A round up of general information and items discussed at the Holdings Board meeting in June that have not already been announced.
Working Members Thank You Party:
The Boards would like to thank Di Malyon and team and Nicky Vale and the Engine House staff for organising the fantastic annual Working Members Thank You Party. The evening was a ‘sell out’ with over 300 attendees and was a lovely opportunity to meet colleagues from all different departments, the beer and pig roast always help!
The Engine House as you may have seen is listed for civil wedding ceremonies, couples can be married on the footplate of 7325, or inside the Royal Carriage for example. We already have six bookings for this year and one for 2015. It is proving popular as a quirky, different wedding venue. Following the civil ceremony couples and their parties are booking the Observation Saloon or Diner for their wedding breakfast which again brings in extra revenue to the Railway.
The Railway is seeking legal advice concerning the continued lack of progress on 6634 the Waterman Trust Engine in order to resolve this long running problem.
Heritage Skills Training Academy:
The Heritage Skills Training Academy Coordinator Richard Thurlow has, following an interview process involving Nigel Hanson, Hugh McQuade from Carriage & Wagon and Ian Walker, Duncan Ballard from the Motive Power Department made five offers to potential trainees for the 2014 intake, the young men and woman will be starting in August.
The Railway is working with the Heritage Railway Association to produce a syllabus that means the Railway apprenticeship course can be accredited.
Potential Severn Trent Water Authority Work:
Severn Trent Water Authority are looking to carry out some renewal work on the aqueduct this winter and are in negotiations with the Infrastructure Manager Chris Bond to achieve this without causing the Railway disruption.
Review of the 2014 AGM:
The Board reviewed the 2014 AGM and considered venues for 2015, deliberations are continuing on the best venue for next year. In response to some of the questions that arose from the AGM the Board will look at the best way to produce and circulate further financial information in addition to the requirements of the annual accounts to shareholders prior to the next AGM.
The Diesel Depot detailed designs are being worked on by C21 the contractor undertaking the build, they have been instructed to incorporate design change to allow a beam overhead crane to be incorporated in to the shed.
Bridge Strike Bridgnorth:
There has been a recent bridge strike of Cleobury Road Bridge with the articulated lorry making off. A neighbour kindly reported this to Chris Bond, who saw the truck on the way to the bridge and recorded details. Our insurers are pursuing this with the truck company insurers. The bridge has been moved and track damaged as a result of this collision causing a temporary speed restriction to be applied to the bridge.
Forums and social media:
The Board have considered a paper by Chris Thomas concerning the use of Forums on the Railway. Chris as a moderator on the unofficial forum will make it clear that Railway staff will provide answers to queries that arise on the forum if individuals use their name and not a pseudonym.
The Staffing Committee will be publishing an article in the Working Members Newsletter concerning social media. The VLO are still receiving complaints as a result of unwarranted comments being made on social media about colleagues. The Railway are also aware of email content and noticeboards being pasted on to forums and social media sites. Much of this content is suitable for dissemination but the author’s permission has not been sought before circulation.
Pre-bookings for the 1940’s event are running close to the levels of last year, which indicates that the event will again be strongly supported.
Dealing in SVR shares:
The Accountant Matthew Harris continues to look at brokers who can supply a service to deal with the secondary share market. This is proving difficult because of the small size of the market.
The Peppa Pig event achieved its budgeted passenger number of 4,000 and hit its revenue target.
Funding through loans is under negotiation with HSBC bank to assist in the purchase of Apley Estate land and the building cost of the Diesel Depot.
Holdings Board Chairman and Deputy Chairman:
The Holdings Board reelected Nick Paul as Chairman and Mike Ball as Deputy Chairman of the Holdings Plc.