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West Somerset Railway Operations

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

  1. andykeithharris

    andykeithharris New Member

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    For the record, little has changed at Fawley since Sir Bills death. we still run several events a year, with brake van and wagon rides. It is certainly true the rides are popular though!
     
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  2. daveb

    daveb Member

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    Received my WSRA membership renewal today. The envelope is postmarked 14/02, i.e. yesterday. Included is a letter from the chairman asking for donations to the Loco Restoration Fund, mentioning 4561, 7821 and "WSR PLC owned Large Prairie 4110".

    OK, so these were probably printed prior to the sale of 4110, but they're now wrong and therefore revised versions should have been produced.
     
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  3. Beg to differ!

    As I said earlier, the length of the line is not a issue - it didn't put off the hordes of passengers a few years ago when record numbers were carried ;)

    In any case, the WSR can offer journeys to suit all those who might find the duration a tad long for them. Just join at an intermediate station that'll give the length of journey that suits. Or join at a terminus and head for an intermediate station. A wide choice of options. A real choice for all. What could be better!

    Steve
     
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  4. granmaree

    granmaree Member

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    When did they sneak in 3 year old child fares? Shooting themselves in the foot?
     
  5. Faol

    Faol Well-Known Member

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    What a bright early evening, my bantams are still foraging in the garden ................ Oops wrong forum. But on a news item after standing down from the Wagon Restoration I have agreed to return in a limited capacity. With my bad ankle I can no longer clamber up the side of a wagon and standing still for periods of time gives me much pain. So after discussions with Angie, the team leader, I am going to help with planning and project management, fund raising, managing the FB page and editor of Plaustra. There will be a new issue of Plaustra soon and hopefully our good friend Steve will put it on the WSR.org site. On with the chickens!!!
     
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  6. Greenway

    Greenway Well-Known Member

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    That may well be so Steve, but the WSR web site headlines, in two places, seem to emphasise 20 miles and the longest line. I still think that could be a dissuader.
     
  7. :) Maybe because most people seem to like the fact? As before, it didn't put 'em off a few years back. ;)

    Steve
     
  8. 61624

    61624 Well-Known Member

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    The NYMR + NR to Whitby is longer still at around 25 miles, yet passenger numbers still seem to be gradually rising. If heritage railways were to base their length on the duration that children remain interested then they would all be rather short. I don't pretend to know what the answer is - the WSR seems to me to have above average lineside interest but perhaps it needs something mid-way to try to pull in traffic from both ends. How about an NRM outstation, or at least something along those lines focused at Williton? Move the gauge museum there and maybe expand it with a demo line and some working exhibits? Somehow, the 40,000 visitors a year who have been lost have to be induced to rediscover the railway and if they can that is probably the best part of an extra £1M a year turnover to be had.
     
  9. Fred Kerr

    Fred Kerr Part of the furniture

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    Publicising it ? Why not publish a leaflet to identify the various elements that are available, suggest some options for day(s) out based on train riding and spread it both widely within the local communities within a reasonable radius of Minehead (20 Miles ?) and as a main advertising product elsewhere.
     
  10. free2grice

    free2grice Member

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    Ah, the wonderful brand new First Great Western 800 unit. The only train where I've witnessed businessmen boarding the train with cushions for the commute. :eek: <BJ>
     
  11. Indeed. The WSR already does publicise several "day out" trips - Hestercombe, Dunster Castle, Watchet - along with ideas of things to do and see from each station, inc walks. I think the commercial folks already do a great job and I'm also sure they'll agree that there's always new stuff to explore and work on, if they have time. However, my earlier comments were more about the opportunities for folks to tailor a trip on the railway to suit the time they have available and maybe suit their purse too.

    Steve
     
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  12. mvpeters

    mvpeters Member

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    Under 3 fares are showing as FREE on the WSR website.
    That's pretty normal for many societies - it implies occupancy of a seat, or not, even if it doesn't say so.
     
  13. michaelh

    michaelh Well-Known Member

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    Hasn't the Commercial Manager been made redundant ?
     
  14. pgbffest

    pgbffest New Member

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    Appear for a ride on the WHR from August onwards and you should find the brand new observation carr in service. We've gone one above the USB sockets, heating and window demisters from the last observation car. Coach 2152 should have Air Con :)
     
  15. Steve

    Steve Part of the furniture Friend

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    By your own admission (elsewhere) the NYMR is now basically a transport provider, enabling people to get to Whitby from Pickering (and elsewhere). This it seems to be doing rather well. It may not be what the wider WSR wants but it is probably what the WSR needs to become. Having said that, Whitby appears to be a much greater attraction than Minehead. Whitby was the fastest growing seaside destination in the UK not that long ago. It may well still be the case. Perhaps there is real scope for a joint marketing initiative here but it needs the Minehead community to get into bed with the WSR and not simply flog the dead horse of running to Taunton.
     
  16. Matt37401

    Matt37401 Part of the furniture

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    Will you really need Aircon in North Wales in the summer? :p:p
     
  17. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    That would mean the Minehead Chamber of Commerce getting engaged with the question "how do we encourage people to visit Minehead?" rather than their current inexplicable stance of "how do we make it easy for them to leave?"

    Viewed from afar, Whitby has been marketed really assiduously over the last few years, and in a way that highlights certain characteristics. If you say "Whitby", certain things leap straight to mind ("Dracula", "Abbey", "Steam punk"). By contrast, it's not really clear if you say "Minehead" what the immediate associations are. In recent years, the whole Visit Yorkshire tourism thing seems to have been promoted with far more energy than pretty much anywhere else in the country. (Maybe it is just people doing research for the picture puzzle ;) )

    Tom
     
  18. howard

    howard New Member

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    If anyone mentions Whitby I think “Great fish and chips”!
     
  19. Platform 3

    Platform 3 Member

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    The marketing point is of such importance here. The fact that the SVR managed to get the BBC to make a short film about the launch into traffic of an overhauled engine is an example of a railway who regularly get this sort of thing right. In different ways the NYMR, ELR, SVR and Ffestiniog all seem to be market leaders in this. The WSR need to learn lessons.

    Sent from my SM-J330FN using Tapatalk
     
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  20. pgbffest

    pgbffest New Member

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    A lot of that kind of marketing relies on having the contacts (and also nothing much else going on). Being next to major conurbations (not the FR!) means that they can pop out for half an hour to do a news story rather than take most of the day. WSR probably relies on BBC Bristol which is a good hour away at least and therefore a bit more tricky!
     
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