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All across the Great Western territory => Diary - what's happening when? => Topic started by: grahame on June 22, 2020, 01:59:34 pm

Title: 3.10.2020 - RailFuture Annual Conference
Post by: grahame on June 22, 2020, 01:59:34 pm
Thus far - just a one-liner for this event from Rail User Express, published over the weekend at "3 October. Rf Annual Conference. Online event."

Rail User Express is an interesting read, though thin on news from the GW area / South West - there's an Avocet line article in there ...

Avocet Line Rail Users Group

Little will change on Avocet rolling stock until more Class 165 and 166 Turbos are cascaded, as Class 769 Flex units take over services on the North Downs Line and some Thames Valley branches, although this may not be until December. If the introduction of the Flex units proves problematic, the eight Class 143 Pacers on the Avocet Line - which can now only operate attached to a disability compliant unit - may well see service into 2021; GWR could not currently operate 4-car trains without them. It is also awaiting the final Castle Class HST, which will free at least one more Class 158 DMU for work elsewhere.

I really appreciate Roger Smith's copyright position on Rail User Express:
Welcome to the Rail User Express
RUX may be forwarded, or items reproduced (quoting sources).

Title: Re: 3.10.2020 - RailFuture Annual Conference
Post by: grahame on June 23, 2020, 10:23:09 am
From Railwatch - July 2020 (

October webinar

Railfuture is organising a free online event (or webinar) on Saturday 3 October 2020, in place of the planned national conference in Leeds cancelled because of the Covid-19 crisis.

The topic will be Attracting passengers back to rail. Railfuture plans to have four speakers from train operators, transport authorities, Transport Focus and employers, presenting views of what can be achieved and how potential travellers will respond post-Covid.

If you are interested in joining the event, which will run from 11.00 to 12.30, please check at

Title: Re: 3.10.2020 - RailFuture Annual Conference
Post by: grahame on September 25, 2020, 08:32:19 am


This is a free-to-join Zoom Icon event but please register in advance

Chris Page, Railfuture chair says: "Britain's railway faces its greatest threat since the Beeching Cuts in the 1960s. Because of COVID-19 patronage fell through the floor and has only partially recovered.
"The government will not be willing to keep the railway afloat at vast cost indefinitely. Fare income from passengers is vital. The public must use the railway or risk losing it.
"Rail travel must be safe, value for money, punctual, convenient and enjoyable.
"We have five speakers from the rail industry representing organisations that can offer expert advice and/or take the necessary actions to encourage the public to use our railway."

Social media hashtag (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) for this event: #ReturnToRail

Join from 10:45, webinar starts at 11:00 and finishes at 12:30

Charlene [Charley] Wallace, Director for National Passenger & Customer Experience, Network Rail
Jacqueline [Jac] Starr, Chief Operating Officer (formerly Managing Director Customer Experience), Rail Delivery Group
Linda McCord, Senior Stakeholder Manager, Transport Focus
Ali Chegini, Director of Systems and Systems and Health, RSSB
Peter Sargant, Head of Rail Development, West Midlands Rail Executive
Chaired by Mark Valleley, Technical Lead, Transport for the South East

The above is the full list of speakers. Peter Sargant replaces Malcolm Holmes (Executive Director). All are confirmed, although Jacqueline Starr's contribution will be limited to a specially-produced video at the start. After presentations there will be a Q&A

For further details about the webinar please email

Places are still free to book - but bookings for this webinar will close on Fri 02/10/2020

Title: Re: 3.10.2020 - RailFuture Annual Conference
Post by: grahame on September 25, 2020, 09:27:51 am
Other Railfuture (branch) events ...

Severnside Branch have 21st November in their diary ( ) - optimistic, I think
Wessex, Thames Valley, Devon & Cornwall and Wales branches have nothing in real life or online on their event pages.

Some of the London and SouthEast subbranches (divisions), Yorkshire, and perhaps others (I have not looked through all 17) have online meetings planned (not for all, but good for them to keep members involved)

Title: Re: 3.10.2020 - RailFuture Annual Conference
Post by: grahame on October 03, 2020, 08:08:33 am
For today ... perhaps 'see' some other members in zoom windows.


* Introduction by Mark Valleley of Transport for the South East, who will be chairing the Webinar - 5 mins

* Presentations by panellists (some will include PowerPoint slides) ? 35 mins

* Discussion between panellists based on each other?s presentations, results of attendees? polls and questions submitted on Zoom Q&A facility ? 20 mins

* Q&A from attendees ? 30 mins

* Closing remarks by chair ? 5 mins

Title: Re: 3.10.2020 - RailFuture Annual Conference
Post by: grahame on October 04, 2020, 05:25:25 am
A thin substitute for an annual conference. But at least it was an attempt, unlike S--------- and other branches, W--- ----- ---- ---- -----, or T---------.  There was a vein of useful data in the short time. Try to fit a gallon into a pint pot, and a gallon that's such a mixture, and you'll only get a bit in.  90 minutes in which
.... 5 speakers had 9 minutes each (and they were scheduled at 7 minutes each including intros ? so were were given an overrun)
.... 5 questions addressed out of 150 posed via a Q&A window by 4 of the 5 speakers (even of those few, 2 were passed to a single speaker to answer briefly only)
.... zero opportunity for networking - zero interaction with other delegates or speakers. 
I felt very sorry for the speakers who had to attempt to tell a decent story in an impossibly short time frame.

I spend quite some time yesterday afternoon, after the event, on the phone with a friend who had been there.  We guestimated an audience of between 150 and 180. Publicity spoke of over 200 signed up, but as this was a free event there would have been a proportion of "sign up in case I can make it" folks in that number.  The content felt like "not much new" - but then that was to us and we were probably far more advanced in knowledgable than most of the audience. I suspect the speakers actually had it about right.  A few interesting comments and certainly some things that gave away the mood and thinking of the organisations speaking.  Sad to report that only one speaker came across as truly customer and community focused - the others less so, and one shockingly not.  More to follow - perhaps in snippets.

"We will log the questions for reference" said the chair. Good - but I fear that means they will stay on a dusty shelf.  Perhaps I should ask for a transcript (after all, they were public visible) to start up a "thread of the week" here.  There was a final contact / join Railfuture slide - sadly, flashed by quickly and as I was capturing the debris of a survey of those present as it went by, I failed to get a copy.  So I am missing the news - as yet - of any follow up. 

The two surveys - at the start and end of the 90 minute annual conference - were of interest.  Details / results just below; if I'm still around and they're run again, I'll do the same next time, next year.  It would be wonderful to have more interaction from RailFuture with members - something I suggested to them when on the board and they took a report, similarly trimmed from a useful (I felt) suggestion to their snippet format, and parked on that same dusty shelf as the member's questions.

Before ( 11:00 a.m.)


After ( 12:25 p.m.)

A statistical / surveyors eye questions the way some things were asked and how that effects the utility of the answers given, and indeed the immediate conclusions reached by the chair. But never the less, some food for thought there.

Title: Re: 3.10.2020 - RailFuture Annual Conference
Post by: grahame on October 06, 2020, 12:32:08 pm
I have copious notes which I may (or may not!) be able to get round to writing up ... in the meantime, here's the even on YouTube if there's nothing worth watching on TV.

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