Minutes of the meeting of NELPG Ltd
7.30 pm, 8 October 2018
Middlesbrough Municipal Golf Centre
Present: Bill Dobson, Colin Foxton, Nigel Hall, Paul Hutchinson, John Hunt, Chris Lawson, Martin Lloyd, Roy Marshall and Richard Wheeler. Nigel Bill attended as an observer and was welcomed to the meeting by the Chairman.
The Chairman advised that family matters would be taking his attention over coming days, as he arranged care for his Mother, and asked for patience, if he was not able to respond quickly.
1. Apologies for Absence –Richard Pearson had apologised in advance.
2. Declarations of Interest – John Hunt declared an interest as an employee of WCRC.
3. Minutes of Previous Meeting – The minutes of the 10 September meeting were agreed and signed off by the Chairman.
4. Matters Arising Not Covered Elsewhere
4.1 The Treasurer confirmed that MSLOA membership was already considered lapsed and no further action was required.
4.2 Colin Foxton confirmed that further progress on the Articles would follow resolution of Social Media, Safety, etc policies, with the Articles prepared for the 2019 AGM.
5.1 The Monthly Finance Report had been circulated by the Treasurer. The following points were noted:
5.1.1 The Treasurer reported that various hire fees were outstanding, including, unusually, a sum from WCRC.
5.1.2 He also reported that a small discrepancy in the Movement in Funds had yet to be resolved.
5.2 John Hunt asked whether the Treasurer felt that the balance of over £300K was sufficient – this was confirmed.
5.3 The third broken spring on the J27 was discussed. Fred Ramshaw had reported that it was not broken when the locomotive left WR and it was accepted that the cost would have to be borne.
5.4 The Chairman reported that Ian Storey, having sold 44767 to David Smith, had given the Group first option on his allocated space in Deviation Shed. He had said that he would ask no more than he had paid for the space originally. It was agreed that we should take up the option. Action: Chairman.
5.5 Nigel Bill asked about the insurance position for 3rd parties working in Deviation Shed. Action: Chairman to investigate.
5.6 A number of donations had been received, including a significant sum from a non-member on the LNERCA train and some £520 from the collection box in Deviation Shed. It was agreed that the proceeds from the forthcoming Photographic Charter, for which NYMR had waived charges, would be split, with donations to the NYMR and the Wagon Group. Booking would be via John Hunt. Peter Townend had agreed that purchases of John Hunt’s book would, if purchased through the Group, be (DN reduced by 35%? contribute to 35% NELPG?) from the list price of £45.00.
5.7 Draft Budget - the Treasurer set out the main points of his draft, which showed £207K expenditure and £218K income, which was slightly more conservative than the K1 Background note. It included £20K for the J72 – a significant bill was expected for the axleboxes and half of the lifting costs had already been incurred. Action: Treasurer to circulate the draft. Comments were requests by the end of October. Action: All.
5.8 The Chairman reported that DEFRA had circulated a consultation letter on the use of domestic coal and was minded to extend any ban to business use. Andrew Scott had written for clarification. A coordinated response from Heritage Railways would be required in respect of the proposals and, it was agreed, in respect of ordering and storing supplies of imported coal. Action: Chairman to circulate the letter.
5.9 Bank Accounts – the Treasurer described the changes to the terms of the account we held with Barclays. One of the main thrusts of the changes was the elimination of cheques. The Co-op Bank offered free banking on accounts with a turnover of up to £1M and there was the possibility of access to grants. It was agreed that this should be pursued in discussion with the Co-op. Action: Treasurer. It would be useful to enable membership renewals by electronic means. Action: Treasurer to discuss with the Membership Secretary. The Treasurer also suggested the opening of an account with the Charity Bank, which offered interest of 0.75% in its deposit accounts. Same day withdrawals and transfers were available. It was agreed that a savings account should be opened. Action: Treasurer.
6. Dates for 2019 Meetings – It was agreed that meetings in 2019 would continue on the 2nd Monday of each month and that the current venue should be retained. Action: Secretary to book venue and circulate dates.
7. Locomotive Update
7.1 Locomotive Sub Committee – Bill Dobson said that Ian Storey had given an indication that he would be willing to chair. John Graham was to be invited. Maurice Burns’ offer to assist with boiler contracts was mentioned – one response to the offer was outstanding. Action: Secretary.
7.2 Locomotive Overhaul and Maintenance Policy – Nigel Hall reported that there had been no time to progress the Strategy. Paul Hutchinson said that he had started on the LMP and would target completion for completion of the K1 repair.
7.3 K1 – The locomotive was in the process of being stripped down and parts were being serviced as they came off, where possible. It was planned to lift the boiler shortly after the SGM. There had been some difficulty removing the concrete in the base of the smokebox. Martin Lloyd offered to provide a Kango hammer. Action: Martin Lloyd.
7.4 SGM arrangements were reviewed. Some 100 proxy votes had been received. Chris Lawson confirmed that he would chair and deploy the votes. John Midcalf would supply light refreshments. Roy Marshall suggested that John’s Stainmore Route slideshow would be attractive as entertainment. Action: Chairman. It was essential to have a quorum of 33 present - a reminder would be issued on 15th October. Action: Secretary. The CME’s presence was generally felt to be extremely useful and some additional detail was awaited from the Caretaker. Action: Paul Hutchinson – speak to CME and make detail available.
7.5 The V2 tender was discussed. It was thought it had six good axleboxes and the wheelsets, axles and brake gear might also be serviceable. As a minimum, the tender would provide some useful spares and needed assessment. Action: Paul Hutchinson. Ideally the tender should be moved into Deviation Shed, if practicable. Action Bill Dobson to speak to NYMR.
7.6 Q6 – The NYMR had made great efforts to ready the locomotive for use at the SVR, where, despite only 18 miles of running in before being sent off, it had been a great success and had attracted much favourable comment.
7.7 The Centenary year (2019) was discussed. There had been an offer to help with painting. The Fundraising Sub Committee had proposed a number of events to mark the Centenary, including, Chris Price had agreed, 100 seats at the back of a train (the Diner) on the anniversary (2nd December 2018), when there would be a birthday cake. Although this would be relatively low key, a bigger event at Easter 2019 would launch the new livery. WWI re-enactors, the NER Autocoach and Railmotor, plus the NER coach might be available.
7.8 A vote of thanks to Bill Dobson was proposed and agreed by the meeting for his persistence with the Q6 completion and to NYMR for their sterling efforts. Action: Chairman to write to NYMR.
7.9 J27 – The.J27 had not had a great deal of use since return from the WR, though it had run 162 miles during the Gala. In the absence of any spare springs, it was in reserve, until spares arrived.
7.10 J72 - The.wheelsets had been removed and there was now plenty of skilled and unskilled work available. It was agreed that Fred Ramshaw should receive minutes of Committee meetings, Financial reports and other relevant papers, as the only Locomotive Caretaker without a seat on the Committee. Action: Secretary.
7.11 Locomotive Hire – There had been a number of requests for the Q6 and the J27. The starting point in any consideration should be how many miles we want for our locomotives and how many NYMR is likely to offer. What wear and tear do we think is acceptable? It was noted that the condition of some heritage railway track is better than others. In addition, distant hires, indeed any hires, needed the availability of NELPG representatives. Discussions with NYMR were awaited.
8. Health & Safety
8.1 The Chairman reminded the meeting that Bryan Orange had taken over as Safety Officer as of August. Bryan would not attend all Committee meetings, but would be present when significant H&S matters were on the agenda. He would be copied all relevant papers and had been invited to the November meeting, when H&S would be discussed more fully than had been the case recently, with the press of locomotive matters. The Chairman, Secretary and Safety Officer had agreed to meet on 22nd October to try to scope out the extent of H&S matters which need to be addressed.
8.2 The secretary gave a verbal summary of the ICE papers he had revised and reissued and urged the meeting to accept the proposals, which might not be perfect, but made possible a significant improvement in the current position. Comments were requested by 20th October Action: All. Agreement to shred the existing paper records was sought, now that an archive list had been created, with sensitive material stripped out.
9. Any Other Business
9.1 It was confirmed that the Treasurer’s report would be included in October News.
9.2 Nigel Bill raised the matter of the Q6 boiler paperwork. It was confirmed that the Chairman was pursuing this with the NYMR and also that for the J27 with Crewe. Action: Chairman.
9.3 It was suggested that Patron Christmas Cards could be included with December News to save postage costs. Action: Treasurer to consider feasibility.
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