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Barry O

Exhibitions.. a place to add your ideas on the current situation

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Posted (edited)

Lots of people are adding bits to threads about their ideas about the current and near term future of exhibitions.

Rather than drifying threads from their initial focus...just feel free to add your words in this one..

Baz

Edited by Barry O
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I don't know if we've covered this before, but how we pay to gain access to exhibitions will-might be a bit of a challenge. As we will all know, we are fast accelerating to a fully cashless society, thanks to Conn-Vid 19. The last show I attended was a very relaxed affair, with cash of any denomination at the gate. Unfortunately, I can't see that going on, unless we drop the coinage into a bucket of bleach... Perhaps indeed, that's the answer.... Apart from cashless, then perhaps the good old Florins still have a use....

 

I do hope that we can find a way through this. The social event of an exhibition features large in the hobby, and I for one will miss it.

 

Pre-paid by e-mail as well?

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At the Stafford Railway Circle exhibition held in February this year we introduced admission payment by card for the first time.

 

We tend to have four pay desks available for the first 2/3 hours each day then down to 2/3 depending on demand for the rest of the day.

 

It was well received, and probably at our next exhibition we will have more card machines available.

 

Card payment is also available on the clubs secondhand sales stand.

 

I think the hardware was around £40 and you will also need a spare mobile with sim fitted.

 

From memory the card machine provider makes a small commission.

 

I feel with the current situation this will be the future.

 

Hope that helps

 

Terry 

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A whole host of things here I think.

1. If, as Govt mentions, we move onto an era of localised lockdowns/exclusion zones or whatever they're called the insurance arrangements for the organisers need to be able to recognise that situation and the possibility of cancellkation at short notice.

2. If, as seems likely, some kind if distancing remains in force - or is suddenly reintroduced - planning of the layout of the show will have to take account of it.  This will have one particularly critical effect because assuming the same available floor area as pre-Covid days what can be included in a post Covid show will be reduced in order to create more space to enable people to keep further apart.  That must surely mean an increase in cost oer sales stand or layout which will have to feed into the entry price.

3. This will also apply to catering and seating areas.

4. Demo tables could be partially adapted by making a 'T' using a second table at a right angle to teh first but it does mean probable loss of close contact.  does that undermine the whole idea of a demo or is teh alternative to provide perspec x screens as in retail premises.

5. A big problem will be trying to impose distancing at layouts and trade stands - will that mean separate queues for each taking up yet more space and, again, perspex screen?

6.  Much though I hate to say it I think contactless payment is likely to be unavoidable unless the banks can be persuaded to issue notes in special hygienic packages of various denominations - that simply won't happen.

7. If we start from, say, where things are today there would be a requirement to wear masks in shows - assuming that does not change how is that one going to be policed and enforced

8.  and - again dependent on wider 'rules' there is the matter of transport to/from shows and potentially  (unless circumstances change) a need for greater car park capacity).

 

But the biggy is  that what ever is adopted, and whatever space is made available, how will the 'discipline' of what is needed be enforced on show visitors.  We are looking I think at a sort of 'supermarket plus' way of moving folk round a show (might need even more room) and making sure they do it.  If nothing else what has become very clear in recent weeks is that relying on people to exercise 'common sense' is a forlorn hope.  There's always been a modicum of attendees at model trailway shows who seem to be either stupid, selfish, or rude  - or in any combination of the three you care to think of.

 

Overall I think the idea of shows is far from dead and they will arise Phoenix like from tthe ashes of the imoact of the virus but they will need some b very careful organisational planning and possibly even a controlled rate of entry at busier events.

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4 minutes ago, The Stationmaster said:

 

6.  Much though I hate to say it I think contactless payment is likely to be unavoidable unless the banks can be persuaded to issue notes in special hygienic packages of various denominations - that simply won't happen.

 

 

That in itself is going to be an issue if the location doesn't have decent wifi. I'm thinking particularly of Wells Town Hall at 3pm on a Saturday with assorted traders aiming their handsets skyward, resembling either the blessed at a Revivalist meeting, or the [insert your own incompetent football team of choice] back four attempting, belatedly, to play the offside trap.

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How many shows have space for a minimum 9ft walkway  in their halls?  We have always managed to sort it for our large Hall in Leeds.. the foyer area isn't designed for it...There are a lot of shows which always shove a lot of stands in a very small space... they might need to change halls or change their strategy.. even specialist show seem space limited...

 

Baz

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The StationMaster  said

 

"4. Demo tables could be partially adapted by making a 'T' using a second table at a right angle to teh first but it does mean probable loss of close contact.  does that undermine the whole idea of a demo or is teh alternative to provide perspec x screens as in retail premises."

 

My weathering demo involves "hands on " which currently is a nogo area. Not sure I would want to work inside a screened area.

 

"5. A big problem will be trying to impose distancing at layouts and trade stands"

 

Having ventured out to a supermarket this week for the first time since the 14th March.. it would need Tazers, Prodding sticks or some other form of control device.. or large full sized perspex "booths" - one in one out...

 

Baz

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I could see the exhibition scene going into hibernation for a while. Rather than tying ourselves in knots trying to work out safe yet viable scenarios it might be better to accept that in the current climate it's a circle which can't be squared. If a club made a spanking loss it could jeopardise future exhibitions. Perhaps it's better to ride out the storm and return when matters are more favourable. Club exhibitions aren't comparable to everyday businesses, there isn't the same financial imperative.

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2 minutes ago, Neil said:

I could see the exhibition scene going into hibernation for a while. Rather than tying ourselves in knots trying to work out safe yet viable scenarios it might be better to accept that in the current climate it's a circle which can't be squared. If a club made a spanking loss it could jeopardise future exhibitions. Perhaps it's better to ride out the storm and return when matters are more favourable. Club exhibitions aren't comparable to everyday businesses, there isn't the same financial imperative.

Neil

 

I understand your point, but some Clubs need shows to keep going. While income is low (no clubroom collection coming in but rents etc still having to be paid out...until the public have confidence to get back out to attend Shows few shows will be viable.

 

Baz

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What always suprises me is the cost of admission to an exhibition. It is not unusual to pay £30-50 for entry to other venues (National Trust, zoos, football) but many exhibition managers are unwilling to break the £10 barrier. If the future is more spacious venues and limited admission then something has to give. Traders cannot be expected to pay more to face fewer customers. I am not wealthy but would expect to pay something like £20 for a small local show and up to £50 for a large national exhibition. I expect this will be controversial but what will the market stand? Personally I don't see crowded shows returning until an effective vacine is available and in widespread use and that could be years rather than months. 

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If a club needs extra revenue over and above membership subs or any other levy on it's members then it can't afford to stage a loss making show. At this point in time (if I understand the regulations correctly) it's not possible to hold large indoor events. Even if restrictions are eased/changed later on it's difficult to see how a reduced footfall could generate a profit and this is before any  re-imposition of lockdown due to a second wave. It may be more productive for cash strapped clubs to look at other ways to meet their costs. With the recession in full swing landlords may opt for a reduced clubroom rent than no rent at all.

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face masks will now become the norm, and are already a legal requirement on public transport. I can foresee a rather pleasant up-side to this, where social distancing, plus masks, will allow visitors to forgo the usual aroma of 'bodily perfume' which sometimes pervades occasions such as this. The 2-metre rule can hopefully out-distance any rucksack with a length of track sticking out of the top. Perhaps, you will be required to deposit your bag-rucksack at the cloakroom, to be within the space rule.  Yes, there will be some changes, but with a bit of ingenuity, it can  be overcome.

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Really?

 

warley.jpg.d12407c368a4a31adac466bcc74d6c68.jpg

 

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Well let's see what the fourth of July brings (pubs re-opening - which I will not be attending). I foresee a social distancing (etc) disaster countrywide, with new government rules regulations & conditions being quickly re written and applied just after the chaos and mayhem, especially if a spike in cases occurs soon after. Some of these new conditions might / will affect other public gatherings such as our far more gentle & civilised exhibitions. Then again we could have chaos and mayhem in our pubs (normal in Wigan !!) with no spike in cases - such an occurrence may then help our exhibition cause.

 

This year is a write off, and I think it's far too early to tell what conditions and rules will be in 2021

 

Covid seems thankfully to be on the decrease and I am venturing out a little more, but as Beijing & Germany has shown it ain't gone, and we all still need to be careful and vigilant.

 

Brit15

 

 

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I think demonstrators  are one element of a show that is going to be very difficult to square with social distancing, and may well have to be dropped for the duration. 

 

They are a nice extra , but they are not a revenue generator, and may well be a cost.

 

The fundamental elements of the show are the layouts and the traders; and the traders look to be the more difficult of the two elements because buyers expect to handle the goods and there is much closer interaction between trader and buyer than there is between spectator and operator.

 

I also think that in the short to medium term a 1 day event without overnight accommodation will be much less problematic than a 2 day one. There might be access to the hall on the Friday evening to set up,  but nobody staying overnight.

 

This implies that any shows or other events in 2020 are going to have to be modest sized "local events for local modellers"

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2 hours ago, Ravenser said:

I think demonstrators  are one element of a show that is going to be very difficult to square with social distancing, and may well have to be dropped for the duration. 

 

They are a nice extra , but they are not a revenue generator, and may well be a cost.

 

The fundamental elements of the show are the layouts and the traders; and the traders look to be the more difficult of the two elements because buyers expect to handle the goods and there is much closer interaction between trader and buyer than there is between spectator and operator.

 

I also think that in the short to medium term a 1 day event without overnight accommodation will be much less problematic than a 2 day one. There might be access to the hall on the Friday evening to set up,  but nobody staying overnight.

 

This implies that any shows or other events in 2020 are going to have to be modest sized "local events for local modellers"

 

I can think of one Cardiff event where the 'modest venue' is packed to the rafters, with aunts, grannies & children perched on the visitors shoulders, as they walk around, consuming bacon baps.... 

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I wonder how many Societies can take a hit from a cancellation of an Exhibition? The Gauge O Guild may have a financial problem...but lets hope they can survive..

 

Baz

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On 26/06/2020 at 12:22, Allegheny1600 said:

Ouch!

Too much dumb for me, I had to stop watching halfway through.

Where do these people get their ideas?

Im a member of a non railway forum,  that forum is owned by one man,  and was quite good for it's function unfortunately he's gone off the deep end of being anti 2M rule, Anti face mask,  anti vax his facebook pages get regularly blocked by them.  I've stopped going to that forum as its getting quite unpleasant.. 

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As for club shows,  even our quite small one day show of around 500 visitors in a six hour period. At peak times its heaving and even on a cold day we have to open the fire doors to let the heat out. 

 

The side rooms are accessed by a less than 6ft wide corridor.

 

The T bar in one corner of the main hall,  is normally packed as well. 

 

There is still several months to our show which is cancelled,  however the situation is changing so fast I think it was premature to have made the decision to cancel the  show 2 months ago. 

 

If the current situation stays the same, our show couldn't go on, and I think can't do so until vaccinations are given. 

 

Our economics are reasonable,  our club fees were set to cover the costs when we were down to ten members,  recruitment drives over the couple of years have pushed our membership up to about 30.

 

What the shows paid for was new layouts, and a slowly building fund for unusual occurances, like now, since we can't go to the club to build a layout,  that's not a problem,  but I'm guessing we'll have lost a year's show money and at least 6months build time..

 

 

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2 hours ago, Barry O said:

I wonder how many Societies can take a hit from a cancellation of an Exhibition? The Gauge O Guild may have a financial problem...but lets hope they can survive..

 

Baz

 

I would have hoped that the Societies were the least affected, and that they are largely supported by subscriptions - not exhibition incomes. 

 

I would also hope that they have reserves, in some cases extensive reserves.

 

I'm a member of 3 societies (DOGA, DEMU, 3mm Society). Only DEMU holds an exhibition, and while it isn't one of the societies with big accumulated reserves my hazy recollection of figures reported at the AGM is that it isn't much dependant on income from Showcase

 

I presume you are essentially talking about GOG, S4S and EMGS, and I would have hoped that such large long-established societies would have sufficient accumulated reserves to ride out the loss of ExpoEM, Scaleforum and Telford. It might be an uncomfortable and awkward loss, but not - I hope - a critical one

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39 minutes ago, Ravenser said:

...

I presume you are essentially talking about GOG, S4S and EMGS, and I would have hoped that such large long-established societies would have sufficient accumulated reserves to ride out the loss of ExpoEM, Scaleforum and Telford. It might be an uncomfortable and awkward loss, but not - I hope - a critical one

GoG's problems don't seem to be related to it's show but I might be wrong in that. The others might actually see their finances improve with the loss of their shows, but they might feel the need for another form of socialising, perhaps based on their already existing Area Group format. Perhaps meeting by Zoom or in member's gardens wearing face masks might be a good way forward. Certainly the NLG's Zoom meeting are a big hit with me, looking forward to another on Monday!

I don't feel at all comfortable in an enclosed space with other people unless everyone, including me, is wearing a face mask and I wouldn't attend any show were the wearing of them wasn't mandatory and the stewards had the power to require people to leave if they removed them.

Sorry, but it seems to me that the wearing of masks is pretty much a civic duty until a vaccine is available.

 

Regards

 

 

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39 minutes ago, PenrithBeacon said:

GoG's problems don't seem to be related to it's show but I might be wrong in that. The others might actually see their finances improve with the loss of their shows, but they might feel the need for another form of socialising, perhaps based on their already existing Area Group format. Perhaps meeting by Zoom or in member's gardens wearing face masks might be a good way forward. Certainly the NLG's Zoom meeting are a big hit with me, looking forward to another on Monday!

I don't feel at all comfortable in an enclosed space with other people unless everyone, including me, is wearing a face mask and I wouldn't attend any show were the wearing of them wasn't mandatory and the stewards had the power to require people to leave if they removed them.

Sorry, but it seems to me that the wearing of masks is pretty much a civic duty until a vaccine is available.

 

Regards

 

 

 

I think smaller society events, where you put your name down in advance, might be viable in the latter part of this year, and could be a way forward. But not big public exhibitions..

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