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West Somerset Railway General Discussion

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

  1. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    As others have said:

    (1) I didn’t start it, and

    (2) I worked hard, with the assistance of others, to hold interesting meetings at a pleasant venue and to ensure that they were well publicised.

    But in the modern world, it was not what folk wanted, especially considering how close to the Railway Taunton is.

    I don’t believe it could have been given a better shot.

    Robin
     
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  2. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    West Somerset Railway - Then and Now #153

    Washford 1978 / 2017

    A topical pair, relating to present weather conditions.

    Copyright A Harding / Robin White

    1978
    AA91C538-319E-4FEA-AD7F-251BB79B0254.jpeg

    2017
    D131EC5B-1BEF-48B5-AF3F-A79FB3D849F3.jpeg
     
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  3. Ferguson

    Ferguson New Member

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    I attended the old venues at the BRSA club, run by Mr Aldridge before the new venue was hastily arranged. I don't remember you or Mr Sherwood at any of the meetings, yet you speak with some authority. I appreciate that you haven't been on the railway for very long, but a previous trustee Mr Norman did attend and was very informative.
     
  4. Paul Kibbey

    Paul Kibbey Well-Known Member

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    ' Methuselahs ' , love it .
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
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  5. Snifter

    Snifter Part of the furniture

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    I particularly enjoyed Don Bishop's presentation however forgive me if I did not introduce myself to you. I'll make amends when I attend the next event which I presume you will be organising. I can recommend the Wyvern club as the room is quite large and there is a bar for socialising afterwards.
     
  6. Ferguson

    Ferguson New Member

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    Sounds like you have talked yourself into a job there. Fortunately, I am no longer a WSRA member.
     
  7. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    Gosh, what memories! I remember that winter so well, plunging through the snowdrifts to go on my first proper date, I was that determined!
     
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  8. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    I suppose to work all those boxes one after another requires a degree of "bottle":)
     
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  9. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    It does require a degree of ‘focus’. Were we to staff the 4 boxes normally open (Crowcombe usually switches out but a technical problem on Saturday evening prevented that.) four Signalmen would have a relatively boring evening.

    What happens is that one signalman is ‘on the go’ pretty constantly from 19:00 to 21:30 or so. In my view much to be preferred and that tends to be the view of the small cadre of regulars who perform this role. It sort of goes with the territory. To be mad enough to be qualified for all five boxes and to do enough turns to keep that knowledge current does require a certain level of commitment to the ‘black art’.

    Robin
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
  10. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    Speaking as someone who first volunteered on the WSR aged 15 in 1979, I am delighted to see a regular influx of new folk from time to time, especially those from all age groups and personal demographics.

    I value the contributions equally of someone who comes to us at retirement and may give 5, 10 or 20 years as someone recruited as a tracker who may give a lifetime.

    Anyone using the phrase ‘Jonny come lately’ as I have seen on another website recently has lost the (volunteer recruitment) plot.

    That may also be to miss volunteering history elsewhere, and invaluable life experiences.

    Room for (almost) all!

    Robin
     
  11. aldfort

    aldfort Part of the furniture

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    Well as I pointed out I live in S Wales. I'd hardly attend a local group meeting based in Taunton.
    Snifter clearly has attended meetings, perhaps held after you allowed your membership to lapse? I don't like a lot of the change that the modern world forces on us either. I don't like the fact that my bank is closing the five branches nearest to where I live but it's a fact. People seem to like to receive their information in different ways in the modern world. My offer still stands, please do consider re-joining and re-establishing the Taunton Group, I'll support you in your effort and will promise to attend your first meeting despite being 90 plus miles away.
     
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  12. Andy Norman

    Andy Norman Part of the furniture

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    The one I presented at was at the Wyvern Club in April 2016, it was the first one Robin arranged and she invited me. It was well attended due to the ex6 being recently 'ex'd' so I was there to answer questions for members on behalf of the WSRA.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
  13. Mark Thompson

    Mark Thompson Well-Known Member

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    "black art" is one way of putting it, I guess! There must be quite a buzz to it.
    Something unique to the signalman's environment; a mixture of almost marine discipline, alongside the cosy domestic of kettle and stove. I loved reading Adrian Vaughn's writings on that world.
    Do you have to make all the entries in the train register as you go as well?
     
  14. Andy Norman

    Andy Norman Part of the furniture

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    I could not agree more with your last comment. One of the reasons (not the main one but an important one) that I resigned as WSRA Trustee after a short time (I joined post ex6 to help move the WSRA forward after the clear out) was due to being told I should not be posting anything online as only the Chairman was ‘authorised’ to do so.

    This I had/have a major issue with as I feel my opinion in whatever capacity I hold is as valid as anybody else’s. It’s like a chat between friends down the pub but with many more people involved, I would not expect to have to ‘clear’ any comments before I made them over a pint with my friends any more than I would posting an opinion online.

    Social media is great, we all get information instantly, we can debate quickly, it involves us all including those who can’t visit the WSR often enough because of health or logistics so all can play a part without barriers as it is inclusive. It just needs us all to talk for it to happen and not be afraid to debate in case we say something others may not like.

    But times change and my negative experience is now a thing of the past as there are now at least 2 WSRA Trustees and 2 PLC Directors who post opinions on here regularly and I thank them for that it’s a big step forward.

    However I do feel more understanding is needed by the WSR and no-doubt many other organisations, social media is here to stay and people should stop fearing it and embrace it, we should value freedom of speech rather than try and restrict it because we don’t like what’s being said, look at where it got the ex 6 !!!!!!!!!

    As you say Robin, ‘more thought required’, however a good start.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017
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  15. Ferguson

    Ferguson New Member

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  16. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    There is no way we would have built the base of support to X the X6 without social media.

    It is, perhaps, no coincidence that totalitarian regimes hate such communication - China for instance.

    In the former East Germany, which I knew well, the equivalent was photocopiers and fax machines which were controlled by the regime with an almost religious fervour. Free thinking is always the enemy of dictatorial regimes.

    That isn’t to say social media doesn’t have its dangers and can’t be abused - of course it can - and so can telephones. But you can’t herd cats...

    Robin
     
  17. Ferguson

    Ferguson New Member

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    Thanks Andy, your comments on here are obviously heartfelt and appreciated. I didn't realise that you resigned trusteeship because of restrictions on speaking out, I knew you were a good'un.

    This weekend it's been a bit like a Trump convention after 'fake news ' with all the cohorts standing on stage behind the leader presenting a united front. The chairman has been very busy on here this weekend, still it doesn't hurt to stir up the bottom of the barrel now and then.
     
  18. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Nat Pres stalwart

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    I feel a little uneasy about describing postings here as just like talking to friends down the pub, it is more than that and you do need to be more careful of the consequences. That said I agree with the general gist of your post.
     
  19. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    I regard it as more like standing on a soap box at Hyde Park Corner...shouting at passers by.

    Some contributions are of a similar quality to the speakers found there. Mine included, some might think.

    Robin
     
  20. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Nat Pres stalwart

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    Wouldn't dare comment! :Angelic:
     

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