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What makes a great diesel gala?

Discussion in 'Diesel & Electric Traction' started by 21B, May 16, 2011.

  1. 21B

    21B Well-Known Member

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    What do you need to run a great gala? Loads of variety, or lots of different versions of the same type of loco? 08 haulage? Trains through the night? Beer coach? What would really pull in the crowds?
     
  2. The Black Hat

    The Black Hat Member

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    To avoid:

    1. Not every engine in BR blue or green
    2. No frothing middle aged men or older, saying how diesel is better than steam, or that BR was perfect and privisation has destroyed railways
    3. No arm waving fanatical teenagers or slightly older, with limited vocabulary and dont bellow out of windows, or end every word in written form with zzzz.
    4. A sudden hike in the fare beyond whats reasonable for a gala - ie dont just add a sudden surcharge.

    Great weekends include:

    1. A roster so that all engines are given decent loads, matched to occasion, or stock.
    2. Timetables that make riding and photographing the engines possible in a day or weekend.
    3. A mix of stock and locomotives to cater for a wider theme. Even bring in stock if needed that would work.
    4. Enthusiasts of all ages and backgrounds to accept each other when there and not vie for spots and be over competative about their behaviour.
     
  3. Lewisb06

    Lewisb06 New Member

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    Also diagrams provided about 7 days before the event and free of charge....

    With regards to fares make sure its value for money.....

    The gala should not be 1000 -1700 like some railways do.....
     
  4. cymroglan

    cymroglan New Member

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    For some smaller lines, I wonder if there is a future in a mini gala with just one visiting loco which would need to be a big name. Personally, I'd travel a fair distance to ride behind a Deltic or a Western on any unusual territory.
    For me, one of the turn offs of steam or diesel galas is double heading. I know this flies in the face of conventional wisdom.
    I do think there is a noticeable deterioration in behaviour at diesel galas compared to steam ones, though in my experience, Swanage diesel galas are the exception to this rule. I stopped chasing the Class 40s on the North Wales Coast 30 years ago because of the foul & abusive language of other fans.
     
  5. Neil_Scott

    Neil_Scott Member

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    Avoiding the childish behaviour that seems to characterise diesel enthusiasts at times...
     
  6. northernblue109

    northernblue109 New Member

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    Well-organised and realistically priced photo opportunities, as an alternative way of supporting the railway financially without enduring the bad behaviour mentioned in previous posts (I prefer to take my rides on ordinary operating days).
     
  7. Lewisb06

    Lewisb06 New Member

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    Have events/facilities at each end, and or along of the line. Plenty of advance warning as to what is being planned for the event. Add variety and also be welcoming to visitors. If you provide a good atmosphere/events and at a reasonable price they you are on the right path.

    If you just use home fleets(ie no costs involved in bring guests in) and charge £20+ (and that includes those railways that charge for diagrams)then you could be seen as not providing good value for money. But if you are seen as making an effort by bring guest(s) it is ok to charge a little extra as it is know that the railway has spent monies putting the event on.

    Also having staff on duty who are pro the event and not anti diesel......

    Just a few of my views...
     
  8. eddief

    eddief New Member

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    Theme days where engines that have a link to a line/works/depot/sector or anything else all work together giving different line ups each day for added variation.
     
  9. Stewie Griffin

    Stewie Griffin New Member

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    A slick operation with something going on most of the time.

    If things do start running late, try (within reason) to keep everything in the same order and the locos on the same diagrams; I don't mind the timetable running 20 minutes late for example, if I can pick up the fact its 20 minutes late from the diagrams I've paid £5 for. If they become worthless, then I become irritated.
     
  10. Kje7812

    Kje7812 Member

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    Variety and value for money are the important factors.
    Variety in the locos, liveries and possible workings.
    Value for money for the amount of travel, ie lots of it.
    (Same really for steam)
     
  11. Tim Hall

    Tim Hall New Member

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    Plenty of droplights in end coaches (unlike the "Green train"), no catering vehicles near the ends nor first class or similar nonsense. Free and reliable diagrams/ rosters.
    Enough time at stations for "leaps" without needing to be a 100m champion (to be fair token exchanges usually help with this).
    No Peaks or 47s (lights blue touch paper and retires........)
     
  12. 7822WelshSteam

    7822WelshSteam New Member

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    I'm so look glad someone else shares this view. I don't mind things being late so much. I like going home later and thinking "that's what happened that day". The Severn Valley are very good but most other lines rather poor.
     
  13. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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    You are just waiting for a reaction to that broad statement
     
  14. 73129

    73129 Member

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    A good selection of visiting locos but not to many locos and a well put together timetable.
     
  15. D1039

    D1039 Well-Known Member

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    Availability of good beer
    Buffets on the train open
    Station facilities (food, drink) open
    A mix of local and through trains on longer lines
    Good weather
    Sparse and appropriate multiple heading, 2 x type 2/3 yes, Deltic and class 14 or triple headers no.
    Not too many locos, so each gets enough diagrams
    A couple of visitors, but not so many as to make it
    DMU running
    Careful timetabling so that, for example, both hydraulics (or whatever) aren’t on at once
    Themes are good, but not essential
    A good brochure in advance including timetable and rostered loco
    A reasonably priced WTT in advance
    Some extended hours running
    A works train (or the like)
    Works visits and demos to encourage membership and volunteers
    Sales stands

    Patrick
     
  16. 7822WelshSteam

    7822WelshSteam New Member

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    Not at all. Look, I can't imagine how people manage to run a railway during a busy gala but I don't understand why people leave things out of timetables or change things to get back up to speed. I'm not singling the ELR out here but using it as an example. I think it was on the Friday of the Summer gala in 2012 the last run of the Beerex to Heywood was cancelled because it was running late. What possible harm could it have done to have run that last train? A lot of people were disappointed. My SVR comment was intended to be praise for them rather than a provocative comment towards anyone else. I just can't understand how that line manages so well while others don't.
     
  17. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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    Yes, but that is one example over the many hundreds of gala's and thousands of trains run over a lot of railways. Sevrail does not always get it right, it's how you get over it that matters. Claiming that every other Gala run is a shambles is a slight on all the volunteers and staff up and down the land.
     
  18. david1984

    david1984 Well-Known Member

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    No Freights, in my experience all diesel cranks care about is haulage, a freight path is a wasted path in their opinion.

    As many loco's taking a turn as possible, shuttles at large station for shunters, to please the red pen bridgade

    As heavy trains as possible to make the loco's work, if you haven't significant gradients, chuck another loco on the back as dead weight.
     
  19. tor-cyan

    tor-cyan Member

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    :Da steam loco it show how its really done:D
     
  20. D1039

    D1039 Well-Known Member

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    It is possible that some of the safety critical people (crew, signalmen) may hasve been out of hours, or simply needed to be away at xx.xx for work?

    Patrick
     

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