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WSR Spring Steam Gala, 20-21 & 25-28 March 2010

Discussion in 'Galas and Events' started by gwr4090, Nov 10, 2009.

    Brilliant! The list was quoted from the SEPT report. Doh. No wonder they are having trouble :)

    Steve
    (WSW)
     
  1. conireland

    conireland New Member

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    Unless I am completely mistaken, Brittania hasn't been operational for a number of years!
     
  2. mattspencer

    mattspencer Member

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    The list says Oliver Cromwell not Britannia. It just says it is a Brittania class of loco.
     
  3. lil Bear

    lil Bear Well-Known Member

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    Could 7828 have returned by the time this gala is ?
     
  4. Sidmouth

    Sidmouth Part of the furniture Staff Member Moderator

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    not really a BR standard though !
     
  5. Special Engine Procurement Team aren't known for attention to detail since RPJ left. Particularly disappointing since they claim the engines are the 'stars' and everything else supporting gala events are mere 'sideshows'.

    Except possibly the fleet of pasty vans. SEPT seem to be very proud of these and think them much more exciting than a faithful recreation of steam era restaurant car catering. Best not waste anybody's personal valuable time dwelling on this point, eh.

     
  6. conireland

    conireland New Member

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    Thanks for that, after re-reading the comments I fully understand...
     
  7. lil Bear

    lil Bear Well-Known Member

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    Built by BR though !
     
  8. JBTEvans

    JBTEvans Member

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    QB

    Any chance of the Quantock Belle returning for this event?
     
  9. QB

    Not as things stand, I understand :-(

    Steve
    (WSW)
     
  10. JBTEvans

    JBTEvans Member

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    QB

    What is the problem between the QB team and SEPT? Surely if the breakfasts and lunches bring in money it is worth doing? The last gala wasn't the same, starting the day with a bacon roll from a van at BL, would of much prefered a full breakfast on the train.
     
  11. Indeed! It's all a bit of a mystery to many of us. I understand SEPT tend to prioritise their efforts on securing the "stars", ie guest locomotives, which leaves them insufficient time to consider and accommodate the "sideshows" such as the operational requirements of the QB Gala service (such as ensuring breakfast can be offered on at least one down and one up service during the morning). Hopefully SEPT will find additional help to work with the folks providing the "sideshows" and everyone gets what they want. Never say never!

    Steve
    (WSW)
     
  12. SEPT have imposed operating changes, without consultation, that make our QB gala operation untenable. We suspect they do not fully appreciate the effects of their ops changes but unfortunately SEPT are not prepared to meet us to discuss the issues thus created. While we have compromises to suggest to them, communication needs to be a two-way process and without it being reciprocated we are a bit banjaxed.

    We also have serious concerns about the consistently inaccurate information about our operation released into the public domain by SEPT. Again, a little two-way communication and consultation would easily resolve this. An opportunity to see proofs before publication for example.

    If anyone can suggest a way of prodding these guys into a coherent response we would be very pleased to hear it. We have tried all avenues of railway management to no avail, so suspect we will have to wait for the current SEPT chairman to retire from his post before we can consider reinstating the QB gala restaurant car service.

    The dedicated folk, who have operated the QB gala restaurant car service very successfully for the last 12 seasons, have built up a significant number of loyal and appreciative regular customers, many of whom consider our service to be one of the WSR gala highlights. We deeply regret not providing this service at future gala events, not least because we really enjoy working them, but hope you will appreciate the reason for our decision.

    Barrie


     
  13. Black Jim

    Black Jim New Member

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    Ridiculous ! The gala QB service is , or was , so popular its like cutting of your own nose dispite your face! You only had to hear the comments on the train to realise the WSR had a winner there , on top of a gala!
    Can someone from SEPT explain this? Or do they need a rocket up there arses!
     
  14. ernestgew

    ernestgew New Member

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    It sounds as though they do! We missed the on train breakfast at the GWR Prelude gala in October, like someone else has said, a burger from the van outside the station is no way near the same!
     
  15. 6959 Class

    6959 Class New Member

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    I don't have any connection with WSR but have enjoyed attending the majority of Spring and Autum Steam Galas for over 10 years.
    I've never had food on any QB train prefering to grab the odd bacon roll (Williton Station in the morning) or a pasty and cuppa somewhere on the line in between taking photos or videos. Others, having travelled from afar prefer to sit in comfort and enjoy good food whilst travelling with their companion(s) talking Steam or Railways.
    I heard many people who were disappointed that there was no QB and it obviously affectected their visit to the railway. Many were unaware the service was not running and obviously had just decided to have a day out without reading the brochure or checking the website.

    We are constantly being told that for Heritage railways to prosper they need to offer not just steam engines but the whole "experience" . A variety of locos, liveries, carriages, goods wagons, stations, staff and scenery.

    I don't think it will help The WSR, the QB team or the Special events team to have this "rift" in the railway. I hope someone will get all the people talking together so they may be able to resolve things in time for next year.
     
  16. Bulleid Pacific

    Bulleid Pacific Member

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    As usual in such cases, someone involved in planning for this gala needs reminding of the symbiotic relationship between departments on a heritage railway. You can't have the Quantock Belle without motive power, and you can't have motive power without the revenue earned from hauling the Quantock Belle. I've never needed to use the Belle during galas, preferring to bring my own sandwiches, but I also realise that it is popular amongst other enthusiasts and families. In this respect, when a gala is also about putting on a show for these families to market the railway, I agree that a lack of effective communication between the planning authorities and other departments of the railway does not inspire confidence. However, I do want to see as many standard locomotives as possible on the line, so its going to come down to old-fashioned but relevant compromise...

    By the way, if its running in March, you could technically run 34046 as a 'Standard' locomotive on the basis that it uses many features found on the 'Britannias', which at the same time used certain Bulleid features (trailing truck design, some aspects of the boiler design, driving wheel size). Just an excuse to run a Bulleid!
     
  17. Rumpole

    Rumpole Member

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    Do you need an excuse...? :D
     
  18. Orion

    Orion New Member

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    I'm a WSRA member although I live far enough away not to know the gossip and politics, basically I just turn up at steam events twice a year when I spend what is for me a lot of dosh. That being said I am wondering if this spat over SEPT is marking a change in attitude on the railway.

    I have always got the impression that the railway was content within itself but now I'm beginning to wonder if this is no longer the case. Last autumn I was at Washford station rumaging through the secondhand books and there was one hell of an argument in the room going on. The argument was about the provisional timetable for 2010 that had just been issued. In it all the 'minor' stations on the line, including Washford, had been omitted and this had been done without any consultation. This had created a lot of bad feeling.

    Now SEPT appears to have done something without consultation too. A volunteer run organisation cannot run if this sort of thing continues. There is a fine line between leadership and dictat and that line seems to be being crossed.

    Sorry if this offends

    Regards
     
  19. Thanks for the comments about the QB issue and the general support for a proper restaurant car service at WSR special events. Your comments give the all-important "view from abroad" and provide the necessary evidence of public opinion. Please note some folks are working hard to restore the service - although still some way from resolving the present difficulties.

    Steve
    (WSW)




     

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