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Broadway Station Rebuild

Discussion in 'Heritage railways & Centres in the Uk' started by Breva, Aug 1, 2014.

  1. frazoulaswak

    frazoulaswak Member

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    You forgot to add "...and be delivered late and way over budget." - neither of which are likely to apply to the work carried out by the Broadway volunteers.
     
  2. Nick Gough

    Nick Gough Active Member

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    ......and all steam locomotives would be designated 'out of gauge' - the day before opening.
     
  3. Breva

    Breva Member

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    I'm afraid it isn't all behind us now, the underlying issue remains the same in that the construction management is not heritage minded. The heritage canopy is a triumph, but was built by the loco dept and was doggedly resisted by the Broadway construction management. As recently as mid February, when the heritage canopy was already well advanced at Toddington, they claimed in writing that the heritage canopy was forced upon them by the heritage group, while they had a solid structural design of modern box section steel.
    The latest symptom that the underlying issue has not gone away is the construction of the first chimney. Broadway used to have 5 flues in 3 chimneys. We will now have one flue in two chimneys, for a 50% bigger building. The first chimney that has been built is quite a different shape to what there was. It could so easily have been in GWR style, with a bit more curiosity and interest in our past.

    The objective of the GWR Trust, of which we are all members - it only has this one objective in its statutes - is to 'build and maintain a railway museum for the benefit of the public', often extended as being 'from fence to fence, and from buffer stop to buffer stop'. This message isn't getting to where it is needed.
     
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  4. AndyY

    AndyY Member

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    It really is disappointing to read that last message. When will the management learn?

    Andy
     
  5. Kinghambranch

    Kinghambranch Well-Known Member

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    At the next AGM? Shareholders can change things if they want to.
     
  6. FearOfManchester

    FearOfManchester New Member

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    I suppose they won on the canopy extension to the footbridge stairs argument aswell
     
  7. Breva

    Breva Member

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    From the beginning, the construction team didn't want the footbridge touching the canopy in any way. Extra non-GWR supports were bought in; they are still lying on site. A GWR replica design, endorsed by a structural engineer, was rejected and the foundations of the towers dug out the very next day.
     
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  8. daveb

    daveb Active Member

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    The last AGM was about a fortnight ago.

    If no-one raises things like this at the AGM (and no-one did), how are the shareholders supposed to know that there is an issue?
     
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  9. 17B

    17B New Member

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    Afraid it's this management attitude that has always troubled, me and stops me volunteering at the GWR.
    Which I find a real shame, it's only just down the road, but I'd rather travel over an hour to somewhere I feel takes the heritage side seriously.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  10. Phil-d259

    Phil-d259 Member

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    That phrase does not explicitly state a "GWR Railway Museum" so technically the GWR trust are not misleading anyone (though given the Trusts name, it is perfectly reasonable to expect said "Railway Museum" to be in the style of the GWR).

    While I can appreciate my view might grate with those in the know, as far as I am concerned Broadway is shaping up to look like a fine example of a typical GWR station and I*, nor most of the lines potential visitors (which like all other Heritage railways will mostly be families looking for a fun day out, coach parties, people on holiday in the area, etc - NOT enthusiasts) are really going to care if the footbridge or chimney breasts / flue arrangement are entirely accurate, particularly as virtually all the passenger trains will be formed of Mk1s.

    * and yes I do plan on visiting to see it in person once the extension opens.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
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  11. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Part of the furniture

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    What I can't understand is why? All our directors etc. are just other volunteers like the rest of us, I work alongside some of them, drink tea with them, discuss current and future plans and give my own suggestions, they just happen to be directors as well.

    In some cases authenticity or lack thereof is just that no one is in a position to do something about it. Since I've joined C+W I've managed to persuade folk that I can do some sign-writing, so now our wagons are a bit more authentic rather than having some transfers in the wrong font.
     
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  12. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Part of the furniture

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    I've always found "the management" (as I've said above, just other volunteers really, it's not really "them and us") perfectly approachable if I've got a query.
    There's plenty of volunteers on the GWSR who do exactly as you do, live near one heritage heritage railway but go straight past to come to us for our friendly atmosphere, it really is a smashing place to volunteer, everyone's always very welcoming to new people.

    Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
     
  13. michaelh

    michaelh Well-Known Member

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    Management attitude exemplified by the Signalboxes at Gotherington & Cheltenham. I hold shares from the very first share issue, but I've never bought any more because of this management attitude.
     
  14. Bean-counter

    Bean-counter Part of the furniture

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    Perhaps the 'management attitude' has been to get the job done rather than be sat without signal boxes because the extra funding wasn't available to 'do it properly'. That may have been a lack of faith, justified or otherwise, in the availability of funds if appealed for, or a shortage of specialists at 'fund raising', and I have no inside knowledge of the GWSR but I would lay odds it wasn't just to wind up enthusiasts or deliberately not use authentic designs!

    Stating time and time again 'I don't like this - it is wrong' is not the same as placing a viable alternative in front of those daft enough to have taken on positions of responsibility - but, hey, we're British, so naturally 'management' are an unnecessary evil.....!

    Steven
     
  15. Kinghambranch

    Kinghambranch Well-Known Member

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    You really don't like those boxes (which were erected as long ago as 2003) do you? They look like signal boxes to me (and there was a style of GWR box that looked similar but had certain details that could be replicated on the current boxes). I also understand that planning conditions had some effect on what could be built at those locations at the time but I cannot confirm that.
     
  16. Breva

    Breva Member

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    I don't think there were any planning issues.

    The designer, I understand, was asked to provide for an internal staircase to limit vandalism. Instead of across the box as the GWR did, the designer put the staircase along the back. This made the footprint quite unlike the GWR one, being deeper and shorter.
    We thought about cladding them, but their dumpy shape would remain and trying to clad them is, in the end, only lipstick on a pig. They would be better, but still all wrong.

    One factor with the GWSR that I can understand is that they started with a completely bare railway, and no money. In the early days, you were grateful for what you could get. An industrial tank, army sleepers, a Mk1, two plastic signal boxes.
    Gradually as the railway matures, your expectations rise and the quality improves. We are now raising chunks of £500.000, even a million and a quarter.

    What I find difficult to comprehend is that today, with this sort of money, a brownfield site where you could have built anything you wanted, and the willing advice of several knowledgeable volunteers, it is still acceptable to build something that 'only has to look right from a distance' (I quote!)
     
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  17. daveb

    daveb Active Member

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    As you can tell from my previous post on this thread, I was present at the two AGMs held a couple of weeks back (GWRT and PLC) and also at the previous year's AGMs.

    If people posting here are not happy with the railway management, the AGMs are opportunities to raise issues. Some of the directors retire by rotation every year and stand for re-election, and there are usually new directors who seek confirmation of co-option during the year to fill posts that have become vacant due to retirement or (sadly) death of the previous holder of the post. In the last two years, all of these elections have been uncontested.

    I'm also a member of the WSRA, and I know through what happened in that organisation that it can be difficult for anyone to defeat and unseat an existing director or trustee, regardless of how poor a job they may or may not be doing. That said, if there are volunteers who feel that wrong decisions being made, it's a waste of time posting your complaints on NP. You should raise awkward questions at the AGM, and be prepared to stand against the existing directors if you're that unhappy. Like most of the other attendees at the AGMs, I left feeling that everything was going well....
     
  18. Kinghambranch

    Kinghambranch Well-Known Member

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    I was not certain about the planning issues situation; it was 3rd hand information. I was aware that fears of potential vandalism, particularly at CRC in the early days, imposed limitations on the type of box that was built. The lesson here appears to be, that for the sake of a little research, an opportunity to create a more authentic type of structure was missed. Regarding the situation with a brownfield site railway, in hindsight I think we were lucky that the original Toddington Station buildings and the signal box actually survived at all.
     
  19. 17B

    17B New Member

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    It all comes down to what you are setting out to achieve, and how we define railway preservation. Is it about reopening as much of an old route for trains, or recreating something as it was/could of been in the past? I'm not saying there is a right or wrong answer (there certainly is room in this world for both) and I'm certainly not attempting to belittle what the GWSR has achieved, as I have said before they have build a railway of good length, with good infrastructure and continue to extend at a rate that I think is unsurpassed in recent years.

    What I am saying is I find the preservation world somewhat hypocritical. Again as I've said before, you wouldn't fit UPVC windows to a coach, or build a tender tank out of fibre glass because it was cheaper or easier, somebody dares paint a locomotive in a non original livery and we see significant column inches all over the railway media. Yet a non historically accurate signal box is not such a big deal.
    OK, I'll admit I'm what you could term a Architectural Rivet counter, I'm a conservation Architect, who spends a large proportion of my working life restoring old buildings and making new ones look like they were built 100 years ago. So saying they look like signal boxes, too me is the same way a Polish TKh looks like a pannier tank.

    I think the main point of this argument is not having a go at 'management' because we don't agree with whats been achieved, but by the way people are seemingly working against other. There are people who obviously care passionately about recreating something as historically accurate as possible at Broadway, and are doing a bloody fantastic job at Broadway. (I'll supress any comments about the movement joints, and put them down to a touch of OCD ;-) There are then those (management or not) who seemingly have a different agenda and are working against them.
    The same appears to me evident across the railway, who go to the effort of taking apart Monmouth Troy station, moving and rebuilding it stone by stone, to create something historically accurate and then plonk a modern footbridge next too it.

    I can understand the internal staircase being advantageous from a vandalism point of view, but that's still achievable in a historically accurate form. I'm pretty sure the box at Minehead has an internal one, It's the detailing and choice of materials that I think lets it down.

    But incase that gets me in the 'don't moan if your not willing to do something about it' category. If you need any Architectural input drop me a line.
     
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  20. jnc

    jnc Member

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    But according to Jo:
    they were provided a viable alternative - and ignored it!

    I'm really a bit dumbfounded at this attitude. If it were getting in the way of getting the extension done, fine, I'm practical too; but I'm not sure it really is - look at the canopy, for example, as well as the station construction technique (which is, it is my understanding, what we lost Bill Britton over).

    It really seems like the issue is that originality is valued so lowly, in some quarters, that if it costs anything at all, over 'it looks OK from a distance', it gets ignored, and those to whom originality matters have to fight tooth and nail to get it, even when a viable alternative is provided.

    I do see the point of view of the 'management': money is finite, as is the amount of volunteer time available, and it's vital that with the amount of both being expended, that the extension be done ASAP, with no distractions. But I think the people to whom originality matters are equally desirous of getting there ASAP, and are trying not to ask for anything that would really be a serious diversion from that goal.

    It's just terribly sad that a path can't be chosen that keeps both sides happy.

    Noel
     

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