a lot with relatively little. Being somewhat late in the game compared with the majority of preserved railways, they have been trying to persuade people, whose loyalties and commitments lie elsewhere, to pay up in support.
    I can understand why they do not want to miss out on gift aid. I can understand why they do not want to give any percentage to a click service. In the case of Bratton Fleming station, it was something of an emergency situation. If the station and section of trackbed had been sold to a private owner, it might have been lost to the railway for half a century or more, requiring an expensive, and likely opposed, deviation. If a wealthy existing objector had bought the station, or persuaded another party to purchase to strengthen their case against the rebuilding, what then? That being the case, I think the wisdom of EA's 'raise the money at any cost' strategy is plain to see.
    Maybe EA could offer a "20% of a share to be held by a proxy" for those who cannot commit to £100
     
  17. Penrhynfan

    Penrhynfan New Member

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    That sounds complicated and involving more admin.

    Come on EA! Just accept my £20 or whatever even if it costs you a small percentage.
     
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  18. The Dainton Banker

    The Dainton Banker Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, Ross, I can't follow your logic. Nobody is arguing that EA should not have used a 'raise the money at any cost' strategy. I agree that the BF station was a special case, this was well understood and was why many of us donated. It seems there is now a further opportunity to purchase some track-bed and, again, we would not want it to fall into other hands. So why not accept all donations and complete the deal ?
    You say "I can understand why they do not want to miss out on gift aid" but share purchases will not qualify for Gift Aid and neither will donations as EA are not a charity. As for the cost of the "click service" Just Giving charge under 2% not the 10% some seem to think and other models are available. Surely worthwhile to achieve the object ?
     
  19. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    Also worth remembering that JustGiving is good for a specific appeal, but incurs (or at least did last time I looked) ongoing membership costs while the account remains open and takes time to set up.

    I'm considering my position on another regular donation, which might lead me to switching that donation in this direction. The ability Gift Aid my donation is a factor (I'm a higher rate taxpayer, so it has benefits to me as well as the charity), as are the ongoing costs of servicing shareholdings rather than just taking cash gifts, but it will ultimately be the merits of the cause that will ensure - or not - my commitment.

    However, while I think there is room for EA to improve how they operate, I'm also minded to consider what they've achieved with a softly, softly approach and without Gift Aid etc. They're entitled to some slack, and the time to work things out.
     
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  20. D1039

    D1039 Part of the furniture

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