Monthly Archives: September 2017

Sniff Sniff, Cough Cough, AChoooooooooooooooooo

The station building wont be open this weekend, the trains will run, the trains will stop, and I will be sitting at home feeling decidedly terrible.

I am suffering from a dose of the lurgi to put it mildly. I don’t know which kind soul gave it me but I wish they had not bothered. That’s the trouble with free gifts, they are rarely worth having and when you get them you don’t enjoy them.

I am coughing and spluttering worse than the old DMU the railway used to have some years ago.

At the moment I am not really in the mood to get any work done either, I just can’t concentrate and I have to remember to turn away from the laptop screen every time I sneeze, thus saving a big bill for screen wipes. Take it from me there is nothing worse than cleaning the remnants of a good sneeze off a laptop screen and keyboard.

Hopefully back to normal, or as normal as I ever am for the board meeting next Thursday and the services next weekend, but we shall see.

Some things never change.

Now I know you’re all expecting to read about last weekend and how excellent it was, but I am sorry you are going to be disappointed. Those on the railway and those who visited know what a super weekend it was without me going on about it.

Now I was sitting in my office today having a think, it’s something I tend to do especially when I can’t remember what I need to do next.

Anyway, there I was thinking funnily enough about the railway, I am in my 14th year as a volunteer, and my thinking bought me to the conclusion that although there has been lots of changes in that time there are many things that have not changed at all.

I mean take for example the time board outside the doors to the platform. Every day the station has been open on a running day the times have been chalked up on that board. And every day at least one person will look at the board, look at the time and then come in and ask what time the next train is. I mean don’t they believe what’s on the board, after all it’s written in white and black, it’s not joined up writing and even I can read it without my glasses on.

Another thing that has not changed is the gate off or on to the platform. It’s most strange if people come on the platform when we are shut they will leave the gate open, but if they come on the platform when we are open they will often shut it. It’s most strange I have never been able to work out the logic of the visitors with regards to the gate.

The same goes for the no public toilet sign, people read it then come in and ask if we have a toilet. Perhaps they think we may have built one in the ten seconds since they read the notice. Last Saturday a woman when told there was not a toilet asked the question… What do you do? My answer was that I wait in eager anticipation for the next person to read the sign and still ask if we have a toilet. She just gave me a vacant look and wandered off heaven knows where.

Something else that has not changed over the years is that somebody will stand next to somebody else buying a ticket, and then ask me if we sell tickets. I am always tempted to say no. But the little treasures already look confused enough without me adding to their day.

Over the years I have lost count of people who stand at the counter, see somebody buy a tea or coffee and then ask if we sell hot drinks. Again I am so tempted to say no.

One gem happened recently. A couple came in who are quite regular came in and had a couple of cups of coffee, they went off quite happily. A few minutes later the man came back in and said to me…. How long have you been here? I replied since about 8.30am that morning, he looked at me, smirked and said Oh I though it was a few years longer than that, and went out chuckling to himself.

So despite the time I have been at the station some things never change…….

The best thing that happened all weekend was a chap came in clutching his camera. He looked at me and said, I read your blog last week can I have a platform ticket please? It made my weekend.

Steam, Diesel and a non-paying shower

Last weekend saw a mixed traction weekend, in in simple terms the steam enthusiasts moaned we were running diesel and the diesel enthusiasts moaned we were running steam.

Major guest of the weekend was 66779 Evening Star, kindly provided by GBRf. Here is a picture of the loco approaching my platform 2 and also a shot of the plate on the side of the locomotive. Just click on the images for a larger version.

For a change we also ran a freight train, which proved popular especially with the shunting each day at the station.

Here are a few more shots from the weekend.

Saturday saw some very heavy showers as well, here is a shot of the clouds over the station.

Not at all nice.

Overall the weekend was for the station best described as steady, with unusually Sunday being the better day, but that was perhaps due to the heavy showers on Saturday.

Now events like this at weekends tend to bring out the non-payers or as I often call then the platform warmers, and this weekend was no exception. They were out in numbers. Running about like rats up a drain pipe trying to get the best shot irrespective of other people and dodging any chance they would be asked for money. I must have spoken to almost a dozen over the weekend for running up the platforms and getting in the way of those who had paid.

I just wish they would get it into their thick heads that if everybody did as they were doing and trying to get something for nothing then there would be no trains for them to photograph. The paying visitors provide the money that pays for the locomotives to be hired, transported and run up and down the line. I am aware that we can’t stop photographers, but why must many of the non-payers be so rude, uncaring and basically be so good at not giving a toss that they are inconveniencing others. We even had one on Saturday complain to the signalman about the high-viz he was wearing saying it was spoiling his photograph. He did not win that exchange I gather.

So here is a challenge, if you are one of these platform warmers who pay nothing, get in the way and are generally a nuisance to the ones who have paid and also to the volunteers now is your chance to comment on this post on why you do it and what pleasure you get out of having a day subsidised by others? Please comment on this blog to tell me, I look forward to any posts.