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Poll
Question: What things would do the old way? (select options where you like the (*) option)  (Voting closed: March 01, 2020, 08:49:13 am)
Wooden (*) or concrete sleepers? - 5 (2.7%)
Bullhead (*) or Flat bottomed rail? - 4 (2.1%)
Jointed (*) or continuous welded track? - 6 (3.2%)
Manned signal boxes (*) or automated? - 13 (7%)
Bell and telegraoh (*) or modern comms? - 6 (3.2%)
Retention tanks or flush to track (*)? - 2 (1.1%)
Slam doors (*) or power sliders? - 11 (5.9%)
Central door locking or not (*)? - 3 (1.6%)
Green flag (*) or bell dispatch? - 9 (4.8%)
Driver only operation or guards on all trains (*)? - 9 (4.8%)
Semaphore (*) or colour light signals (or ERTMS (European Rail Traffic Management System.))? - 9 (4.8%)
Steam (*) or Diesel? - 7 (3.7%)
Infrequent (*) or frequent trains? - 2 (1.1%)
Disabled spaces in carriages or luggage vans (*)? - 7 (3.7%)
Signals operated by solenoids or by wire (*)? - 5 (2.7%)
Permanent staff only (*) or substantial volunteer help? - 3 (1.6%)
Male staff only (*) or all allowed in track operation roles? - 1 (0.5%)
Edmondson tickets (*) or modern equivalent? - 11 (5.9%)
Tuned for general use in the area (*) or for tourists? - 5 (2.7%)
Full route (*) or just the pretty / practical section? - 7 (3.7%)
Booking by post and in person (*), or online? - 1 (0.5%)
Credit card, or cash and cheque only (*)? - 2 (1.1%)
Correct stock for line (*) or outsiders welcomed? - 2 (1.1%)
Gift shop or not (*)? - 2 (1.1%)
Original prices (*) or current market price? - 2 (1.1%)
Artefacts museum or not (*)? - 2 (1.1%)
Oil lamps (*) or electric light? - 1 (0.5%)
All year services (*)  or 'off' days in winter? - 3 (1.6%)
Gated (*) or barriered level crossings? - 10 (5.3%)
Drab (*) or high vis clothing for staff? - 5 (2.7%)
Original gauge (*) or narrowed? - 11 (5.9%)
Exact Original loops and layout (*) or re-engineered for traffic? - 1 (0.5%)
Plain platforms (*) or tactcile edges and yellow lies? - 6 (3.2%)
Electronic real time information or chalkboard and megaphones (*)? - 5 (2.7%)
Tough if you are delayed (*) or delay-repay? - 9 (4.8%)
Total Voters: 21

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Author Topic: Imagine you are responsible for a heritage railway - poll  (Read 2649 times)
grahame
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« on: February 23, 2020, 06:01:19 am »

Imagine you are responsible for a heritage railway.  How much do you 'preserve' and run as the line was in its prime, and how much do you update to modern tastes, practicallity or requirements?  Please select those items you think should be "just as they always were".  I have marked the "old way" with (*) in each case - please check boxes to select that option.

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« Last Edit: February 23, 2020, 06:22:11 am by grahame » Logged

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eightonedee
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« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2020, 09:06:31 am »

Grahame

As a long time supporter of one, I think you would have to add to your assumptions "and were not subject to the severe financial constraints that result in the sector living a hand to mouth existence just to survive "
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grahame
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« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2020, 09:51:16 am »

Grahame

As a long time supporter of one, I think you would have to add to your assumptions "and were not subject to the severe financial constraints that result in the sector living a hand to mouth existence just to survive "

Yes, please vote on the basis of the ideal that you would desire.  Business needs would then mean some compromise from "what we want" to "what we can actually achieve".
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2020, 10:13:00 am »

I found this a bit hard to follow! I think I just voted for retaining standard gauge (and nothing else!); I would have liked to be able to vote for electrification!

As I've said elsewhere, I would keep the scenery just as it is, and only make minor safety updates to stations. Other than that, for the most part I'd rather have a train service than a museum.
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johnneyw
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« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2020, 10:44:58 am »

Some options are not in reality "either/or" ones. Take bullhead rail and wooden sleepers as an example. Some heritage lines use them within the stations and their approaches but use concrete sleepers and CWT "out of sight".
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eightonedee
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« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2020, 11:34:24 am »

I have just voted having read Graham's clarification.

To be fair to the sector quite a few upgrades ( admittedly mostly the cheaper and essential ones) seem widespread such as gift shops, high visibility clothing for many staff and card payments. It's the big ticket capital items particularly rolling stock, track and signalling that are the challenge.

Perhaps there will soon be a number of little used (after conversion) 769s available for diesel days services that do at least tick some of the modern rolling stock compliance boxes.  But will they be as reliable as 1950/60s first generation stock  Roll Eyes
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eightf48544
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« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2020, 03:15:07 pm »

Some options are not in reality "either/or" ones. Take bullhead rail and wooden sleepers as an example. Some heritage lines use them within the stations and their approaches but use concrete sleepers and CWT "out of sight".


To be fair to the sector quite a few upgrades ( admittedly mostly the cheaper and essential ones) seem widespread such as gift shops, high visibility clothing for many staff and card payments. It's the big ticket capital items particularly rolling stock, track and signalling that are the challenge.

Perhaps there will soon be a number of little used (after conversion) 769s available for diesel days services that do at least tick some of the modern rolling stock compliance boxes.  But will they be as reliable as 1950/60s first generation stock  Roll Eyes

Ideally one would like all the asterixed items but as the quotes above show there are things which need updating.

I think the hardest part of running a heritage line,  particularly the longer ones like the West Somerset, Severn Valley and North York Moors is ongoing maintenance of the track, signals, locos (steam and diesel)
, rollingstock and buildings. Network Rail struggles with maintenance on the national railway.

I am involved in a very short line <1 mile and maintenance is an ongoing problem. So if something requires replacement it makes sense to replace it with something more modern especialy as it may not be possible to get an original part.

Thus heritage lines will evolve, they can't be preserved in aspic.

Who knows in another 100+ years time parts of  HS2 (The next High Speed line(s)) might be a heritage line.
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Umberleigh
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« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2020, 06:00:54 pm »

Good topic.

Staverton station is a wonderfully atmospheric rural platform set in stunning scenery.

But for my tastes it’s compromised by the large amount of rolling station to be found in the sidings that run parallel to the single running line (some of which is decidedly tatty and out of character).

But then I’m not the one having to balance the demands of running the line
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« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2020, 07:05:33 pm »

I have no objection to a little modernisation when this detracts very little from the general experience.
No objection to electric lighting in place of oil for signals (remembering though that oil may be cheaper in some locations)
Modern communications are very useful for emergencies, but the old ways preferable for day to day operation.
Colour light signals only if not in sight from stations.
A flashing tail lamp just looks wrong though, oil tail lamps or GOOD fakes needed.

A pet dislike of mine is a modern generating set under the buffet car, makes a very non-heritage noise.

Staff should dress in a traditional way when on view. No bright green warehouse coats on the platform at Minehead please.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
rower40
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« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2020, 01:24:06 pm »

I want to be able to pull levers to signal the trains.  But when I'm on my break, I can switch on the ARS (Automatic Route Setting) which tells a robot arm which lever to pull.
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grahame
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« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2020, 09:00:46 pm »

The things you most want to retain as they were
- Manned Signal Boxes (62%)
- Slam Doors (52%)
- Edmonson Tickets (52%)
- Original Gauge (52%)
- Gated level crossings (48%)

The thing which you least want to retain are
- Exact original loops and layout (5%)
- Oil lamps rather that electric (5%)
- Male staff only in track operational roles (5%)
- Booking only by post or in person (none of this newfangled internet booking) (5%)



You weren't very keen on some other things from olden times either, such as:
- Flush onto track
- Infrequent trains
- Cash or cheque - not debit or credit card
- Correct stock for line only
- No gift Shop
- Original prices
- No museum
but you would also like to keep:
- Green flag dispatch
- Guards on all trains
- Semaphone signals
- and "tough" if you are delayed (so no delay repay!)

Voting by a small, self-selected group (after all, this is on the heritage board of what in a mainstream public transport board) but looking at this it really makes you think, doesn't it?
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broadgage
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« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2020, 04:06:28 pm »

I am surprised that anyone voted for "exact original loops and layout" Original from what year ? most routes evolved very considerably.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
broadgage
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« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2020, 06:54:44 pm »

Re post #8, I have had a private communication from the wearer of the distinctly  non heritage bright green overall coats that offended my eyes. Such garments will be confined to the workshop in future.

BTW (by the way) I donated them to the railway, because they shrank in storage and no longer fitted me. A bit like the trousers of a respected member.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
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