Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Steam Railway to reopen on 15th August

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Good, any idea which locos will be reactivated for the occasion? Have got a free ticket to use before the end of September.
Make sure you take a friend...it's going to be all compartment stock at first, with a minimum booking of two people...This from a GWSR Facebook post -

"Snippets are coming out though: All the carriages used will be 'Compartment' stock with the corridor along the side. The idea is that #Visitors will be able to book a compartment for a minimum of two people and for family groups of up to eight. There will be no #Buffet service or #Toilets on the trains.

Booking will be on-line in advance. Regrettably Shareholder Vouchers and Work Permits will not be valid for travel (except for train crew) in the first wave of operations. This will be kept under constant review as the new operating methods develop."
 

Peter C

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This is excellent news! The GWSR is my local heritage line and although I've been following their Twitter and other news feeds closely over the lockdown period, this announcement slipped through!
The GWSR is in the fortunate position that all of their coaching stock is, IIRC, Mk1s. They've got plenty of corridor stock so it's not as bad as some railways which don't have so much.

Their website (https://www.gwsr.com/planning_your_visit/visiting_gwsr/forthcoming_events.html says:

All travel will need to be pre-booked and will start and finish at Toddington. We're still working on the details so check back soon as there will be changes to the information on things like our facilities and 'what to see and do' as well as booking and pricing information.

Please note that our reopening will be subject to any further changes in UK Government policy in response to the Covid-19 situation.
-Peter
 

reddragon

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There are enough corridor coaches, BSK, FK, CK, SK and BG to operate 2 shorter or 1 long rake with spares.

GW 4270, 7820 & 7903 seem available for service.
SR35006 is a bit costly to run and GW9466 has been off leased to return to the WSR.

Operational volunteers returned Monday; lineside, p/way, those setting things up to run etc
Workshops stay closed until late July and shops / cafes have no current plan.
 

Peter C

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There are enough corridor coaches, BSK, FK, CK, SK and BG to operate 2 shorter or 1 long rake with spares.

GW 4270, 7820 & 7903 seem available for service.
SR35006 is a bit costly to run and GW9466 has been off leased to return to the WSR.

Operational volunteers returned Monday; lineside, p/way, those setting things up to run etc
Workshops stay closed until late July and shops / cafes have no current plan.
Thanks for the info. Seeing as the GWSR don't normally need to replace coaches in trains during running days, I'd expect them to go with the 2 shorter sets. But that might not happen - we'll have to wait and see.
IIRC the cafe at Toddington is owned by the GWSR, but isn't run by them directly; it's run by a separate company, which I expect might well have slightly different safety rules/standards for the current situation? I don't know that for certain, though. The shop at Toddington is also very small - if you social distance in there you get two people in, one being the person behind the counter, so I'd say that anyone wanting to visit that shop will have to wait a while.

-Peter
 

reddragon

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“We will be using coaches that have an old-fashioned side corridor with compartments that have sliding doors. The idea is that visitors will be able to book a compartment for a minimum of two people and for family groups of up to six
The official public announcement now released
 

Peter C

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Peter C

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From https://www.gwsr.com/planning_your_visit/our_stations/winchcombe_1.html:
Train services restart on 15th August. However, Winchcombe Station will remain closed. Passengers can only start and end their journeys at Toddington. Services will stop at Winchcombe long enough for passengers to use the station's toilet facilities.
-Peter

EDIT: This is the same for all stations, apart from Toddington, where journeys will start and end.
 

Peter C

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I'm looking forward to get back volunteering...those diesels aren't going to take care of themselves!
The work done by the volunteers at the GWSR really is superb - you ought to be really proud of yourselves. I've been going there for years and the diesel gala a couple of years ago was a really lovely day out!

-Peter
 

Worf

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With only running to/from one station, they will have to be careful they dont attract VAT, unless they are relaxing things for the moment.
 

Richard Scott

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With only running to/from one station, they will have to be careful they dont attract VAT, unless they are relaxing things for the moment.
Sure there's some get out clause for that as the DMU shuttle from Toddington to Laverton wasn't liable for VAT when run back during times of Landslip at Chicken Curve if I remember correctly. Remember asking same question and was told that wasn't VATable but can't remember reason.
 

geoffk

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Good news and I expect this is how it will be on all heritage lines for a while - no turning up on the day, buying a day ticket and riding at will. Am waiting to see what's happening on my two local lines, the Worth Valley and East Lancs.
 

Peter C

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The GWSR have published their re-opening timetable:

They will be running 1 steam service to begin with, but 2 steam-hauled trains over the August Bank Holiday weekend:
Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway Twitter said:
BREAKING NEWS - Re-Opening timetable is up on our website at: http://ow.ly/OPH850AcO1Y

We'll be running 1 #steam train initially on a very limited timetable while we assess the situation. 2 steamers for the August #BankHoliday weekend

#Cotswolds #Heritagerailway
-Peter
 

Solent&Wessex

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Good news and I expect this is how it will be on all heritage lines for a while - no turning up on the day, buying a day ticket and riding at will. Am waiting to see what's happening on my two local lines, the Worth Valley and East Lancs.
If you see what the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway are doing in the posts above, then I strongly suspect you will see something identical from the KWVR. Starting around 15th August, 4 days per week, boarding at Oxenhope only, no break of journey all other stations closed to the public, full compartment suburban or vintage stock being used and pre-booked in advance only, with no on the day sales available and no access to any premises unless holding a pre booked ticket. I suspect the plan will evolve as government advice changes so expect to see timetables and bookings advertised only about 3 to 4 weeks in advance at any one time.

There are number of other revenue generating ideas in the pot, some of which sound quite interesting and unusual and possibly good value for those so inclined, but they are still in the early stages of planning.

Nothing confirmed yet but that is currently looking most likely from the various risk assessments and meetings recently.
 

Peter C

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If you see what the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway are doing in the posts above, then I strongly suspect you will see something identical from the KWVR. Starting around 15th August, 4 days per week, boarding at Oxenhope only, no break of journey all other stations closed to the public, full compartment suburban or vintage stock being used and pre-booked in advance only, with no on the day sales available and no access to any premises unless holding a pre booked ticket. I suspect the plan will evolve as government advice changes so expect to see timetables and bookings advertised only about 3 to 4 weeks in advance at any one time.

There are number of other revenue generating ideas in the pot, some of which sound quite interesting and unusual and possibly good value for those so inclined, but they are still in the early stages of planning.

Nothing confirmed yet but that is currently looking most likely from the various risk assessments and meetings recently.
Having read the GWSR's website, this seems to be the way they are going.
The stations along the line will all be closed apart from the toilets. Trains will stop at the stations along the line to let passengers use the facilities and then they will continue, just like a normal train would.

-Peter
 

reddragon

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The clever use of compartments also negates the legal requirement to wear masks on public transport, so not to detract from the date out and there is an hour break to allow passengers from train 1 to disperse and for carriage cleaning before passengers for trip 2 arrive & board..
 

Journeyman

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The clever use of compartments also negates the legal requirement to wear masks on public transport, so not to detract from the date out and there is an hour break to allow passengers from train 1 to disperse and for carriage cleaning before passengers for trip 2 arrive & board..
Much as I loathe coronavirus restrictions, it's got the potential to make some heritage railways more interesting, as rarely used compartment stock will come out to play. The Mark 1 TSO can get a bit dull after a while.
 

Kettledrum

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Much as I loathe coronavirus restrictions, it's got the potential to make some heritage railways more interesting, as rarely used compartment stock will come out to play. The Mark 1 TSO can get a bit dull after a while.
Using the compartment stock is very sensible - and facilitates social distancing and yet allows household groups to stay together so is very sensible. Passengers may still be legally required to wear masks though.
 

DelW

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Using the compartment stock is very sensible - and facilitates social distancing and yet allows household groups to stay together so is very sensible. Passengers may still be legally required to wear masks though.
If you choose a line with non-corridor compartment stock, that's a rather theoretical requirement though.
 

leezer3

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At last - a sign of normality . Hopefully the South Devon Railway will open soon too.
In that vicinity, the Bodmin & Wenford has said to members that they are not re-opening until Christmas at the earliest.

Basically, I think all announcing any form of reopening have compartment stock available & a significant summer timetable to reduce.
 

Journeyman

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In that vicinity, the Bodmin & Wenford has said to members that they are not re-opening until Christmas at the earliest.

Basically, I think all announcing any form of reopening have compartment stock available & a significant summer timetable to reduce.
Yeah - I don't want to name the railway concerned, but the one I have most knowledge of has a maintenance backlog of two months to deal with, and very few compartment vehicles, so isn't in a strong position. Only railways with sufficient compartment stock in full working order are good to go.
 

Kettledrum

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In that vicinity, the Bodmin & Wenford has said to members that they are not re-opening until Christmas at the earliest.

Basically, I think all announcing any form of reopening have compartment stock available & a significant summer timetable to reduce.
I really don't like the idea of reduced timetables. When other aspects of lock down have been lifted, beaches, and country parks have been swamped with the pent up demand - particularly with some leisure activities still not possible. This potentially means more customers crammed into smaller spaces, at the very time when we really want them spaced out and social distancing.

Assuming the demand is there, and customers want to come out and support our heritage railways, then we need to be running more trains and enhanced timetables. Why not operate into the summer evenings for example to allow more visitors to come and generate more revenue?
 

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