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NRM York Regeneration

Discussion in 'National Railway Museum' started by Dan Hamblin, Jan 9, 2018.

  1. Johnb

    Johnb Resident of Nat Pres

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    I never said it was just about locomotives, although being located in an engine shed a bit of vision when they rebuilt the place could have seen a corner kept as a steam age motive power depotrepresentation
     
  2. garth manor

    garth manor New Member

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    Indeed but that hasn't helped to attract mass tourism, the NRM is in a competitive environment to secure funding, what counts ? well every region south of York attracts more tourism, numbers count to non railway enthusiasts in control of the purse, economic growth in Yorkshire is half the national average and only the northeast has lower, NI, Scotland and Wales considerably exceed Yorkshire, it is not a prosperous area. So the NRM has to regenerate, modernise, seek to remain significant within the national cultural context, otherwise it will be marginalised, lose funding and tough decisions unpopular to this audience become inevitable, its just another national museum amongst how many in Britain to the outside world and it takes a big chunk of time to get to, you can do 3 or 4 of the others in a day.
     
  3. Johnb

    Johnb Resident of Nat Pres

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    Aye it's grim up north! I would have a little bet that you come from south of the Thames and think anything north of Watford is heathen. York is a major tourist centre and is per capita is one of the more affluent cities in England. You make the mistake of using averages which is a mean between extremes, York, in terms of deprivation is a million miles from Doncaster or Hull
     
  4. Platform 3

    Platform 3 Member

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    Hasn't helped to attract mass tourism?! The NRM is the sixth most visited English museum outside of London. And your answer to lack of economic growth in the region is to move Yorkshire's most visited attraction out of the county?!

    Seriously - have you ever been to York?

    Sent from my SM-J330FN using Tapatalk
     
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  5. The Green Howards

    The Green Howards Part of the furniture Friend

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    Remind me: why did it move from Clapham? And are you seriously suggesting the RM is the only show in town in York?
     
  6. The Green Howards

    The Green Howards Part of the furniture Friend

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    Doncaster.

    Hull.

    <shudders>
     
  7. std tank

    std tank Member

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    I defy you to do the V & A, Science and Natural History Museums in a day and they are all together in Kensington, London.

    Why have you not criticized Shildon?
     
  8. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    It took me all day just to do the Natural History Museum, and I still didn't finish it!
     
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  9. std tank

    std tank Member

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    Aye, I can understand that.
     
  10. Thompson1706

    Thompson1706 Member

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    A separate food court area away from the main exhibition areas would solve some of the problem. How you would solve the employment of unsuitable personnel is the biggest problem.

    Bob.
     
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  11. The Green Howards

    The Green Howards Part of the furniture Friend

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    Same here...
     
  12. martin1656

    martin1656 Part of the furniture Friend

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    The problem isn't the location, its the policy decisions of the Science Museum group that are, York is a major Tourist attraction I would say that those who now make policy regarding the NRM have set the wrong direction and things that may work in the sterile surroundings of South Kensington will not work in York, , my view, has been, and remains that the National railway museum should not be under any other group, but a stand alone railway sector museum with its own funding and means of creating income , it should have an engineering bios, and be able to show engines in working, condition , it should be a live breathing museum , and being a rail tour hub, it should have engines that are able to stretch their legs that could use the NRM as a base to lay over, I see no reason why the NRM can not loan engines out, subject to the host railway meeting a set critea one of which should be that, that engine once restored during its ticket spends some time at York so there can be a live steam presence on the demonstration line using an NRM owned engine, or an substitute engine if its not practical
     
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  13. Jimc

    Jimc Well-Known Member

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    Didcot talk about the non-operational fleet. That seems pretty reasonable.
     
  14. Chris86

    Chris86 Member

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    I think, for me that is the problem with York, it has become too sterile and the last few times there has been no operational steam.

    I guess to appeal to families and schools it has to be that way sadly as most people don't want to visit a place that feels like a loco shed, and if they did then they would probably know about, and visit Didcot.

    The creeping in of more and more commercial/catering stuff is not really to my taste but I'm sure gives a worthwhile income stream- even my wife commented last time we visited that there seemed to be a lot of floor space dedicated to this and the museum lacked atmosphere.

    the station hall is better than the great hall as it does have some atmosphere and does a better job of displaying items more in context so has a better 'feel' to it. The Great Hall does risk feeling like Meadowhall but with a load of railway stuff kicking about.

    Chris
     
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  15. goldfish

    goldfish Part of the furniture

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    Anyone complaining that the modern NRM is ‘too sterile’ clearly never visited in the 70s, when it was like visiting a nuclear power station.

    Simon
     
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  16. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    I don’t know the precise days and dates of when they run operational steam, but the NRM did have our SE&CR P class No. 178 on loan for the best part of a year in 2017/8 so clearly they still run steam on occasions.

    Tom
     
  17. GWR4707

    GWR4707 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Funny you mention Didcot, as many of the criticisms being made about the NRM reflect those being made towards Didcot on other threads.

    Ultimately these places have to move with the times, neither are repositories for providing working steam to other heritage lines, likewise they need to move with customer requirements and the majority of those customers tend to be standard tourists looking for a good day out, often with kids, rather than possibly the enthusiasts of old. My extremely tolerant wife actually likes the NRM as there are places for her to sit down and have a brew in the warm whilst I look at stuff, likewise whilst we have never made it over there I know my 5 year old needs more than just looking at dead big pieces of metal to keep her occupied for more than an hour or so, so that's what museums have to cater for.

    Times are a changing, museums have to change with the market and if nationally funded will have all manner of criteria to adhere to, having worked on the periphery of a number of museum operations over the years they do not get changed on a whim.
     
  18. GWR4707

    GWR4707 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Do they have room to run much at York, I have never been to Shildon but I know that the FR no.20 has been a fixture up there for a few years now as operating steam (although now under overhaul in Preston).
     
  19. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator

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    The NRM is a brilliant place; it just needs to get its mojo back.

    I find it strange that more is not made of providing a ride on the demonstration line with any loco that it might borrow from a heritage line. But to do that they need to make it a feature and construct the option as an integral part of the museum rather than an 'extra' out in the yard.

    It's actually not a place that works well with thousands of visitors milling around. A balance is needed so folk can actually see the exhibits.

    On the catering front, I actually think that the arrangement in the Station Hall is good. However the organised chaos in the Great Hall leaves a lot to be desired.
     
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  20. toplight

    toplight Member

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    I think the NRM has got better in some areas for example the search Engine part where you can access drawings etc is very good.
    I also disagree with the negative comments on food there. I like the fact you can get a proper meal in the station hall part and last time I went the tables were done so you felt you were in a compartment of a carriage. No problem with the food at all.

    Location in York is good too

    The part where is has declined massively is with the Engineering/Restoration side. Closing their workshop facilities and converting it to an area for teeny tots is just madness.
    They should be able to restore (in house) a small selection of their collection to working condition as they did in the past. Maybe not for mainline running but for heritage lines and their own museum definitely, plus they should be able to do things like repaints of stuff that is on static display.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019

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