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Isle of Wight Steam Railway

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by Freshwater, Nov 12, 2013.

  1. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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    Everything on the IOW steam railway is almost perfect.

    You cannot fault it.

    However, it is not for me.

    What they do is a template for what most are achieving, yet:

    It is sterile

    Please, beat me on the bottom with your Woman's Weekly,

    It really is a caricature of the islands railways
     
  2. paulhitch

    paulhitch Guest

    All leisure railways are "caricatures". Some are better caricatures than others.
     
  3. gwalkeriow

    gwalkeriow Well-Known Member

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    What do you think would need to change for you to change your opinion?
     
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  4. nanstallon

    nanstallon Well-Known Member

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    ... and one which the IoWSR meets very successfully.
     
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  5. Luke Bridges

    Luke Bridges New Member

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    I love and have always loved the Isle of Wight railway for as long as i can remember. Its general feel is missed virtually anywhere else on the mainland. Small tank engines, with not a Mk 1 in sight. Brilliant.

    However, three things always get to me everytime i visit.

    Non Edmonson tickets - i know this has been talk to death before, but makes it feel more like a theme park than steam railway. Swanage and KESR have gone the same way and to me, the same applies.

    Cattle hearding at Havenstreet - Again adds to theme park feel, queuing in a seperate area for your turn to get on the ride. Yes trains emptying onto the small island playform make it busy but no more so than Sheffield Park or Tunbridge Wells West when a train empties.

    Nothing has changed - with the exception of the new museum and now finally Wooton, it is the same railway ive always visited. An extension on and off the cards more than i can count. Tickets bought from a shed.

    Now dont get me wrong, i love the Iowsr. The engines they run and can turn out are amazing coupled with those beautifully looked after coaches the rest of the country could only dream of. But nothing grips me as being exciting. My personal opinion is theyve gone too far down the family day out route as any other visitor attraction. Yes they run steam trains but the small details make the full picture.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  6. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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    How can you change what is almost perfect, it is a working museum, not a transport service.
     
  7. paulhitch

    paulhitch Guest

    Firstly, I have to emphasise these are purely my own views.

    Yes, Edmonson tickets have been done to death as an issue. This is the era of payment by contactless plastic cards and of Gift Aided purchases. You can't get the card blanks anyway. I am far more concerned that it is so darned difficult to find a branch line type train at some places that were branch lines before preservation.

    Havenstreet was rebuilt by the Southern Railway as a passing place that could be run by one member of staff. It's capacity to handle numbers is quite limited, hence the gates and fencing. Don't even suggest the platform gets widened or replaced by two individual ones with a subway! The price paid for a reasonable amount of authenticity is a reasonable amount of "herding".

    If you want a detailed account why running into Ryde is "on hold" at least for the moment, have a look at the railway website. Last year a surprising number of railways lost, collectively, a surprising amount of money. The IOWSR is not one of them. The reason for these losses is not solely excessive route mileage but it is a factor in some cases.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2019
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  8. martin1656

    martin1656 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    Havenstreet's largest problem is in that its an narrow island platform, and not intended to cope with the sort of demands it has to cope with. so the fencing and gates etc is the only way it can be controlled, short of having another crossing at the country end and a flow system, there is not much that can be done its probably just as well that the site has developed in the way it has with the only use being to train , or de train then move away from the platform.
    Whats the problem with Edmonton card blanks? is it that no one makes the card, or the presses used are now worn out, Sorry to say this but modern type tickets in what is supposed to be a trip back in time, does not seem a good move, if traditional tickets cant be used, for what ever reason, then why cant the modern computer printed ticket, many of which are blanks, not be printed as a traditional looking ticket , or have something like Isle of Wight Central railway heading, in an old font, all of which can be done in house, and at least issue something that looks traditional, or based on a traditional design? you retain the ease of recording numbers etc, but also it serves a promotional purpose .
     
  9. paulhitch

    paulhitch Guest

    Somethingof this nature is done in the form of a "My first railway ticket" issued to very small children who. of course, do not pay to travel.
     
  10. martin1656

    martin1656 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    So why can't it be done to all computer issued tickets ? If Edmonton card tickets can not economically be sourced, then does it not make sence to ensure the ticket you issue does at least look the part, and the cost of doing this should only be the art work, which I assume the railways owns.
     
  11. Alan Kebby

    Alan Kebby Member

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    I would suggest that the family day out is their core market, with holiday makers on the island and families coming over for day trips. It’s understandable they cater to this market, and wouldn’t survive long if they didn’t.

    But also I feel the IOWSR caters to the enthusiast market more so than some other railways. Where else can you see carriage restoration in progress, and a display building where you can view stock not in traffic. Also I believe the plan is to one day build a new loco workshop with public access.
     
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  12. paullad1984

    paullad1984 Member

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    I was issued an Edmonton card type ticket at Tanfield on Saturday so don't give us that old chestnut!
     
  13. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    As someone who has bemoaned the demise of Edmonson Card tickets, I think it's fair to note that availability of blanks has become an issue more widely.
     
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  14. Alan Kebby

    Alan Kebby Member

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    Surely it’s a case of supply and demand? If demand was there, it would be worthwhile for companies to produce Edmondson tickets. After all how hard can it be to make cardboard tickets?

    However the demand isn’t there because railways find it much more convenient to use computerised ticket systems.
     
  15. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    To a consistent standard, without returns - probably not as easy as it looks. And for a niche product, possibly not terribly cheap either.
     
  16. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Nat Pres stalwart

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    I do hear the case that stock is difficult to find, but it's not just the smaller railways that still manage to use Edmondsons, plenty of the biggest railways use them too. Whilst they're still finding stock, citing difficulties in sourcing doesn't really cut it as an excuse. Nor does moving to computer systems for ease of use, I know we on the GWSR use modern processing behind the scenes but still manage to produce cardboard tickets.
     
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  17. Alan Kebby

    Alan Kebby Member

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    But that’s exactly my point. If all preserved railways wanted to use Edmondson ticket rather than computerised systems it wouldn’t be such a niche product.
     
  18. Nick C

    Nick C Member

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    I don't buy the idea that you can't get blanks - they're just rectangular bits of pasteboard.

    It took me about 20 seconds on google to find half a dozen links to companies that will print Edmondson tickets. Pasteboard takes a little longer as most places call it "card stock" now, which mixes it up with all the other cardboard, but still plenty of suppliers - I'm sure most will cut it to size for you if you buy enough at once...
     
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  19. gwalkeriow

    gwalkeriow Well-Known Member

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    The “cattle herding” is the safest method of dealing with the vast number of passengers that can be around on special events, on none event days it is rather more relaxed.

    Edmonton tickets has been done to within an inch of its life so many times on National Preservation that I will not add to it.

    Extensions of the existing Railway:- to Newport would be massively expensive for various reasons, to Ryde is very much out of the Railways hands. If SWR do not want to play ball their is nothing much that it can do other than plan for the day when it might be possible.
     
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  20. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    I read elsewhere that it is less SWR that don't want to play ball, as others who are imposing standards that are unacceptably expensive to mitigate, and very difficult to sidestep. The ORR in particular come in for a lot of criticism in this area, I think justifiably.
     

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