If you register, you can do a lot more. And become an active part of our growing community. You'll have access to hidden forums, and enjoy the ability of replying and starting conversations.

West Somerset Railway General Discussion

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

  1. ikcdab

    ikcdab Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    Messages:
    313
    Likes Received:
    1,112
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    WSSRT Trustee
    Location:
    Taunton
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    Yes I am an active volunteer
    I do agree with this very much. "Good" people can make a success out of a poor system or structure. However, no matter how good your systems or structure, if you don't have "good" people, then it will fail.
    Please note my term "good". This is shorthand for well motivated, energised, supported and committed individuals.
    Ian C
     
    jnc and Greenway like this.
  2. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    Messages:
    15,217
    Likes Received:
    12,286
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Grantham
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    I agree. However, there are two important corollaries. First is that a poorly conceived structure can make it difficult or impossible for those "good" people to meet their potential. Second is that the context in which those "good" people work will be very considerably framed by the culture established at the time that the structure is set up.

    It is clear to me that the structure of the WSR over my lifetime has significantly constrained the ability of those in the WSR to achieve the full potential of the WSR. It is also clear to me that, if even a small part of what is said here and elsewhere about the way in which the WSR is run has any truth in it, there is a grave risk of investing time, effort and energy into structural reform that will entrench what is present today rather than provide the basis for a culture that is geared towards long term success.

    The politics of and around the WSR have been a farce. For the attempts to solve the politics to entrench some of the worst aspects of the WSR, in the process undermining it's chances of long term success and guaranteeing further recriminations and politicking, would be to descend from farce to tragedy.

    I am a fan of Wagner's Ring cycle. The central tragedy of the Ring is the attempt of Wotan to have the power of the Rhinegold but without having to suffer the costs of Alberich's curse. The result of his failed attempts to achieve this impossible feat is, quite literally, the end of the world. To draw a parallel, I suggest the WSR is currently somewhere in the general area of the Gibichung's Hall.
     
  3. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,605
    Likes Received:
    4,749
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    West Country
    Do I hear the strains of 'Ride of the Valkyries' coming from Stogumber ? :)

     
  4. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    Messages:
    6,713
    Likes Received:
    4,919
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Thorn in my managers side
    Location:
    72
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer

    Wheres the helicopters?
     
    Diamond Gaz and echap like this.
  5. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    Messages:
    15,217
    Likes Received:
    12,286
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Grantham
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    A bit late in the cycle for that. The Gibichung Hall is rather a dark place, and the exit is into Siegfried's Funeral March
     
  6. Bayard

    Bayard Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Messages:
    1,294
    Likes Received:
    2,768
    Gender:
    Male
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    It is also important not to have a situation, as we have at the moment, where potential new blood gets the following impression "I suspect anyone taking it on would find many new and baroque ways to define the term poisoned chalice. " as @Jamessquared so memorably put it. The terms "snake pit" and "nest of vipers" also spring to mind.
     
    MellishR and 35B like this.
  7. The Dainton Banker

    The Dainton Banker Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2014
    Messages:
    1,021
    Likes Received:
    1,783
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Over the hills and far away
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    I'd have thought that old Somerset anthem "Thee's Gott'n where thee cassnt back'n hassnt un? " would be more appropriate ! :rolleyes:
     
  8. martin1656

    martin1656 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2014
    Messages:
    14,304
    Likes Received:
    8,662
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    St Leonards
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    Where's Harrison ford when you need him he always seems to end up surrounded by snakes, but some how gets out alive,
    Who ever gets to drink out of that poisoned chalice , had better have the antidote close to hand. the problem with any top down solution, s it's depending on those at the top to act in a non selfish manner, and any bottom up solution, equally, is dependent on the pitchfork wielding mob to not want vengeance, more than justice.
     
  9. Bionic_Woman

    Bionic_Woman New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2020
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    47
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    North of Somerset
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    I love the smell of diesel in the morning......
     
  10. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    Messages:
    6,713
    Likes Received:
    4,919
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Thorn in my managers side
    Location:
    72
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    It smells to me the scent of victory
     
  11. Bayard

    Bayard Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Messages:
    1,294
    Likes Received:
    2,768
    Gender:
    Male
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    Shouldn't that be coal smoke?
     
    Bionic_Woman likes this.
  12. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,605
    Likes Received:
    4,749
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    West Country
    ...or even white smoke from the chimney of the meeting room of the next PDG session :)
     
  13. MellishR

    MellishR Part of the furniture Friend

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2009
    Messages:
    5,548
    Likes Received:
    3,230
    Well they did agree about something at the last meeting, though we're still waiting to learn essential details such as how and when.
     
  14. Partnership Development Group minutes attached. Tellingly, discussion about WSR re-structuring is headed ‘Restructuring the PLC’.

    As with the Shareholder Consultation document, there is no mention whatsoever as to how either of the existing charities and their members might become an integral part of the proposed new overarching charity.
     

    Attached Files:

    Keith Sims and Steve Edge like this.
  15. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    Messages:
    6,713
    Likes Received:
    4,919
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Thorn in my managers side
    Location:
    72
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer

    Does the WSRA have a view on this?

    The curent WSSRT view is clearly that they wish to remain a separate organisation.
     
    Greenway and Steve Edge like this.
  16. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,605
    Likes Received:
    4,749
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    West Country
    Noted in Item 6:-

    John Bailey indicated that there was a confidence challenge in moving forward.
    The holder of the lease and the operating licensee would be in control of whatever evolution would be taking place.

    Says it all, really:-(

    Surely the control should rest with the PDG or some other entity independent of any individual component of the 'railway family'?
     
  17. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2014
    Messages:
    10,465
    Likes Received:
    15,725
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Barrister
    Location:
    Stogumber
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    Yes I am an active volunteer
    That might be the view of the present WSSRT Trustees. The members havent been asked yet.

    Robin
     
  18. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    Messages:
    6,713
    Likes Received:
    4,919
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Thorn in my managers side
    Location:
    72
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    No I do not currently volunteer
    More to the point though, what is the WSRA view?
     
  19. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2014
    Messages:
    10,465
    Likes Received:
    15,725
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Barrister
    Location:
    Stogumber
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    Yes I am an active volunteer
    The WSRA made the view of its Trustees on the restructuring proposals public some time ago.

    https://www.wsra.org.uk/2020/06/?cat=1

    Robin
     
  20. Andy Norman

    Andy Norman Part of the furniture

    Joined:
    May 14, 2015
    Messages:
    675
    Likes Received:
    3,809
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Nr Bridgwater, Somerset
    Heritage Railway Volunteer:
    Yes I am an active volunteer
    Thanks Barrie an interesting read, this sentence caught my attention "the success of the new charity would depend on acquiring the freehold of the line from SCC as without it, the charity could not raise capital against the asset".

    So as well as:
    • Convincing all the PLC Shareholders to give up their shares for a simple membership of a new charity.
    • Getting the members of the 2 charities to give up all their charities assets, land, stock, cash, etc. to the new 3rd charity.
    • Inventing a new charity which the PLC themselves said would cost a six figure sum and could not happen until a clear revenue stream was in place which would take X years only a month ago.
    • Changing the status of the PLC when they have been saying you can't change it because it will mean the LRO could be lost.
    Now the PLC are also saying the new charity must own the freehold or it will fail.

    This of course also adds another very big task in taking the 3rd Charity and then 1 route (in itself looking more like a hostile take over bid than anything else others are doing) in side-stepping SCC's tripe lock and stated intent that all parties on the WSR would have to agree and that the freehold should be placed in a separate ring fenced entity keeping it safe for future generations. The freehold being tied into a new charity with the PLC as its operating arm is full of future risks if either get into trouble.

    Its looking less and less realistic let alone that this whole agenda is being driven by a confrontational PLC which just makes it more unpalatable for many on the WSR.

    I think its also interesting that the District Councillor was not mentioned in the apologies for not attending only that Steve Williams was briefing him, so I assume he is no longer involved, and its unfortunate that SCC were not able to be present.

    Lastly the WSSRT Board also continue to say they will be staying independent and operating as a stand alone charity (still without allowing their members to stand for election or asking their members opinion), so it looks like they are bailing on the idea as well.

    To me it looks like the 'new third way' is a dead duck already, its looking more like there is only 'one game in town' and its not this one. However no doubt it will be carry on being pushed, so I'm off to buy more popcorn.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2020
    MellishR, jnc, Bluenosejohn and 4 others like this.

Share This Page