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Quainton News archive - Quainton News No. 35 - Summer 1978
QRS Report of the Executive Committee for 1977 / 8
The past year has again been a difficult one with lack of finances and labour holding up many of the things we would like to have seen started or completed. Fortunately the support and interest shown by the general public in attending our Open Days continues, and as in previous years these have been our principal source of income.
Our achievements during the year must be the completion of the Down Yard Restoration Building, the transport from Barry of our loco Wightwick Hall, the purchase of the turntable, wheeldrop, and phase one of our Restoration Building in the Up Yard. This new building will add much of interest and permanence to this part of our property. As this is a joint project, the Society's financial commitment has been comparatively small and this has enabled a substantial start to be made towards the establishment of our restoration and workshop facilities for our larger relics.
The decision to purchase the turntable was one of those decisions that must from time to time be made a matter of priority. We considered that this would be our last opportunity to purchase a large turntable, and being vacuum operated, an especially valuable piece of equipment without which our Centre would be unable to accept special trains in the future or operate our larger tender locomotives. We have applied for a Grant-in-Aid from the Science Museum to help us purchase and transport this as a preservation project of an important piece of archaeological equipment. If successful, we could receive up to 50% of the cost; the remainder we are financing by means of a small bank loan and weekly collections from members at Quainton.
Our disappointment is again the postponement of our improved refreshment and sales facilities. Plans have been drawn but we still feel unable to make a start on this building until we have sufficient funds available. The money raised at Quainton by special refreshment sales, etc., has been very encouraging, but the appeal for funds from the general membership is disappointing..
During the year our Society administration came under scrutiny, culminating in the EGM held on 12 November last year. No major alterations were judged to be necessary, but it highlighted once again that there are just too few members taking a responsible part in the running of our Society. The cost of operating our Society continues to mount, the proposed increase in the membership subscription will only cover the cost of returning the Quainton News to four issues per year plus incidental expenses. Our Society insurance premiums alone now amount to almost £1,000 per annum. The Job Creation Scheme and Government legislation has meant a big increase in the level of administrative work generally. We have now established a safety structure as required under the Health and Safety at Work Act. Our membership figures remain fairly static and no special effort has been made to recruit new members or associates during the past year.
Our attendance and receipts were down compared with last year and are attributed to the poor weather during our major Open Days and other rival attractions during Jubilee Year.
We must place on record our appreciation of the work carried out by our member and manager of our Job Creation Scheme, Dick Scott. We have been awarded a further grant this year that will enable us to employ up to eight men until the end of 1978. Apart from some more internal walling of the Machine Shop area of the Down Yard, building work will concentrate on the reinstatement of the Up Yard headshunt and fencing. Once this is completed, priority will be given to finishing the Wembley Building to give further cover for our rolling stock next winter. Unlike our previous grant, our new one does make a small contribution towards the cost of materials, but the majority of material costs must still come from our own funds.
We thank you all for your support during the past year and look forward to a successful 1978 season.
ROY B. MILLER
Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
Page Updated: 17 November 2017