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  • February 2019 Newsletter

    A belated happy new year to all our members!

    This newsletter brings advance notice of the Annual General Meeting, which will be a week earlier than usual on 10th April 2019.

    February meeting

    We are pleased to announce that Peter Vannucci will give a presentation on Rails around Melbourne at our meeting on Wednesday 20th February.

    Peter last addressed us in September 2015, when he gave an entertaining account of the NIR in-house magazine Stafflines, including the work of photographer Sammy Norton.

    The Members’ Miscellany has been postponed until a future date.

    March meeting

    A rare chance to see the work of Joe Cassells at an MRSI meeting, Joe will visit us on Wednesday 20th March to look back on Irish Rail in the 1990s and 2000s.

    Annual General Meeting

    The Annual General Meeting of the Society will take place at 7.15pm on Wednesday 10th April in our usual venue of Ashfield Girls’ High School.  This is to avoid the Easter holiday period when we know that members may have other priorities.

    At the reconvened AGM of Wednesday 19th September 2018, the following were elected:

    • Secretary: Vacant
    • Committee members: Matthew Tennis, Brian Templeton and Andy Boal

    By rotation, each of the three Officers of the Society retires in turn at the AGM, and this year it is the turn of the Chairman, David Carson, to stand down.

    However, as most of you will be aware, Andy has filled the post of Acting Secretary since September, and it will be necessary to fill this post substantively at the AGM.

    In addition, Roy Thompson, our Treasurer, has indicated that he will resign at the AGM due to increasing responsibilities outside the Society.

    It will therefore be necessary to elect all of the following at the AGM:

    • Chairman, for a term of three years
    • Secretary, for a term of two years (to fill the vacancy)
    • Treasurer, for a term of one year (to complete Roy’s term of office)
    • Up to three Committee Members, for a term of one year.

    Members are asked to give thought to who might fill these posts for the coming year.  As usual, a newsletter will issue in late March with a detailed agenda and enclosures, but the draft agenda is shown below:

    Draft Agenda

    1. Apologies
    2. Adoption of minutes of reconvened Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 19th September 2018
    3. Matters arising from previous minutes
    4. Chairman’s report
    5. Accounts and Treasurer’s report
    6. Matters arising from reports
    7. 80 class preservation
    8. Election of officers and committee members
    9. Election of Honorary Auditor
    10. Any other business

    After the AGM, the Downpatrick and Co Down Railway Society will give a presentation on their work, especially with the DEMUs whose preservation we have aided by contributing towards their transportation costs.

    Constitution

    Arising from the following Constitutional Amendments passed at the Reconvened AGM of 19th September 2018, the Constitution has been amended and uploaded to the MRSI website.

    1. That section 5.2 of the Constitution be amended to read as follows:-

    The Treasurer shall keep accounts of all monies received or expended by MRSI and a complete financial statement with a report by an independent auditor shall be submitted at each Annual General Meeting. The financial year shall be from 1st March each year to 28th February the following year.

    2. That section 6.8 of the Constitution be amended to read as follows:-

    A quorum at any General Meeting shall be the lower of fifteen or half the voting membership.

    80 class preservation

    The quiet months before the Downpatrick operating season begins again are being occupied with internal refurbishment of the 80 class DEMUs, including restoring the original oak-effect formica.

    As members may know, engines were exchanged between 80 class and 450 class sets as required when they required major work.  An interesting discovery was that due to this rotation of engines, both 69 and 90 carry 70 class engines, and 458 carries an 80 class engine.  Perhaps someone can tell us which class of engines is carried by 97 and 99!

    Driver training on both the 80 class and 450 class sets is due to recommence this spring.

    Members of the Society in the 2011-12 season will hear from Andy and Downpatrick about their benefits for Downpatrick in the next few weeks.

    Senior Travel Pass Group

    The next day out is Wednesday 27th February to Hazelhatch and Maynooth.  Ken Harte writes:

    Irish Rail have introduced an hourly service through the tunnel during the day to Hazelhatch so we plan to head there and back to Drumcondra or Connolly to join the 12.17 service from Connolly to Maynooth.

    TICKETS. Monthly return to Maynooth (NB CODE 92 Mullingar )

    Connolly-Hazelhatch return ticket is required before boarding the train at Connolly to Hazelhatch.

    TIMETABLE

    Lanyon Place dep.         08.00

    Connolly arr.                 10.05

    Connolly dep.               10.40

    Hazelhatch arr.             11.20

    Hazelhatch dep.            11.35

    Drumcondra arr            12.06

    Connolly arr.                 12.12

    Connolly dep.               12.17

    Drumcondra dep.          12.21

    Maynooth arr.               12.58

    Maynooth dep.              14.10         14.40         15.05         15.35         15.42

    Broombridge arr.          14.41         15.11         15.36                           16.13

    (Luas Interchange Available)

    Connolly arr.                 14.52         15.21         15.47         16.08         16.25

    Connolly dep.               15.20                                                               16.50

    Lanyon Place arr.          17.29                                                               19.05

    As ever, please contact Ken for more information.

    Membership

    If you haven’t yet renewed your membership for 2018/19, you will find a new membership form here – please complete and return it to Andy as soon as possible.

    Please remember, we can no longer accept payment in Euros.  We can also no longer process membership applications without a form.


  • September 2018 Newsletter

    Another September, another new season for MRSI.

    Highlights of this year’s programme include a visit from Chris Conway and Richard Knox of Translink in October, and an all too rare presentation from Joe Cassells.  You will find it enclosed with this newsletter.

    Annual General Meeting

    The May newsletter advised all members that the AGM will be reconvened for Wednesday 19th September immediately before Chris Playfair’s talk.  A quorum of at least 20 members must be present for the AGM to take place.

    Agenda

    1. Apologies
    2. Adoption of minutes of Annual General Meeting on 19th April 2017, 20th September 2017, 18th October 2017 and 18th April 2018
    3. Matters arising from previous minutes
    4. Chairman’s report
    5. Accounts and Treasurer’s report
    6. Matters arising from reports
    7. Constitutional amendments
    8. General Data Protection Regulation
    9. 80 class preservation
    10. Election of officers and committee members
    11. Election of Honorary Auditor
    12. Any other business

    The Chairman and Treasurer read their reports at the adjourned AGM in April, and the reports will therefore be taken as read.  Reports included in this newsletter will also be taken as read in order to expedite business.

    Copies of the accounts will be provided on the night.

    Constitutional Amendments

    The Committee has proposed the following two motions:

    1. That section 5.2 of the Constitution be amended to read as follows:-

    The Treasurer shall keep accounts of all monies received or expended by MRSI and a complete financial statement with a report by an independent auditor shall be submitted at each Annual General Meeting. The financial year shall be from 1st March each year to 28th February the following year.

    2. That section 6.8 of the Constitution be amended to read as follows:-

    A quorum at any General Meeting shall be the lower of fifteen or half the voting membership.

    A simple majority of those voting will be sufficient to decide these motions to

    amend the Society’s Constitution.

    General Data Protection Regulation

    Members have already been advised of the adoption of the following Privacy Statement, which was printed in the May newsletter, and is included on the Membership form:

    The Modern Railway Society of Ireland only uses the information you provide to us for legitimate interest as defined by the Information Commissioner’s Office.

    We do not disclose the information we hold about you to third parties without your permission or unless lawfully required to do so. Access to your information is restricted to those members of the Committee who need it to carry out their roles. This will include the Secretary and the Treasurer.

    The Committee of the Society may use your information to contact you concerning the business of the Society, including forthcoming events, membership matters, and notice of Annual and Extraordinary General Meetings.

    By providing your email address, you agree that we can contact you via email in preference to post.

    We delete your contact information one year after your membership expires, however we retain details of your name and membership number indefinitely in case you should rejoin in the future.

    By submitting this membership form with payment, you agree to us using your information in this way.

    80 class preservation

    Members of the society in 2011-12 will be written to separately about how they can receive their benefits from the Society’s donation to the Downpatrick and County Down Railway.

    As you know, we committed £7,000 towards the transportation of the 80 class to Downpatrick, and we finally paid this over to Downpatrick in August.  The agreed benefits for the then members of the Society are as follows:-

    • Free admission to the annual DCDR Diesel Day for 2019-2023
    • Free travel for the 2019 season and half price travel from 2020-2023

    Entitled members will be issued with a card to that effect.

    In terms of the vehicles whose transportation we have supported, 458 is now Downpatrick’s regular buffet set.  It is currently being shunted dead, pending driver training in early 2019.

    69 and 749 are having fairly substantial internal work done.  Internally, they are being restored to fairly close to their original condition: the floor coverings installed in later years are being replaced with more traditional lino, woodwork is being repaired, and perhaps the biggest job of all: the 1980s vinyls which carried abstract murals are being stripped.  Not entirely surprisingly, removing the vinyls is the easy part: the far more difficult bit is removing the 30-year old adhesive still firmly attached to the original teak effect formica.

    Downpatrick hopes to have them ready for passenger service in early 2019, but they were placed on static display in the carriage gallery last weekend for the European Heritage Open Days – complete with freshly applied NIR logo transfers.

    We will hear more from Downpatrick at the 2019 AGM.

    Elections procedure

    In accordance with the Constitution of the Society, one of the officers of the Society retires each year by rotation, and this year the Secretary’s post falls vacant.

    Our Chairman David Carson will continue in office until the 2019 AGM, and our Treasurer Roy Thompson intends to retire a year early at the 2019 AGM.

    No nominations having been received, we will be inviting nominations from the floor as follows:-

    • to the post of Secretary for a three year term, retiring in 2021, and
    • for up to three ordinary Committee Members, to serve for one year.

    Our present Secretary Andy Boal has indicated that he wishes to retire as Secretary this year due to pressures outside the society. He is willing to be nominated as an ordinary Committee Member.

    Eligibility to vote

    Only members who have paid their annual subscription for 2017-18 or 2018-19 and life members will be eligible to vote in the election.

    Senior Travel Pass Group

    The next day out is Wednesday 26th September to Galway, with an optional trip to Salthill and the option of a “long way round” return trip via Derry/Londonderry covering part of the upper half of the Western Corridor.

    BELFAST-GALWAY Code 79

    Depart Central     08.00

    Connolly Arr.       10.05

    Heuston Dep.       11.25

    Galway Arr.         13.25

    SALTHILL TRIP

    Eyre Square South (Stop no 9) Service no 401. Journey time 15 mins.

    Depart  On the hour then every 20 minutes.

    Salthill Return (Caesars Palace Stop) 7 minutes past the hour etc.

    RETURN VIA HEUSTON.

    Galway dep.        15.05         17.20

    Heuston arr.        17.38         19.54

    Connolly dep.      19.00         20.50

    Central arr.          21.10         23.03

    RETURN VIA SLIGO /DERRY/LONDONDERRY.

    Galway bus station dep.  Service 64 (Derry)      14.10

    Sligo arr. (change of coach)                              16.55

    Sligo dep.                                                         17.10

    Derry Foyle Street Bus Centre arr.                    19.45

    Rail Link bus depart.                                         20.15

    NIR dep.                                                           20.38

    Central arr.                                                       22.39

    Central dep. For Bangor at 22.40 and 23.20, and for Portadown at 22.59.

    As ever, please contact Ken Harte for more information.

    Membership

    If you haven’t yet renewed your membership for 2018/19, you will find enclosed a new membership form – please complete and return it to Andy as soon as possible.

    Please remember, we can no longer accept payment in Euros.


  • May 2018 newsletter

    Annual General Meeting

    As members may know, the Annual General Meeting once again found itself inquorate on Wednesday 18th April.  Although it had been intended to reconvene it in October, it will now be reconvened at the September meeting on Wednesday 19th September.

    The minutes of the AGM are attached, together with a letter from the Secretary.

    80 class preservation

    80 class vehicles 90, 752, 69 and 749 arrived in Downpatrick over the weekend of 12th-13th May.  Looking through our minutes reminded us that we had been discussing supporting the preservation of the 80 class as long ago as 2006, so it was a real pleasure to see the fulfilment of our commitment.

    The Society committed up to £7,000 towards the transportation of the 80 class, and we will be paying this to the Downpatrick and County Down Railway Society once we receive a copy of the invoice from Reid Freight Services.

    Members of MRSI in 2011-12 will remember that in return for our support of the 80 class preservation, we were offered admission to annual Diesel Days and concessionary travel at Downpatrick for a period of time.  Only people who were members of MRSI for 2011-12 will be eligible, and we will write to the affected people once the bonuses and arrangements have been completed.

    Visit to Drogheda Traincare Depot – Wednesday 20th June

    There are still four places available on this trip:

    Belfast Central dep 08:00
    Dundalk arr 09:15
    Visit to museum and Central Signal Cabin
    Dundalk dep 10:10
    Drogheda arr 10:33
    Visit to Drogheda Traincare depot

    Return will be by the train of your choice – members without Smartpasses are reminded that cash fares to Drogheda may be cheaper than web fares to Dublin and aren’t tied to particular trains!

    If you wish to come along, please contact Andy as soon as possible.

    General Data Protection Regulation

    Our constitution specifies that we retain an electronic database, and the 2017/18 Membership form specifies that if you provide an email address you agree to receiving electronic communication where appropriate.

    The Committee has adopted the following GDPR privacy statement:

    The Modern Railway Society of Ireland only uses the information you provide to us for legitimate interest as defined by the Information Commissioner’s Office.

    We do not disclose the information we hold about you to third parties without your permission or unless lawfully required to do so.  Access to your information is restricted to those members of the Committee who need it to carry out their roles.  This will include the Secretary and the Treasurer.

    The Committee of the Society may use your information to contact you concerning the business of the Society, including forthcoming events, membership matters, and notice of Annual and Extraordinary General Meetings.

    By providing your email address, you agree that we can contact you via email in preference to post.

    We delete your contact information one year after your membership expires, however we retain details of your name and membership number indefinitely in case you should rejoin in the future.

    Bysubmitting this membership form with payment, you agree to us using your information in this way.

    Membership renewal

    Historically, every year we have exceptionally accepted some membership renewals without an application form being completed, we will not be able to do this in future because we need all members to confirm that they have read and agreed to the Privacy Statement each year.

    An application form for the 2018-19 year is attached, and includes the above statement.

    If you have not renewed for 2017-18, this will be the last correspondence you will receive from MRSI.

    Future meetings

    19th September – reconvened AGM and Chris Playfair
    17th October – Chris Conway and Richard Knox from Translink
    21st November – Matthew Wilson
    16th January – Michael McMahon
    20th February – TBA
    20th March – TBA
    10th April – AGM (please note change of date due to Easter)


  • April 2018 Newsletter

    A belated Happy Easter to all our members!

    Notice is given in this newsletter of the Annual General Meeting of the Modern Railway Society of Ireland on Wednesday 18th April 2018.

    There is also news of a trip to Drogheda Train Care Depot and the preservation of the 80 class DEMU.

    Annual General Meeting

    Notice is given of the Annual General Meeting of the Modern Railway Society of Ireland, to be held at 7.15 pm on Wednesday 18th April 2018 in Ashfield Girls’ High School, Holywood Road, Belfast.

    Agenda

    1. Apologies
    2. Minutes of Annual General Meeting on 19th April 2017, 20th September 2017 and 18th October 2017
    3. Matters arising from previous minutes
    4. Chairman’s Report
    5. Accounts and Treasurer’s Report
    6. Matters arising from reports
    7. Constitutional Amendments
    8. General Data Protection Regulations
    9. 80 class preservation
    10. Election of Officers and Committee members
    11. Election of Honorary Auditor
    12. Any other business

    After the Annual General Meeting, Matthew Wilson will give a presentation entitled Britain, Ireland and France in the 2010s

    Minutes of Annual General Meeting 2017

    Minutes of the three meetings over which the 2017 AGM took place are enclosed with this newsletter. A small number of print copies will be available at the AGM, but members are asked if possible to bring their own copies in order that the minutes can be taken as read before adoption.

    Constitutional Amendments

    The Committee has proposed the following two motions:

    1. That section 5.2 of the Constitution be amended to read as follows:-

    The Treasurer shall keep accounts of all monies received or expended by MRSI and a complete financial statement with a report by an independent auditor shall be submitted at each Annual General Meeting. The financial year shall be from 1st March each year to 28th February the following year.

    1. That section 6.8 of the Constitution be amended to read as follows:-

    A quorum at any General Meeting shall be the lower of fifteen or half the voting membership.

    A simple majority of those voting will be sufficient to decide these motions to amend the Society’s Constitution.

    General Data Protection Regulation

    The Committee has agreed the following Privacy Statement drafted by our Secretary. Members will be given a copy of this on the annual membership renewal form, and the Committee will write to the Life Members separately.

    The Modern Railway Society of Ireland only uses the information you provide to us for legitimate interest as defined by the Information Commissioner’s Office.

    We do not disclose the information we hold about you to third parties without your permission or unless lawfully required to do so. Access to your information is restricted to those members of the Committee who need it to carry out their roles. This will include the Secretary and the Treasurer.

    The Committee of the Society may use your information to contact you concerning the business of the Society, including forthcoming events, membership matters, and notice of Annual and Extraordinary General Meetings.

    By providing your email address, you agree that we can contact you via email in preference to post.

    We delete your contact information one year after your membership expires, however we retain details of your name and membership number indefinitely in case you should rejoin in the future.

    By submitting this membership form with payment, you agree to us using your information in this way. 

    Elections procedure

    In accordance with the Constitution of the Society, one of the officers of the Society retires each year by rotation, and this year the Secretary’s post falls vacant.

    Our Chairman David Carson will continue in office until the 2019 AGM, and our Treasurer Roy Thompson will continue in office until the 2020 AGM.

    We therefore invite nominations as follows:-

    • to the post of Treasurer for a three year term, retiring in 2020, and
    • for up to three ordinary Committee Members, to serve for one year.

    Our present Secretary Andy Boal has indicated that he wishes to retire as Secretary this year due to pressures outside the society. He is willing to be nominated as an ordinary Committee Member.

    Nominations should be forwarded to Andy Boal, 1 Reid Street, BELFAST BT6 8PE, or via email to society@modernrsi.org stating:

    • The name of the person you are nominating
    • Your own name
    • A seconder
    • Confirmation that the nominee has agreed to be nominated

    Nominations must be received no later than Sunday 15th April 2018.

    Eligibility to vote

    Only members who have paid their annual subscription for 2017-18 and life members will be eligible to vote in the election.

    80 class preservation

    We were delighted to hear a few weeks ago that NIR has now released the 80 class DEMU for preservation. Members will recall that the Society voted to donate £3,000 towards the transportation of 450 class DEMU 458 to Downpatrick, and a further £7,000 towards the transportation of the 80 class.

    Withdrawn driving trailer 749 and power car 69, being in the best physical condition, have been selected for repainting into original livery. This is currently being carried out by NIR at DCDR’s expense, and they have launched an appeal to cover the cost of the repaint and the difference between our donation and the actual cost of transporting the 4 vehicles (69, 90, 749 and 752) to Downpatrick.

    For more information about the appeal, see http://www.downrail.co.uk/donate/dcdr80class/

    If you receive a hard copy of this newsletter, their fundraising leaflet has been enclosed. Hard copies will be available at our meetings, and a PDF will be sent to mail recipients as soon as we have a copy.

    Drogheda Train Care Depot

    We are pleased to announce a visit to Drogheda Train Care Depot on Wednesday 20th June at 10.45am. Because we will have to wait for a connecting train in Dundalk, we have also arranged a visit to Dundalk Railway Museum and Dundalk Central Signal Cabin while we wait.

    The itinerary will be as follows:-

    Belfast Central     dep 08:00
    Dundalk               arr 09:15
    Dundalk               dep 10:10
    Drogheda            arr 10:33

    Return will be by the train of your choice – members without Smartpasses are reminded that cash fares to Drogheda may be cheaper than web fares to Dublin and aren’t tied to particular trains!

    Numbers are strictly limited to fifteen, so it will be necessary to restrict attendance to society members only on a first come first served basis. Robust non-slip footwear will be required, but safety footwear would be preferred.

    As ever, please contact Andy Boal to book your place.

    Senior Travel Pass Group

    The next few outings will be on Wednesdays 25th April, 23rd May and 27th June. Details will be announced closer to the time.

    Contact: To add your name to the mailing list, please use our contact form and we will pass your details on.

    2018/19 Programme

    Wednesday 19th September – Chris Playfair

    Wednesday 17th October – Chris Conway and Richard Knox

    Wednesday 21st November

    Wednesday 16th January – Michael McMahon

    Wednesday 20th February

    Wednesday 20th March

    We will confirm the date of the 2019 AGM closer to the time. Because Easter will be late in 2019, we may bring it forward by a week as the RPSI do not usually meet in April.


  • February 2018 Newsletter

    After a flurry of correspondence in the autumn, the customary January newsletter went unpublished as there was little to report.

    However, we do have sad news for members.  Some of you will remember David Mummery, who lived in Essex but travelled on railtours when he was available – he was granted life membership after one railtour where he had been unable to travel, but refused the refund of his ticket to which he was entitled.  We are sorry to report that David died in late 2015, and we send our sympathies to his wife Mary Jane Lewis.

    Annual General Meeting

    At the reconvened Annual General Meeting on 18 October 2017, the following were elected:

    Treasurer:                    Roy Thompson
    Committee members:  Matthew Tennis, Brian Templeton

    This year it is the turn of the Secretary, Andy Boal, to retire, and we will invite nominations to the post of Secretary and for ordinary Committee members in good time for the Annual General Meeting.

    Future meetings

    Time is flying, and our February meeting is this Wednesday, 21st February.

    The chairman of RPSI, Rev John McKegney, is going to visit us and take a ramble through his photo albums – if you’re friends with him on Facebook, you may have seen some of his photos already, and we look forward to seeing what else he brings.

    Our March meeting will be in a classroom on 21st March.  Sam Somerville will reflect on his early days of railway enthusiasm from the early 1960s to the mid 1970s, followed by an old-fashioned slide show showing aspects of railway photography from 1975 embracing Ireland, Great Britain and mainland Europe.

    Finally, our Annual General Meeting will be on 18th April, after which Matthew Wilson will present some of his photography around Britain, Ireland and France.

    Membership 2017-18

    Unless we have already received your renewal form, a membership form for 2017-18 is attached.  Membership rates remain at £10 (£5 concession) but members are reminded that due to increasing bank fees, we can no longer accept payment in Euros.

    Senior Travel Pass Group

    Ken Harte writes:

    Wednesday 28th February – Athlone, Longford and Mullingar

    This month we plan to complete a circuit of Midland towns. Heuston to Athlone then by bus to either Longford or Mullingar picking up the 15.00 hrs Sligo/ Connolly train at Longford(16.19) or at Mullingar(17.00). Ticket- Monthly return to Athlone Code 78. At Mullingar there is a 15 minute walk back along the main street from the bus stop to the station.

    TIMETABLE

    Outward:
    Central dep.        08.00
    Connolly arr.        10.05
    Heuston dep.      11.25
    Athlone arr.         12.41

    Return direct via Portarlington:
    Athlone dep.       14.05         14.58         16.06
    Heuston  arr.       15.42         16.27         17.38

    Return via bus to Longford:
    Athlone dep.       14.45         (Bus Service 065)
    Longford arr.       15.35
    Longford dep.     16.19
    Connolly arr.        18.19

    Return via bus to Mullingar:
    Athlone dep.       14.40         (Bus Service 070)
    Mullingar arr.       15.35
    Mullingar dep.     17.00
    Connolly arr.        18.19

    And then return to Belfast:
    Connolly dep.      19.00
    Central arr.          21.10

    Contact: To add your name to the mailing list, please use the contact page and we will pass your details on.


  • October 2017 newsletter

    It is unusual for us to require to issue a second newsletter so quickly, but we are in exceptional circumstances.

    The attempt to reconvene the 2017 Annual General Meeting at the September meeting floundered due to once again being inquorate – fourteen members were in attendance as per the attached minutes.  We cannot proceed unless 20 members are present.

    The Annual General Meeting is required both under our Constitution and to ensure that we the Committee are accountable to members.

    Part of the business of the AGM is to adopt the 2016-17 accounts.  This is essential to avoid a heavy fine from HM Revenue and Customs.

    We will therefore reconvene the AGM at the beginning of the October meeting on 18th October.  As it is now eating into time set aside for presentations, the revised agenda will be as follows:-

    1. Apologies
    2. Adoption of minutes of AGM and adjourned AGMs on 20 April 2016, 19 April 2017 and 20 September 2017
    3. Adoption of Chairman’s Report, accounts and Treasurer’s Report
    4. Election of Officers and Committee members
    5. Election of Honorary Auditor

    Because of the limited time available, it will not be possible to accept matters arising from the floor at this meeting.  Any matters arising should be sent to the Secretary, who will circulate the responses to all members before the 2018 AGM, and where possible with the January newsletter.

    October meeting

    We are sorry to report that Chris Playfair will not be able to join us on Wednesday 18 October.  Chris was refused leave from his work, and he was badly beaten up at the weekend.  We wish him a speedy recovery.

    We are pleased to announce that Martin Baumann will delve into his considerable collection, and Ian Wilson will present some video during the meeting, which will be held in one of the classrooms as the Drama Studio is unavailable. 

    Membership 2017-18

    Unless we have already received your renewal form, a membership form for 2017-18 is attached.  Membership rates remain at £10 (£5 concession) but members are asked to note that due to increasing bank fees, we can no longer accept payment in Euros.

    Senior Travel Pass Group

    Ken Harte writes:

    Wednesday 25 October – Kilkenny

    This month we plan to travel to Kilkenny, Code 72, returning direct to Heuston for the 16.50 from Connolly or by the next train to Kildare and the tunnel for the 19.00 departure to Central. Industrial Action in Irish Rail may disrupt rail services at the end of the month. We are hopeful that this will not take place until after the 25th. If it does we will substitute our planned visit in November to Derry/Londonderry.

    TIMETABLE:

    Central       dep.  06.45
    Portadown  dep.  07.21
    Connolly     arr.    09.05
    Heuston     dep.  10.15
    Kilkenny     arr.    11.40.

    Return direct via Heuston:

    Kilkenny     dep.  13.43
    Heuston     arr.    15.15
    Connolly     dep.  16.50
    Central       arr.    19.05

    Return via Kildare and Phoenix Park Tunnel:

    Kilkenny     dep.  15.30
    Kildare        arr.    16.35
    Kildare        dep.  16.45
    Hazelhatch arr.    17.09
    Hazelhatch dep.  17.25
    Connolly     arr.    17.55
    Connolly     dep.  19.00
    Central       arr.    21.00

    Contact: To add your name to the mailing list, please use the contact form and we will pass your details on.


  • August 2017 newsletter

    East Coaster Railcruise – Gone West!

    It was with some shock that our friends in the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland learned a few days ago that the railtour planned for Saturday 9 September will not be able to proceed as planned.

    Unfortunately, essential engineering work means that the line will be closed between Bray and Wicklow all weekend.  Iarnrod Eireann have apologised for this oversight – the railtour plan was predicated on the line not requiring to close until Saturday evening, but the engineering work must begin on the Friday evening.

    Iarnrod Eireann have therefore offered an alternative destination – Sligo.

    The railtour will operate as intended between Whitehead and Dublin in either direction, but with an expected earlier departure from Dublin Connolly as follows:-

    Whitehead Excursion 07:30
    Carrickfergus 07:47
    Belfast Central 08:27
    Lisburn 08:42
    Portadown 09:06
    Drogheda 10:10
    Dublin Connolly 11:30

     

    The train is expected to return to Belfast Central for 22:15 as planned.

    Plans for the journey to Sligo are being finalised as we write, but they are expected to include several photostops and almost an hour in Sligo.

    We realise this will disappoint many members, especially anyone who travelled on the IRRS/RPSI railtour a few weeks ago.  Unfortunately, the only passenger guards passed for lines out of Heuston are reserved for Belmond operations due to the long hours involved, and to reschedule to a different day would cause severe inconvenience to those who have already arranged flights and accommodation.

    Anyone no longer wishing to travel should contact Belfast Welcome Centre.  Card payments can be refunded to your card, otherwise it will also be necessary to contact RPSI to request a refund via BACS transfer.

    Membership 2017-18

    A membership form for 2017-18 is available here.  Membership rates remain at £10 (£5 concession) but members are asked to note that due to increasing bank fees, we can no longer accept payment in Euros.

    2017/18 Programme

    Full details of the programme will be made available on the day of the railtour, but this is the outline programme for 2017/18:

    Wednesday 20 September (reconvened AGM) – Erwin Tisch and David Carson
    Wednesday 18 October – Chris Playfair
    Wednesday 15 November – Edwin McMillan
    Wednesday 17 January – Michael McMahon
    Wednesday 21 February – John McKegney
    Wednesday 21 March – Sam Somerville
    Wednesday 18 April (AGM) – Matthew Wilson

    All meetings will be held at 7.15pm in Ashfield Girls’ High School, Holywood Road, BELFAST.  The October and November meetings will be held in a classroom, and the remaining meetings will be held in the usual venue of the Drama Studio.

    Annual General Meeting

    The 2017 Annual General Meeting will be reconvened on Wednesday 20 September at 7.15pm.

    All minutes and reports will be taken as read, but matters arising will be accepted in the normal way.

    In the spirit of the Constitution, notices of motion will be accepted up to and including Thursday 31 August, and nominations for the post of Treasurer and the three Committee posts will be accepted up to Sunday 17 September.

    Full papers and agenda will be issued to all members after the railtour.


  • East Coaster Diesel Rail Cruise – 9th September 2017

    A full newsletter will follow in a few days (the Secretary is currently away) but this has just been announced…

    EAST COASTER DIESEL RAIL CRUISE – BELFAST TO WEXFORD AND ROSSLARE STRAND
    SATURDAY 9 SEPTEMBER 2017

    The Railway Preservation Society of Ireland and The Modern Railway Society of Ireland are delighted to announce a unique diesel hauled railtour on Saturday 9 September 2017 from Whitehead RPSI at 07.30, Belfast Central 08.22 to Wexford and Rosslare Strand in the far south east of Ireland. The RPSI’s Mk 2 carriage set will be used throughout. Motive power will be provided by an NIR 111 class (former Enterprise) locomotive to and from Dublin, and beyond by an Irish Rail 071 class diesel locomotive.
    The day will feature over 460 miles maximum travel with a very rare opportunity to travel by a diesel locomotive hauled train from Belfast to Wexford and Rosslare Strand over the former Dublin and South Eastern Railway (DSER) main line; Ireland’s most scenic line.
    The day return fare is £59.00 boarding either at Whitehead RPSI (not the NIR station), Carrickfergus, Belfast Central, Lisburn and Portadown. The fare from Drogheda and Dublin Connolly is £54.00. Tickets may be purchased from the Belfast Welcome Centre, 6 Donegall Square North, Belfast, either in person, on-line, or by telephone 028 9024 6609.

    For those not familiar with the railway beyond Dublin it skirts Dublin Bay to Dun Laoghaire and beyond Dalkey Tunnel there are sweeping sea views. At the majestic Bray Head there are four significant tunnels interspersed where the railway clings to the cliff face. Between Greystones and Wicklow the railway runs immediate to the beach and sea. Beyond Wicklow the railway climbs inland to Rathdrum and onward through scenic woodland to the small coastal town of Arklow. Travelling through rich countryside the next stations are Gorey and Enniscorthy, still in their DSER glory. Here we cross the River Slaney and skirt the ever widening river until it reaches Wexford, where it meets the sea. Wexford is the main town of Co. Wexford and has a population of around 20,000. While the train continues 6 miles south to Rosslare Strand (a small seaside village) our destination, passengers have the alternative option to de-train at Wexford, permitting around 2.5 hours to explore the town, its harbour and the option for sustenance. Beyond the station the train passes along an unfenced tramway at the quay, unique in Ireland, at 5mph; the road and retail outlets on one side, with the quayside on the other.

    This should be an exciting day out, aimed both at those interested in diesel locomotive haulage and the customer seeking an alternative day out, featuring unique Irish scenery observed from a beautiful railway line.

    Wexford arrival is schedule for 14.10 with departure at 16.45; Rosslare Strand is 14.30 to 15.40. Belfast Central return is 22.15.

    The outward departure times are Whitehead RPSI 07.30, Carrickfergus 07.43, Belfast Central 08.22, Lisburn 08.36 and Portadown 09.01. Departure from Drogheda is 10.05 and Dublin Connolly (platform 5) 11.40. Return set down stops are as per the outward pick up stops.

    30 June 2017


  • May 2017 newsletter

    Enclosed with this newsletter are the minutes of the adjourned Annual General Meeting on 19 April 2017 together with a copy of the audited accounts, and these come with an apology on behalf of the Committee.

    Simply, we accept that it was clearly a mistake to have the 30th birthday dinner on the same night as the AGM.  We seriously misjudged the interest that dinner would create amongst members.

    Therefore, we undertake that any future celebration dinners will be arranged separately from the main programme rather than sacrificing the traditional half meeting after the AGM.

    The AGM will therefore be reconvened at the beginning of the September meeting, and arrangements are later in this newsletter.

    Elsewhere in this newsletter we have news of a bus tour to the Clogher Valley Railway later this month, and a trip to Adelaide Train Depot.

    Clogher Valley Railway bus tour

    With stations at Augher and Fivemiletown hard to miss on the way from Belfast to Enniskillen, there are plenty of traces still to be found of this narrow gauge railway that closed in 1941.

    Our Chairman is acting as guide for an Irish Transport Heritage bus tour on Saturday 27 May, leaving the Europa Buscentre at 9am and travelling directly to Maguiresbridge before following the railway line back to Tynan.

    The fare for the day is £15.  If you would like to come, please use the contact page and we will put you in touch with Keith Ashe directly.

    Adelaide Train Depot Visit

    NIR has kindly agreed to facilitate a visit by the Society to Adelaide Train Depot at 7.30pm on Wednesday 14 June.

    There is a limit of 20 members on this visit, so if you would like to come, please contact the Secretary by Sunday 11 June.

    Railtour to Rosslare – 9 September 2017

    Members will understand that with our railtour being the first through special train to be operated by RPSI from Whitehead to beyond Dublin for some years, a significant number of arrangements have to be agreed between RPSI, who are operating the train, NIR and Irish Rail.

    Unfortunately, this means that it will not be possible to tell members more details of the itinerary and fare or to formally advertise the railtour until RPSI conclude their negotiations with the railway companies.

    We appreciate and share members’ deep frustration with this ongoing delay, and our next newsletter will include full details of the tour.

    Membership 2017-18

    Membership forms for 2017-18 will be issued with the next newsletter.  Membership rates remain at £10 (£5 concession) but members are asked to note that due to increasing bank fees, we can no longer accept payment in Euros.

    2017/18 Programme

    Full details will be issued later in the summer, but here are the dates and planned speakers:

    Wednesday 20 September (reconvened AGM) – Erwin Tisch and David Carson
    Wednesday 18 October – Chris Playfair
    Wednesday 15 November – Edwin McMillan
    Wednesday 17 January – Michael McMahon
    Wednesday 21 February – John McKegney
    Wednesday 21 March – Sam Somerville
    Wednesday 18 April (AGM) – Matthew Wilson

    Annual General Meeting

    As stated in the enclosed minutes, the Annual General Meeting on 19 April 2017 was inquorate, and we were unable to take any decisions.

    Although the reports were read, neither they nor the minutes of the 2016 AGM could be adopted, and the meeting was adjourned as the elections could not take place either.

    The Annual General Meeting will therefore be reconvened at the beginning of the September meeting on Wednesday 20 September.  All minutes and reports will be taken as read, but matters arising will be accepted in the normal way.

    In the spirit of the Constitution, notices of motion will be accepted up to and including Thursday 31 August, and nominations for the post of Treasurer and the three Committee posts will be accepted up to Sunday 17 September.

    The outline intended agenda is as follows:-

    1. Apologies
    2. Minutes of Annual General Meeting on 20 April 2016
    3. Minutes of adjourned AGM on 19 April 2017
    4. Matters arising from previous minutes
    5. Adoption of Chairman’s Report
    6. Adoption of Accounts and Treasurer’s Report
    7. Matters arising from reports
    8. Election of Officers and Committee members
    9. Election of Honorary Auditor
    10. Any other business

    The minutes and enclosures will be reissued with the formal agenda in early September.

    Senior Travel Pass Group

    Ken Harte writes:

    On Wednesday 24 May we plan to travel to Waterford returning direct or via Limerick Junction. Ex Central 06:45 (Code: Carrick on Suir  85). Depending on the weather etc. there will be an opportunity to stop off at Carlow on the way down OR to visit the seaside resort of Tramore by bus before getting the 16:25 hrs service to Limerick Junction.  At Tramore the original terminus building of the seven mile Waterford and Tramore Railway is clearly visible.

    TIMETABLE

    Belfast Central     dep    06:45
    Dublin Connolly    arr     09:00

    Dublin Heuston    dep    10:15
    Carlow                 arr     11:11                  or dep         14:12
    Waterford            arr     12:20                  or               15:25

    RETURN DIRECT

    Waterford            dep                                        14:50
    Carlow                 dep    14:11                  or               16:09
    Heuston               arr     15:15                  or               17:06

    RETURN VIA Tramore/Limerick Junction

    Service 360 to Tramore from Waterford Bus Station
    Waterford (bus)    dep    12:30                  or               13:00
    Tramore               arr     13:15                  or               13:45
    Tramore               dep    14:45                  or               15:15
    Waterford (bus)    arr     15:30                  or               16:00
    Waterford (rail)    dep    16:25
    Limerick Junction arr     18:05
    Limerick Junction dep    18:17
    Dublin Heuston    arr     20:22

    As a backup the no 4 Bus departs Waterford at 15:00 arr Busaras 17:30 and 18:00 arr Busaras 20:30.

    The last train to Belfast departs Dublin Connolly at 20:50.

    The next trip will be on Wednesday 28th June.  Possible destinations over the summer include Killarney Tralee / Western Corridor and Nenagh / Cork Kinsale.

    Contact: To add your name to the mailing list, please use the contact page and we will pass your details on


  • April 2017 newsletter

    Happy Easter to all our members!

    Notice is given in this newsletter of the Annual General Meeting of the Modern Railway Society of Ireland on Wednesday 19th April 2017.

    A reminder of dinner after the AGM is also included.

    Annual General Meeting

    Notice is given of the Annual General Meeting of the Modern Railway Society of Ireland, to be held at 7 pm on Wednesday 19th April 2017 in Shandon Park Golf Club, Shandon Park, Belfast.

    Agenda

    1. Apologies
    2. Minutes of Annual General Meeting on 20th April 2016
    3. Matters arising from previous minutes
    4. Chairman’s Report
    5. Accounts and Treasurer’s Report
    6. Matters arising from reports
    7. Election of Officers and Committee members
    8. Election of Honorary Auditor
    9. Any other business

    Minutes of Annual General Meeting 2016

    Minutes of the 2016 AGM have been issued to members.  A small number of print copies will be available at the AGM, but members are asked if possible to bring their own copies in order that the minutes can be taken as read before adoption.

    Elections procedure

    In accordance with the Constitution of the Society, one of the officers of the Society retires each year by rotation, and this year the Treasurer’s post falls vacant.

    Our Chairman David Carson will continue in office until the 2019 AGM, and our Secretary Andy Boal will continue in office until the 2018 AGM.

    We therefore invite nominations as follows:-

    • to the post of Treasurer for a three year term, retiring in 2020, and
    • for up to three ordinary committee members, to serve for one year.

    Nominations should be forwarded to Andy Boal, 1 Reid Street, BELFAST  BT6 8PE, or via email to society@modernrsi.org stating:

    • The name of the person you are nominating
    • Your own name
    • A seconder
    • Confirmation that the nominee has agreed to be nominated

    Nominations must be received no later than Sunday 16th April 2017.

    Eligibility to vote

    Only members who have paid their annual subscription for 2016-17 and life members will be eligible to vote in the election.

    30th Anniversary dinner

    As well as having our AGM in the pleasant surroundings of Shandon Park Golf Club, we are pleased to invite you to share a celebratory dinner afterwards in the Golf Club restaurant.

    A menu is available by contacting us – your menu choices and your payment (£20, £25 if you choose steak) must be received by the Secretary by Sunday 16th April.  Cheques should be made payable to MRSI as usual.

    Members are encouraged to bring their wives and partners to this auspicious occasion.  Dress code is smart casual – the golf club have requested shirts with collars, and no jeans or trainers.

    Senior Travel Pass Group

    The next few outings will be on Wednesdays 26th April, 24th May and 28th June.  Details will be announced closer to the time, due to the ongoing Bus Eireann industrial action.

    Contact: To add your name to the mailing list, please send your details to us and we will pass them on.

    Dates for your diary

    Clogher Valley Railway bus tour

    Irish Transport Heritage are organising a bus tour from Maguiresbridge to Tynan, guided by our Chairman David Carson.  Further information will follow, but it will be in late May or June and cost around £15.

    Railtour

    This remains provisionally scheduled for Saturday 9th September.  More information will be issued when available.

    2017/18 Programme

    Wednesday 20th September

    Wednesday 18th October

    Wednesday 15th November

    Wednesday 17th January

    Wednesday 21st February

    Wednesday 21st March

    Wednesday 18th April (AGM)