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Loco 76017

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by johnofwessex, Nov 15, 2022.

  1. 21B

    21B Part of the furniture

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    I can offer no explanation for the lack of statement. That is a matter for the parties concerned, and their prerogative.

    What I can say is that the locomotive was overhauled by the railway at its expense. Running fees were due and paid according to the schedule set out, and the railway undertook maintenance as required.
     
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  2. MellishR

    MellishR Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    That would seem to imply a large investment, for which one might reasonably expect the loco to remain available at least until its next overhaul.
     
  3. Jimc

    Jimc Part of the furniture

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    This one would expect all that to be defined in a contract, maybe with termination clauses. It seems to be spectacularly unlikely that the MHR management, with their history of mixed relations with locomotive owners, would miss something so very basic. And bearing in mind the level of secrecy that customarily surrounds these arrangements I would be a little surprised to hear anything at all unless someone is foolish enough to start litigating. I submit the smart money is that the change in location has been made in concordance with contracts.
     
  4. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    I think one might reasonably expect the loco to remain available for the duration specified in the contract. Which is not quite the same thing ...

    None of us (or at least, almost none of us) knows the details of the contract, so it is all speculative. But since the loco cannot have travelled along the MHR and across the junction to Network Rail without the active co-operation of the MHR operations department, I strongly suspect that the move was considered by both parties to be within the terms of any contract.

    The other side point is that locos don't tend to wear out evenly across a ticket. A crude generalisation would be I suspect that if the MHR had 60% of the boiler ticket, they probably had > 60% of the mileage / value. It would be normal for a loco to work harder at the start of its ticket, and by the end be mostly doing standby or similar duties. 75% of the mileage run in 60% of the ticket might be a fair assumption.

    Tom
     
  5. Gladiator 5076

    Gladiator 5076 Resident of Nat Pres

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    There may even have been a break point clause in the contract allowing one or either side to allow the loco to move. Perhaps with the history between the parties believed to be involved, if I was negotiating it, I would have gone for one.
    But as you said Tom the loco went from the MHR to NR with some sort of operational involvement.
     
  6. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    Just on this point, the matter that has caused such surprise is that 76017 has not returned to the MHR. AIUI there were no suggestions in the public domain that it's leaving the MHR was anything other than a routine hire and return, and the reaction to the news that it was no waiting time at Bluebell was sufficiently surprised that it is IMHO a reasonable surmise that those plans changed after departure from Alton.

    It is that gap that made - and still makes - me very uncomfortable.
     
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  7. Alan Kebby

    Alan Kebby Well-Known Member

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    As has been explained before, there is no doubt that the move to the Bluebell was done with the full knowledge and blessing of the MHR management.

    The questions surround whether they knew at the time it was never going to return.
     
  8. martin1656

    martin1656 Nat Pres stalwart Friend

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    I suspect we will never know, The management is never going to say, yes we knew, but decided it best not to tell anyone, because you can bet that management won't last very long,
    The engine was overhauled by the previous management, so it could very well be there was an agreement signed up before the engine was overhauled, which would have ran out with 4 years left on the ticket, the railway, at the time expecting the group to just sign a new 10 year agreement, and it was only once this agreement ran out, that the new owner took their rightful prerogative to move it somewhere else, that is the only reasoning i can think of,
     
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  9. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    I’ve no idea of the principles of the contracts that were in place before and after its last overhaul but I can see a scenario whereby the first contract was on a run and repair basis and the latter contract on a pay per mile/days use. That would fit with 21B’s statement that:
    “What I can say is that the locomotive was overhauled by the railway at its expense. Running fees were due and paid according to the schedule set out, and the railway undertook maintenance as required.”
     
  10. 6026 King John

    6026 King John Well-Known Member

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    It just seems a little strange that the loco should leave the railway with the blessing of the management at a time when they are short of steam locos. As it is there are only 3 for next season unless they decide to keep "Lady of Legend" on for next year.
     
  11. Alan Kebby

    Alan Kebby Well-Known Member

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    A
    It only left with the blessing of the management to go to visit the Bluebell, presumably with the expectation it would return. It’s the non return that has possibly taken them by surprise.
     
  12. Jimc

    Jimc Part of the furniture

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    If everyone has fulfilled their contractual obligations, and there seems to be precisely zero evidence that they haven't, why shouldn't it leave with a blessing. Yes, its no doubt awkward having it leave, but I submit a wise management always ensures contracts end on friendly terms, just in case you want to negotiate another down the road a piece.
     
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  13. 21B

    21B Part of the furniture

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    The loco was overhauled by the MHR under an agreement reached with the owners. The railway and the owners funded this overhaul. The details of how that arrangement worked are not for publication, but it was an agreement that dealt with the entirety of the cost and the running arrangement within the life of the boiler certificate.

    I think that regardless of the length of time that the agreement may have been intended to run (about which I offer no comment), the railway has concluded that it has got from that contract sufficient value that the locomotive leaving is acceptable. Since no one outside of a small group can know why it arrived at that conclusion, all you can do is accept that this conclusion was arrived at after a good deal of thought.

    I agree that an announcement would have been sensible. I do not think the absence of an announcement should be taken as evidence of anything other than an inability to communicate. The cause of that inability is unknown, but as the loco could not have left without help from the railway, the inability does not relate to any kind of animosity surrounding the departure.
     
  14. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    The facts are often hidden to those searching for monsters under bed. ;)
     
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  15. MellishR

    MellishR Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    When the loco left, the railway may or may not have known that it would not be coming back. Even if that was known, the railway may or may not have considered permanent departure acceptable. The absence of any statement leaves us wondering and speculating about foul play. If indeed it was all done by agreement, why not say so? There would be no need for any details, just the basic fact.
     
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  16. Jimc

    Jimc Part of the furniture

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    Its easier to have no dialogue at all than it is to control one. I imagine that's why a sizeable percentage of locomotive owners keep quiet about almost everything.
     
  17. Alan Kebby

    Alan Kebby Well-Known Member

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    Indeed. However it’s the fact it went to the Bluebell for a visit first that raises eyebrows. Was it just a big coincidence that it was booked a visit there at exactly the same time it was to leave the MHR? Or is there more to it?
     
  18. 21B

    21B Part of the furniture

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    Like what? For goodness sake, the loco left and visited the Bluebell on its way elsewhere. The MHR clearly knew where it was going and when. Please stop looking for monsters under the bed.
     
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  19. Sidmouth

    Sidmouth Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator

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    Froth levels on this thread are surpassing some of Nat Pres's finest and that takes some doing

    The point so many for whom the shock and apparent trauma hasn't subsided is that overall control (as in ownership) also changed which may well have been sufficient to render any agreement void

    secondly if the loco's original contract was on a run and repair agreement then its subsequent overhaul merely concluded that agreement . It could well have run on a steaming fee basis on a form of rolling contract so it is free to leave at any point
     
  20. 21B

    21B Part of the furniture

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    Quite. The agreement was repair and run with a daily fee, but otherwise you’re broadly correct.
     

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