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Mike Bellamy

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    Hilton, Derby

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  1. The D Class quoted by Phil is hardly a mass produced model straight out of the box - it was in 7mm by Lee Marsh and only 60 were produced at a cost of £2850 each - information from Gauge O Guild Gazette - and the next advert three months later said they were sold out.
  2. An example of the benefit of advertising was at our local show a couple of weeks ago. We paid 'Derbyshire Live' £240 for a Facebook campaign which went to 25,000 followers of the local news site targeted at older males and younger females. On the door I was amazed at the number of families who came to the show and when asked, most of them said they had seen it on Facebook. A day or two after the show we got feedback - out of those 25,000, about 2,500 (10%) had clicked on the original advert to go to a page with more information - however their normal click rate is 2% to 5% and so they saw that as a great success. So did we, as our numbers were almost identical to 2019 without the benefit of a Railway Modeller diary entry this time - what we lost in enthusiasts, we made up for in local families. .
  3. I did wonder how many pre-orders they had taken and their disappointment at only being sent one loco . . . . . . .
  4. Found it - Robert Heath No 6 now at Foxfield It looks like the photo may have been taken at the Stoke Garden Festival in 1986 - see links below. Scroll half way down for photo of loco at Stoke - the background seems the same. Link to Preserved British Steam Link to Stoke Garden Festival .
  5. I wonder if the £999 price was put on their website as they had no idea what the price would be - otherwise they could have shown £000. and everyone would have thought they were free !! Of course a properly configured sales site should have the ability to show "Price to be advised" or similar.
  6. Yes - but I'm sure it isn't what you are looking for. Micro Engineering Code 83 track for On30 - but it is still 16.5mm track gauge !! Click Here for link to ngtrains.com for Micro Engineering track .
  7. I thought we had been told several pages back that these are not the actual advertisements but are test videos on a loop so that they keep repeating the same few. I assume that when the test is over we will then get proper adverts with a frequency based on how much has been paid. Hopefully the Silver Membership will be available by then to pay for just RMweb to be advert free. .
  8. I haven't seen any comments on here about Facebook which is full of advertising and is accepted by millions (billions?) more users than we have on RMweb - and of course it's the advertising that pays for the free use of Facebook as evidenced in their recent failure said to have been costing them hundreds of thousand dollars every minute. How many of the complainants here would be prepared to suggest to Mr Zuckerberg that he should provide his service free and without advertising. Following on from that comment - we had our exhibition last weekend (to get the topic back to model railways) and paid for a Facebook advertising campaign run by the local newspaper (Derbyshire Live). For £240, as well as a full page advert in the paper, we also got 7 days of targeted marketing to the local area - in total the advert went to 25,000 readers and there were around 2,500 who clicked on the headline to see the details of the show. This 'click rate' of 10% was much higher that their usual response of 2-5% and shows that the right advertising in the right place does make a difference. I was on the door most of the time and it was surprising the number of young families coming in and almost all of them said they had seen it on Facebook. .
  9. To do that you need a reliable phone signal for the card reader to make contact with the bank. On more than one occasion, I have been walking around the car park (O Gauge show at Kettering) with the customer following me so that we could get a connection. Another problem was at Sparsholt Agricultural College (Winchester) where we lost the signal as the college switched off all the IT equipment for maintenance (which included the phone equipment) on the Saturday because no students were there, not realising that there was an exhibition on.
  10. BBC report from a couple of weeks ago shows 65 ships waiting to berth at Los Angeles and Long Beach and so it's a world-wide problem - a bit like the petrol situation in UK - plenty of fuel but it's in the wrong place - plenty of ships/containers but they are in the wrong place. Click Here for BBC News .
  11. Sorry Jim, it was a late decision to go ahead and we missed the Railway Modeller deadline for advertising - the October issue comes out early September so cut off date was around mid July - I think it's 6 weeks before publication. Our near neighbours at Nottingham (Clifton) 18/19 Sept were affected in the same way as they also missed out on a Modeller advert.
  12. Pleased to say we had a very successful weekend which exceeded our expectations. A great number who I served on the door were first time visitors and most were local. We have to ask if they have been before as the show makes use of all three rooms in the Community Centre and we also have our clubroom open with three larger static layouts that won't fit in the centre - so I spent most of the two days telling them which way to go so they didn't get lost - I was told I sounded like an air hostess - 'toilets on the left and refreshments in the tearooms on the right'. At times when we weren't busy I would ask how they had found out about the show and was surprised at the number who said they had seen the show advertised on Facebook. We paid the local paper for this and for £240 they sent targeted adverts for 7 days to all those who were linked to their Facebook pages. As part of the deal we also got a full page advert in the paper (as they need to fill the space as they don't have any news) - the same deal in 2019 for the same cost only gave us 1/8 page advert. Previously we had charged £4 for adults (inc OAP) and £2 children but this year changed to £5 adults and all children free and it was noticeable especially Sunday afternoon how many young families were there - obviously not enthusiasts but just a family day out. End result was that numbers were not far off previous years with 230 adults Saturday and 157 Sunday - plus an unknown number of kids. We had notices up to encourage wearing a face covering and I had mask on - many people read the notice and/or saw me and pulled a mask out of their pocket - although it was noticeable that some had seen a lot of use and couldn't be described as clean! We did have masks available for free for those who wanted one but out of almost 400 visitors only about 15 were taken. Couple of minor issues when setting up - a 16ft layout won't fit in an 8ft space and the 14ft layout had a 10ft space with the fiddle yard right across the main entrance door - both resolved before the exhibition manager had arrived !! A great success and this is where I would normally remind you about the big Derby show in May - but that isn't going to happen. As reported elsewhere on RMweb, Derby College who operate the Roundhouse closed immediately on first lockdown last year and as soon as they were able to reopen the college they said they needed extra space for the students and they closed their subsidiary company Roundhouse Events, switched off the website and made the event staff redundant. We had dates booked and deposits paid for the next three years and this was all refunded. We are still trying to decide what to do as we are not aware of any affordable venues in the area. .
  13. Well I didn't get much chance this weekend did I as I was on the pay desk for 90% of the show opening time - thanks for your voluntary donation of £5 to the rebuilding fund. About five years ago a surveyor said our building wasn't in danger of imminent collapse but we should consider 5-10 years as the remaining life - so we're on the final countdown. What our visitors didn't see was the bucket on the floor behind the O Gauge layout as the roof was leaking again - in the same place that was supposed to be fixed last year. Time to find another contractor - so your £5 and the other 386 contributions will go to the building fund. That's right Tony - and it was the same Paul Martin who was running that demonstration at one of the early shows at the Assembly Rooms. I had met Paul at the club and been with him to the Festiniog a couple of times where he was a volunteer driver - at that time he was an apprentice electrician at the BR Carriage and Wagon Works in Derby - then he got a full time job on the FR followed by commissioning work on Docklands before ending up in York working for a railway consultancy. His love for narrow gauge turned to all things American and he set up EDM Models as the retail side of ngtrains.com. What started out as very part time developed into full time after redundancy and I went to a number of shows to help out - after listening to Paul so many times, I did start to understand some of what I was selling. He was so knowledgeable about so many things that we operated a queuing system for those with questions - if I hadn't been there he wouldn't of sold much. Covid and a number of unrelated health problems has forced a rethink so there will now be a lot less shows and instead of a long wheelbase van, the stock is going to be just a few boxes in the back of his car. .
  14. I had a similar experience many years ago at the Derby Show. One of my friends had a demo stand covered in soldering irons and assorted tools along with a number of 4mm brass chassis that he had built, some with wheels spinning on rolling roads. Time for lunch and I was asked to just look after all his kits and equipment - but every time a club member went past I got the comment 'What the h*ll are you doing sitting there - you've never built a model in your life' !! That comment is still true . . . . . . .
  15. At the age of 67, I don't consider myself to be elderly but I was happy to serve 400 visitors to our show this weekend and to take cash from each and every one of them - and yes they all breathed on me. If we had to limit numbers then there's no point in having the show - we run an exhibition to help with club costs so if we reduce our income we make a loss. I know from talking to another exhibition manager today that they only broke even by organising the catering and selling food to the visitors which is more profitable than just organising a show that can't make a profit. Out of the 400 mentioned above, I think only three had less than £5 in their pocket and we had a cash machine over the road so they were back in 5 mins with cash in hand.
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