The West Somerset Steam Railway Trust

Author: Admin

November 23, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The Minutes of the 14 November 2020 meeting of the Trust Board have been published. View the Minutes here or on the Documents page. The Board also say: “Les Blake an existing WSR volunteer has kindly agreed to work with the Trust to provide a number of administrative support functions. We welcome Les and look…

November 14, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Summary of WSSRT AGM – 14th November 2020 The board of Trustees of the WSSRT is pleased to update members and the wider WSR community on the results of the AGM of 14th November which was held virtually via Zoom due to Covid-19 restrictions. You will be aware that an attempt was made by a…

October 29, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Chris Austin’s picture above shows the three heritage carriages wrapped in new heavy duty covers and properly protected for the winter. The right hand coach is in use as a workshop, and new covers have now been bought for this one too, but smaller, to leave the windows clear to let in natural light. The picture is taken…

October 26, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Following the resignation of our Chairman, Chris Austin and trustee, David Baker, it is appropriate to update our members and the wider WSR community on the current situation. Read the full statement.

October 25, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Please see the note below from Chris Price, Vice Chair Heritage Railway Association: This afternoon I have spent time reading through the online discussions and bringing myself up to speed on the WSR current situation. As Vice-chair of the HRA I have no, (or indeed right) to take sides. However, I can confirm that in…

October 24, 2020 Admin No comments exist

David Baker is the second Trustee to resign from the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust as a result of the attempted hostile takeover, David writes: “It was with a very sad heart that I tendered my resignation as a Trustee but like Chris Austin the constant threats, besmirchment of character and bullying became too much…

October 23, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The Chairman of the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust, Chris Austin, has announced today (23 October 2020) that he is stepping down as chairman and as a trustee with immediate effect. He remains a member and loyal supporter of the Trust and a volunteer worker on the railway. Chris said: “I am sorry to be…

October 20, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The Trust advises that it will not be possible to process any further applications for membership received henceforward in order to prepare for the forthcoming AGM.   A welcome record number of applications has been received over the last four months, but our articles require Trustee approval before membership is confirmed, and time is needed for this…

October 19, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Trust Chairman Chris Austin writes: A generous donation to the railway of £30,000, (£37,500 with Gift Aid), has been made by Jamie Hooper from Worthing following a visit he made to the railway last week.  Part of Jamie’s kind gift will form a huge contribution to completing the outstanding trackwork at Doniford to allow trains to continue to use this…

October 11, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The West Somerset Steam Railway Trust is delighted to welcome three new volunteer trustees. They have been co-opted to assist the work of the Trust at this challenging time, and will be recommended to members at the Annual General Meeting to be held next month. The appointments follow interviews last month, and are part of…

October 11, 2020 Admin No comments exist

With ten existing trustees and ten nominations for new trustees, the Trust is now unable to accept additional nominations this year.  A potential total of 20 is in danger of breaching the Charity Commission’s guidelines, and is an excessive number for a charity with just over 200 members.

October 9, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Chris Austin, Chairman of the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust congratulated the WSR PLC on its successful application to the Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage for a grant of £865,000.  Chris said:  “This is brilliant news and will help the railway get through the winter months, and an extensive programme of maintenance, training and covid…

September 28, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The Annual General Meeting of the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust will be held on Saturday 14 November at 14.00 by Zoom.  Details will be sent to members 21 days before the meeting. The temporary suspension of applications for Trust membership will also be lifted from 1 October.  This had to be put in place while we…

September 25, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The Partnership Development Group (PDG) met yesterday to consider proposals from the PLC towards achieving ‘One Railway’ via a fundamental re-organisation of the PLC to create a parent charity, with the PLC operating as a subsidiary company. The meeting was also attended by John Bailey, architect of the recent report recommending these changes. The PDG…

September 18, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The West Somerset Steam Railway Trust regrets that it is having to suspend the acceptance of new member applications from today as a result of the huge level of demand which is beyond our ability to process at this time. The Trust is a small charity run by volunteers and hitherto has been processing applications at the rate…

September 17, 2020 Admin No comments exist

WSR Shared Vision – September 2020. John Bailey.  Independent Assessor. WSR – Achieving the Three Chairmen’s Consensus Following a notably amicable meeting on 15th September, involving the Chairmen of The West Somerset Railway PLC (“the PLC”), The West Somerset Railways Association (“WSRA”)   and the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust (“WSSRT”),  they asked me to assess independently…

September 10, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The recent successful bid by the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust resulted in an award of £28,700 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund’s (NLHF) ‘Heritage Emergency Fund’. This will allow the Trust to be Covid-19 secure when it is able to reopen the museums to the public again, and also to resume work on carriage…

September 4, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The West Somerset Steam Railway Trust announces with regret that it is having to defer its Annual General Meeting from the proposed date of September 19th to a date later in the year.  The Chairman, Chris Austin, will be writing to members in the next few days to explain the reason for this and to…

August 18, 2020 Admin No comments exist

On 17 August, the Trust was advised by the National Heritage Lottery Fund that their recent application for support from the NHLF Emergency Fund has been approved in full. The Trust will get details from the NHLF in the next few days on timing. Trust chairman Chris Austin welcomed the grant, saying, “This will allow…

August 8, 2020 Admin No comments exist

West Somerset Railway weed removal teams could be working near you. It would be really beneficial if every single working member of the WSR, or anyone else willing to help, would consider doing one morning of weeding on the railway track. This will help with the important work and assist the railway in surviving the…

August 6, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The title is nothing to do with Ben Stokes, but the Steam Trust has just recruited its 100th member, following a run of new applications in recent weeks!  There have been five applications in the last week alone.   Whilst Covid 19 has stopped the trains running and brought a halt to many of our activities,…

August 5, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The Board of Trustees is pleased to be able to publish its Business Plan for the remainder of 2020 up to 2022. There has inevitably been a delay in completing this work due to the impact of Covid 19 and the consequent need to review and reset our business objectives. The Plan reflects the wide…

July 29, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Tuesday 28 July found the Salvage Hunters team at Bishops Lydeard in the Gauge Museum. Chris Austin, Chairman of the Trust, was on hand to welcome them and to show them around the museum. Salvage Hunters is a television series that shows Drew Pritchard and Tee (John Tee) his long-time friend searching for old and…

July 26, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The Board of Trustees has now set a date for the 2020 AGM which will be Saturday 19th September at 2 PM. This will be by Zoom videoconference. The Board acknowledges that not all Members may be able to attend due to absence of or difficulties with, technology but have decided to hold the meeting…

July 20, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The West Somerset Steam Railway Trust is delighted to have received a £15,000 donation from the Peall Railway Trust. Trust chairman Chris Austin said ‘ We are hugely grateful for this generous donation which will be of such help as our museum donation boxes have so far remained empty this year.’ Simon Peall the Trustee…

July 7, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The newly formed WSR Fundraising Group are issuing the attached document in order to assist the West Somerset Railway survive the effects of Covid 19. We realise you may already have contributed and seen this from a number of sources. A number of our members are also members of other parts of our large railway…

July 4, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Welcome to Gauge Junction, the model railway situated in the Gauge Museum at Bishops Lydeard. It is hoped that this is the first in a series of video’s that will be showing some of the winter and refurbishment work carried out by the Gauge Junction team. It is hoped you will all find the video…

June 30, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Briefing Partnership Development Group (PDG) has held its first meeting since 2018. PDG is an advisory and stakeholder body drawing together participants from all the major groups on the WSR together with County and District Council representation. Its role is to provide a forum for members of the WSR family to discuss railway wide issues…

June 28, 2020 Admin No comments exist

1 The Trust is grateful to John Bailey for the comprehensive report he has produced and the commendable speed with which it was produced. The PLC response to it is welcomed, and we look forward to participating in discussions on how best to take forward the ideas put forward by John Bailey on structural change….

June 27, 2020 Admin No comments exist

As part of its ongoing process to strengthen the Board and to continue with its programme of succession planning, the Trust is seeking expressions of interest from individuals who have a love of and commitment to, railway heritage and who would be interested in working in a small charity. The Board has three main objectives…

June 18, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The West Somerset Steam Railway Trust welcomes the appointment of their Vice Chairman and Company Secretary Steve Williams to the PLC Board. Steve will continue to support the Trust in his present roles and as Project Lead for the Gauge Museum Project, part funded by the National Heritage Lottery Fund.  Chairman, Chris Austin said: “At this…

June 15, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The first issue of ‘The Platform’ has an inevitable focus on the work the WSR Plc Board is doing to keep the railway in good order and prepare for re-opening as soon as they can. There are also brief contributions from the West Somerset Railway Association and the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust which is…

May 25, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Alan as DMU driver with the last ‘staff and ticket’ movement between Williton and Crowcombe Heathfield in 2006. After 29 years service to the WSR, the Trust will miss the support of Alan Meade who has retired as a Trustee and as leader of the Model Railway Group at the Gauge Museum. Alan, who was…

May 16, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Welcome to special issue No. 14 of the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust Newsletter. I hope you are keeping well and managing during these strange times. Please click here to load the Newsletter This update is for all members and volunteers of the Steam Trust to provide as much information as we know about the…

May 2, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Here is the Joint Statement issued by the West Somerset Railway PLC, West Somerset Railway Association and the West Somerset Steam Railway Trust. This is followed by a copy of the Position Statement issued by West Somerset Railway Plc. West Somerset Railway & Somerset & Dorset Railway Trust A joint statement from West Somerset Railway…

April 22, 2020 Admin No comments exist

The WSR plc’s main Coronavirus emergency appeal now stands at £50,983, comprising: £26,715 via website donations, £1,868 in cheque donations, share purchases of £6,400 and station group donations of £16,000). There is an additional £14,395 from the WSRA/WSSRT for Rail Renewal 2020, comprising offline donations of £12,241 and online Justgiving of £2,154. This brings the…

April 20, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Steve Williams, Company Secretary, writes to Trust members: Dear Member As a result of the Coronavirus pandemic and Government requirements around self isolating, the Board of Trustees has decided to postpone the 2020 Steam Trust AGM. The Board had intended that this would be held on 23rd May and you would have been receiving the agenda…

April 18, 2020 Admin No comments exist

Just a month after its launch in mid-March when the heritage West Somerset Railway (WSR) was forced to close before the 2020 season had even started, the WSR’s emergency coronavirus funding appeal has raised just over £50,000 by 17 April. The WSR has asked railway enthusiasts, supporters of the railway, local people and the public…

April 4, 2020 Admin No comments exist

We know that these are uncertain and difficult times for everybody.  To help keep young children busy and support parents and carers, our education team have put together a series of STEM-related learning challenges for you to download and complete at home. Feedback We would love to see photos of any finished products, so make…

April 2, 2020 Admin No comments exist

After the West Somerset Railway plc (WSR) was forced to suspend operations and shut down on 17 March –  before the 2020 running season even got underway planned for Saturday 21 March –  an urgent appeal was launched on the company’s website for desperately-needed funds to help the 22-mile line heritage line get through the…

Recent posts...

  • Minutes of Board Meeting 19 November 2020
  • Minutes of recent Board Meeting
  • Summary of the 2020 AGM
  • Minutes of recent Board Meeting
  • Covered carriages
  • Statement to members
  • A note from Chris Price
  • Minutes of recent Board Meeting
  • Resignation of David Baker
  • The Trust Chairman
  • Membership Applications
  • A generous donation
  • New Trustees Welcomed
  • A note for Trust members
  • Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage
  • Railway letter box
  • PDG draft minutes
  • At the Gauge Museum
  • Annual General Meeting
  • One Railway
  • WSSRT Membership Pause
  • WSR Shared Vision
  • A restart for volunteers at Williton
  • A statement by the Trust
  • News from the Living Museum event
  • National Heritage Lottery Emergency Fund
  • West Somerset Railway Weed Removal
  • 100 not out
  • Business Plan 2020-2022
  • Salvage Hunters
  • The 2020 Annual General Meeting
  • Minutes of latest Board Meeting
  • Donation from Peall Railway Trust
  • WSR Covid 19 Appeal
  • Partnership Development Group Minutes
  • Gauge Junction on YouTube
  • Relaunch of Partnership Development Group
  • Response to Report by John Bailey on WSR Organisation
  • New Trustees Are Welcomed!
  • PLC Director Appointment
  • Edition 1 of the ‘The Platform’ published
  • Minutes of the recent Board meeting
  • Alan Meade retires
  • Newsletter no 14 – May 2020
  • Joint Statement on the Washford lease
  • An update on the funding appeals
  • 2020 AGM Postponement
  • WSR funding appeal reaches £50,000
  • A home learning pack for children
  • West Somerset Railway funding appeal hits the right notes
  • Minutes of the recent Board meeting
  • A wash and brush-up for 9038
  • Museum re-opening postponed
  • Roll of Honour
  • Progress at the Gauge Museum
  • Gauge Museum scaffolding removed
  • Another important milestone passed
  • News about Blue Anchor Museum
  • The GWR Roll of Honour
  • Steam Trust welcomes new GM
  • Minutes of Board Meeting published
  • Refurbishing the Gauge Museum
  • Heritage Railway Association Awards
  • Gauge Museum Renovation Project Update
  • Gauge Museum: latest picture
  • New curator for Blue Anchor Museum
  • The Trust contributes £35,000 to Track Appeal
  • Work in progress at the Gauge Museum
  • Proposals for redesign and reinterpretation of Gauge Museum
  • James is through to the Finals
  • Newsletter no 13 published
  • A generous donation…
  • WSR Plc Chairman’s end of season message
  • Minutes of Board Meeting published
  • James Pearson nominated for HRA Award
  • GWR letter rack
  • Museum revelations
  • Award presentation
  • Learning Assistants needed
  • Infrastructure update
  • Parcels train
  • WSR Autumn Steam Gala, Thursday 3 to Sunday 6 October 2019
  • Steam and Scream Community Event at Watchet
  • Minutes of the September Board Meeting
  • Urgently required: A curator for Museum at Blue Anchor
  • New steps for TK 5856
  • All dressed up and nowhere to go
  • Analysis of feedback from Taunton shuttle train passengers
  • Steam Trust appoints Vice Chairman
  • The WSRA Steam and Vintage Rally
  • The launch of the Taunton Shuttle
  • New Somerset train services start on July 27
  • Minutes of July Board Meeting
  • Newsletter no 12 published
  • New Somerset train services start on July 27
  • Peter Barnfield “A Railway Retrospective”
  • ‘Tales of the West Somerset Railway’
  • Minutes of Board Meeting 22 May 2019
  • Launch of new 40th Anniversary book
  • ‘Quantock Steamer’ launched
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