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West Somerset Railway Operations

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

  1. Beckford

    Beckford Well-Known Member

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    They are advertising for new directors, one of which will focus on business development .
     
  2. Hampshire Unit

    Hampshire Unit Well-Known Member Friend

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    I went there once....by car:(
     
  3. Forestpines

    Forestpines Well-Known Member

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    Now that's a shame - there really is nothing to do in Williton then!
     
  4. Steve

    Steve Part of the furniture Friend

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    Trainspotting?
     
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  5. malcolm imps

    malcolm imps Member

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    Nothing to do in or at Williton ???.....have you even been to Williton by chance ? ;) DEPG dept, Restorations dept, many owners groups work, Steam Trust work, gardening, Station work, PW site work......& more volunteer work !!
     
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  6. mvpeters

    mvpeters Member

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    Well, yes. Malcolm, but I think I'm right in saying the various work areas are not often open to the public, are they?
    Given 2 hours +/- between trains is it possible there could be - conducted for safety - tours offered that would occupy some of that time? Time left over for shopping & snacking......
    I'm sure this would be of interest to enthusiasts, & marketed appropriately, also to the 'general public'.
    It wouldn't exactly make WN a 'destination' of note, but it would provide one more varied attraction.
     
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  7. Forestpines

    Forestpines Well-Known Member

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    I think @mvpeters has hit the nail on the head here. The average passenger is hardly going to want to get off the train at Williton and immediately crack on with the gardening or start work in the restorations shed, even if that were feasible.

    Of course running to a random spot in the middle of nowhere isn't necessarily a barrier to success. There's even less for a random visitor to do in Bishops Lydeard. I do think it's a shame though that the Bakelite Museum has closed, with its wonderfully random collection of appliances.
     
  8. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    This all seems very sensible.

    Perhaps the answer is that tourist railways need to provide their own ancillary attractions for group members who have no interest in trains and not rely what may happen to be around in the vicinity. It's a very common tourist railway inadequacy.
     
  9. DragonHandler

    DragonHandler Well-Known Member

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    As you say Bishops Lydeard doesn't have a lot to offer the random visitor, although it does have a rather fine church with a beautiful fan-vaulted rood screen.
    The Bishops Lydear Mill is well worth a visit too. The station of course has the shop and cafe along with the excellent Gauge Museum.
     
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  10. Chris86

    Chris86 Member

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    Choose life, choose a job, choose a family........
     
  11. 35B

    35B Resident of Nat Pres

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    Of course, 5 minutes from Williton is Watchet, which has plenty to occupy the casual visitor for an hour or two.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  12. mdewell

    mdewell Member

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    I believe they were designed with the south Wales valleys very much in mind, so the thinking was that they would work chimney first up hill (so more water covering firebox) and being faster downhill when running bunker first meant putting the pony truck at that end (for increased stability at the higher speed expected).
     
  13. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    If you like heritage railways then there's not an awful lot to be seen at Williton if everything is behind shuttering and closed doors. This is a disappointment for me at many heritage railways whilst a few address pretty well with viewing areas.
     
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  14. mvpeters

    mvpeters Member

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    I think one should consider the various timetables, the duration between trains in either direction & then think about what the 'average visitor' might want or be able to do during that time.
    At BL or MD it's an hour or 3.
    At WN or WT, more like 2 or 4 hours.
    Ideally, one objective is to keep the 'spend' on the railway...........
    (I'm sure Marketing spend many hours agonizing over this!).
     
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  15. jma1009

    jma1009 Member

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    Hello Michael,

    6695 has now departed to pastures new after a disagreement. So that is that. We can speculate as to whether 9466 has any role to play on the WSR.

    I would take some exception to your comments on the 56xx class. They were highly regarded on The Valley Lines in South Wales, and always worked up The Valleys smokebox first. They were far superior to the 57xx class which saw little use on The Valley Lines. If you think a superheated piston valve loco with a modern Swindon boiler is a variant of a Rhymney 'R' class with slide valves between, then you are sadly mistaken.

    I worked with Tom Jackson who started at Abercynon in 1964, and Dai James who also started on the footplate around the same time (latterly Foreman at Rhymney), and Dai Thomas who started at CaeHarriss in 1960, and Senior Rhymney Driver Jeff Jones who started on the footplate in 1964 at Rhymney. They all worked 56XX locos on very difficult routes up and down The Valleys, and never had a bad word for them. Tom Jackson worked the TVR and Rhymney tanks that survived, and never expressed a preference over the 56xx class.

    Caerphilly Works outshopped the 56XX locos, and they were always highly regarded on The Valley Lines. The idea that a 57xx pannier tank could have been as good as and substituted for a 56xx is not substantiated by any evidence that I had or have ever seen. 57xx locos never hauled up The South Wales Valleys on the diagrams that the 56xx worked.

    As reported on other threads, the WSR has yet again lost a suitable class of loco to work it's services. One must wonder why, though I think one of the principle owners of 6695 has made this clear, so it is now at the Swindon and Cricklade Railway, which is the SCR's gain and the WSR's loss.

    As we approach the WSR PLC AGM, I hope/trust these matters will be taken into account.

    Cheers,
    Julian
     
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  16. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Who said there was any disagreement? And why would there by any speculation about whether 9466 has a future on the WSR given the owner and the actions being taken with regard to the permanent way?

    Looks like stirring to me.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 12, 2019
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  17. nine elms fan

    nine elms fan Member

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    No change there then!
     
  18. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    The last time I spent time at Williton was a couple of years back where I would have liked to check first-hand how the loco's in the restoration shed were coming on. There were people there to tell me that they were unable to oblige since it was a running day, despite the next working being from memory, approx 45 minutes away. I would have happily contributed on-railway to any cash boxes placed for restoration fund raising.

    Similarly, I and a train-load of enthusiasts travelled to SVR last month on UK Railtours excursion from London and at Bridgnorth all of the shuttering was firmly closed with negative responses to getting any viewing of 82045, 4930 etc. Disappointing really as it shouldn't cost much to roll the doors up and placed some hazard tape as a minimum for those interesting in supporting their restorations.
    NYMR however provide access routes for viewing of virtually everything on site at Grosmont.
     
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  19. michaelh

    michaelh Well-Known Member

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    Why do enthusiasts believe that they have a god given right to wander round private property?
     
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  20. MellishR

    MellishR Well-Known Member Friend

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    Those recent posts are not suggesting a "right", but only that without much trouble the railways concerned could have generated some good will and brought in some cash. That seems reasonable to me, unless there were over-riding reasons why it was not possible to allow some access, which has not yet been suggested.
     

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