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West Somerset Railway Operations

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

  1. Snifter

    Snifter Part of the furniture

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    The role of company secretary includes the following definition as set out by the IOD.

    "All directors should have access to the advice of the company secretary, who is responsible for advising the board on all governance matters."

    Is having the accounts in good order within the expected timescales, part of governance ?
     
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  2. Anne C-B

    Anne C-B Member

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    Whatever the rights and wrongs of the environmental problems associated with Hinckley Point politicians has shown little regard to them as they will this.

    The late announcement of the Taunton shuttle will not help either. My preference would have been for it to be delayed until next year to maximise the number of Minehead visitors aware of it.

    A Penarth contingent had been intending to use the shuttle on the first weekend, then engineering works got in the way. Plan B was 10th August. There is no Plan C yet in case of short notice engineering works again.
     
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  3. Anne C-B

    Anne C-B Member

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    Perhaps there is an explanation in the shareholders' pack!
     
  4. oldmrheath

    oldmrheath Well-Known Member

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    I chanced on it part-way through yesterday and wondered why they were putting a goat onto the footplate, before remembering it was made for kids' TV,

    Jon
     
  5. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    As a mere signalman, the mysteries of the footplate line of promotion (in Somerset or elsewhere) remain a closed book to me.:eek::Wacky::). Fortunately.

    Robin
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
  6. Miff

    Miff Well-Known Member

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    As you say the Cosec may offer professional advice to the board and its members but does not preside (the term used in your earlier post) over anything.
     
  7. aldfort

    aldfort Part of the furniture

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    I though the lawyer in you might appreciate the precedent:

    https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/457889487105411660/

    Which clearly shows a goat on a railway locomotive.
     
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  8. Anne C-B

    Anne C-B Member

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    I wouldn't say 'mere' signalman. The footplate men cannot do their job without your presence. On the other hand you can do your job without theirs. There might not be much to do though!
     
  9. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    The long Canadian winters... No accounting what they get up to.

    Robin
     
  10. burmister

    burmister Member

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    I fully agree.
    In fact the WSR used to use an external consultant who was an ex high level civil engineer on the Western Region He could see the need for renewal coming some 10 years ago and in order to eek out the life of the track had the infamous rail grinding done. His mistake was not to follow up what the NR grinding train did and had left behind in terms of rail edge. He paid the price for that and left but the WSR never took on board the underlying intent of what was trying to be achieved and very new rail if any was laid since. It has all been about ever heavier Locos and more trains since and the fact the rails have now reached the end of their life cycle should surprise nobody. As a shareholder I did email and write to previous Chairmen about this but never even had the courtesy of an acknowledgement. All history now and the WSR is left with a big renewal cost at at once. It’s not only a WSR problem the Bluebell got quite close to this with the state of the track between SP and HK and the NYMR has its bridge renewals to fund.


    Brian
     
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  11. rodders154

    rodders154 Member

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    When I was a PLC Director Andrew Young (Head of Infrastructure) gave a detailed presentation to the board and highlighted the areas that needed immediate attention then what was needed within 12 months and 2 years etc up to 10 years. The total cost was in the ballpark of £13 Million so I cannot see how getting someone in at consultants rates is going to change that. I spoke with others from the IE department at the time and they confirmed the amount of work that needs doing. What was emphasised is it is not just rail but the groundworks that need doing urgently. The ground is waterlogged and sinking in places all along the line and fellow directors who were taken on line walk impressed to me how Andrew knew every yard of the line and where each and every problem lies. Andrew was the most proactive of the Heads of Departments at trying to recruit volunteers and I feel that the PLC already has the information it needs and in the current financial situation cannot afford to pay consultants to redo work that already exists

    Rodders.
     
  12. simon

    simon Part of the furniture

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    I would imagine that part of the issue with the accounts is persuading the auditors that the railway is actually a going concern. If it needs millions to get its pw back into a fit state and dosnt have plausible plans for raising this, the auditors may be very reluctant to sign the accounts and who could blame them.
     
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  13. huochemi

    huochemi Well-Known Member Friend

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    The same thought had occurred to me. I don't buy the official explanation that the extra three month period causes problems with the audit, over and above reviewing an additional three months of entries. One can reasonably predict that an additional three months of costs and little revenue is going to make the P&L and balance sheet look rather ugly. If the plc is intending to produce a more user friendly analysis of the results, they are to be commended, although it seems inevitable that such a presentation will have to focus heavily on the future rather than the past.
     
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  14. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    A wave from 9351’s fireman at Combe Florey on a sunny Summer Sunday afternoon.

    736850E5-9830-4730-85E9-2A1FC3DE70D1.jpeg
     
  15. Footbridge

    Footbridge Member

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    Three posibilities,

    1. Footplate experience, goat may be better then some I have seen.
    2. Ran out of bacon for the shovel.
    3. Fireman is Welsh.
     
  16. gwilialan

    gwilialan Part of the furniture

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    Depth and condition of culverts & drains? New soil loading calculations for the different culvert construction materials and design strengths to ensure they can take the increased axle loads? Marginal areas of track drainage where increased loading could lead to liquefaction and turn a wet patch into a bog? (More of a drainage issue than geology)

    It's not speculation. If the line has been built to certain standards and the intention is now to exceed those standards everything within the construction has to re-assessed. P Way is more than just the track and ballast and I would be careful with your last statement. It does not currently have extensive earthworks issues. Does anyone know exactly how the earthworks or embankments were constructed?
     
  17. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    It was quite an eye-opener learning how some of the large embankments on the current GWSR (a former mainline) were constructed back in the day; after the catastrophic landslips almost 10 years ago investigations showed no foundations were dug and you could still make out the ridge and furrow pattern of the fields underneath the embankment. Since then we've had a dedicated drainage gang toiling away to keep our lineside drainage in good order, you can see the good work they get up to here: draingang.blogspot.com
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
  18. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    Can discount (3) as it was not a sheep.

    Robin
     
  19. Robin Moira White

    Robin Moira White Nat Pres stalwart

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    A valid question given the mess GWR electrification got into by making unwarranted assumptions about the construction of the GWR main line that, on reflection, could be disproved by examination of historic prints showing the construction.

    Robin
     
  20. FrankC

    FrankC Well-Known Member

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    The issue with the GW electrification was much more about unmapped (or poorly mapped) sub-surface wiring and drainage which unexpectedly required exploratory holes to be hand dug before drilling for pylon foundations. As you indicate the substrate of the GW main line is fairly well known (mostly!). As indeed is the substrate of the WSR, including indeed within yards of your own front door, Robin. What seems to be at issue is the long term stability at some locations on the WSR. It is the case that you can do as many surveys as you like but predicting a failure remains a question of probability, and the only real fail safe is massive rebuilding. Not good news.

    Frank
     
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