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North of B'north
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jt75069



Joined: 04 Apr 2005
Posts: 135
Location: Midlands

PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 8:42 pm    Post subject: North of B'north Reply with quote

A while ago, there was an article in the SVR news that said that B'north tunnel had come up for sale, and because Buildwas power station was closing, an extension north was possible. After this atricle (which was about 1 1/2 or 2 years ago now), nothing has been said. On www.svr.co.uk, they say that the land north has been sold, but this has been like this on the website for years. Also, why has the turntable that was due to be put in at b'noth not been put in yet? I also know that a BR Mark 1 coach was moved in at one of the stations north of B'north and the owners were planning to turn the building into a hotel. What are peoples views on an extension North and is it possible or not? Thanks in advance for any replies to my question.
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cherry_p



Joined: 17 Sep 2003
Posts: 1816
Location: Solihull

PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2005 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Extension northwards it's not physically or commercially feasible; people keep bringing up this subject, but it's not something worth pursuing. As it stands, we have a 16-mile railway, for which people pay 11.50 return. if you (say) doubled the length of the line, you'd double all your costs, but there's no way you would double your income; More people would decide they had neither the time nor money to go further.
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hassell_a



Joined: 18 Sep 2004
Posts: 1430
Location: Shropshire

PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2005 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd second what Pete has said here. Wearing my other cap as a parent who sometimes takes his 2 children for a round trip, the current duration/cost of the journey is about enough for most families - and they make up the majority of our visitors and therefore income.

Also much as I (and Pete I'm sure) would like to roll into Bridgnorth from Kidderminster and then carry on throught the tunnel to ironbridge, I can't see where the additional engines/rolling stock for this are going to come from - we are already regularly turning out 6 or 7 engines (and around 50 servicable coaches) on summer weekends if you take into account diners/steam schools and charters. Crews would also be a problem, things can be tight at times already, and it's not just a case of passing a few more people out - to gain the competance needed for these jobs requires experience and that takes time - and lots of it!

In an ideal world it would be great to extend, but in all seriousness, we have a major task in running/maintaining/imporving the 16 miles we already have.

Adrian.
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jt75069



Joined: 04 Apr 2005
Posts: 135
Location: Midlands

PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2005 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hassell_a wrote:
I'd second what Pete has said here. Wearing my other cap as a parent who sometimes takes his 2 children for a round trip, the current duration/cost of the journey is about enough for most families - and they make up the majority of our visitors and therefore income.

Also much as I (and Pete I'm sure) would like to roll into Bridgnorth from Kidderminster and then carry on throught the tunnel to ironbridge, I can't see where the additional engines/rolling stock for this are going to come from - we are already regularly turning out 6 or 7 engines (and around 50 servicable coaches) on summer weekends if you take into account diners/steam schools and charters. Crews would also be a problem, things can be tight at times already, and it's not just a case of passing a few more people out - to gain the competance needed for these jobs requires experience and that takes time - and lots of it!

In an ideal world it would be great to extend, but in all seriousness, we have a major task in running/maintaining/imporving the 16 miles we already have.

Adrian.


OK, thanks for you points of view, I agree becuase it would be good and it will always be there as a 'could be', but I think the SVR should build on what they have already, such as the Highley Display building, which sounds brilliant.
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TVG



Joined: 10 Jun 2005
Posts: 5
Location: West Midlands/Worcestershire

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2005 10:07 am    Post subject: Bridgnorth Extension Reply with quote

I have to say on this subject.


lengthening the line would be good. Because passengers would come back on a 2nd visit to travel on the new extended line.

Also the severn valley railway would take the title of britains longest preserved railway.

again this would get passengers past present and future to travel on the line.

and finally it would be more beneficial for our bigger engines over longer distances.

regards Paul
_________________
don't know what to say here.

but will talk in the forums. just a little joke we should be chuffed at the svr.!!!
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hassell_a



Joined: 18 Sep 2004
Posts: 1430
Location: Shropshire

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2005 12:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

But however much it would be nice to see, I don't really think that you answer any of the points made by me and Pete earlier.
Many (more than half) of our passengers are already on at least their 2nd visit. Putting up the 11.50 fare to say 16 or 17 per adult is going to make it very expensive for the average family, who probably don't want to spend that much on a day out.
I don't really see how the longer distance benefits our engines - many of which are already clocking up 10k - 12k miles per year in their old age on our current traffic levels.
We would need at least one more rake of coaches, and the only realistic option would be to get Mark 2's for this. as any mark 1's left around are in a pretty poor state now. Personally, that is not something I'd like to see on the Valley as they do not really qualify as steam era coaches.

Overall I just don't see how extending the line's distance 50%, along with the staff, infrastructure, rolling stock needed for this is going to bring a 50% increase in the numbers or revenue to offset the costs. The railway is making a profit, but it is about 1% of the total turnover, so it any increase in costs could seriously affect the financial stability of the SVR. On many weekends, we are already operating at capacity in terms of the number of staff and engines etc. available , so where do the extra staff/engines etc. come from?

Adrian.


Last edited by hassell_a on Tue Jun 14, 2005 2:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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porter_s



Joined: 02 Jul 2003
Posts: 101

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2005 12:37 pm    Post subject: North of Bridgnorth Reply with quote

I think TVG should stick to volleyball sailing tennis cycling.
We barely have enough staff to operate 16 miles. Get real.
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David Ward



Joined: 09 Mar 2005
Posts: 46
Location: Liverpool

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2005 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep its best sticking to what we've got and continuing to provide an all round excellent service and developing ehat we have, for example Highley Museum, and dare I say it better catering facilities and staff accomodation at Bridgnorth?
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hassell_a



Joined: 18 Sep 2004
Posts: 1430
Location: Shropshire

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2005 7:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I prefer to see work concentrated on Highley museum, major improvements to Bridgnorth station. Finishing Kidderminster - by which I mean not just the Buffet extension, but also the overall roof/canopy, extension of platform to its proposed original length (ie opposite the signal box) and the footbridge extension. Overhaul Hagley Hall... the wish list goes on!
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jt75069



Joined: 04 Apr 2005
Posts: 135
Location: Midlands

PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2005 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hassell_a wrote:
Overhaul Hagley Hall

Very Happy


Last edited by jt75069 on Tue May 23, 2006 7:23 pm; edited 2 times in total
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hassell_a



Joined: 18 Sep 2004
Posts: 1430
Location: Shropshire

PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2005 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just in case no one had visited their website, come and support the friends of 4930 here:


http://www.4930hagleyhall.org.uk

Adrian
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Ian Pascoe



Joined: 05 Apr 2005
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2005 7:46 pm    Post subject: North of Bridgnoth Reply with quote

This topic as has been said won't go away. I can see why those people have responded in the way that they have but in doing so have only appeared to look at one aspect of the potential.

Firstly, I'd suggest that a new operating company is launched to prevent damage to the existing SVR, and in so doing so, automatically provides a different Railway. I do not believe that marketing the extension as an addition to the existing SVR would have any benefit here, other than to the enthusiast.

The Extension should be marketed on it's own merits primarily as a means by which people can park and ride from Bridgnorth to Ironbridge OR to Kidder. This doesn't mean that people joing at Kidder cannot go through the entire length if they want to. Which leads nicely onto the question of which of the more permanent TSRs could be lifted improving the end to end journey time of the SVR. Yes, I know parking at Bridgnoth is not really suitable, but in this ideal world the Park and Ride would be located on the other side of the Bridgnorth tunnel .

The points about resourcing the extension are valid, those relating to stock can be overcome by either purchasing Mk 1s as they become available or hiring in stock from museum sites like Didcot. Alternatively, if the line speed could be upped the existing stock should cope; for instance what is the minimum theoretical time a service train would take if all restrictions were lifted except for those like Sterns and pointwork?

The biggest problem to overcome would be that of staffing the extra stations and associated infrastructure without diluting the SVR's sometimes stretched volunteers for which there is no easy answer.

Financially, I believe that the Ironbridge museums have a visitor level of about 3 million per annum; this is a large potential to be tapped into. By separating the Railway in the public's eyes we can overcome the cost of fares to a certain degree.

Any extension would also have to be thought as providing the missing link between what the Telford Steam railway is proposing and the existing SVR as we must not be seen to be truying to oust the little guys.

This is something I have spent a lot of time thinking about and believe that the potential is there as long as the business can be seen to break even within a medium term period. I have also given some considerable thought to the extension to Stourport, but that is another topic.
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hassell_a



Joined: 18 Sep 2004
Posts: 1430
Location: Shropshire

PostPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2005 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

I've aired my views well on the topic before, but you make some interesting points. That would be a different way of looking at the extension, though I am still very sceptical, for the reasons I've outlined.

The various speed restrictions on on the valley are either TSR's or permanent - but can't be both (in theory anyway!). There is currently only 1 TSR that I can recall, which is the 20mph over Falling Sands - that doesn't make much difference to section times.

The main permanent restrictions in sections are 15mph over Victoria Bridge, 20mph over the site of Kinlet Sidings, 15mph through the curves at miners halt, 20mph in Alveley Woods and the 5mph at Sterns. You have discounted Sterns, and I would discount raising the speed over Victoria Bridge. The other slacks mentioned above are all where the line is lightly contructed on a embankments composed of mainly ash which were never designed for frequent 8 coach trains - the SVR was laid as a branch and not as a mini main line (unlike the WSR for example). So to raise these would require wholesale rebuilding of the entire formation to gain a 5mph increase in 2 cases and a 10mph increase in the other. This might save about 2 minutes between Arley and Hampton Loade, at huge cost and distruption.

If the line speed was upped, then we would have little or no work for 7714, 5764, 46443 etc as 25mph is the realistic limit for these engines on 8 coach trains - so effectively we'd lose the use of 3 locomotives.

I don't want to sound negative, but I'm not convinced by the practicalities of the arguments of those who want to extend the railway. The idea is great but I just think the SVR has a lot to lose and not much to gain....

I'd be interested on your thoughts on Stourport though! Isn't most of the formation built over south of Burlish?

Adrian.


Last edited by hassell_a on Mon Aug 01, 2005 9:08 pm; edited 1 time in total
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stanworth_i



Joined: 02 Jul 2003
Posts: 174
Location: Inverness

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2005 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Think you are right about Stourport.

Perahps we are better off finishing what we have before we expand our horizons.

Let another body - perhaps a charity allied to the SVR - get the funding and everything sorted and work on building and extending from the Telford end, and once we are sorted strike out North.

Seems to be working for the Ffestiniog - over much more difficult ground!!!!!!!
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boldford



Joined: 11 Aug 2005
Posts: 2727
Location: Glad to be no longer stuck on that linear parking lot known better as the M6

PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2005 8:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the idea of considering any extension of the SVR to Stourport could be less than fruitful. Even if all the obstacles of housing development etc could be overcome and the full extent of the line were re-established it would simply give us another connection onto the NR line at the south end of the SVR.

Surely better to consider the possibilities of an extension of operation in the northern direction.

Yes. I know this has been discussed at length in several places, and; Yes. I would have grave reservations of SVR(H) trying to undertake such a task.

If such an venture were to be commenced I, for one, would only endorse it if another body were to implement the re-construction. For what it is worth it could be an organisation calling itself SVR(E) and share a number of directors of SVR(H) and SVR(G). I'm sure some representation from Wrekin District Council and Ironbridge Gorge Museum would also be wise.

If such a venture were to overcome all the hurdles and recreate the Severn Valley Line to Ironbridge or Buildwas the operational aspects and revenue share aspects etc. would need to be considered.

I don't think there would be too many problems to overcome from the point of running trains since presently many locomotive and rolling stock owners already have no problem in allowing SVR(G) staff operate them over SVR(H) metals.

The revenue share bit is one possible fly in the ointment.

I also realise that the problems of locomotive, rolling stock and staff availability has been highlighted in this discussion group.

I'm sure there are other considerations both positive and negative regards a northern extension. However IMHO a Stourport extension is a no no.
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