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THE LATEST NEWS FROM THE GLYN VALLEY TRAMWAY TRUST
14th January 2018 - YEAR END 2017 UPDATE
During this period negotiations have continued with the Caravan Club of Great Britain (CCGB) to secure the additional land required for the replacement car parking site at Chirk GVT Station. However before these can be moved to more formal level it was deemed prudent to open discussions with the planning office at Wrexham County Borough Council. A site meeting has been held to talk through the principle of the revised car parking site and while it was considered there would be some issues none were considered insurmountable and it was agreed that the Trust would prepare a planning application covering this change for submission to the Wrexham County Borough Council planners. This development is now being discussed with CCGB to ensure we have their full support for the application prior to preparation and submission. Network Rail has now been advised that there will be an extended delay to the tree removal in the GVT station area, while we go through the car park planning process. It is anticipated that fund raising will be required to support the new planning application. Land negotiations for Chirk Station and Chirk Straight area are now on hold until the outcome of the planning application is known. After approval is granted it will be a relatively simple process to conclude land acquisition for the Chirk Straight and Station areas.
In the New Year the Trust the will be actively seeking volunteers to undertake restoration of Van 5 to ensure it does not deteriorate any further and ensure it stays fully weatherproof and at the same time clear the site around the van.
The ill health of David Cooper, the Trustís Chairman, has been more protracted than originally anticipated and it is now unlikely he will be able to get back into harness until spring this year. When taken together with the rapidly declining health of the Trust's Treasurer, Barry Tilling, this has necessitated a further reshuffle of the management team - Ben Williams has stepped up as interim Chairman until the AGM with Nic Drukker moving sideways to take over the role of Treasurer to ensure the finances remain secure.
13th January 2018 - NOTICE OF ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING OF THE GLYN VALLEY TRAMWAY TRUST LIMITED
The Annual General Meeting has been confirmed for 17:00hrs on Friday 9th February 2018 at Black Park Chapel Trust, Maes-Y-Parc, LL14 5BB. All current members of The Glyn Valley Tramway Trust are welcome to attend. Due to the fact that membership cards have not yet been issued for the current year, please advise any intentions to attend via email prior to the event to firstname.lastname@example.org
15th October 2017 - PROGRESS UPDATE
The last three months have proved to be a very difficult time for Trust in that it has been necessary to reopen land negotiations with the Caravan Club of Great Britain to establish whether they are prepared to offer a further area of land to meet the needs of the GVTT for car parking. These discussions have been favourable however without the agreement of the Planning Authority we are unable to proceed. Discussions with the planners have commenced and are expected to carry on for sometime.
Land negotiations for the Station site are now also held awaiting resolution of the car parking issues.
Network Rail have now submitted to us a draft agreement in respect of the tree felling in the Station area however as a result of the parking issues we have put this on hold.
20th July 2017 - SUMMER 2017 UPDATE
This has been a very active period with the land negotiations for the Chirk Station & Chirk Straight sites progressing well. There has however also been a little downside in that our Chairman has taken ill and is currently receiving treatment which is severely reducing his ability to drive the Trust forward.
The negotiations for land at Chirk Station are moving forward satisfactorily with Heads of Agreement in place for a 30 year lease extendable by another 30 years which, while not being the Trusts preferred option, will provide long term security to the Tramway. It is expected that a draft lease will be received by the Trustís solicitors within the next two months.
Negotiations for the Chirk Straight land are proceeding well however these are far more complex as a result of parking issues and the land owner requiring an emergency egress from their own site across the land.
Discussions with Network Rail have continued and we have now identified three forestry contractors who are acceptable to Network Rail. The next moves are to clear the weed growth from the station site (see photo above taken on 16th July) and mark up all the trees requiring treatment. The selected contractors will then be invited to visit site to prepare quotations and provide method statements for the work. This we believe will substantially shorten the delay to starting reconstruction work once the lease is finally in place subject to the Trust attracting sufficient funds to undertake the works. A fund raising appeal will be launched as soon as we understand the costs for work. The 180 degree photo of the Chirk Station site below shows the extent of the clearance and tree felling required.
The ill health of David Cooper, the Trustís Chairman, has necessitated the appointment of an interim Chairman until the AGM to ensure the Trust is driven forward. At the Board meeting held on the 16th July it was unanimously agreed for Nic Drukker to take the helm in the interim thereby ensuring there is no let up in the pressure to secure the land agreements. We all wish David Cooper a speedy recovery.
27th March 2017 - TRUSTEE APPOINTMENT
The Trust Board is very pleased to announce that Mark Edlington has agreed to join the Board as a Trustee in the role of Director responsible for Tramway Construction and Operation. Mark has a long history of employment in both the nationalised and privatised railways of the UK and a lifelong passion for narrow gauge railways. His principal areas of skill in his professional role are in operational management, training & competence control, and with his personal interest in narrow gauge he has been actively involved in a number of narrow gauge railway projects.
26th March 2017 - REVIEW OF PROGRESS
2016: During 2016 the Trust Board put in place plans to commence reconstruction of the Glyn Valley Tramway from Chirk to Pontfaen. The specific element to be started in 2016 being site preparation works from Chirk Station to Ty Ririd.
The objective was to complete site the clearance and undertake some initial excavation of the partly filled cutting close to Ty Ririd so that a full understanding of the nature of the excavated material could be gained. In the event this was not possible. This occurred as a direct result of the Land Owners changing their legal representation just prior to the finalisation of the Leases. The delay has meant that the works would not have been available at earliest until the start of the winter period. This is an unsuitable time for carrying out earthworks and in light of this the Trust Board decided to defer the start of works until Spring 2017.
2017: The delay to the start of works in autumn 2016 has allowed the Trust to stand back and review its current overall situation. As a result the Trust Board has been substantially strengthened from January 2017, a process that will continue until all skills gaps are filled.
A detailed scheme together with outline budget is being prepared by the Board to deliver a complete working section of the Glyn Valley Tramway from Chirk to Pontfaen. From this a planned programme of projects will be developed and work has already commenced on Project 1 which covers updating the working practices of the Trust to meet the challenges of the future and increasing the focus on fund raising to meet the needs of the construction programme.
For this project to achieve success it will require the dedicated involvement of the Board, membership, supporters and local community throughout. To this end it is proposed that details of the projects, the proposed timings and funding requirements will be posted on the website on a regular basis. A dedicated email address has been established or all enquiries/comments relating to the plan and reconstruction of the Tramway to ensure these are dealt with as a priority. The email address is email@example.com and we would be very pleased to hear from you.
Clearly in preparing the detailed construction plan there will be some slight delay while all the information is collated and we request your forbearance in this. It is our intention to publish updates on the website and Facebook on a regular basis.
17th March 2017 - RAY HUGHES
It is with deep sadness that we have to announce the death of our Raising Steam Editor, Ray Hughes, from cancer.
Ray has been a long-standing and strong supporter of the Trust's ambition to reinstate the Glyn Valley Tramway and even during his latter days, when his illness was very debilitating, he was still contributing to the full. He leaves a big hole in the Trust and he will be sadly missed by us all.
10th March 2017 - RESTRUCTURING & STRENGTHENING
During the winter period the Trust has undertaken a complete review of its structure and its aspirations. As a result the Trust Board has now been totally restructured and strengthened with the appointment of new Trustees to take responsibility for Legal, Commercial and Membership matters, plus Project Management, Publicity and Communications. Owing to ill health it has been necessary for the Treasurer to stand down at short notice and the Trust has been very fortunate in finding a local replacement with the ideal skill set for the project. Following the structural changes, the Trust has embarked on a detailed planning and budgeting exercise in preparation for construction starting in earnest. This will, amongst other things, identify the funding requirements for each section of the project. This process is currently ongoing at this time and details will be published when complete.
For further details please feel free to contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.