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Lynton and Barnstaple - Operations and Development

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

  1. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Gordon Bennett! Confused? You will be.:confused:
     
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  2. ross

    ross Member

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    Because, in charge of planning, Yoda is
     
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  3. H Cloutt

    H Cloutt Member

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    The ENPA condition states that funds must be in place for Killington Lane to Blackmoor not Lynton to Barnstaple.
     
  4. Meatman

    Meatman Member

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    something like this was planned back in 2006/7, for those of you who collect the magazines number 81 has a plan and information page 33. The trackbed across Higher Bodley farm was purchased by EA in 2009 and the plan was to extend as far as Heddon Hall where a triangular piece of land had been purchased for a runaround and temporary new terminus, those that have been in charge decided not to do this yet after 15 years of stagnation they now want to go back to Parracombe as they are all sat in the last chance saloon, there are issues with Fairview which they bought, stripped the trackbed and then sold it on without dealing with the extension and then had a chance to buy it again at a much reduced price, ideal as a general managers or volunteer accommodation, the new owners are very critical of the railways plans at present, even Killington lane bridge had been costed and plans drawn up back in 2006, if you have access please read magazines 80 - 89, not all have relative information but they show what was planned, the clock cannot be turned back but it just shows what opportunities have been missed
     
  5. Tobbes

    Tobbes Member

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    It's important to understand the history, but I do think we need to focus on where we are now: sadly, I don't have a time machine to take us back to 2007 (or 1935!) with a wad of cash.

    Everyone in the Trust, EA and the broader L&B family agrees on the goal of extending the railway as far as possible into Barnstaple and to Lynton (presumably at the new station site). To achieve this, the Wistlandpound extension, followed by Lynton at some point later (I see how little of the trackbed north of WB is owned, but I have no knowledge of what the relationships with the landowners are like up there, nor what the roads authority thinks about the plans to cross the A39 twice), before continuing south on a new formation around the reservoir and down to BF, Chelfam, Snapper and beyond, which as a single piece of work combines the Ffestiniog Deviation and the WHR's plethora of bridges north of Snowdon Ranger in terms of difficulty - the only thing the L&B will miss out on is a spiral! Oh, and lots of larger and smaller parcels of land to acquire; this is no project for the faint hearted!

    Against, this, much has been achieved, and I salute all those who have gotten us to this stage. But there's inevitably a but.

    And that but is this: based on what we know in the public domain, the ENPA Planning Permission expires next March, and therefore we need to start substantive enough works to secure that in in perpetuity. If the s73 option provides this at Bridge 65 and we do nothing else to prejudice community relations, then that is a solid win for the project, and allows us the certainty to progress the TWAO application (dates unknown) which will almost certainly mean a Public Enquiry (6-12 months?) and then, if all of that works, the CP powers required to unlock the trackbed and to fulfil the Grampian Conditions - which, Bridge 65 and the roads changes at Blackmoor Gate - seem entirely reasonable. As such, and as I've said in my input to the ENPA planners, I'm very keen on the Bridge 65 variation, but I could only support an extension to Parracombe if there was local support for it.
     
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  6. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

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    There was some speculative discussion about such an idea about 12 months ago, but still predicated on using the old station site as the actual terminus. Various potential operational issues were identified and then it 'all went quiet' until the current idea with the turntable emerged. Even that has some operational issues which appear not to have addressed yet as far as I have been able to establish.....
     
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  7. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

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    I see today (Sunday) that the website map has been altered :)
     
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  8. Penrhynfan

    Penrhynfan New Member

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    Which website of the 2 possibles? Link please!
     
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  9. CharlesBingers

    CharlesBingers New Member

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  10. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, RW. So now there are 4 stages? That suggests much, although I still cannot for the life of me see the logic, or the sudden hurry to get BM- WD constructed, let alone up and running. Is there anything at all on the grassroots grapevine about this phase?
     
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  11. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

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    I have heard nothing specific about BR-WD on the grapevine, tho' the tendrils of that beast - such as it is - don't always reach this far..... My suspicion is that it is probably one or more of the following reasons:-
    • Now the planning permission has been secured, let's get on with it so as to prove to the doubters what the railway is capable of doing and hopefully encourage more donations, grants etc
    • It will help to reassure those in the membership (and beyond) who may be doubting whether the railway is ever to expand anywhere any time soon
    • It could help to provide an additional attraction
    • It would ready to act as a 'springboard' in the event that a southwards expansion towards Bratton Fleming etc suddenly becomes feasible/desirable etc
     
  12. Tobbes

    Tobbes Member

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    So to decode this:
    • Stage 1 is just the Bridge 65 works together with the highways works at Blackmoor
    • Stage 2 is the extension into a temporary terminus at Parracombe that seems to want for local support (unsurprisingly, given the lack of parking etc at the top of the hill in Churchtown)
    • Stage 3 builds a separate railway (and as @Mark Thompson notes above) with the implication that the Trust wants to run two disconnected railways for an indeterminate period without even an obvious way to provide a shuttle bus between them, given the paucity of places to have a bus stop and turn around in Parracombe (this makes rather less than no sense to me, but I'm sure someone can explain it all.....)
    • Stage 4 completes the railway in ENPA and means that most passengers would again join the train at either WB or at Blackmoor (it's hard to see too many joining at Wistlandpound or at Parracombe, unless they're locals/staying locally as I don't see any car parking provision at either station).

    I strongly support Stage 1, as it will lock in the ENPA Planning Permission and demonstrate our ability to fundraise and responsibly construct a significant piece of infrastructure to the standards required for Devon CC to take over the permanent maintenance of it.

    I'm not convinced that Stage 2 offers much to the railway unless the local population in Parracombe are strongly supportive - do we really think that there will be significantly greater profits from the extended run? As I understand it, there aren't many (any?) examples where major extensions have been funded by farebox revenues, so why should the L&B be different?

    Even with @RailWest 's points, Stage 3 still seems very odd to me, and I'd appreciate those proposing it making a case for why it is important and how they envisiage it working. The (boring) details are critical here, like the number of volunteers required, number of carriages (do we expect to have two rakes of five gorgeous heritage coaches in the next three years from Gt. Yeldham?) and motive power (though this is probably the least concerning given the number of 2' gauge locomotives in the UK), and servicing all of the above. Otherwise, it risks looking like we lack the confidence that we will ever be able to open Stage 4.

    Stage 4: what we all want, but will need the CP powers from the TWAO process for reasons that are public, and well-known.

    What have I missed?

    (edited because I can't spell Blackmoor....)
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2022
  13. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely. Although the critical details are far from boring. Construction south from BM would be a significant drain on finance and resources needed further north. Unless the intention is to construct and then mothball for the future, I see no logic in it, beyond what RailWest stated above.
     
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  14. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

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    • >>>>Stage 1 is just the Bridge 65 works together with the highways works at Blackamoor....
    Plus the Materials Recycling Centre.

    >>>Stage 3 builds a separate railway (and as @Mark Thompson notes above) with the implication that the Trust wants to run two disconnected railways for an indeterminate period without even an obvious way to provide a shuttle bus between them, given the paucity of places to have a bus stop and turn around in Parracombe ....

    Unless you are trying to emulate a 'rail replacement' bus service to take you by train+bus from WD to WB via BR and PE, then I would suggest that any shuttle bus would be more likely to run between BR and WB. Quite how many people, having paid for their family to ride from BR to WD and back (perhaps more than once) and then partaken of the delights of the OSHI etc, would then want to take a bus to WB to ride to PE and back is another 'unknown quantity'.

    I note that one objector has submitted a very long and detailed analysis of the 'business case' behind the application. It needs much time to read and digest, but it does make for interesting reading, if only in terms of working how how best to counter each of the criticisms raised. I do hope they are not all like that!
     
  15. Tobbes

    Tobbes Member

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    Thanks, I stand corrected. Well, that sounds like a good start, and surely enough to secure the planning permission.

    I saw that too. I'm not sure how to respond to it - not least because having sent in responses to all five applications, they don't appear to have been made available. Is this a manual process meaning that they'll appear in due course, or is it suggesting that I've messed up the submission?
     
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  16. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

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    I've only had time for brief 'skim' so far, but two things caught my eye.

    Firstly, the suggestion that it was not correct to call this an 'independent' report as it was written by the L&BR's own contractor. A fair point, I suppose, but...would anyone submit a planning application that was accompanied by a report which did not support their case?

    Secondly, the claim that relaxing/removing the Grampian Conditions (GCs) would mean that the extension would never be built/finished. I would argue that the contrary might in fact be true - if you have to obey the GCs and effectively wait for goodness-how-long in order to achieve the 'optimum conditions', by then it might be too late, there would be no Phase 2A extension, and the ENPA would be left with a possible combination of Phase 1 + Phase 2B which might never achieve all the traffic and tourism benefits to be gained from the whole line restored. On the contrary, with no/reduced GCs then at least work can proceed in more manageable 'chunks' as/when resources permit - it may take longer and look initially like a series of disjointed activities, but at least it would come to a conclusion in the longer term.
     
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  17. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    I wonder whether anyone, even ENPAs planning dept, would have the resources to dig into the veracity of that mind-bogglingly complex submission, but the fact remains that they are only having to deal with a temporary variation of the existing P/Ps. Everything else is already decided, so this highly detailed, alternative "business case" is a bit of a squirrel, I think aimed to distract from the issue in hand. It looks efficient, but is it actually relevant to the requests being asked? And for every single extension of every single heritage railway, since time immemorial, I'm sure a similar document could have been produced. And yet they are all still with us, and as popular as ever, or is the L&B somehow different?
    And apart from maybe the Great Central and the Waverley route, the L&B is probably the most famous and lamented lost railway in Britain. And those 2 aforementioned are both undergoing their own revivals, so...
     
  18. H Cloutt

    H Cloutt Member

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    I think that for most local authorities - responses to planning application do not appear in realtime and generally appear in the early evening. I thing that the Local Authority may monitor them to ensure they conform to the rules before they appear on the public part of the website.
     
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  19. H Cloutt

    H Cloutt Member

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    For those who are members there is an update to the members pages today - just in case you have missed it.
     
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  20. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Shame. But the gap between the candidates is noticeably narrowing. Good to see people being recognized for their efforts on the gala, too.
     
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