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West Somerset Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by gwr4090, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. Big Al

    Big Al Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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    And on the BBC last night was a good piece on the re-opening of the Swanage Railway that highlighted all the benefits for the local community. I know that it's a shorter line but it's an integral part of life in Purbeck much as the WSR in the Minehead/Watchet area. It's such a shame therefore that the WSR seems to be unable to get its act together and on the face of it seems a long way off from being able to do so.
     
  2. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    Did you do any due diligence?
     
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  3. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    By side stepping the question Frank, it is sure to raise 'colourful conjecture' in many minds. :D
     
  4. Sidmouth

    Sidmouth Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    Having been out Yesterday , just catching up on the thread . it seems pertinent to remind everyone to keep things civil , we are despite our differences all passionate about preservation and its continuation , especially in Somerset . All sides have reasonable points that can be considered . I hope Directors of the WSR who I know read this thread take on board the goodwill towards the railway but also that the current direction and malaise is not helping matters and change is very clearly needed
     
  5. Kylchap

    Kylchap Member

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    I live at the other end of the country so have never visited the WSR. These photos show what a wonderful scenic railway it is and also give an insight into the dedication of volunteers. I hope the railway gets back on an even keel soon, especially since I am now determined to visit it before too long.
     
  6. Steve Edge

    Steve Edge Member

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    [​IMG]

    Donation from the Peall Railway Trust

    [​IMG]

    The West Somerset Steam Railway Trust is delighted to have received a £15,000 donation from the Peall Railway Trust.

    Read more...

    Steve
     
  7. Forestpines

    Forestpines Well-Known Member

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  8. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

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    That's the Lord Berkeley who came off very much 2nd best when his expert evidence* was recently considered by a judge? Looking at that article (I can't find the report itself), I'm left decidedly unmoved at what reads like a wishlist of projects being vastly overpromoted for their readiness.

    * - other terms are available, but might break various Forum and other rules.
     
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  9. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    Apart from the Lostwithiel-Fowey line the West Somerset line upgrade seems quite cheap. Given the parlous state of the WSR that may add grist to the mill of those hoping these plans will get approval.
     
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  10. The Dainton Banker

    The Dainton Banker Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for your reply Andy, and my apologies for the delay responding (1 day and over a hundred messages !). As others have already commented you clearly had a reasonable system in place to cover the wear and tear on the locomotives. The problem, though, is that there seems to have been no provision for the replacement of track and other infrastructure. Perhaps it was expected that this would only occur on a fairly small scale at any given time and could be absorbed into the R & M budgets ? Unfortunately this has proved not to be the case and, AIUI, the Plc has now been caught with a major replacement for which it has had to draw on all its funds, including some of the loco overhaul reserves. And this before the impact of Covid !
    If I am correct then there are lessons here to be learnt by other lines who have ageing infrastructure : Make sure you are accruing funds towards the costs involved in replacement, you cannot guarantee your ability to raise large sums from appeals just when you need it.

    Mike
     
  11. Forestpines

    Forestpines Well-Known Member

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    I agree completely (and I did hunt for the copy of the report itself but couldn't find it) - this is really just a wishlist put together by two guys with very little real influence. However as @Greenway hinted it does show that if the WSR is at risk, there will be pressure from some quarters, possibly more influential quarters than just MRLG, to shut down the WSR as it is and return the line to the national network.
     
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  12. Sidmouth

    Sidmouth Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    collapse of the railway could cause a vacuum into a which a non heritage operator could happily fill
     
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  13. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Part of the furniture

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    Were the worst to happen, I suggest that reinstatement as part of the national network would be preferable to a cyclepath
     
  14. 3ABescot

    3ABescot New Member

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    I don't know about the costings, but the WSR does seem to me a potential candidate for a return to the National Network in a manner that would be compatible with the steam heritage operations. There seems (for once) to be a national political wish to restore closed lines and post-covid this could be a lifeline for routes that link main line towns to significant destinations.
    It would secure the track and enable preservation to concentrate on buildings and rolling stock.
    Whitby has shown how you can book a preserved trip alongside an NR one, while Worcester Shrub Hill shows how vintage signalling can continue to operate a busy NR junction station.
    There would be compromises of course but it seems a great opportunity to me.
    I can think of other lines where this could apply, but I've probably invited enough wrath for now...
     
  15. Big Al

    Big Al Nat Pres stalwart Staff Member Moderator

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  16. martin1656

    martin1656 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    A new possible destination for Vintage trains tours then ;) Birmingham to Minehead especially if the turntable was retained and a prep/ disposal pit and servicing road provided.
     
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  17. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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    Here we go with W.I.B.N. again!:rolleyes:
     
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  18. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    How about WIBA, Wouldn't It Be Awful...
     
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  19. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Who would pay?

    Seen from SCC’s point of view, were the line to fail, a cycle track could look attractive. Relatively low capital expenditure, almost no ongoing revenue cost while still providing an amenity for the local tourist economy. The station sites could be sold while not interrupting the primary purpose of the cycle track.

    By contrast, re-instating as part of the national rail network has horrendous capital cost, probably a requirement for ongoing revenue subsidy while still being uncompetitive with the (also Local Authority-subsidised) buses.

    If people want the Minehead - Taunton Railway to continue to exist as a railway, you’d better hope the heritage line survives, because I think if it failed, a cycle track would be the obvious thing to arise from the ashes. In that respect I completely agree with the Bailey report.

    Tom
     
  20. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

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    I think the interesting variable in this might be over who would bear liability for the coast at Doniford.
     

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