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  1. Customers are paying for the nice day out, so profits can be used for such improvements. There are also grants available for improving vistor attractions. Or perhaps a fund raiser specifically for the purpose. People are more inclined to visit a railway if the atmosphere is enjoyable and everything is neatly presented, so the time, money and effort that go into such improvements will often be worth while. There are some wonderfully restored and looked after stations in preservation, and it makes a huge difference to the experience. People are more likely to spend money in the cafe if they can
  2. I often think that some of these heritage railways should give a bit more thought to 'front of house'. A restaurant for example might have bins, old fridges, cookware, trollies, etc, but they're not stored in the view of the customers; they're out the back behind a screening fence. If sidings are being used to store rusty, broken and tarpaulin covered hulks, I'm sure in many cases a screening fence with some period adverts on or something could be built to hide it. Cheers, Jack
  3. I've I had cab ride in one of those Vanguards at Whatley; a friend working at NR organised a visit in 2007, and once the Whatley chaps saw how fascinated we were with this little shunter they fired it up and gave us a ride. We got to ride in the SW1001 too, but that didn't have quite as much novelty as we'd already been in the 1001 at Merehead earlier in the day! Whoever painted that Vanguard in OP's photo must have been listening to Hawkwind and eating some of the local fungi! Cheers, Jack
  4. This would probably be closer to the Class 60 application. Roof grey above the cantrail stripe, yellow corner pillars and the black around the windows squared off, rather than following the radius of the 66 windows. Personally I prefer the black corner pillars.
  5. I agree. To me it looks like GBRf have tried to shoehorn the Class 60 style of triple grey onto the Class 66, but it doesn't work very well as that style of triple grey was specifically designed to work with the shape of the Class 60. Whomever BR had planning the livery application was careful to adapt it to each class in sympathy with their shape.
  6. It's nice to have variety in the liveries, however I'm not keen on the application. I would have prefered something more along the lines of: Original image by GBRf can be found here. Reproduced in an edited form under the fair dealing exemptions of copyright for the purpose review/criticism.
  7. Depreciation makes no difference to the point I was making. Depreciation is factored into whether a service is worth running. If it's not worth running and it doesn't serve any operational purpose, it shouldn't be running. If a loco depreciates in value £100 per day, the cost to crew the locomotive is £120 per day, and the cost of fuel is £2.5 per mile. If you run the train on a 100mi route and sell £100 worth of tickets, that service has lost £370; if it had just sat in the siding it would have lost only £100. There are lots of trains running each day which are running at a loss and are only
  8. For only 82 people to die in a storm of that magnitude out of a population of 28 million people is a miracle in my eyes. Comparing it to the death tolls for such storms 100 years ago and it's amazing how successful we have been as a species at improving the quality and duration of human life.
  9. I think the national grid would experience a bit more than a wobble if Britain was hit with a ice storm dumping half a meter of snow with temperatures below -20 Celsius, so it's not really a useful comparison. In a state with a population of 28 million, 82 deaths is a comparatively successful outcome, as just a few decades ago such a storm would have killed thousands of people. In railway terms there are the UIC standards, which allow for interoperability and are a useful set of standards developed by the industry itself with members both public and private. The UIC is the sort of
  10. Your first one is the point I was making. People say private companies will gut the railway system, where as it was BR who gutted the railway system. Thus it is not a case of private will gut the system and public will not. They are both capable of such a thing. My second point was that private companies are better at raising capital and generally managing a system for a sustainable profit, where as public companies are generally poor in both these areas, relying on the government to provide funding and often lacking accountability for their failings. If BR was a private company it
  11. I'm not talking in absolutes. Just as if I was to say that the water that comes out the tap is clean, it is clean for almost all purposes, but it's never truely 'clean,' if clean means 100% of the impurities have been removed. The market can never by 100% free, but it can be free for most intents and purposes. I've seen instances where a company will come up with a solid business plan, apply for paths to run trains, only to be told that they'd be too competitive with an existing franchise holder. That's a functional monopoly, but it's not an inevitable consequence of the free marke
  12. You're taking small examples where something worked and treating it as though it's a microcosm. You mention the HST as a success, but then neglect to mention the hundreds of standard steam locomotives which were comissioned and then cut up long before they were life-expired. BR then comissioned a whole raft of different diesel types and once again cut them up long before they were life-expired. There's no way any private company would have undertaken such a wasteful approach to developing new locomotives and methods of operation. BR were almost constantly on the back foot, always reacting rath
  13. Seems like the sides will need completely replacing. I'd imagine the underframe will need a lot of rot cutting out of it and new sections spliced in. It would be cheaper to build one from scratch than buy, transport and restore this one. It's not even like it's a vehicle of much historical significance either. There's probably £12000 worth of scrap metal, but it's not worth much more than that realistically.
  14. It never was 'privatised' to begin with. Almost anyone who's worked in railway management knows that it's the government that has the final say on almost all aspects of running the 'privatised' railway. Private companies are much better at innovation, raising capital and bringing supply to meet demand, than any part of the public sector. Everytime I suggest that the railways should be properly privatised, people tell me that private companies will do eveything on the cheap, gut the service and tear up railways left, right and centre to maximise profit; despite the fact almost all the railways
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