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Baldwin "Lyn" new build.

Discussion in 'Narrow Gauge Railways' started by Meiriongwril, Jan 25, 2009.

  1. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

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    I've just submitted a post to the Yahoo group asking for clarification on these points.
    They have just posted it so we may get some replies.
     
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  2. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    Thanks for your replies Chris and Martin.

    I think these are perhaps issues that might stop people from signing up. Lets hope someone from the Trust or Club can clarify the issues and modify the website/application forms to make everything crystal clear to everyone.


    Keith
     
  3. lynbarn

    lynbarn Well-Known Member

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    if anyone who is reading this is a signed up L&BR Trust member or a 762 club member can you all please contact me off list as I am in the process of setting up a members only e group, and membership will be by invitation only once I have cleared your membership status with the Trust or the 762 club.

    Regards

    Colin
     
  4. SpudUk

    SpudUk Well-Known Member

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    From what I understand, the only reason the money goes through the Trust is so they can claim gift aid off it, being a registered charity! The locomotive itself is still completely owned by the 762 club!

    ...so no confusion
     
  5. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    With respect, there is confusion!
    If virtually all the money goes to the Trust and then has gift aid added, there is then a large amount of money sitting in the Trust's bank account while the 762 club's bank account would be virtually empty in comparison. The club would therefore not be in a position to have the loco built and therefore cannot own it!
    The confusion arises as to how the Trust 'gives' the money (or the loco if the Trust places the order for it to be built) back to the club.

    As I said earlier, hopefully someone from either Trust or club will be able to help clarify things.


    Keith
     
  6. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

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    Herewith the comments of 762 club project manager Peter Miles on the L&B Yahoo group, which I think clarifies things:

    "There really shouldn't be any questions about ownership of Lyn. It says quite
    clearly in the leaflets that 'the 762 Club has been formed to construct, own and
    maintain a replacement Baldwin...' That is clear enough.

    The confusion may come from the link between payments to the Lynton & Barnstaple
    Railway Trust and payment for a share.

    The L&B Trust can claim Gift Aid on donations. It supports projects that are in
    accordance with the Memorandum of Association. The 762 Club therefore can
    receive the payments plus Gift Aid to fund the build of Lyn.

    Despite what some people think or say ... the Trust will not own the
    loco - she stays with the 762 Club. The Trust has plenty of plans for the future
    which include a full set of replacement locos and they will be needed to operate
    the rebuilt railway.

    That is the main reason why Lyn is being built now - because those that join the
    762 Club want to!

    If anybody needs or wants clarification of any matters on the Lyn project they
    only have to ask; many have and they have received answers that deal with their
    concerns, after which most of them have bought in.

    A news release will be out soon, covering progress to date, plans for the
    immediate future etc etc. The sponsorable list will also be released in the next
    couple of weeks. Once solid progress is seen we are confident that support will
    continue to grow. It must be remembered that our support to date has built up in
    just 5 months and is already much larger than the other 'replica new build'
    plans for other railway's projects.

    Make no mistake - the 'Yankee' will ride again! (and quite soon)"

    Any further queries, please contact Peter via the L&B Yahoo group or the 762 club website
    =D> \:D/
     
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  7. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

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    Colin -
    I'm not sure what purpose such an e-group would serve. Does it have the approval of the 762 Project manager and team and/or Trust leadership? I wouldn't want to be associated with a group that might be considered outwith the the pale. Once the 762 club website gets the promised forum up and running, we'll have a way to contact each other about Lyn. Other than that, I'd rather not buy into any other grouping or forum without knowing that it's approved by the project team or Trust.
    I would strongly suggest all other club members or Trust members wait to hear the status of this proposed e-group before signing up.
    Martin
     
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  8. lynbarn

    lynbarn Well-Known Member

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    Hi Martin

    I can see your point, but this proposed new group will I hope feature a lot of what is available right now on other forums and I hope in time it will be taken over by developments on both the L&BR and 762 web sites.

    This new group is manly aimed at getting L&BR members to use the main L&BR web / forum (yet to be set up) sites.

    While a yahoo group is free to set up, getting everyone's ideas on a public e group on what they would like to see on an in house forum is not the way to go about it, hence the reason why it is only open to L&BR members at this moment in time.

    I know of at least four other L&BR e groups which have been set up to do certain tasks and I feel that now is the time to try and take these groups forward and put them all in one place / forum.

    I understand from Martyn de Young that things are very busy for him right now and hopefully when he gets the time he can add forum facilities on both the L&BR and the 762 web sites.

    While I am not saying we should stop using NP as a means to publicly discuss issues concerning the L&BR group, we appear to be going around in circles in some areas and having a central resource facility for the membership has to be a good thing.

    One area which the L&BR does not have at the moment and that is a means of contacting members by email on a group basis via alerts, so if we needed say 20 members to turn up at a show to help run the stand we don't have something like that in place at the moment, this is only one example which I would like us to get around to putting in place. Another facility I would like to see and that is somewhere to place training information for the benefit of L&BR members.

    I would also like to see and that is a site which can handle an electronic version of the L&BR magazine, as this could save the L&BR trust a huge a mount of money in postal costs and it would make the L&BR one of the few groups to offer this as well (another reason for being a members only group is you still need to pay a subscription to obtain the online magazine).

    In time such a forum may become a one stop shop for all internal L&BRT internet information, such as photos archives, technical information, historical notes, but such a development has to start somewhere.

    I don't know all the answers and there are still a number of questions which need to be asked and hopefully someone somewhere will have an answer. Using a computer based forum can help develop good relations between the membership who may live miles apart and don't get to see each other quite as often as they may like. a web site is used in the main to promote the cause, but how many do you know which does anything for the groups membership?

    I hope this has help answer a few of your questions.


    regards

    Colin
     
  9. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    At the risk of throwing a sanner in the works, I don't see how the L & B Trust can claim Gift Aid on contributions and then give the money back to a group of private individuals who form the 762 club and own the engine. In order to claim Gift Aid, as I understand it, the Trust would have to own the asset.

    But why is ownership important to the contributors? They may get a warm glow from being able to say that part of it is "theirs", but at the same time they are saddling themselves with the liability of future uptake. Far better to simply make a donation to the Trust and have the enjoyment of it while leaving the worries to others!
     
  10. Axe

    Axe Member

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    Then your understanding is wrong. The 'gift aid' process was explained to members attending the L&B AGM last month. It's not a new process that's been dreamt up by the L&B; it replicates similar projects at other heritage railways. Unfortunately the question of who will actually own the locomotive was skipped over at the AGM, but that has now been clarified.


    Selling tangible assets is the most successful method of fund raising. It's been proved time and time again.

    Chris
     
  11. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    Looks like there is still confusion over this matter. If the gift aid explanation was only given to those people who attended the AGM, then they are really the only ones in possession of all the facts and therefore the only ones who can make a rational decision. I have to say that '61624' does seem to have a point here - what's to stop me donating money to project X, getting the gift aid claimed back and then project X giving me my money + the gift aid back? Nice little earner for me, project X doesn't lose anything, but at the same time the gift aid would have been claimed for project X - not for my back pocket, which doesn't seem right to me.
    I know parallels have been drawn with the Ffestiniog and the Lyd project, but there is a subtle difference - the Ffestiniog own Lyd.

    I have to agree with Chris here. £762 is quite a lot of money and if I was going to donate that amount I would want to see something in return. With a loco, then a part share/voting rights etc. would be a reasonable benefit.


    Keith
     
  12. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

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    Oh, for heaven's sake Keith, why do people have to see conspiracy theories everywhere - it's frankly ridiculous! ](*,)
    Also, it's not true that only people at the AGM got the story of the Gift Aid. The leaflet you get from the Treasurer to fill in in order to buy a share clearly sets this out - as does the form downloadable from the club website. The only thing not clarified was the link between the Trust and the Club, as laid out in Peter Miles's explanation that I posted above.
    You have to remember that many heritage railways have used this approach; the promoters of the 762 Club and the officers of the L&B Trust are highly respected folk, and spent many many months on the scheme before launching it. It's not like they just came up out of the blue and launched a scheme without researching it!!
    If I were you, I'd be careful before posting similar insinuations about wrong-doing by fund raisers - putting this in the public domain is potentially costly (for you!).

    Please can we move on from silly suspicious gossip, and get back to supporting the English Narrow Gauge's equivalent of Tornado! Help Lyn ride again!! \:D/
     
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  13. SpudUk

    SpudUk Well-Known Member

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    There does appear to be a number of people suggesting a conspiracy when clearly there isn't one! I for one dont doubt the knowledge and ability of the L&BR trust
     
  14. ghost

    ghost Part of the furniture

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    Martin,

    I haven't made any 'insinuations about wrong-doing' and neither have I engaged in 'silly suspicious gossip' or any 'conspiracy theories' and I resent your implication that I have.

    The questions I have asked have been to try to clarify how the Trust and club work together and who the owner of the loco will be at the end of the day. I have no doubt that the Trust and club officials spent a long time preparing the plan and are people of integrity, however if I don't understand how the scheme works and I ask questions, that doesn't mean I'm questioning their honesty - merely that the publicly available information doesn't explain things well enough.

    As I stated earlier £762 is a lot of money to me, so I would want to know exactly how that money will be spent, how the club is structured and ruled, and how the money is moved between Trust and club before I would consider investing. If you think those requests are unreasonable then here is why I ask about these things; I have donated money to other heritage projects in the past only to find that the money was used for ridiculous non-heritage items, and that the membership had no say in how their society was being run - I vowed not to make the same mistake again. Maybe that's just me being overcautious, but I don't feel it's cause for the toys to be thrown out of the pram.

    Anyway, since I still don't fully understand how it all works, I will leave you and your colleagues to it, I wish you the best of luck and I will make no further comment on the scheme.


    Keith
     
  15. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    I'm not suggesting for a moment that there is a conspiracy going on, but I can't see how its possible for people to make donations that are gift aid-able and yet retain ownership of the item created by those donations. If it can be done I'd like to understand how, for the benefit of my own organisation!
     
  16. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

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    Apologies Keith - it did seem to me however that your quote 'getting the gift aid claimed back and then project X giving me my money + the gift aid back? Nice little earner for me...' suggested you thought something fishy is going on! :-#
    I accept of course that you didn't mean to insinuate wrong-doing, and apologize again for too rapid a reaction.

    One final attempt to explain the procedure (I have also replied to Firefly off-list on this). Members buy shares in the Club for a nominal amount (non gift-aided), but donate the bulk of the amount to the L&B Trust (so, gift aided). The Trust has as its mandate the ability to donate to schemes that help the railway; the 762 club's scheme helps the railway, so donating to it is within its mandate. The Trust, therefore, undertakes to donate the relevant amount to the Club to enable the Club to build and own Lyn. An agreement is in place between the Trust and Club to ensure it can't spend the cash on extra seats in the Tea Garden or snazzy uniforms for the guards!
    This method is tried and tested, the Club and Trust officials are entirely reputable.
    I hope you'll still consider supporting the scheme, and as a former Northern Ireland inhabitant (Jordanstown 1991-2000), I'd hate to think I'd put you off.

    M
     
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  17. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    I've received the PM and replied, but for the benefit of others, I'm surprised that the L & B Trust doesn't have a clause in its constitution that limits its giving to charitable bodies. In this model the owners of the locomotive are personally benefitting from a charitable donation and I would not have thought that is permissible.

    However, if they can pull it off, good luck to them.
     
  18. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

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    My last post on this topic - honest!

    The Trust's Memorandum and Articles of Association are available on the Trust website. Among others they state:
    "4. In furtherance of the Objects but not otherwise the Charity may exercise the
    following powers:
    (1) To study, compile records on and acquire, build, restore, reinstate, rebuild, create,
    reconstruct, preserve and maintain railway lines, trackbed, locomotives, rolling stock
    and other items of railway interest, and to provide training and instruction in such
    activities and in particular but without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing
    those associated with the former Lynton & Barnstaple Railway, the former Southern
    Railway and other railways and to enter into such agreements and to take all such
    steps as may be necessary for these purposes, and to organise, sponsor and
    support displays and such other shows and events for the provision and stimulation
    of information, education and interest in such vehicles and other items of railway
    interest. (Amended by Special Resolution dated 24th March 2007)

    ...

    (7) to co-operate with other charities, voluntary bodies and statutory authorities
    operating in furtherance of the objects or similar charitable purposes and to
    exchange information and advice with them;

    ...

    (10) to restore replicate and preserve the locomotives and rolling stock that operated
    on the railway.
    ...

    (24) To subscribe, make donations or loans (provided such loans are made in direct
    furtherance of its objects or for investment purposes) to any such association,
    society, trust or corporation as aforesaid with a view to obtaining any advantages or
    benefits for or promoting the objects of the Trust or to amalgamate with any such
    body having charitable objects similar to those of the Trust. "

    M
     
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  19. Old Kent Biker

    Old Kent Biker Member

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    Last month, 762 Club subscribers received their first Newsletter, giving more detail of the aims of the project, progress to date, and plans for the next stage in recreating LYN.

    The newsletter is now available on-line, as a pdf file, from the news page at 762club.com There will also shortly be details of ways to donate cash to the project, and sponsor individual components of the build at various prices, from a few pounds upwards ...
     
  20. pmh_74

    pmh_74 Well-Known Member

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    Not a comment on the specific project (about which I have no knowledge or involvement whatsoever) but more of a general one.

    If charities could only make grants to other charities there would be no point, as the other charity could simply do its own fund raising and claim its own gift aid.

    What they do instead is make grants to other organisations - possibly including private individuals - who are carrying out projects which support their aims. In doing so they will (or should, anyway) require some sort of a contract in place with the body receiving the funds, to ensure that the grant money is only spent on the agreed item, and that said item, when finished, is going to benefit the aims of the charity - for example by x years of guaranteed running on the railway concerned, or whatever.

    Provided all of these checks & balances are in place then I can't see a problem. If the grant-receiving body didn't do what it said it would do (and within whatever timescales are agreed) then the charity could ask for their money back, probably causing the project to go bust and possibly (certainly if fraud rather than incompetence was to blame) leading to personal prosecutions and a spell 'inside', so nobody in their right minds is going to abuse this process.

    Finally, in the example quoted above, the locomotive's owners would only personally benefit if they then sold the loco. It is quite possible for the charity making the grant to attach a 'pay back' clause to the grant, such that the money is repaid to the charity if the loco is sold within an agreed timescale (there have to be limits of course - if the grant is to buy boiler tubes and the loco is sold after 10 years of use then nobody can reasonably claim that the owner has profited... other than via a steaming fee perhaps, but that could also be negotiated/adjusted to take account of the grant received.)

    Phil
     

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