Flying Scotsman Steams!

As a little bit of context re cost, we're about to put one of our locos in for a boiler overhaul in order to get it up to standard for a 10 year ticket. It's a tiny 0-4-0 German built loco. Cost of the boiler overhaul alone is almost £30,000. While I perhaps don't agree with the amount put into a single project, it's easy to see how it could cost so much.
 
Much of it was from covenants taken out by various wealthy people (As funded Tornado) large amounts from appeals, large amounts from donations from the public not forgetting that with every Loco Rebuild there always seems to be one or two anonymous benefactors who contribute large sums of money.
The purchase cost was as follows from the Flying Scotsman Website.

After a successful campaign, Flying Scotsman was returned once more to public ownership in 2004. The successful bid included £415,000 raised by the public and £365,000 donated by Sir Richard Branson, plus a £1.8m grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund. Since that time, it has been going through a thorough restoration.

Most reliable sources are quoting £4.2 million for the restoration adding the purchase cost is where they are getting the 6 million from
of which only 1.8 million has come directly from a public source being a Grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund which gets around 4 million a Year from the Government to "waste" on saving items of our Heritage.

Most of the World has heard of the Flying Scotsman and as such is likely to be a big crowd drawer / money in the bank whereas they more than likely haven't heard of any of other candidates for restoration and they wouldn't get the media publicity that the Flying Scotsman attracts. Personally I think the NRM are well aware of what they are doing in restoring a crowd pulling cash earner.
 
Hi everybody.
Clam1952, I respect your posting at #22 of this thread, in which you state that 1.8 million was donated by the National Heritage Memorial fund (NHMF). However, the MHMF is entirely funded by the British government from taxpayers money and therefore only 780,000 was in fact given by private donation directly to the Scotsman funding. The balance of the purchase and restoration of the flying Scotsman was funded by the National Railway Museum which is part of designated government and local Council Museum funding which is again entirely taxpayer revenue.

In the above, more than £5.2 million for this project came from British taxpayers a substantial proportion of whom will no doubt be rail commuters (such as myself) who have to put up with overcrowded stations and trains and may well argue (had we been consulted) that the over 6 million would have been better spent on reducing the foregoing problems to commuters they being taxpayers.

However, I would be the first to agree that funding needs to be forthcoming for all that Britain holds in its long worldwide heritage. The problem is with such projects as the flying Scotsman will always be the high maintenance cost of running such a locomotive. Many doubt that the revenue received for the limited number of journeys it will make will ever exceed the restoration, maintenance and running cost and therefore further taxpayer money will be needed ongoing into the future.

Britain’s museums need to reflect all of this country’s history both good and bad. The National Railway Museum is an important part of that history, but spending such a large percentage of its funding on one “glamorous” project does not reflect or do justice to the great place in history that British railways hold in the world.

Far better I feel would be to bring forward projects such as I described at #16 of this thread which would truly demonstrate the role British railways have played in world history at far lower cost than this flying Scotsman project.

Bill
 
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As personal preference to the above project, I believe that a far better spend would have been a much improved exhibition than of now featuring the history of the railways during the Second World War. For it was from 1940 until late 1944 that the whole transportation for the war effort was carried on the British railways with its drivers, fireman, guards, signalman and loaders working 16 to 18 hour days in appalling conditions to make the Allied victory possible.

I would also wish to see a much better representation of the UK railways connection with the now defunct British deep mine coal industry during that wartime era. For in that industry the countries male youths leaving school at 15 years old where then conscripted into the mining industry to manually dig out the thousands of tonnes of coal that was so badly needed by the railways. These young people again worked long hours in appalling conditions on behalf of the war effort, only then to be called into military service at the age of 17 or 18.

The trouble is that the public will flock (and pay!) to see Flying Scotsman, the public will not necessarily flock to see the exhibitions you describe, although they are both worth of attention. Whilst the NRM are almost certain to get at least half the money back they spent restoring 60103, if they had plunged the same amount of money in to the exhibitions you have described they would probably make a huge loss. Put it this way- the restoration of Flying Scotsman has made national news on a fairly regular basis (see here, here and here). Can you imagine an exhibition on the railways during WW2 doing the same? The last time the NRM got this much attention was during the Great Gathering, which people were queuing outside the door and along the street to see. Again this involved, big, glamorous locomotives which for the most part, is what the public want to see. They might not be interested by a grimy 8F, but show them Mallard or Flying Scotsman and they want to know more. The P2 Project has received a lot of media attention recently for similar reasons, in a way that the G5 project, arguably filling a bigger gap in preservation, doesn't; and this is for similar reasons.

I have to say, it is a credit to the late Sir Nigel that his locomotives capture the public's imagination like no others 80 years after they were built. It is entirely right that we should have Flying Scotsman, Bittern, UoSA, and in a couple of years or so Prince of Wales and Cock' O the North in steam to remind Britain of his legacy.
 
Whilst the NRM are almost certain to get at least half the money back they spent restoring 60103, if they had plunged the same amount of money in to the exhibitions you have described they would probably make a huge loss.

Wouldn't "at least half" then equate to a £2-3 million loss? What would a huge loss equate to if that isn't one?
 
Entry to the National Railway Museum is free of charge. No one will pay anything to see the locomotive, they will only be charged if they travel on a heritage trip hauled by the locomotive.

Bill
 
Entry to the National Railway Museum is free of charge. No one will pay anything to see the locomotive, they will only be charged if they travel on a heritage trip hauled by the locomotive.

Bill

Which are proving extremely popular, the ELR has sold out of tickets for next week and likewise the NYMR has already sold out of seats across a whole week in March.

Also all those people who get in to the NRM for free will spend money in the museums shops and cafes, so they will make something when the loco is there too. There are also a number of paid for photography and dining events featuring the loco (including a number of corporate dining opportunities which I suspect will be the real money makers).
 
Which are proving extremely popular, the ELR has sold out of tickets for next week and likewise the NYMR has already sold out of seats across a whole week in March.

Also all those people who get in to the NRM for free will spend money in the museums shops and cafes, so they will make something when the loco is there too. There are also a number of paid for photography and dining events featuring the loco (including a number of corporate dining opportunities which I suspect will be the real money makers).

With every respect to the above posting, I do not think that many people will believe that the above revenue stream(s) will ever come anywhere near to recouping the six and a half million restoration cost or even the every day maintainence costs.

Bill
 
£6 million over a decade when government expenditure is around £700 billion is not really that big a deal. Stuffed steam locomotive like the Mallard tell you nowhere near as much as live steam, and the Flying Scotsman has recognition beyond the rail enthusiast enclave.

Money reasonably well spent.
 
Now that the FS is back, someone needs to make a new version of the FS for Trainz. The TRS2004 one is showing its age by now. Same goes for the Mallard.


I agree!

My-Trainz-Screenshot-Image.jpg
 
That's already captured her lines and spirit beautifully, Ed. Eagerly looking forward to seeing your progress!

m
 
Hi amigacooke and everybody.
£6 million over a decade when government expenditure is around £700 billion is not really that big a deal. Stuffed steam locomotive like the Mallard tell you nowhere near as much as live steam, and the Flying Scotsman has recognition beyond the rail enthusiast enclave.

Money reasonably well spent.

Amigacooke, it is as always a great pleasure to joust with you on the forum again. In regard to your above comment on taxpayer expenditure on the flying Scotsman versus total government spending, then perhaps an old adage should come to mind. In the foregoing the adage advised “look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves” or perhaps in this case the adage should state “look after the millions and billions will look after themselves”LOL.

In regard to static museum exhibits, then I think anyone who has visited the major museums around the country in recent years (especially in London) will have seen the transformation in how the exhibits are presented to the public.

Back in the summer we took our grandchildren on a visit to the Natural History Museum in the capital where we were all absolutely amazed at the visuals that were presented to the visitors. At one stage on a 3-D giant screen we all actually believed we were about to be attacked by a giant pterodactyl which was an amazing experience. Virtually all the other exhibits invited visitors to hands-on experiences together with a high level of live audio/visual education in Britain’s natural history.

It is without doubt the capital’s museums with their free entry and hands-on exhibits that have now greatly contributed to London becoming most visited city in the world. That situation also has the added offshoot of visitors leaving the capital to visit other treasures such as the National Railway Museum in York.

Therefore, Britain’s Museums including the National Railway Museum can inform and educate the millions that visit them each year in a far better manner than purchasing a high priced ticket in a coach behind the flying Scotsman or any other locomotive, where you cannot see or be informed of anything which is taking place on the footplate.

Bill.
 
I know the restoration was quite expensive, but they did an amazing job. Anytime I hear complaints about the time and cost of restoring a locomotive to operation I just remember what a friend told me, "It will almost always take twice as long and cost twice as much as originally planned."
 
Hi Everybody.
I know the restoration was quite expensive, but they did an amazing job. Anytime I hear complaints about the time and cost of restoring a locomotive to operation I just remember what a friend told me, "It will almost always take twice as long and cost twice as much as originally planned."

flyboy559,It is very good to hear that railway enthusiasts all over the world are appreciating the “ amazing job” the National Railway Museum has carried out in the restoration of the Flying Scotsman.
Should you or others from around the world wish to contribute to the restoration cost and ongoing funding that will be needed to keep the locomotive in running order, then please do not hesitate to do so through the following address.

Her Majesty's Treasury Department
1 Horse guards Road
London
SW1A 2HQ

The Treasury department will accept a good old fashioned cheque.

I am sure all UK citizens will be highly appreciative of all donations given by Flying Scotsman Restoration supporters based overseas. The foregoing is especially relevant as we British taxpayers were never given the opportunity to decide whether we wished to financially support the 6 million pound project or not, we were just informed we would be paying a very large percentage of that bill.

Anyway, many thanks in confident expectation of your contribution.:D
Bill

 
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If you want to support the work of the National Rail Museum, send donations to the NRM, not HM Government as those funds could be allocated anywhere across government expenditure.

Public control of public finances is organised by the blunt instrument of general elections and representative MPs.
 
From 2011 http://www.rail.co.uk/rail-news/2011/flying-scotsmans-multi-million-pound-repair/

The restoration of Flying Scotsman has been generously supported by Tata Steel, formerly Corus, a £275,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and support from many other generous organisations. Members of the public also generously donated £250,000 to the Steam Our Scotsman appeal.

The engine was purchased in 2006 for £2.3 million pounds and with the overhaul reaching a similar level, the total bill could eventually reach five million pounds. Tornado, built from scratch over 20 years cost around three million pounds.
TATA as far as I am aware is an Indian Owned Company thus overseas support ;o)

Now this is interesting and well worth a read re all the problems encountered - Report for the Science Museum Trusties in 2012. Reading that it's no small wonder it cost so much! As for the way it was dealt with, well draw your own conclusions!
It's a pdf by the way.
http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/about_us/smg/~/~/media/33CDC07ED88345BEA5412F91D8742D45.ashx
 
Hi everybody.
There seems there are any number of figures being “touted around” in regard to the total cost of purchasing and restoring the Flying Scotsman. Following the public relaunch of the rebuilt locomotive yesterday (8[SUP]th[/SUP] of January 2016) one British national newspaper has quoted the project as costing close to £7 million with more money needing to be spent. In all the argument (some of it very critical) the one thing that is very clear would be that British taxpayers have been left with a multi-million pound bill they have no choice in but to pay.

In terms of need for the restoration the words “iconic locomotive” have been used frequently by the project supporters. I would agree that the locomotive was iconic in the sense that it was the first rail engine in the world to reach a speed of 100 mph while on a normal service schedule. However, it can also be argued that this steam locomotive and many others like it where responsible for the decline and near collapse of Britain’s railways throughout the period of the 1950s through to the mid-1960s.

The truth is that the flying Scotsman should have been retired from scheduled service following nationalisation of the UK rail industry in 1948. However, in a decision that was to have more than a decade long repercussion the then UK government decided that the sole motive power for Britain’s railways should remain as steam. That decision condemned Britain’s rail passengers to continued sooty and filthy stations, frequent train breakdowns and a timetable that was a work of fiction. All the foregoing took place while Britain’s competitors in Europe rebuilt their post-war railways on diesel and electric as their main motive power.

It would have always been that by the late 1950s and early 60s that the average person would turn to the car as their main form of transport. However, in Britain that change was very much quickened and became much deeper due to the state of Britain’s railways still being run on steam. That ever declining situation without doubt brought forward the Beeching report which led to the axing of large sections of the railways in the mid-1960s.

The introduction of diesel power through such power units as the Deltics stopped the decline but Britain’s railways bumped along the bottom until the introduction of a truly iconic power unit, that being the class 43, or as it was to become better known, the InterCity HST 125. Designed and introduced in the mid-1970s it revolutionised passenger comfort, reliability and timekeeping bringing passengers back to the UK railways from that time up until today. The HST 125 is still the backbone of Britains express services on all main lines including the East coast, West Coast and Great Western (GWML) 40 years after its introduction.

In my humble opinion the class 43 in its dual train end capacity is a locomotive which is truly iconic and the one that should have received the honours yesterday and not one which played a leading role among others in Britain’s rail decline and the closure of so much of its infrastructure.

Bill
 
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