Minutes of the meeting of NELPG Ltd
7.30 pm, 10 December 2018
Middlesbrough Municipal Golf Centre
Present: Chris Lawson (Chair), Bill Dobson, Colin Foxton, Nigel Hall, Paul Hutchinson, Martin Lloyd, Roy Marshall.
Bryan Orange attended for items 1-7 on the agenda and was welcomed to the meeting by the Chairman.
1. Apologies for Absence –John Hunt and Richard Wheeler had offered their apologies in advance. Richard Pearson had started a new job that day for the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust and was unable to get to the meeting.
2. Declarations of Interest – There were no declarations of interest.
3. Minutes of Previous Meeting – The minutes of the 12 November meeting were agreed, signed off by the Chairman and authorised for publication on the website.
4. Matters Arising Not Covered Elsewhere
4.1 The Secretary reported that he had taken possession of the Bryce Greenfield photographic collection at the request of Dave Whitfield.
4.2 The Fundraising Sub Committee had requested a change of name and it was agreed that, given their wider role, they should be known as the Finance Committee. It was also agreed that the Committee would be known as the Board of Trustees, but that the embryonic Locomotive Sub Committee would not require a change of name.
4.3 John Hunt’s action in respect of the monies collected from the Photo Charter had been cleared.
4.4 Immediately before the meeting, the Chairman had circulated an initial draft NYMR/NELPG collaboration and hire agreement resulting from the meeting with the NYMR on 19 November. At this stage he was only looking for immediate reactions to the draft, which on the hire of locomotives looked relatively straightforward. There were concerns over the apparent restrictions that were proposed on our activities at Grosmont however, particularly for JVs, which seemed to cut across the collaborative working arrangements which had developed over the past 18 months or so. The final document would have to be approved by members at an A/SGM, and it was planned to consult members on a future revised draft when closer to agreement. Paul Hutchinson suggested legal advice could be useful, given the semi-legal tone – the need for this would be considered at a later stage. In the meantime, any detailed comments were invited by 24 December. Action: All.
5.1 The Monthly Finance Report and Movement in Funds had been circulated by the Treasurer. The following points were noted:
5.1.1 There were no comments on the issued reports.
5.1.2 The opening of an account with the Co-op Bank was in progress. It was confirmed that no cheques should now be paid into the Barclays account and they should be retained until further notice. Current countersignature arrangements were to continue after the opening of the Co-op account.
5.1.3 The Q6 and J27 would each receive an equal share of the Downton filming monies. Future filming fees had been agreed with the NYMR General Manager at £5k or 10% of the NYMR fee, whichever the greater.
5.1.4 It had been agreed with the NYMR that the outstanding invoice for the Q6 boiler work would be charged at £18 per hour. When received, it would need to be checked that this rate had been applied. Action: Richard Wheeler.
5.1.5 The Finance Committee had suggested that the reserves policy of £100k might need to be increased to £500k in the light of Nigel Hall’s analysis of Group finances. This would be considered further.
5.1.6 The Treasurer had received the annual mileages for the Q6 and J27 at the NYMR, but requested that Locomotive Caretakers confirm final mileages for the K1 on the Jacobite workings, the Q6 at the SVR (via Barney Casey) and the J27 at the Wensleydale Railway. Action: Paul Hutchinson, Bill Dobson, and Richard Pearson.
6. JV Update
6.1 Bryan Orange summarised the current position. Our JVs live as far afield as Derby and Newcastle and it is thanks to parents and grandparents that they are able to take part in our activities. Some 8 or 9 of the current JV team are 16 or over and are taking up footplate related activity, so the younger ones are to get priority for working parties. Eight new faces had joined the JV team in the last 12 months, but it was important to continue to recruit more.
6.2 In addition to NELPG activities, work had been undertaken for the NYMR, including non-locomotive tasks, and also for the LNERCA, but such work depended on the availability of sufficient numbers of CRB-checked adults. NELPG had recently seen an increase in such checked adult volunteers, but this was not the case in those other organisations. As a result, it had been decided to withdraw JV involvement from them, and concentrate on NELPG activities only on the Railway. Ed Murray and James Conway had attended NELPG working parties at Carnforth. Tom Noble was now the HRA’s Youth Member.
6.3 Development of the JVs was supplemented by interview tutoring, educational visits to other sites and Arthur Jenkins had agreed to restart workshop training for them at Grosmont in 2019.
6.4 A vote of thanks was proposed and agreed for Bryan’s continuing action in keeping the JV initiative a success.
7. Health and Safety
7.1 Scope – Bryan Orange explained that initial discussions had taken place in October, involving Chris Lawson, Roy Marshall, Dave Pennock and himself, to try to capture the scope of what was required and where the Group stands in respect of H&S responsibilities. This had been set out in the schematic diagram tabled for the meeting. It was agreed to add “machines” into the schematic under “assets”. Action: Secretary.
7.2 Planning Approach – Bryan went on to explain the approach, using the example (Deviation Shed) matrix circulated earlier. He had used Railway & Other Guided Transport Systems (ROGS) Safety Regulations as a guide and taken note of Darrin Crone’s Competency Framework for 60007. There were not many in the Group responsible for safety-critical work – ROs for the Jacobite, Locomotive Caretakers, and the Caretakers for Deviation Shed and Hopetown. Earlier work on the Group competency matrix and Nigel’s paper on RO responsibilities had not been progressed and would need to be resurrected. Nigel Hall suggested that Richard Pearson’s experiences at Locomotion Shildon would be useful too. The Chairman asked what Bryan required from the Board. Bryan requested views on scope and approach; sanctions, in the event of persistent non-compliance; help in populating the spreadsheets and the identification of priority areas for attention. Action: All.
7.3 Safety Officer Responsibility – It was recognised that overall responsibility for these matters rested with the Board. Bryan, as Group Safety Officer, would plug into HRA Guidelines, NYMR arrangements and would revisit the Group H&S Policy. Trevor Wilford’s resignation as Hopetown Caretaker had left a gap that was proving difficult to fill. Action: Nigel Hall.
7.4 PTS Update – Martin Lloyd provided an update on the number of PTS renewals needed in 2019. He had received 19 replies to his invitation to potential attendees and proposed to book 3 of the available 4 dates and notify attendees. Action: Martin Lloyd. Only Group members would be sponsored for the courses. Paul Hutchinson confirmed that the numbers available should provide sufficient cover for our planned 2019 Jacobite operation.
7.5 PPE – After some discussion, it was agreed that Martin Lloyd would order 9 x new Hi-Vis coats (1 x small; 8 x XL; one of each for JVs), 52 x new Hi-Vis vests (6 small for JVs; 25 for Support Coach) and 6 x hard hats (all items for the Support Coach), plus 14 further Hi-Vis vests for use at Grosmont and Hopetown. The Secretary requested an additional vest, which he would pay for himself.
7.6 First Aid – Martin Lloyd suggested that if we wanted to expand our First Aid capability, he would approach Andy Fyfe, whose CPR training had been so well received, to put a number of working volunteers through a basic course. Action: Martin Lloyd.
7.7 ICE Papers – the Secretary had circulated the latest version of his ICE proposals and requested comments or agreement, so that they could be implemented soon. Action: All.
8. Locomotive Update
8.1 J27 – Richard Pearson was to ride the footplate to help assess work required this Winter. Likely areas for attention were the injectors and the possible renewal of the safety valves.
8.2 K1 – Progress had slipped a little against the programme of repairs, because the tubes had taken longer to remove. The method statement for the repairs to the bosses was to go to the insurers for their agreement. The repairs were expected to take a day and would then be magnetic particle and ultrasound tested. The superheater header would be tested in situ. Mechanical work was going well and Steve Gibson was making good progress on the ashpan. There had been limited expenditure, because WCRC had not yet done much work, though the tubes and stays had been prepared. Paul was to discuss the tyre situation with the CME. The Chairman emphasised the need to keep George Nissen advised of progress as a matter of courtesy.
8.3 J72 – Mark O’Brien had carried out an advisory inspection of the boiler and found some thinning of the bottom of the boiler barrel. It was, though, for the boiler inspector to inspect and report on the work that may be necessary. Nigel Hall and the Chairman were due to meet Fred later in the week, to discuss the best way forward for decision making in Fred’s absence from Hopetown. In the meantime, the Secretary had been asked by Fred Ramshaw to get an update on new brake blocks and firebars for the J72. Paul Hutchinson agreed to speak to Fred. Action: Paul Hutchinson.
9. Any Other Business
9.1 The Group had been nominated for the HRA Steam Railway Magazine Award (one of 10 nominees) and members would be notified that voting was open and would close on 21 December.
9.2 Paul Hutchinson advised that Chris Henwood had been taken on part time by WCRC, but would be available to us for 2 days a week.
9.3 Fred Ramshaw had asked whether a change of insurance provider should be considered at the next renewal. It was agreed that this would need discussion with the CME. Action: Secretary to advise Fred Ramshaw.
9.4 Arrangements for the 2019 AGM were discussed. A notice would be prepared for the February News and the venue and date needed to be settled. It was particularly important to ensure that Paul Hutchinson could be present, given the pressures as Jacobite commitments loomed, and similarly the Treasurer’s availability was important. Also, since 2 Trustees were due to retire by rotation, their intentions in respect of re-election needed to be ascertained. Action: Secretary.
9.5 The Chairman advised that he would be unable to attend the January meeting, and, in closing the meeting, wished everyone a merry Christmas and happy New Year.
Date of Next Meeting – 14 January 2019
The meeting closed at 10.00pm.
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