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Spa Valley Railway - Latest News

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by matt41312, Jan 15, 2014.

  1. The Gricing Owl

    The Gricing Owl Member

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    So much SR steam activity going on with the three SR heritage lines in a day's reach of me, but I'm still stuck at home on a 14 day course of antibiotics for the decades long habit of my body rapidly turning a cold into Bronchitis.

    I'm typing up timing SR steam loco logs from the 1960s for my Steam Loco memoirs book, but every so often I take a webcam break, mostly with the Spa Valley Railway, running 6 car trains at present. Thankfully still top and tailed diesel down to Eridge and currently 34072 hauling 6 cars and the diesel back up the grades to TWW. Maybe @Jonnie can say how long that will continue as it makes for superb day's visit for me with 5 uphill steam runs for photography and/or journeys. And it could be another couple of weeks before I feel up to getting across to TWW again.

    Anyway, my latest webcam break cheered me up no end. I did think about posting a screen grab of 34072 taken from the webcam, but checking the copyright I see it is for the company operating the web cam, and not the railway - so I have deleted the screen grab from my pc. Instead I've atttached a view of 34072 at Groombridge that I took in February - not quite the same view as the webcam, but a view of the steam loco in operation at the Spa Valley today.

    Bryan B

    025a-34072-on-14.15-Groombridge-4Feb-2024.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2024
  2. Jonnie

    Jonnie Member

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    It's back to a 4-car set. Was only 6 due to loadings at Easter and the Cream Teas.

    When we use 34072 in the foreseeable future on a Green day it is top and tailed as it doesn't fit in the headshunt at Tunbridge Wells West. The locos rostered all Green timetable days until 14th April when its annual exam falls due. 828 is then running, then Thomas.
     
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  3. alexl102

    alexl102 Member

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    Hey Jonnie,
    With 80078 leaving for the summer, Douglas back in Lancs and one Bulleid also going out on hire, to my mind that leaves 828 and the other Bulleid left at SpVR. Any plans to hire in another loco for the summer?
     
  4. Jonnie

    Jonnie Member

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    We usually operate with just two locos so it isn't a major issue for us, 828 and 34053 should manage but there'll be another loco in for July and August to cover for 828 when it has its annual exam.
     
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  5. 3855

    3855 Member

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    Ingrid could do a job for you.....
     
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  6. Jonnie

    Jonnie Member

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    Caledonian Railway No. 828 is operating this weekend for steam fans, I'm driving both days so feel free to say hello if you visit us. The normal green timetable is back in use so no top and tailing this weekend. Diesels are 73140 Saturday and D7535 Sunday.
     
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  7. 5944

    5944 Resident of Nat Pres

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  8. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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  9. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Resident of Nat Pres

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    I thought maybe we were planning to invade Russia and the image had been released in error.;)
     
  10. evilswans

    evilswans Member

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    Staying in the area, smith and western, so couldn’t be any closer, so thought we would try and drop in to have a look inside the shop, maybe give a donation to have a walk about…. But no this wasn’t to be, I know a Thomas event is taking place, but the gentleman at the gates point blank refused entry, even when I mentioned about giving a donation just to be able to look around the shop. But no, a firm no, unless we had event tickets we wasn’t allowed in. Shame as I always like to spend money at shop when visiting a preserved railway.

    plenty of families so clearly making some good money today and Thomas looked very smart sitting in the platform, but that was as far as my experience got with the Spa Valley Railway

    Jonnie I know you’re a busy man, but maybe a polite reminder to volunteers and staff might be helpful, the gent on the gate was borderline rude

    all the best
    Matt
     
  11. Jonnie

    Jonnie Member

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    Hi,

    I'll endeavour to speak to the volunteers (although with volunteers you can only do so much, it is a very difficult game, trust me) sorry if you felt the way you were spoken to wasn't appropriate. The reason for no entry is because the event is ticketed and licensed and is operating in the same way Polar Express does, we aren't selling tickets on the day for example. We did advertise it (as it shows now) not to visit us this weekend (or next) unless you have a ticket. We have had 1,214 people visit today and it is difficult to police, we have taken the blanket policy because some have turned up today wanting to "just see Thomas" but people have paid a fair sum of money to do that. We have had experiences at Polar of people wanting to come in then even trying to get on the train and getting a journey for free! The public will sadly try and get away with anything now.

    Sadly, due to the way of the world we cannot just admit anyone anymore especially on events like this.

    You'd be most welcome on an ordinary day but Thomas events are like other big events we do nowadays no longer just a pop in and have a look type arrangement.
     
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  12. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Part of the furniture

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    As ever, thank you, Jonnie for your engagement on this forum, it is really good to have your detailed comments.
     
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  13. The Gricing Owl

    The Gricing Owl Member

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    One for @Jonnie I guess.

    Is it possible that 34072 will be back in action at 75 F before it heads SW for a seaside holiday please?
     
  14. Sidmouth

    Sidmouth Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator

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    Why was he rude or were you pushing what was really an unreasonable request . I wouldn’t go near a line on a Thomas or polar day because I know all involved are totally occupied making sure that it operates smoothly . Why would I add a complication to it by asking for an exception for me ? Offering a donation then makes it feel like you are trying to bribe the poor volunteer who is probably stressed anyway . Then raising it on social media for all to read rather than a discrete message to the railway really is a pretty sh***y thing to do . Not being funny but if I were the volunteer I’d be tempted to not do that event in the future
     
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  15. Brunswick Green 2

    Brunswick Green 2 Member

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    Well said sir, my thoughts exactly!
     
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  16. evilswans

    evilswans Member

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    firstly I’d like to thank jonny his for reply and informing me what’s going, but again politeness cost nothing

    Now Martin,is visiting a shop a really unreasonable request and if he’d said what Jonny has since said I’d have said okay no dramas. But it was more the way he came across and the rudeness. I wasn’t pushy, it was a simple request. As to it being a sh***y thing to do. I’m awfully sorry to raise something on a discussion forum. It doesn’t normally stop anyone else in this place does it.

    anyways I’m sure I’ll be down to visit when an event isn’t on some time in the future.

    enjoy your weekend ladies and gents

    all the best
    Matt
     
  17. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Resident of Nat Pres

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    If it is an "event" I would not expect to be able to get on site without a full ticket, or a travel ticket if it is a gala like the WSR this weekend that still offers point to point ticketing as an option.
    For example MHR Gala's offer nothing but a rover ticket, would you expect to be able "to talk your way in" just to go to the shop or the cafe?
    I think your request was totally unreasonable in the first place, regardless of if the response was rude (or if you just interpreted that way) as you did not get what you wanted.
     
  18. simon

    simon Resident of Nat Pres

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    Ignoring the rights and wrongs of @evilswans actions, your example of the mhr is a poor one as you can access the full facilities at both Ropley and 4marks during galas whether or not you have a ticket ( of course excluding travel).
     
  19. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Resident of Nat Pres

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    News to me about Ropley as you have always needed a ticket to get through the gates by the footbridge at galas in my experience, and the gates off Bighton Hill are always locked during a gala.
    Certainly the other week I had to show my wristband to get back in from the car park during the day.
    MFM I agree but the bridge is a footpath, as there also is above the down platform so more difficult to restrict folks.
     
  20. Jonnie

    Jonnie Member

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    Yes, annual steam test is this Friday. Should then be back in service until it leaves for Swanage. It is then back at ours after another gala elsewhere (that is for that railway to announce, not me) and should operate alongside 34053 between 12th and 14th July before 34072 again leaves on another hire for the rest of 2024 elsewhere (not for me to announce that one either).
     
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