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West Somerset Railway General Discussion

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

  1. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    My reading of the piece is that the offer to stay came after they already had their agreements with the MHR and AVR, had moved a lot of equipment already and followed a number of periods of silence from the PLC and that there were still unanswered questions about the Washford site.

    All of which points to complete mismanagement and incompetence by the PLC. You evict a group, lose an engine, lose a museum and a station group, abuse them in public and then after all that, the board turns around and asks them to stay and seems surprised that the S&DRT had decided that no, the WSR was not where they wanted to be.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2021
  2. Steve Edge

    Steve Edge Member

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    I note the smiley. But your suggestion is the very thing we do not need. Ever. May the idea die here, now.

    Steve
    wsr.org.uk
     
  3. The Dainton Banker

    The Dainton Banker Well-Known Member

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    Your post makes no sense to me.
    If you read much of the recent posting on this forum you will see that a number of people have attempted to "organise some action for real change" and were rejected (and vilified for their efforts). Many others have suggested better ways of doing things, and have been ignored. You will also see how the structure of the PLC is such that it is almost unanswerable to anybody, even its own shareholders !
    As I have stated before, I am not a stakeholder in the WSR. I live far too far away to have an active interest and, anyway, am committed to other lines of my choice. I have only a passing interest in the WSR as I have fond memories of the line in BR days, but I have made occasional donations to it in the past. That said, I am very concerned that the line should be got back onto an even keel as soon as possible but cannot see that happening under the present administration.
    Once again, you have side-stepped my original questions by suggesting that there are other actions that could be taken by those advocating for change but you do not spell out what they are.
    I really wonder what the point of your postings are.
     
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  4. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Thank you for that reply.

    I guess it poses three questions / observations from me.

    The first is - do you think the railway will still be around in five years time to "revive" the idea of structural change? And if so - why is the current appeal painted in such existential terms? You can't have both - an appeal for the very survival of the railway and confidence it will still be here in five years.

    The second is - suppose you get through five years? What is likely to have changed to make a structural change more conducive? The options are basically some significant change of personnel on the board of the plc (but that organisation has played musical chairs with directors for years without any significant change being forthcoming); or an existential threat forcing the issue - one of @Robin Moira White twin scenarios of bleeding to death slowly or suddenly - but if so, why wait five years?

    The third is an observation: "There is no "collective"." And therein lies the problem: the railway can be bleeding to death and any power to do anything about it is vested in about half a dozen people. The railway could have ten thousand passionate members and they would be powerless to do anything to influence the strategic direction of the railway they love. And even from a fundraising point of view: the statements of @ikcdab have made it abundantly clear that the WSRHT is uninterested in any non-members donating to its appeal, since it refuses to give any guarantees about the controls in place to ensure that ring-fenced funds will be properly spent except for "any member who wants to know should email the trust direct." So the rest of us have no right to know, it seems. Which is fine - but we have no obligation to donate, either ...

    Tom
     
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  5. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    I absolutely agree. It would be immodest to point at my record of sewing in railway heritage. We progress when we listen to each other, and accept and accommodate difference (I know all about that) and recognise that none of us carry some form of personal ‘sacred flame’. I certainly don’t, and I can think of a few others who don’t either.
     
  6. martin1656

    martin1656 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    I suppose the PLC should be relieved Robin is at the controls of a light fighter, not a dive bomber about to overfly the PLC offices in Minehead, loaded up with bags of manure, ;)
     
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  7. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    That would be unnecessary. Existing holdings are entirely sufficient.
     
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  8. Steve Edge

    Steve Edge Member

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    Well, first, I didn't say the Railway would be here in five years, just my belief that any change in structure would come about.

    Second, I didn't suggest waiting five years. As you have said, and as many know, we have had revolving doors for years with the Plc board. I am not convinced we need to continue with that process by insisting on a new board made up of our preferred chums. Twill soon break down. Been there, done that. We need a new structure completely.

    Third, I am pleased folks are waking up to the structural situation and the lifelong problem of getting three organisations to work together. That, as I think you have spelled out several times, is why structural reform is sorely needed.

    Steve
    wsr.org.uk
     
  9. martin1656

    martin1656 Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    Steve, I agree100 percent, with what you have just posted, But, the PLC, and others with in the revolving door that is the trusteeships/ plc directorships, would never give up power, I just can't see it, If anything, they would view it as more time to ensure they hold onto power, by pushing back any and every policy that would make them accountable and will only give up power when they are left with no other way out, And of course, the mess they leave behind will never be their fault.
     
  10. Lenny

    Lenny New Member

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    £36,021 raised so far according to post on FB
     
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  11. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    But she lost. Although she did cause a lot of havoc on the way.
     
  12. Snifter

    Snifter Part of the furniture

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    Steve,

    The issue is that as soon as there's a risk of the membership being consulted on structural reforms, there are cries of "they are out to destroy us". Anyway, we physically tried and there are very few who can say the same.
     
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  13. Kje7812

    Kje7812 Member

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    It was £32,793.44 on 27th July (as per post #39611)
    Hmm...
     
  14. Sidmouth

    Sidmouth Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    with the best will history is littered with examples of those with very strong ideas and a willingness to do anything to hold onto power , who almost without exception are removed not of their own volition and usually a lot of force

    The WSR farce really has played out for way too long now which is why many are lobbying for change now rather than waiting either for the worst case to happen or a miraculous alignment of planets .

    Of course the simple and quite elegant solution would be for volunteers to refuse to operate trains . A few key staff should be enough . It hasn't happened in preservation yet although it came incredibly close twice and both times the growing dissent was enough to cause those in charge's removal . Five years may be long enough to have fully paid staff and no volunteers in rail critical roles ....... just a thought
     
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  15. nick813

    nick813 Well-Known Member Loco Owner

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  16. Piggy

    Piggy Member

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    Last edited: Aug 11, 2021
  17. gwilialan

    gwilialan Part of the furniture

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    So that's what, £1,614 a week pouring in? It's beginning to look like the majority of those who were going to give have done so and a dreaded hush is falling as all of the rest of the potential donors keep their cash in their pockets.

    I wonder if this supposed appeal total has been 'tweaked' to include the money from those members who have a monthly standing order or whatever as a general donation to the railway? Yes all you supporters of the board, I am speculating. Why? Because I don't trust them an inch. I fully expect them to distort and miss post general donation income as specific appeal donations, just to make themselves look better. I'm not worried if you disagree with me, in fact it is the board that should be worried because if that is the impression I'm getting from afar how many others are feeling the same?

    A quick search of this thread using the word 'trust' shows just how many people are of a similar opinion.
     
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  18. RailWest

    RailWest Part of the furniture

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    The figure seems low enough as it is, represent it graphically like that and it seems barely a puddle at the bottom of a deep well :-(
    Is it just me, or is that not a 'visual message' more likely to inspire a lack of confidence in the railway in those who view it rather than a desire to 'chip in' and help with a 'surge to the top' ? Maybe this is a case where regular updates can provide to be counter-productive?
     
  19. Ploughman

    Ploughman Well-Known Member

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    Apologies, I have made a mistake.
    The figure is not £60,000 it's £70,000 in 2 weeks.

    I miss remembered the article I saw.
     
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  20. Snifter

    Snifter Part of the furniture

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    At this rate, the £50k target should be achieved by November 1st. The full target is achievable by February 2033.

    Perhaps changing the responsible manager for the lottery application was not the brightest idea.
     
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