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RTC 2022

Discussion in 'What's Going On' started by 1020 Shireman, Nov 12, 2021.

  1. ficksberglion

    ficksberglion New Member

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    6233 heading through Stafford on the fast line.


    46233 Stafford-NP.jpg
     
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  2. tilling

    tilling New Member

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    Please may I publish this on the prclt facebook page?
     
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  3. ficksberglion

    ficksberglion New Member

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    Yes no problem, except perhaps that I'm not on Facebook.
     
  4. Deepgreen

    Deepgreen Well-Known Member

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    Surprised to see any visible steam in these temperatures. A very fine shot.
     
  5. 1020 Shireman

    1020 Shireman Part of the furniture Friend

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    This came into my mailbox teatime:

    With regards to your booking on our West Somerset Steam Express on Saturday 23rd July please accept our apologies for the delay in receiving your tickets.
    We are awaiting a decision from Network Rail regarding the use of steam haulage for this coming weekend, at present steam is prohibited on the main line due to the recent heat wave. This is currently being reviewed.
    Once a decision is made, we will update you accordingly and issue you with your tickets and timings.
    We would appreciate your patience and understanding at this time as we deal with the situation.
     
  6. Big Al

    Big Al Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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    A tricky one to call. It may be less hot but it's still as dry. Where the weather is more predictably dry and hot such as in Oz steam just doesn't run in certainly parts during particular months. We are lucky that in the UK, at present, there are not automatic 'closed' seasons.
     
  7. 1020 Shireman

    1020 Shireman Part of the furniture Friend

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    You're right Al. But here we are, 0915 on Thursday with no idea what's happening. Not great for folk with hotel bookings or advanced tickets on trains. If there's no 'proper steam' we'll just write it off. More worrying is the Royal Duchy on the 31st as there's little likelihood of rain before then. We aren't destination folk so things are getting concerning with the number of seats we book to try to stay as 'covid safe' as possible.
     
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  8. Big Al

    Big Al Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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    I still find it amazing that people are relaxed about travel in crowded trains. We recently attended (briefly) an event at a golf club in an airy room. It turned out to be a super spreader and whilst we were fine many tested positive including the hostess. One person was seriously ill for over a week.

    Following our passion seems to have become very expensive and not just because of the doubling of the price of coal.
     
  9. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Part of the furniture

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    This is of course in the hands of NR not RTC, but I would think after, (what was a highly rare day on Tuesday) it would take a brave person to say OK, not because of their own infrastructure particularly, but how something could spread to adjacent land very quickly,
    Also the risk to steam on the mainline going forward would be serious if that did occur.
    But for those with tickets then I hope it does work out for them.
     
  10. Johnb

    Johnb Resident of Nat Pres

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    People have become complacent, I travel down to S London on the Overground regularly and often I’m the only one wearing a mask. It’s not a great protection but it helps.
     
  11. Alexbrown123

    Alexbrown123 New Member

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    Just got my tickets for West Somerset steam express.

    No surprise really diesel hauled to bishops Lydeard but double headed down to Minehead so not all lost.
     
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  12. 1020 Shireman

    1020 Shireman Part of the furniture Friend

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    This is the email in full. No mention of any kind of refund.

    With regards to your booking on our West Somerset Steam Express on Saturday 23rd July we are writing to advise that Network Rail, despite their freight and charter department initially expecting acceptance of steam haulage with diesel assistance to be allowed on our train on Saturday, they advised yesterday afternoon, shortly after we had received the official timings that two regional managers within Network Rail had objected to their plans. Both ourselves and our operating company have fought to have this decision overturned, and we have even escalated the issue to the chairman of Network Rail.

    Unfortunately our efforts have been met with much resistance and the current steam prohibit remains in place. Due to steam not being permitted on the main line we are left with no option other than to run diesel hauled from London Paddington to Bishops Lydeard in both directions.
    The section on the West Somerset Railway, from Bishops Lydeard to Minehead and return will be steam hauled, using two of their steam locomotives.

    We acknowledge that this change will undoubtedly cause you disappointment for which we apologise, please be assured that we have worked tirelessly to overturn the decision. We hope that you understand the circumstances surrounding the situation which is due to the current weather conditions and the enforced ban, both of which are completely outside of our control.

    Your boarding pass/tickets with the timings has been despatched today, by email or post, should you not receive this please contact us and we will confirm your seat number and the final timings for the train over the telephone on 01553 661500.
    Should you need to contact us to discuss your booking, we ask that you are patient with our team at this time.

    Kind regards
    The Railway Touring Company

    Not true that there was no option other than to run diesel hauled. Could have cancelled it or offered a transfer to the second WSE for folk who don't do diesels or even the 'expected' Show Pony Steam.
     
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  13. banana patch

    banana patch New Member

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    11 15 now
    Couldn't agree more and it doesn't look good for any mainline steam in the near future at least West Somerset part will be steam hauled though
     
  14. free2grice

    free2grice Part of the furniture Friend

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    A difficult but sensible decision by NR to continue the steam ban. No significant rain forecast in the Somerset area for the next 5 days. We had 25 mins of rain yesterday, the ground was bone dry within an hour.

    Can you imagine the uproar and backlash by the public and media if a fire resulting in devastation to fields and property was caused by a main line steam loco . <BJ>
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2022
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  15. gricerdon

    gricerdon Well-Known Member

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    Whilst there has been some rain and temperatures are down the ground is still bone dry and I can’t say I can disagree with the NR decision. I saw this coming in the long range weather forecast so transferred my booking to 13th August. Even that looks doubtful so it may be autumn before I get my first main line steam this year
     
  16. MellishR

    MellishR Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    It happens occasionally that a trip which was scheduled to run with steam cannot do so, for one reason or another (FTR failure, gauging, weather). In that situation there is no right answer. Running the trip with a diesel will cause upset, but so would cancelling at short notice for those who have booked connecting travel and/or accommodation.

    However running with a diesel must be somewhat cheaper for the TOC than running with steam. They could pass that saving on to RTC who could pass it on to the people who are booked on the trip. RTC could also offer those people a discount on future trips.
     
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  17. bleeder4

    bleeder4 Member

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    As others have said, cancelling at this late notice would be a massive inconvenience to passengers, many of whom have probably made travel arrangements and cleared their diaries for this. Running it diesel-hauled and offering some partial refunds to passengers would be far preferable to cancelling it outright with less than 48 hours notice.
     
  18. RalphW

    RalphW Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    Had anyone actually been in touch with RTC to see if a full or partial refund is available?
     
  19. AMP

    AMP Member

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    Yes and no it isn't.

    Andrew
     
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  20. MellishR

    MellishR Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    If they are saving a bit of cost but passing none of that saving to the customers, they are thus making slightly more money from the trip at the same time as causing disappointment. That is not good customer relations.
     
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