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Mike Storey

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  • Location
    Charente Maritime, France
  • Interests
    BR Southern Region, 1975 - 1986. Building a model in 00 based on Queenborough, Sheppey, Kent. I also model live steam in the garden, scale 16mm/ft, 32mm gauge.

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  1. That's all fair enough, but I have a different dilemma. I have been collecting stuff for a specific layout for many, many years and have almost everything I need for my layout, when I can get around to building it (having concentrated on a garden, live steam jobby for the past 7 years). I have awaited older age to start an indoor layout, given it is increasingly hard to maintain the outdoor one. But I realise many of my locos, wagons and some units have been "bettered" by more recent releases. Even when I can afford them, I have shied away, as I wonder whether they will actually give me more pleasure than that which I already have. I certainly held back on sound chips, because I never thought they were quite good enough, but now, with better speakers and recordings, many are quite brilliant. But it will cost quite a few hundred sovs to buy all that I might need. I guess it is a matter of what you can put up with.
  2. I had wondered if Covid had killed off the wonderful Jubilee bar at Sowerby Bridge station, but I am assured it continues, albeit slightly altered in its offer. Its website offers no such enthusiasm.
  3. I agree with Mike SM here. The "scale of resources" needed to identify the causes of delay and then to attribute them started with BR Sectorisation in the 1980's, not with privatisation in the 1990's (although that might have needed a few extra accountants). But the discipline and concentration on delay causation it brought was wholly necessary. Previously, whilst much was made of punctuality drives and much was known by experienced railway peeps, much of the problem was brushed under the carpet, especially as the railway started to change rapidly and congestion was becoming a much greater problem on the wider network. Back to topic (sorry, I have come a bit late to this thread): I never received a Form 1 (although I got plenty of bollockings, the first, when I was still a clerk, being for wearing an old BR Hi-Vis vest on my motorbike - I never really found out what was so wrong with that). But I did have many issued to others, and was party in some way to several more. I also actioned at least 2 Clause 9 dismissals. I was taught by an old hand at Gillingham (Kent), Ben Dyer, together with the local NUR rep (one of the Guards' Regulators), in a simulation, where I had an hour to prepare my case. I was crucified. But it came in handy when, several months later, we (as in the three Traffic Managers) were told to go into a certain signal box on successive Sundays, at a certain time, following which Form 1's were issued to three signalmen for absence from duty. Within a week or two, agreement was reached to single man that box on Sundays, and the Form 1's disappeared.
  4. Yep. She was one of many we had as work experience peeps at Euston over the years, and I tried to find jobs for those that were any good. She came joint first in her finals. I believe she married a chap from Business Systems in the end, and they moved to Yorkshire, which is a bit of a change from Strood...... Meanwhile, back at the Grove, after management training, I recall going back there for one or two courses and an assessment, but my last time there was, I think, for the initial OforQ exercises. Would that have been right?
  5. Quite so. The publicly-funded Channel that gave us Murray Walker, amongst other people and things, consigned to the dustbin. The publicly-backed Channel that at least gave us free-to-air highlights, perhaps consigned to the dustbin (we shall see). The public consigned to the dustbin, unless you have more money than sense to spare.
  6. Technically, by about 30 yards. It is actually a very short walk to the town centre, unlike many stations. I used to commute from/to Malton, in the 1990's, for around 9 years. The cafe was particularly interesting, being run for most of my time by an ex-con, who could make the perfect bacon sandwich. One needed a strong stomach though to ignore some of the hygiene.....Stu has captured the buildings and layout remarkably well, especially as it is in 2mm scale. I look forward to following this thread with great interest.
  7. "Pretty sound" in that it had very little to say about how it would all be done, just what the end results should look like, kind of, to a degree that would brook little argument because it was so vague. How Shapps was allowed to attach his moniker to Williams we can leave to historians, but the intent was presumably to give it some prospect of surviving contact with the enemy (the Treasury). It does not appear to have done so. That leaves us, as the article suggests, in limbo yet again.
  8. I agree - this is a good article, the contents of which have been ignored by other media who prefer only to concentrate on the industrial relations aspects. His conclusion, that if GBR is not sanctified in this parliament leaves the door open to Labour's nationalisation plans, is not perhaps accurate. It does not matter whether GBR exists or not - this will not affect the re-nationalisation of TOCs when each comes to the end of their contracts.
  9. It's only function is to increase the number of spectators on Saturdays, surely?
  10. Very interesting, indeed. I thought I recently had an email from Fraser saying they were going to have to give up the business for a number of reasons, that they would supply from remaining stock but would not be making anything new, and were looking for a buyer. Unfortunately I must have deleted the email. I wonder if that has now changed? My apologies if I have got that wrong!
  11. Faverdale was an interesting survivor. We (as on the ER and later GNER) were still using it into the 90's, for meetings, outward bound courses and the occasional training course. It had privatised to some extent (there had been a management buyout, but which was funded to some extent by railway sources), but most of its business was still railway. It remained much cheaper than alternatives. Indeed, I presented there at quite a few "privatisation" courses, where the intention was to prepare staff for the great unknown. My only qualification for this was my many years as an external lecturer, and examiner, at a college then University, in Bedfordshire, on Business Studies degrees. But horns were drawn in, and such courses were confined to York, and eventually disbanded, once it became obvious that the management buyout of IC East Coast was not going to win. Even under GNER, we (as in the Passenger Ops part) still used Faverdale for two day conferences, as indeed did the Director Engineering and some others, but even this was curtailed eventually by a certain MD, brother of a prominent female Tory MP, who insisted all such events were done "in house". When it was pointed out that the facilities available "in house" to hold such events did not really exist, they were cancelled completely. That is almost certainly when GNER lost the plot, and a short while later, had to give up the franchise, due to completely unattainable targets and deadlines, that Sherwood and his increasingly isolated team, had signed up to. Faverdale meanwhile went bust.
  12. Many thanks for this - the pics bring back a lot of memories, as do some parts of the articles.
  13. Well remembered! It appears to be some kind of ghastly "steak house" now. Yuk.
  14. It was about the same percentages when I joined the Management Trainee scheme in 1981 as a staff entrant. We rarely all came together, for the various courses (we, as the Southern contingent, were partnered with the LMR for most sessions), but I do know that the entire Scottish contingent, bar one, were sacked for "inappropriate behaviour" before they had even finished training.... We spent a lot of time at the Grove, more than I think had been normal previously, and also at Derby for much of the technical training. But the worst period was for the final five weeks of Rules and Regs instruction and examinations (which also consisted of days out with a certain Area Inspector, named Sidney T Ball, involving ludicrous feats of memory and many broken shunting poles). But all was relieved by our early discovery of the local hostelry at the end of a leafy lane, whose name has long since escaped me, but visits to which were, strictly, verboten, but rules are for the observance of .....etc etc. incidentally, whilst almost all of the university entrants left after a year, or perhaps two, pretty much all of the staff entrants stayed, and made a decent career out of it. But, before crowing too much, the university ones that did hang on, tended to be the ones that ended up as CEO's or better, of TOC's or, in one case, of Network Rail! Nonetheless, the silly so-and-so's did pay for my Masters degree in my thirties, which gave me a decent claim to a job in the privatised world.
  15. They claim the tyres have been "working well" so far this season, with the reduced tyre warmer temps and the new compounds. I think many drivers would disagree with that, especially on the extended out-laps? I agree there have been few absolute failures, but the tyres seem to be featuring more and more as a factor, depending on the circuit, not so much for delamination, but for control. To wit: the number of cars penalised for being outside the white lines, and the number of run-offs we have seen. Only those cars with exceptional grip, particularly the RBs and the Reds, have managed deep overtakes on corners where you would not expect to see it. Is that because everyone else is being so cautious? I am sure there will be differing opinions.
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