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West Somerset Railway Operations

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

    No idea. Probably based on analysis of likely demand. But it does create a very pretty calendar:

    [​IMG]

    Steve
     
  1. Kengo

    Kengo New Member

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  2. Kengo

    Kengo New Member

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    I was told by the ladies putting up the yarn bobbing [ knitting ] that Bishops Lydeard village theme was a tour of the world - B L station decorations are all swiss themes, other areas are different countries.
     
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  3. Barrie the Beer

    Barrie the Beer Well-Known Member

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    The ones around Quantock Brewery are all themed for Venice.

    Planted the idea today of opening the Quantock pop-up bar on Minehead station while the 7802/7828 anniversary special is in town. Offered to help man said bar in a bid to see it happen. The bar at MD is set to be open each daytime that weekend so will be in situ.
     
  4. The Man of Kent

    The Man of Kent Member

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    It will also be good to see the railway getting to know and working with the Minehead community one day.

    On the Minehead station page of the Website there is mention of the Exmoor Producers Association at 11 Friday Street. The organisation now has different members and rebranded as Exmoor Food and Crafts hence the broken link. It moved a couple of years ago to The Avenue while a different "Exmoor" shop took over the premises in Friday Street. To the unknowing this is effectively now an advertisement for a competitor.

    Also mentioned on the page is Atlantis which now operates as Doormouse plus there are two glowing mentions of the clothing store Dottys who left Minehead completely in 2016, the address now being occupied by a hair and beauty salon.
     
  5. Yorkshireman

    Yorkshireman Part of the furniture

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    You need to tell their webmaster not us!
     
  6. Catherine Dance catherine.dance@wsra.org.uk is the Railway's Community Engagement Officer so perhaps you and I should each get in touch with Catherine on the issues you mention above. You will know I am working on a webpage for wsr.org.uk on the theme of "Things to do" (at Minehead) which may help a bit, however, it is far more important to have the official website reflecting current situations.

    Steve
     
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  7. Andy Norman

    Andy Norman Well-Known Member

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    Steve

    Yes there was some science behind it. As a part of the turnaround plan in 2018 the previous Head of Marketing and previous FD did a lot of work looking at increasing revenue and a better customer offering whilst decreasing costs. The now redundant Head of Marketing oversaw a 6.7% increase in revenue in 2018, but that was only half of the picture. He also completed a large piece of work looking at traffic flows and train usage.

    The resultant 2019 Timetable which was locked into place for printing/marketing before his departure resulted in a more scientific running pattern. Now I’m sure this new method will need some modification as it goes live but it results in a circa £100k pa reduction of costs whilst not unduly effecting the customer offering.

    The previous long running strategy of just putting on more trains to increase revenue meant the small increases in revenue was outstripped by large increases in operating costs (and of course wear on the track). Many have said that the large cost increases seen in the last 3-4 years was due to the increase in staff salary, I partly disagree. Their salaries costs involved with getting this result of both revenue increase and cost decrease are far out stripped by the overall cash saving their employment caused (not including all of the other parts of their jobs).

    This is just my opinion of course but perhaps, people of the WSR should ask if the retention of the old guard who presided over the previous strategy and the departure of this ‘radical new thinking’ was the right direction to take?
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2019
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  8. The Man of Kent

    The Man of Kent Member

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    The point that I have been making in this and in my previous posts #18199 and #18149 is that although the railway terminates at Minehead it seems to take little or no interest in the town that it supposedly 'serves'. Such an interest could benefit both the railway and the town.
    16 vintage buses are running from just the other side of the buffer stops tomorrow and it doesn't even get a mention on the facebook page.
     
  9. granmaree

    granmaree Member

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  10. free2grice

    free2grice Well-Known Member

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    Some good news for the railway. Blue Anchor station has returned to normal operation. :)

    7828 'Odney Manor' hauling the 10:15 ex B. Lydeard has just passed D6575 in the station.

    The class 33 was a Diesel Experience course. <BJ>
     
  11. Yorkshireman

    Yorkshireman Part of the furniture

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    This maybe. However if you want the site changing telling the webmaster really is the most effective way. Or were you just having a moan ? Alternatively write to the chairman. Don’t leave it to somebody else to do.
     
  12. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    I have a feeling this post could be one for filing away and bringing up later! ;)
     
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  13. 6026 King John

    6026 King John Member

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    I'm sure there was some science behind it but it makes no sense to me or I would guess to a large number of the travelling public. The inconsistencies seem to be mainly for the month of May then it seems to settle down into more of a pattern. Why for example are there trains next Friday but none the following Friday which precedes a Bank Holiday weekend? Is there some element of experimentation about it to see what passenger loadings it produces?
     
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  14. Pete Thornhill

    Pete Thornhill Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

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    I wonder if the same science was applied to the gift shop? I visited the railway last Sunday and was amazed to see that despite the times of the last trains into Minehead that it shuts at 3.30pm, the opening hours being 9.30 to 3.30pm, most surprising considering the railway needs the money.

    I would of thought most tourists would be more likely buy their souvenirs at the end of the day rather than before the experience they are visiting (the railway in this case). I can understand staffing constraints but maybe it would be better to open later and then close accordingly.
     
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  15. DragonHandler

    DragonHandler Well-Known Member

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    Yes, it would be much better to contact the webmaster directly. They probably don't read Nat Press so commenting on the errors and/or omissions of the website here is really a bit pointless. For Facebook, and Twitter, there's nothing to stop people posting messages about events happening near the railway that aren't mentioned by the respective admins.
     
  16. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    This is something which is very easy to look at from the point of view of an enthusiast rather than that of a "normal". Are the staff paid or voluntary? Does the individual railway do more of its business early in the day or later?

    A modern electronic system will give data as to when in the day the greatest sales are made. It can even give data as to sales of cooked meals versus sandwich consumption and ongoing trends. It is not so much income the railway needs from sales and catering as profitable income.
     
  17. Pete Thornhill

    Pete Thornhill Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

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    Yes Paul but I’m not sure how data comparing cooked meals and sandwiches is particularly helpful with gift shop opening hours.

    Completely agree that it’s profitable income they need but if they have the margins right then that should be the case.

    I’m happy to be proved wrong and that opening and closing earlier in the day is a more productive use of limited resources but it’s the first railway I’ve been to that shuts their gift shop so early. Certainly the Bishops Lydeard one was open when I got back there just before 4 so maybe the railway has decided most people end their day there.
     
  18. 45076

    45076 Member

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    Thought the diesel gala was at Swanage this weekend.
     
  19. 6960 Raveningham Hall

    6960 Raveningham Hall Member Friend

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    I think it’s widely accepted that a larger number of people start and end their day on the WSR at Bishops Lydeard than at Minehead.

    However, in my opinion, the shop at BL is very poor; fine if you have an interest in model railways, but little else to interest many people.

    I hope and expect that the BL shop will improve markedly when the WSRA (reportedly) ceases its commercial operations.

    @Pete Thornhill,I fully understand the observations made about the early closing of the Minehead shop.
     
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