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West Somerset Railway Operations

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

  1. 6024KEI

    6024KEI Member

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    Doesn't necessarily add much to the moral arguments but the SDRT accounts suggest a total figure for "Museum rent, water, phone etc" has not exceeded £2k per annum in the last 4 years. If that is really the case then the "what about the loss of revenue to the plc" argument is a bit thin. Yes there is money spent on museum maintenance which might have to be picked up by the plc if SDRT aren't in the buildings to use them but on that sort of figure I do have some sympathy with the view (if incredibly poorly expressed) that there isn't much of a mutually beneficial relationship here.
     
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  2. 007

    007 Member

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    This is a cloud 'Cuckoo' land statement...

    'Currently, Somerset and Dorset Joint Railway 7F, No.88 (No.53808) is owned by the S & D trust and is operated on a separate contract. As a railway, we are committed to this popular engine, and we propose to honour this contract as a separate and free standing agreement and it is hoped that this will be unaffected'

    Again an odd choice of words... 'Currently?'
    We want honour the bit we like, I would bet if the engine was out of ticket or approaching the end of its ticket, it would of been out the door too.

    Good luck to the S&D Trust and good luck to all the WSR volunteers who are having to weather this storm.
     
  3. AnthonyTrains2017

    AnthonyTrains2017 Member

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    Anyone know when the class 47 leaves the WSR. Thxs
     
  4. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    What happens if the S&D tells them to jog on? It seems a bit perverse to kick someone out and then expect them to keep on allowing you to use their engine.

    I’d have thought that for a line so strapped for cash that they have to go begging the S &D for money, they wouldn’t have money to spend on trying to break a contract. I assume that they are working on the principle that the S&D is so old and poor that it won’t have the money or the energy to kick up a fuss.

    Let’s hope the legal costs don’t exceed the amount that the S&D pays in rent.
     
  5. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

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    It is still £2k in the door. When every penny counts, that's not to be sniffed at - especially if the site is one of a string of pearls and helps attract custom.
     
  6. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Well, I read the statement over lunchtime and I've only just picked my jaw up off the floor! This really is appalling behaviour on a par with X6 level. I thought the new WSR chairman wanted to bring an end to all the infighting and squabbling the WSR is known for all over the country in certain circles? How exactly does accusing a benign group quietly going about their business as they have done for the past 40 years as a "cuckoo in the nest" help?
    If the railway really does need the use of the Washford site for its own purposes, then there's a certain way of going about doing it, this was not it. How hard would it have been to take the line of something thus:
    "The S&D trust have taken fantastic care of Washford station over the past 40 years and provided extra interest on the railway, as well as providing motive power in the form of the 7F. Sadly, with the railway under increasing pressure to do ever more work on ageing track/rolling stock/whatever, we really need to have an enhanced facility above our current operations, and Washford is the most practical site. Therefore it is with regret we have had to serve the S&D trust 12 months' notice. We wish them well in their future endeavours and hope we can remain good friends wherever they move to, and if practical we will do what we can to assist with their move."
    From what has been released so far, it doesn't look like the railway has a firm plan what it wants to use the site for at all, it was about as vague as suggestions here have been, and @Andy Norman has explained why it would probably unsuitable for those uses anyway. It certainly doesn't feel like a case of "we need this facility, where can it go?" And much more "now we've kicked them out, what can we use the space for?"
     
  7. Mike Birch

    Mike Birch New Member

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    By contrast, according to accounts filed on Companies House, DEPG costs for rent, utilities, property and site maintenance were £15,205 in 2017 (of which £5,533 was rent) and £12,192 in 2018 (of which £5,788 was rent). I don't know the detail behind these figures however so this may well be a very unfair comparison to make.
     
  8. Matt78

    Matt78 Well-Known Member

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    As someone involved in the management of another heritage railway I am trying to look at matters from the PLc’s point of view. I can understand the need to be more businesslike and equally I could respect any concerns about non adherence to the SMS.

    However in saying all this no one can deny that the WSR is in need of a lot of goodwill to assist the various ambitions (track renewals etc). The idea of a Paignton style standalone business is some way off in West Somerset as far as I can make out from afar, so the burning of bridges and goodwill in this way cannot in my view be the way to do things.

    I think @flying scotsman123 sums it up perfectly in his post above.

    regards

    Matt
     
  9. Johann Marsbar

    Johann Marsbar Member

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    Or a bus garage................?
     
  10. 5944

    5944 Well-Known Member

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    About as relevant as 99% of locos, stock and museum artefacts at 99% of heritage railways. They're still accepted and welcomed.
     
  11. nanstallon

    nanstallon Well-Known Member

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    You sound as though you want the WSR to close. I thought that this was a railway enthusiasts' site. I may not be alone in wanting the WSR to do well, which would be more likely with a management which was less bullying and better at communications.
     
  12. Mike Birch

    Mike Birch New Member

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    The WSR appear to be quite well represented on the Board of the HRA:-https://www.hra.uk.com/board-members

    I am sure that there will be some interesting conversations.
     
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  13. Steve

    Steve Part of the furniture Friend

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    There's Mark Smith. I can't see anyone else. I have a great deal of respect for Mark, which is why I'm a bit puzzled by all this. I do wonder if there is something deeper which is not going to be in the public domain.
     
  14. Poolbrook

    Poolbrook New Member Friend

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    It's the HRA AGM on Wednesday in Bristol. Poor action and poor timing by WSR plc.
     
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  15. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

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    There may be, but there are ways to point to a deeper issue without being so frankly crass in the overall approach. Even good people make mistakes, and it has to be said that the tone of comments from the WSR plc has been pretty blunt.
     
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  16. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

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    You are not alone.
     
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  17. Mike Birch

    Mike Birch New Member

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    David Morgan appears to be Vice President of both HRA and WSR plc
     
  18. michaelh

    michaelh Well-Known Member

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    Even by the standards of this site, that is an exceptionally foolish comment
     
  19. 007

    007 Member

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    The WSR hasn't had 200,000 visitors for a number of years now. The average passenger will of course not really care what goes on, but what does that matter? Are you involved because you want to be just 'an average passenger' or are you interested and involved because you love heritage railways and want to see them succeed. It's such an utterly simplistic reply to say... the average passenger won't care.

    The WSR have been appealing to the enthusiasts to help them out of the financial hole it dug for itself, and is run and operated by enthusiasts and so in my opinion, their opinion matters greatly.
     
  20. michaelh

    michaelh Well-Known Member

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    But they should be aiming for 200,00 visitors
     

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