Monthly Archives: May 2013

Sue visits Thomas.

Today Sue my wife took a trip to the big station and visited Thomas.

Though I should point out she has spent more time raving about the excellent food in the cafe as she described it rather than the little blue engine.

Regretfully there are no pictures of the food in question, this I think is due to the fact that she did not have a fast enough shutter speed on her camera to capture it before she ate it.

Anyway here are a few pictures Sue took at Wansford and Yarwell including of course pictures of Thomas and the Diesel that ran the main services all day.

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Whilst the wife was having all this excitement I was at my station as normal, today I had Nathan helping me. Rosemary came to do some more of the garden and received numerous complements from the visitors.

However, as Rosemary rightly points out praise must also be given to Trevor one of the civils team who cuts and maintains the grass, his efforts complement the work Rosemary puts in she is quick to inform me. Certainly the garden is looking really nice this year and is a credit to the station. When I am next at the station I will take some pictures and do a special blog entry all about the garden this year.

At the station the day could best be described as steady, although a Bank Holiday Monday, many people were at work rather than being off but we were steady business wise and had some really nice visitors to chat and natter to.

It’s been a good three days at the station and my thanks to all who have played their part.  Rain is forecast tomorrow which is a shame as we are running servies for the next three days.

Not by him but by me……

I had a day off from the railway today, Peter and Susan kindly ran the station for me.

Peter reported a good day with a fair number of people about.

The weather always plays an important part in the success or failure of any trading day at the station.

If it’s wet and cold we can be dead all day, but surprisingly we can be just as quiet if the weather is really hot, because then the locals all head for the coast and the fleshpots of Skegness and Hunstanton.

So what we like is it to be just nice and warm enough for a walk round the park but not warm enough to tempt people to the coast.

Technical stuff this running a station.

Tomorrow I have young Nathan with me, he does not do many turns but when he does he is always keen and a pleasure to work with. So we will now see what tomorrow brings.

Yes well…….

Today was one of those days that was steady but not able to impress.

Business wise we were steady and as I expected for the day. But one thing was noticeable and that was we had some really nice people in today both travelling and just walking past.

Nigerl & Sally were with me for the first time this year and it was as always a pleasure to do a day with them. Peter H who has not been down for some time also put in a few hours which was very nice as well. Rosemary as always plodded along in the garden which is really looking nice this year.

Trains ran almost to time which just added to the pleasure of the day.. But being a bank holiday I would have hoped we would have been a tad busier, but all things considered I was very happy with today.

Tomorrow I am actually having a running day off. Peter and his daughter Susan are running the station, so I get a lie in, lunch at lunch time and if the weather is OK a day pottering in the garden.

BLISS!!!!!!

But back in action at the station on Bank Holiday Monday.

23 hours from ulcer.

Well that’s the second day of the diesel gala over and done with, and I must admit I enjoyed it.

Diesel fans are not known generally for their manners, but this weekend we had some real nice people in, and both Saturday and Sunday were most enjoyable.

On Saturday Peter & Susan helped me and on Sunday Jason and my wife Sue. In total I did around 23 hours both days combined, hence the title of the blog.

Now I have seen busier gala weekends, but there were enough people to keep us busy.

We sold drinks both hot and cold and today (Sunday) lot’s of ice cream.

Here in no particular order are some of the pictures I took this weekend, none are great masterpieces but I hope they will give a flavour of what was running on both days.

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As you will see from the pictures above the weather was not always sunshine, but Sunday was the better of the two days.

Gala weekends are important events for the railway as they bring in income and hopefully at the end of it some profit.

Now this weekend will not be claimed by anybody to be a record breaker, but it was enjoyed apparently by those who attended, certainly the people I spoke to enjoyed themselves. Hopefully this means they will return for the autumn Diesel gala.

A few days ahead now to get back to normal and recover.

My thanks to Sue, Susan, Peter and Jason for helping me, we could not have done the weekend without you all.

The Spring Diesel Gala Day One

Today was the first day of the spring diesel gala.

Now I must admit I enjoyed today, I had Peter & Susan with me, and the day went well.

Not one problem, not one idiot, just nice customers and all in all a pleasant day.

The weather was nothing special, dull except for some sunshine at the end of the day. Trade was steady nothing exceptional though.

Full report with pictures hopefully from both days tomorrow.

A little thing has a big adventure.

All excitement today, it’s the day of the Thomas Big Adventure. Here is a picture of him going through my station on his way back to Wansford.

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The people in the coaches certainly seemed to be enjoying themselves. As always the special was sold out a few weeks in advance.

For the main service we have a class 31 pulling it and here is a picture of it running round as the second service terminated with me.

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Quieter today than yesterday both shop and passenger wise, but the weather although dry today for the big adventure was cool and that never helps.

Derrick kindly fitted a phone socket this morning. (Happy now Derrick?) he has commented that he was not mentioned, so here we have corrected that terrible error!!

The day ended weather wise dismal and wet, so a quiet last train.

Next week sees the diesel gala, so hopefully the weather will be kind and the trains busy.

 

 

An absolute shower.

Well it’s the 11th May and last week over the bank holiday I was in shirt sleeves, today I had a sweater on plus a fleece.

As Rosemary  who does the station garden says, in the UK we don’t have weather we have samples.

Now I will be the first to admit I did start today thinking we would not take a lot of money, I was fairly accurate in the shop but we did very well in tickets which was a nice unexpected surprise.

To top it off we had some really nice people travelling, all in all the resukt was a really nice day passenger wise. However, the weather was another matter. From lunch tome onwards we had a succession of short sharp showers, thankfully none of them coincided with a train arrival so we did not get wet.

Susan was with me today and as always it was a pleasure to work with her, she just gets on with things is plesent with the customers and she is learning to laugh at some of my crap jokes.

Tomorrow sees the Thomas Big Adventure train annual run up the line and no doubt we will get the normal quota of none paying visitors bringing their little darlings along to see him chug through. Then, as if by maging they will all disappear before there is a chance they will have to pay any money for something.

So for a report on the Thoma excitement you will have to pay another visit to the blog tomorrow evening onwards.

How do I stand all this tension and excitement?

Well we got there at last.

Well today we got there at last, bucking the trend at the station that Bank Holiday Monday is always the quietest day of a bank holiday we had an excellent day.

Some really nice people in, not a single pain all day!

Jason was with me today and he seemed to enjoy himself. Rosemary was in the garden working away and even Harry who used to look after the allotment turned up and planted some Potatoes. It was really nice to see him again.

The day just flowed with trains on time and people visiting the shop but also buying tickets and travelling, the day boosted up was was fast turning out to be a below average weekend.

Back at the station on Wednesday for a delivery and as it’s a running say I will open as well.

I can sum it up by simply saying “I enjoyed that!”

Yes well……..

Had the wife with me today, but for a bank holiday we were not exactly rushed.

Yes we were steady and the shop did better than yesterday but it did not for want of a better description flow.

It was a disjointed kind of day, bits and bobs really, people travelled but the trains were not by any stretch of the imagination busy, but as always with mixed traction the steam service was far busier than the diesel.

Unlike a few years ago people were not coming back from Wansford with stuff from the gift shop, or if they were it was well hidden.

People just don’t have the money to spend, and the lookers and wanderers around the place have increased greatly.

Tomorrow is Bank Holiday Monday and traditionally at my station it’s always the quietest day of a bank holiday, based on the first couple of days I might just take the lap top and got some work done.

This year to be honest I am finding a slog, there are so many average weeks and not enough good ones. We will see how the year pans out and I think at the end of the year I will take a long hard look as to wether I want to carry on for 2014.

I was almost right

Well I predicted recently that it would rain this bank holiday weekend, well I was almost right we had a couple of light showers.

Quiet day at the station, the only people we saw were those wanting to travel, very quiet in the shop and also very few people walking around. Actually both Paddy and I commented on the lack of people about, far less than a normal Saturday. At times is was like a week day numbers wise.

Hopefully the next couple of days of this Bank Holiday will be better, but I am not holding my breath!!! May Bank Holiday is a funny break, people are itching to get out and do something and often they are spoilt for choice, tomorrow needs business wise to be better than today. But as always it’s all down to the weather, so as I often say “Time will tell”