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West Somerset Railway General Discussion

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

  1. D1002

    D1002 Resident of Nat Pres

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    But the original Big Bang occurred 13.8 billion years ago. Are we going to have wait a similar timescale for the WSR to reorganise;)?
     
  2. Bayard

    Bayard Well-Known Member

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    I had a similar idea some time ago. I thought about it and then concluded that the NWC would be viewed by the Plc as a Trojan Horse to allow the usual suspects to gain control of the railway and they would refuse to co-operate with it. I mean, if they won't even allow their financial director to talk to the WSRA...
    It is becoming abundantly clear that the Plc views any talk by anyone or any organisation outside of the Plc itself of "saving the WSR" simply as a disguise for yet another attempt to wrest the railway from its rightful controllers. For them, it is all about control, so they cannot conceive that anyone else should think differently.
     
  3. 35B

    35B Nat Pres stalwart

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    I would “like” that but…


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
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  4. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Resident of Nat Pres

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    Give it a year and there will be 13.8 billion posts here…

    Robin
     
  5. 242A1

    242A1 Well-Known Member

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    Controllers or owners?
     
  6. Bayard

    Bayard Well-Known Member

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    Considering that some people think of it as "my" railway, the difference might be academic to them.
     
  7. 242A1

    242A1 Well-Known Member

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    I just wish that this railway would fully cast itself apart and fully adrift from the preservation world and sail off beyond sight, sound and memory. But I do so get your point there is never going to be an end in sight within what any rational individual would call a reasonable timescale, not unless this end is forced by uncontrollable circumstances and external forces.
     
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  8. MellishR

    MellishR Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    I agree that the actions of some parties at WSR have not been good for the reputation of the preservation world as a whole. But if the amount of money needed to keep the WSR going is anywhere near the figures that have been quoted, the income remains at its present level, and there are no more assets that can be sold or pawned, can the crash be far away? That will of course be followed by much finger pointing and "Don't blame me". Then all the interested parties, including the County Countil and the creditors, will be scurrying around trying to choose the least worst plan for the future. Place your bets: new charity? Community Rail Partnership? Sustrans? Caravan parks?
     
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  9. Snifter

    Snifter Well-Known Member

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    The Trust should refuse the offer for a number of reasons, not least of which is that it would benefit from the most disgraceful behaviour seen on any preserved line. If the proposal ("do this or else" ?) is accepted and turns out to be a relocation rather than expansion, then who stands to prosper ? Who for example could find they have access to a nice warm and dry accomodation shed for a red route loco ?
     
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  10. ikcdab

    ikcdab Member

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    This does indeed seem a workable plan. With two provisos.
    Unless the NWC owns the freehold, then nothing is protected. We signed the "triple lock" with the council a few years ago, but this could be at the whim of changing council politics. Transferring the freehold to the new charity should be a priority.
    Second, isn't a point that the charity needs to own the trading arm? Apart from encouraging plc shareholders to swap their shares for membership of the NWC, how would you achieve that?
    Your post is a really positive one, and this forum could now use its collective wisdom to develop it and arrive at a workable answer. That would be a really good use of the forum, rather than the usual tosh.
    For starters, I might suggest that the initial membership of NWC includes SCC and that SCC might be persuaded to transfer the freehold at nil cost, given that it is for the community good and that it is going into a charity in which they would have a say.
    Thoughts?
    Ian C
     
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  11. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Resident of Nat Pres

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    We HAVE a workable answer as set out by John Bailey and endorsed by all right-thinking folk. Even the WSR plc's most creative response to that is 'not now'.

    What we do not have is the WILL to implment it.

    Until that emerges, this is all so much hot air.

    It is to be hoped that the Railway survives until that will emerges. In the meanwhile, ownership of the freehold by SCC (with all the political risks that entails) and the triple lock, are the best protection from the more upalatable alternative futures that some might want to implement.

    Robin
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2021
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  12. 62440

    62440 New Member

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    An interesting germ of an idea worth developing. Ignore the “Dr Nos”.
     
  13. Downline

    Downline New Member

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    Sounds like a massive safety net the current PLC board call fall into if (or when) they fail. Doesn't change the current poor leadership and managerial structure or people of the PLC, poor governance, all the other issues the railway has. It just provides somewhere comfy for a couple of people to fall before running off. I can see why the WSRHT would support a idea like that.

    Other than a bit of stationary in the offices, what has the PLC got that this NWC can buy anyway? If there were tangible assets available to buy that were not in the control of a bank, and this NWC would address all the other issues the WSR has, then yes it seems a great idea. Otherwise its just another party thrown into the WSR pot that is going to no doubt upset someone and cause another internal war for the rest of the heritage railway movement to witness.

    Bailey had a plan, the resistance to this plan is because people will loose power, and there lap dogs will feel threatened, put rather blunt.
     
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  14. johnofwessex

    johnofwessex Resident of Nat Pres

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    Ian,

    Why doesn't the WSRHT support 'Bailey'?

    I can understand that it might not wish to be part of the 'New' single membership organisation and there are precedents for this but it could use its shareholding in conjunction with that of the WSRA to help push for a new structure
     
  15. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    If indeed the WSST stand to be offered the Washford site, complete with shed, for carriage restoration it would be a major step forward for them to have their own dedicated workshop space, but it would represent monumental cynicism and greed on the part of the Plc to assume that they could evict the S &D museum and still retain the shed. It certainly makes the WSST stance on support for the Plc more understandable but I hope that the S & D people ensure that they leave nothing on the site to reward the WSST for their stance.
     
  16. gwilialan

    gwilialan Well-Known Member

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    If funds were available wouldn't it be more practical to buy the debt (liens included) from the lenders? That way the money doesn't go through plc hands ( can we trust that they would pass it all on to the lenders, especially if things were about to go bottoms up?) and also give some measure of control e.g. "If you insist on wasting money on a route upgrade instead of servicing your current commitments then we will call in the debt and you'll be responsible for all that follows."?

    Edit added:- It might even be possible to buy the debt at a reduced rate if the lenders were keen to get the debt off their books.
     
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  17. Maunsell907

    Maunsell907 Member

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    Ian, many of us have for some years supported this type of approach i.e an overarching charity.

    Bailey essentially promulgated a similar approach presumably encouraged ( influenced ) by
    the NYMR experience.

    I like the concept of ‘New Charity’ involving the SCC and the Charity assuming title to
    the Freehold. The Plc becoming its operator ( irrespective of what individuals may think
    of the Plc they have the ‘rights’ to operate; the less change the more I suspect the ORR will
    approve. )

    However the Railway has to find a way to still be able to operate in April/May 2022
    and that I an afraid, forum ladies and gentlemen, can only be achieved by the
    current Plc and its management.

    Robin (White), I am surprised at your lack of enthusiasm. I remember you were in
    favour of the WSRA ( with the ‘ex 6 in power ) purchasing the freehold. Indeed you
    spoke out against the petition from volunteers to the SCC opposing such an
    outcome.

    Whilst ‘mythering ’ on, I remember that the demise of the ‘ex 6’ became a reality
    when there were two Trustees ( including the then new Chairman ) who contrived,
    with the support of the requisite number of members calling for it, and organised
    the ‘General Meeting’. ( I think British law no longer recognises ‘Extraordinary
    General Meetings ). I have always believed if you wish to change a Board/Committee
    etc you need friends on the inside. ( Complete takeovers, unless financially overwhelming
    seldom succeed, and even the financially driven ones more often than not flounder. )

    let’s all get behind Ian’s approach. What we first need to find is a ‘leader’’ who is not
    tainted ( as we all are ) by past positions/involvement to ‘head up’ the ‘New Charity’.

    Any likely candidates ? Not necessarily to be stated on this website but perhaps to Ian.

    Michael Rowe
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2021
  18. nick813

    nick813 Well-Known Member Loco Owner

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    support idea X, support idea Y and now support Idea Z.

    As an individual, first of all, all these ideas/schemes have to gain my trust, something which is lacking.
     
  19. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    And exceptional cynicism and greed on the part of the WSST. All that bullshit about the WSR family, stab a member of the family in the back to get a shed and space for yourself. The WSR as a family is Claudius killing Hamlet to marry Gertrude.
     
  20. staffordian

    staffordian Well-Known Member

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    And how long would it be, after signing a long lease, before their tenancy was abruptly terminated?
     

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