Committee Meeting Summary – 18th April 2024

The Meeting commenced at 7.30 PM.

Present: Dave Fildes, Cathy and Martin Houghton, Chris Jackson, Peter Miller, Bob Newton, Mat Peacock, Francis Stapleton, Nick Talbot, Tim Williams. Also present for items (1) and (2) were Society Stall volunteers Ron and Lynn.

Prior to the opening of the Meeting, it was reported that two locomotives, ‘Skippy’ and Dorothy, had very recently been re-united with their wheels.

The Meeting began with a lengthy discussion concerning the Society Stall. Ron and Lynn were thanked for their work on this and invited to lead the debate. They were later appointed as publicity officers (non-committee). They were convinced from recent experience that more things were needed on the stall to attract people to it and to generate Society revenue: both exhibits and, in particular, more and better merchandise. This second point was supported – but not unanimously. The need for a single storage area for Stall equipment was also stressed (by Mat Peacock) and an idea was developed (for security reasons, no more details will be given here). The lack of volunteers – and new ways we might encourage people to help with the Stall – was also discussed. It is currently planned to take the Stall to the Llangollen Garden Railway Festival (11th May), AGM day (18th May), the 7mm NG Modellers’ Show in Burton-on-Trent (8th June), the Bala Model Show (21st and 22nd September) and the Vale of Rheidol Model Show (26th October), if enough volunteers can be found.

No progress has yet been made on the Penrhyn- and Dinorwic-related book reprint proposals. After the previous Meeting, Mat Peacock emailed to the Committee a fully-costed version of his Company-supported proposal for an artist-drawn souvenir (frameable) map of the Railway. There was very little positive reaction and the general feeling at the Meeting was that computer-generated graphic art would be better as it could have multiple uses (such as information boards at the Railway) and lower costs. Mat handed over the project to Chris Jackson at this point.

Progress on the financial re-organisation was reported. It was decided to use ‘Xero’ accounting software (£18/month) on a trial basis over the next yearThe President’s Appeal for signalling equipment is still in limbo, with little public interest shown. It was decided not to try to relaunch it until the SNPA decision on the Extension, which may come in June. The Appeal as it is currently designed is, to no small degree, aimed at funding signalling equipment for the Extension and for operating a longer line.

Membership numbers are continuing to fall, albeit very slowly. However, the present level (374) is still higher than the pre-Covid maximum of 347. New members for the Draw Club would be very welcome, as ever. It costs £30.00 for 12 months, which works out at £2.50 per month per number. There are 8 Draws left for 2024.

New units were installed in the volunteers’ kitchen in March. There was not enough time to relay the kitchen floor. Several people using the facilities had reported that other users were not respecting the new Terms and Conditions. More notices detailing the rules will be erected. 

Mat reported some example prices for slate memorial plaques for deceased members, and places where they might be displayed were discussed. It was agreed to wait until Chris Jackson’s list of potential honorands was finished. Mat had also spoken to the executor of the will of the late member whose 7.25″ track had been offered to the Society to purchase. A price was agreed and the track bought shortly after the Meeting. It was a very good deal, but still a considerable sum, and Mat again urged that it was essential to have a proper plan for using the track to recover and raise money for the Society. Various options were discussed. 

The Company hopes to start constructing the new Disabled Toilet, part-funded by the Society, at Llanuwchllyn this coming winter.

The AGM will take place on 18th May at 2.30, at Llanuwchllyn and via Zoom. There will be a light buffet beforehand and, at 4.45 PM, a Members’ Train. There will also be an engine available at Llanuwchllyn for members to drive during the day. Please see the separate post for more details on the elections which will be taking place.

It was also proposed that the Society acquire and pay for a defibrillator at Llanuwchllyn Station. The costs and practicalities of this will be investigated.

The Meeting closed at 9.54 PM.


Mat P

Society Secretary