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Oswestry Update

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by ilvaporista, Aug 13, 2010.

  1. 30854

    30854 Part of the furniture

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    So, nothing to do with that adjacent brewery then? :D

    Progress in recent months has been nothing short of phenomenal. To always have it all so regularly and comprehensively reported, both here and on your blog, is a real treat and always greatly appreciated.
     
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  2. weltrol

    weltrol Member Friend

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    IIRC, with the completion of the Weston Wharf run-round loop, this will be the first time since the original concept/formation of the Cambrian Railway society in 1972 that they have had such a facility. A milestone indeed!
     
  3. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    Ha. The brewery does have a certain lure... I’ll not be able to partake for a while as we are now all locked down and travelling is off for the moment.
    The short term plans are a bit on hold but thoughts are already turning to what’s next. If you are signed up to the newsletter then you will know about the desire to press on to Llynclys.
    If the challenge of Weston was impressive then further expansion is going to be doubly so!
    First step is to open the railway to Weston and consolidate operations. The plans for crossing the A483 are to have a road over bridge. That will take serious funding. Realistically we are looking at a few years for this to happen but the track beyond is in good condition having been changed to concrete sleepers for much of the length.
    I’ll have to think of a new blog name for when that starts but until then it’s a Bridge (Too) Far (Too) Early.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2020
  4. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    When I was a nipper playing at the station back in the 70’s I was convinced that before long I would be riding down the line behind a steam train. Never give up on your dreams! It’s thanks to the early members that the dream is still alive. Now all we need is for Foxcote Manor to make a return visit.... I think that’s a while away yet. But the run round loops are almost ready!
     
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  5. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    In terms of the blog the real credit goes to the people who take the pictures, I’d be lost without them. Again the railway is the result of the members pulling in the same direction working towards an overall plan. The right people in the right positions can make a world of difference.
     
  6. billbedford

    billbedford Member Friend

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    how right you are .bet you thank god every day for not locating oswestry in somerset :)
     
  7. weltrol

    weltrol Member Friend

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    You were probably one of the youngsters that frequented the yard on a regular basis. Where you there when the Class 104s were in the yard?
     
  8. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    I was always more interested in the Barclay and when that arrived it was ‘my’ engine. I would only be there on some Wednesdays over the school holidays. My gran worked at the Park Hall camp during the war and we would have to go and visit various ‘aunties’ in Oswestry now and again. After the obligatory hasn’t he grown routine I would be sent out to play and told to be back at 4:30. There was a bus on market day from Nantwich to Oswestry direct which speeded up travel from Sandbach, it still seemed to take all day though! Funnily enough the journey home only ever seemed to be 10 minutes and we would have fish and chips when we got back, memories! There was a lad a little bit older than me called Neil who was always at the station. I can’t remember much about the DMU’s though. Gran got too old to go by bus so I stopped going to Oswestry about 1980ish. When I could drive I took gran back for one last look around but by then all of her friends had passed away so there was no reason to stop for long. She would tell me of the old days when she would travel by train to Oswestry. She called Ellesmere Millionaire’s Row. It seems like only yesterday but it’s well over 40 years ago.
     
  9. Steve B

    Steve B Well-Known Member

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    Can I add a further comment in praise of what has been achieved over the last few years. Where we see other railways struggling with the PR side of things, what @ilvaporista has achieved in keeping people informed shows how you can still make an excellent contribution to your favourite railway and not even be in the same country!

    A few years ago I had the opportunity to give some time to help one or other of the local railways because I had time available - I looked at the Cambrian, but at the time there were all sorts of tensions between the society and the trust (now all apparently resolved) and so I didn't pursue it because I had enough conflict to deal with at work at the time. Now look years later and see what they they have achieved, and we've been given a blow by blow account of it all. I retire in about a year and a bit, and I'm getting tempted, in no small part due to these updates.

    Thank you

    Steve B
     
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  10. Ploughman

    Ploughman Well-Known Member

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    I would agree with that statement. Well Done.
     
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  11. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    Thank you all for your kind words, again I am only a simple remote member but I want to do my bit.
    I can only physically volunteer on my occaisional trips back to the UK, but every time I have been made to feel most welcome. The change in volunteer facilities has been remarkable and it will be good to have a place to sleep.
    .
     
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  12. 2392

    2392 Member

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    Don't worry ilvaporista, many of us here are most grateful for your posts/blogs. As Tesco are most apt to put it...."Every little helps!"
     
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  13. Vulcan Works

    Vulcan Works Member

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    This post should be mandatory reading for the leaders of all heritage railways! I agree, having a plan that people support (and debate and occasionally disagree with) and having key people who get things done and inspire others is so, so important. Having bags of money also helps of course but if you have a good plan it helps to ensure that any money is spent wisely!
     
  14. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    Just to put things into perspective CHR turns over around £30’000 per year. Based on that level of turnover you can see why internal funding for investment is so tight. We really do have to make every pound count. Which is why I always say donations go much further than perhaps is the case elsewhere.
    The hope is that when we have a proven track record and are seen to be an operating entity, that further grants and investments will be easier to obtain. The new bridge to allow trains to run under the A483 could never be funded from the current level of turnover.
     
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  15. 2392

    2392 Member

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    As you have shown ilvaporista with your posts/blogs. You don't need "to get your hands dirty" to help/promote your railway/group. Whilst many of us prefer to get'em dirty..... As you've highlighted you can't get to Oswestry as often as you'd like, which is one of many reasons that stop folk being more active in a "hands on way," A former treasurer of NELPG is/was a bank manager and used his banking skills to look after their finances being another example.
     
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  16. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    It’s a question of circumstances here in Italy. I do like to get my hands dirty when possible but the chances here in Italy are a bit limited. The closest group to home turned out to be rather a closed shop and very much if you are not an ex railway employee don’t bother.
    The group up in the Alps where we have a house is much more welcoming and I help out with the steam specials when I can.
    The major dirty hands work is on the miniature railway side and before too long I hope to move out of the suburbs to a property with enough land to create my own railway.
    Once I retire the plan is to spend some weeks per year in the UK volunteering. That I am really looking forward to!
     
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  17. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    I had a dig back through some photos and here is a before and after, just over 14 months separates these picture but you need to take away a few months for lockdown.
    Before
    67337392_2261412673912260_5699741783013982208_o.jpg

    After
    IMG_9971.jpg
     
  18. Martin Fuller

    Martin Fuller New Member

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    Speaking as a Foxcote Manor trustee, we'd love to make a return visit! Hopefully with a photocharter and maybe some driver experiences. (Covid permitting)
     
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  19. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    It's a shame I could only put one 'like' on that post! It deserves a few hundred. I am sure that one day it will happen.

    Now just as a teaser here is a picture from just before lockdown on the final day of the working week. A loco hauled goods train made it across the Morda bridge and arrived close to the level crossing. I bet there were a few surprised motorists on the A483.
    219e8c2c-b944-426c-aa19-f940146362ac.jpg

    I will be updating the blog with some of the latest pictures over the next few weeks so keep checking back.
     
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  20. ilvaporista

    ilvaporista Part of the furniture

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    I have made a couple of posts of the work done in the week leading up to the lockdown. Keep checking the blog as new pictures arrive.

    http://ilvaporista.blogspot.com
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2020
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