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  • Taunton - WSR shuttle starts: July 27, 2019
  • WSR shuttle last for 2019: October 05, 2019
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Author Topic: West Somerset Railway - heritage line, Bishops Lydeard to Minehead - merged topic, ongoing discussion  (Read 104343 times)
bradshaw
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« Reply #270 on: August 03, 2019, 06:03:39 pm »

From the News section of the WSR website

Quote
The Railway wishes to announce that Mr Conibeare has decided to leave the Railway from Wednesday 31 July   2019.   Mr Conibeare started with the Railway in 1983 and has held a number of posts, latterly as General Manager. 

Mr Conibeare has decided that the time was right to move on to new challenges and we wish him well.   
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IndustryInsider
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« Reply #271 on: September 08, 2019, 12:32:57 pm »

Do GWR have the stock to run this service?

I have a cynical suspicion that this new service will run only for a very short part of the Summer season, and be frequently cancelled due to lack of stock.
Patronage should then be low enough to pronounce through trains as being a failure, and an experiment that does not need repeating for a few years.

I see everything ran on the last week of the trial on 7th September, but do we know how successful the trial was (either anecdotally or officially), and whether any trains were cancelled due to lack of stock or other problems on any of the other weeks of operation? 
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martyjon
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« Reply #272 on: September 08, 2019, 08:08:22 pm »

Help please.

Any forum member know if Taunton - Bishops Lydeard shuttle is running on  tne 28th September, RTT seems to think it is as there are STP journeys / times for that date but the WSR website says running on 21st September and 5th October as I want to treat my great niece and her mum, dad and older sister to a belated birthday treat with a journey on Thomas's or one of his friends train as it was her 4th birthday this weekend and it is my sisters on the 4th October and her and hubby will tag along too as they live in Taunton. I suppose I could always phone the WSR, they should know.
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infoman
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« Reply #273 on: November 19, 2019, 01:38:12 pm »

report on BBC points west at Lunch time
should be on BBC Spotlight as well
 including this evenings two offerings
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Timmer
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« Reply #274 on: November 19, 2019, 02:20:16 pm »

Ouch!!! That can't go on surely? Very sad. I'm sure they aren't the only preserved railway that's under the financial cosh.
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grahame
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« Reply #275 on: November 19, 2019, 02:33:35 pm »

Ouch!!! That can't go on surely? Very sad. I'm sure they aren't the only preserved railway that's under the financial cosh.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000bk2z/points-west-lunchtime-news-19112019

3 minutes 45 seconds in

Loss - 807,909 v profit 12,000 is previous year

Explanation:
- catching up on years of maintenance backlog / neglect
- so much infighting that volunteers walked away, forcing additional employment
- wage bill up from 700k to 1.25 millions

Profit and loss account - said to look good. Chief sure they can pull through.
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Umberleigh
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« Reply #276 on: November 19, 2019, 08:54:57 pm »

Sounds like they have some capable and grounded people at the helm now, and 2019 was a much better season than 2018, so there is reason to be positive going forward
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Timmer
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« Reply #277 on: November 19, 2019, 09:17:31 pm »

Sounds like they have some capable and grounded people at the helm now, and 2019 was a much better season than 2018, so there is reason to be positive going forward
I sincerely hope so. Its a wonderful line and it would be a sad day to see it fail.
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MVR S&T
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« Reply #278 on: November 19, 2019, 11:30:26 pm »

Has a standard guage, preserved railway ever closed? Many smaller guage railways have of course.
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grahame
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« Reply #279 on: November 20, 2019, 03:48:20 am »

Has a standard guage, preserved railway ever closed? Many smaller guage railways have of course.

For definite: Lochy Private Railway
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Fife_Central_Railway

Just faded away - not sure of status: Swansea Vale Railway
https://www.walesrails.co.uk/svr.html
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infoman
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« Reply #280 on: November 20, 2019, 06:41:09 am »

In my opinion, I said to one of the senior members of the WSR that those in charge of the stations run things there own way with no joined up thinking for the entire line.

Too many persons wearing station masters caps,not enough porters.

If the stations and the line want to encourage visitors, then those who volunteer should engage in conversation with the visitors and not their mates.

Finally keep sending the railway magazines to Minehead.
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #281 on: November 20, 2019, 10:16:45 am »

Has a standard guage, preserved railway ever closed? Many smaller guage railways have of course.

What would happen if the current West Somerset Railway went bust?

It is hard to imagine the line being ripped up and sold off. Could it rejoin the national network? Would that be a bad thing?
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broadgage
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« Reply #282 on: November 20, 2019, 11:48:32 am »

Has a standard guage, preserved railway ever closed? Many smaller guage railways have of course.

What would happen if the current West Somerset Railway went bust?

It is hard to imagine the line being ripped up and sold off. Could it rejoin the national network? Would that be a bad thing?

Rejoining the national network would IMHO be a good thing, though I hope that this could be achieved without going bust.
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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 is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
johnneyw
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« Reply #283 on: November 20, 2019, 11:48:43 am »

The 800 grand loss is a lot of money but as a comparison, the Gloucester Warwickshire Railway's embankment land slips of 2010/1 cost even more to repair IIRC and disrupted  services which simultaneously dented their source of revenue.
I'm planning a solidarity visit there with my brother in the new running season as they look like they will need a good year in 2020.
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Witham Bobby
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« Reply #284 on: November 20, 2019, 12:16:12 pm »

As one of the WSR pioneer members (1973 onwards) and employees (1976-79) it does sadden me to read about the goings-on.  What drove us, back in those early years, was the aim of restoring a Minehead - Taunton year-round service, to replace the one that we felt BR(WR) Bristol Division had connived to close-down.

Hundreds of West Somerset residents queued at Minehead in March 1976 to subscribe a fiver for shares in the Company which had promised to bring back their trains to Taunton.

The intransigence of BR(WR) management and the NUR, and the WSR's insufficient cash resources conspired to prevent our vision becoming a reality at the time.  Since then, the project has morphed into a heritage operation, and that is now deeply ingrained in the management and staff (both paid and volunteer) of the line.  They wouldn't want the heritage operation to be diluted or put at risk by a more obviously public-service regime.

The costs of running a year-round service under present day maintenance and operational standards would be quite scary.
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