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West Somerset Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by gwr4090, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. nanstallon

    nanstallon Well-Known Member

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    What does Brislington (used to have a station on the Bristol - Radstock - Frome branch) have to offer that makes it such a draw? Not a patch on Bridlington, Yorkshire, though.
     
  2. malcolm imps

    malcolm imps Member

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    :Morewaitingisrequired: I Think........I Think ?? IMG_9356[1].JPG
     
  3. malcolm imps

    malcolm imps Member

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    :Morewaitingisrequired: :Banghead: :Banghead: THE Volunteer PW gang last Sunday after walking to site from MD ..... IMG_9360[1].JPG
     
  4. Roland Bushell

    Roland Bushell New Member

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    Good point. Well made. Duly corrected. Never good practice to post after the first double expresso of the day.
     
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  5. MellishR

    MellishR Part of the furniture Friend

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    It could be even worse pre-caffeine.
     
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  6. Snifter

    Snifter Part of the furniture

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    The WSSRT business plan is available however there is a small erratum in item 45. IIRC, the Bailey report was commissioned by the S&D and the PLC as a mediation device and the findings included recommendations for a restructure of the railway family. It was not commissioned solely by the PLC to look at the structure of the PLC. One wonders which director wrote the plan and which hat they were wearing at the time ?

    http://www.wssrt.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/Business-Plan-2020-22-final-version.pdf

    On a different note, the calendar marches on and we have a date for the PLC AGM. One silver lining in the Covid cloud is that economic activity has been greatly reduced so there should be no undue delay in having the accounts ready.
     
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  7. John Palmer

    John Palmer Member

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    The WSSRT business plan's suggestion that the WSR plc commissioned John Bailey to review its structure is at odds with the account given in his report by John Bailey himself.

    According to paragraph 1.2 of that report, unidentified 'key players' made contact with the Railway Heritage Association following the plc's service on the S&DRT of notice to quit the Washford site. The HRA was asked to help and advise. The HRA's response was to adopt a suggestion that it should promote "a facilitated discussion with all relevant parties to see if they could identify an alternative way forward." John Bailey was asked to lead that process on behalf of the HRA.

    John Bailey goes on to say that it was clear that the notice to quit raised much wider issues. In the light of that he expressed his wish (in paragraph 1.5) that "the various parties will forgive my voluntarily taking on a greater challenge than originally envisaged. That is to chart a potential road map to peace … for the whole of the West Somerset Railway family." That strikes me as a clear indication that John Bailey decided to take the initiative in making recommendations relating to governance structures going beyond the terms of reference of his appointment, and that he had not been 'commissioned' by the plc to do so.

    It does appear that it was the plc that originally made contact with the HRA, as revealed by the following passage from the joint plc, WSRA and WSSRT statement published on 1 May 2020:

    "Following discussion, the WSRA and the WSRST expressed their support for the PLC, while regretting the concern caused to the members of the S & D Trust, which seemed to be partly as a result of the S & D Trust’s unwillingness to engage in discussions. It was agreed that the best way to minimise those concerns was to use the services of an independent party, which is provided for in the terms of the lease. The PLC explained that it has already been in talks with the Heritage Railway Association about such an approach, and was waiting for their final agreement on assistance. It is hoped that the S & D Trust will take up this opportunity."

    Leaving aside the spin put upon the Trust's alleged "unwillingness to engage" (which is, incidentally, entirely inconsistent with the Trust's response as reported in para. 1.3 of John Bailey's report), it is apparent from this passage that it must have been the plc that first approached the HRA, and that it was concern aroused by the plc's efforts to evict the S&DRT that prompted the WSSRT and the WSRA to support the approach to the HRA that the plc had already made. So it was the eviction of the S&DRT that prompted HRA involvement, not a structure review commissioned by the plc.

    It should also be noted that the 2018 Agreement extending the S&DRT's Washford lease specifically assigns to the HRA the limited role of acting as appointer of an arbitrator to resolve certain disputes, and the promotion by the HRA of a facilitated discussion was not a dispute resolution mechanism envisaged by that Agreement. To the extent that the 1st May joint statement suggests the HRA was simply being asked to follow the terms of the Agreement it is misleading.

    I really cannot understand why the WSSRT has chosen in its business plan to advance the notion that the Bailey Report was a structure review commissioned by the plc when it must have been aware from the terms of the 1st May joint statement to which its chairman subscribed that such was not the case. I hope that what I have set out here helps to set the record straight.
     
  8. gwilialan

    gwilialan Part of the furniture

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    It seems the WSSRT's directors have nailed their colours firmly to the Plc's Boards mast... I wonder if this was a decision supported by their members?
     
  9. Triumph 2500S

    Triumph 2500S Member

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    Which doesn't make them independent does it?
     
  10. garth manor

    garth manor Member

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    All the evidence in this plan points to a unified approach.
     
  11. jma1009

    jma1009 Well-Known Member

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    I support John Palmer's most recent post earlier this evening.

    And as I posted the other day on The SDRT thread, things are dragging on.
     
  12. John Palmer

    John Palmer Member

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    In the course of browsing the WSSRT website where the aforementioned Business Plan is located I happened across the agreement between the WSSRT and the WSR plc that came into effect on 1 January 2017 (at http://www.wssrt.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/wssrt-plc-signed.pdf). This agreement sets out the grant by the plc of sub-leases of the down platform building at Blue Anchor and the goods shed at Bishops Lydeard. The agreement is expressed to have a term of 50 years.

    I was struck by similarities of the WSSRT agreement to the 2018 agreement in which the S&DRT's lease of the Washford premises was extended by 50 years. Postings by John Bailey (@Lineisclear) on this forum make clear his view that there is a defect in the agreement formed between the plc and the S&DRT, and that this is of sufficient gravity to invalidate the extension by 50 years of the Washford lease. Since John Bailey has commented that "it would be bizarre in facilitating a resolution over the Washford situation not to at least suggest that apparent problems with validity of the extension agreement should be checked" (https://www.national-preservation.c...eviction-notice.1417790/page-127#post-2592407), he has presumably set out details of the problems he perceives in the part of his report that currently remains confidential, and consequently such details will have been made known to those in receipt of the unredacted report, including the management of the WSSRT.

    As I've commented before, I can only speculate about the nature of the defect John Bailey believes to exist in the agreement extending the S&DRT's Washford lease. I suspect I have correctly identified the source of his concerns, and if my suspicions are confirmed by disclosure of the remainder of his report, I might well offer the view that the supposed defect does not in fact exist or, if it does, that the consequences are not as grave as he implies.

    On the other hand, the defect John Bailey claims to have identified could turn out to be just as serious as he suggests. In that case, the resemblances of the 2017 WSSRT agreement to the 2018 S&DRT agreement point to the likelihood that, if the defect is one that renders void the 50-year extension of the S&DRT's lease, a like defect exists in the sub-leases granted by the plc to the WSSRT and will have the same effect upon them.

    It was quite unnecessary to drop a hint on this forum that there might be an unspecified defect in the S&DRT's extension agreement that rendered it invalid. Doing so has had the malign though doubtless unintended side effect of raising the possibility that another tenant of the plc may be similarly affected. Members of the S&DRT and now the WSSRT have grounds for concern that leases enjoyed by both trusts could be found to be void, and the sooner such concerns are allayed or confirmed by full disclosure of the defect alleged, the better.
     
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  13. nine elms fan

    nine elms fan Member

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    Lets all hope it does not end in tears. :rolleyes:
     
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  14. granmaree

    granmaree Member

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    What does the DEPG agreement look like in comparison?
     
  15. oliversbest

    oliversbest New Member

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    Is this thread a soap opera,a treatise on the intricacies of company law or the UKHR poster boy for how NOT to do it. The question from a Rail enthusiasts POV is 1. Will the WSR survive or 2. does it deserve to?
     
  16. Hampshire Unit

    Hampshire Unit Well-Known Member Friend

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    It certainly deserves to. despite the current management
     
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  17. Aberdare

    Aberdare Member

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    A few photos taken recently on the WSR.

    Network Rail's High Output Ballast Cleaner (HOBC) train has been working nightly in the South Devon area over the last few weeks. In the early hours of each morning the train returns to Fairwater Yard in Taunton to be prepared for the next night's work. The empty supply hoppers go to Westbury for filling with new ballast, and the loaded spent ballast hoppers come over to the WSR's triangle site for emptying. As the WSR's conductor driver last Friday I took the opportunity to take a photo of the train being unloaded. Only 7 wagons that day with approximately 330 tonnes of dirty ballast. On occasions we will have the complete train visit for turning which can consist of two class 66 locomotives, two blue dust suppression wagons, thirty eight 82 tonne hopper wagons, plus the central ballast cleaner itself and barrier wagons, it's quite impressive. The "Taunton Trains" web site has a section devoted to the HOBC operation, see:- https://www.tauntontrains.co.uk/photos/gallery/the-network-rail-hobc--trt-gallery

    Anyway, my photo of the 7 hoppers being unloaded.

    IMG_1241.JPG

    Work is continuing on 53808. Firstly, today the new valve heads being fitted to the reground valve spindles.

    IMG_1242.JPG

    Again today, the tender coal space sides were getting rather too thin to hold the coal in places so patches are being welded in to correct the fault.

    IMG_1245.JPG

    More pictures of recent WSR work are available on wsr.org.uk
    Andy.
     
  18. Snifter

    Snifter Part of the furniture

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    Fantastic work, !
     
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  19. free2grice

    free2grice Well-Known Member Friend

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    A message written by Paulthehitch regarding the Isle of White Steam Railway.

    ''Judging from the webcam, W11 is behaving itself today whilst there are lots of people travelling. If this is generally representative, those places who have decided against operating this year (other than those with technical issues) have really made a bloomer''. <BJ>
     
  20. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    Indeed those lines open will bank something to tide them over the closed winter period. If things go the proverbial 'pear shape' as winter sets in then it would be unlikely Christmas trains would operate and a commencement in 2021 might be delayed again until April or May at the earliest. I guess those managements with foresight have thought about these possibilities. Somehow I doubt the country could afford more furlough payments and financial help given the future forecasts.
     

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