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Library - Spread the word!

Postby Peter Hall » Thu Sep 27, 2018 8:29 am

Interesting that the news has been broken by a lay member, all be it one with his ear to the ground.

It is presumed that the formal announcement will be made in the October RO which is presumably only days away from appearing on our screens or dropping through our letter boxes.

As has been mentioned in other topics the Society website is our shop window and now needs to prominently promote the library as a benefit of membership. It is also a good way of keeping members informed of Library developments including updates on opening hours etc.

As far as I can tell no direct link from the home page currently exists with what information there is being found by clicking Society and selecting Library from the menu. Hopefully this Library link will become a direct link from the home page and a fully updated version be available coinciding with presumably the official announcement in the next few days.
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Re: Archive and Library

Postby Andy Davies » Thu Sep 27, 2018 5:40 pm

The initial arrangements for access to the Archive and Library at Leatherhead are published on Page 640 of the September RO. It is intended to have a regular opening time in due course but that does depend on volunteers (All volunteers welcome!).

Additional information is on the Library webpages https://www.rcts.org.uk/about/library/events.htm

I did send the editor an update for the September RO. I will write another once the opening and Members' Weekend are over.

There is no secret about the opening ceremony, each Branch Chairman or Secretary has had an invitation to send a representative. We cannot invite the whole Society due to lack of space. However access at other times is available, if you contact me as stated in the RO.

I will be giving a presentation at the Officers' Conference regarding progress, and afterwards intend to circulate that presentation as a Newsletter. Ask your branch committee for a copy when it is circulated.

Andy
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Re: Library

Postby MisterC » Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:16 pm

The October RO is now online and I made a beeline for the official announcement about the library, but it took some finding! The Society does seem intent on hiding its light under a bushel instead of blowing its own trumpet.

For those who did not read to the end of the Chairman's address, the announcement about the library is buried deep in the middle of a very long fifth paragraph on page 650.

This is breathtakingly inadequate at doing justice to a fine achievement, and shows how the Society is stuck in the 20th century when it comes to communication with its members. In the age of the internet communication to members should be direct, immediate and precise, via the website and this forum. Cascading information via branches still has its place, especially for those without internet access, but in the 21st century it can't be considered the primary channel of communication, because it is indirect, slow and imprecise.

I hope that this will be rectified in the November RO with a full report of the opening ceremony and at least a summary of the Archivist's presentation at the members' weekend. I also expect the latter to be posted in full on the website as soon after the event as is practical, for the benefit of those unable to attend.
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Re: Library

Postby Train Spotter » Thu Oct 11, 2018 10:27 am

Its now 6 days since the Library was officially opened but if you look on website click on the Library quotes last updated April 2018.... Why is it so hard for somebody to update the website or have we got send the carrier pigeon to find out the latest information.....

I want to come to look for some info got a very limited time frame on the few remaining Saturdays this year but yet no information on anything..... To who it may concern get your act together & update the Library page on the website........

We all don't live down south & trying to book train tickets in advance almost makes it impossible to do anything this year as cheaply as possible because nobody can be bothered to up date the library page on the website.......
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Re: Library

Postby pauludey » Thu Oct 11, 2018 2:50 pm

No doubt, you or your branch reps will get an update at the Officer's Conference this Sunday.
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Re: Library

Postby Peter Hall » Thu Oct 11, 2018 7:31 pm

Train Spotter makes some very valid points. As MisterC has also pointed out, the website is where members are most likely to turn for up to date information about the society and its activities in this day and age.

I am aware of a number of members who have only renewed their membership in recent years so as to ensure they were in a position to access the library as soon as it was again available. In fact, only on Saturday at another Societies event, I was asked by a RCTS member if I had heard anything about when access was possible. My answer was along the lines of the official opening is today so I presume a list of dates is now available but don't hold your breath. That member lives over 200 miles from Leatherhead so like Train Spotter needs to make arrangements.

It would be interesting to know how many Branches were represented at the opening and how many will be represented in Bournemouth? Previous years minutes suggest not all Branches are represented at the Officers Conference and many members do not, or are unable to attend Branch meetings - more than 50% of the membership as I understand it. Personally I consider myself Branchless but I'll not go into that now.

What Train Spotter has highlighted seems to emphasise what MisterC says about the Society being intent on hiding its light under a bushel instead of blowing its own trumpet when it comes to the library.
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Re: Library

Postby webmaster » Thu Oct 11, 2018 10:04 pm

The reason opening times don't appear on the website is that they haven't been decided yet. The priority over the last few months has been to move the books and other archive material out of Uxbridge (which we have now vacated) and the other stores into Leatherhead so we can stop paying rent on them. This has largely been achieved - though I understand we have discovered that we have rather more stuff than we thought we had.... The lack of news since the opening is doubtless because some of the people heavily involved in the library are also organizing the Members Weekend which starts tomorrow.

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Re: Library

Postby MisterC » Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:11 am

I have not been expecting any substantive announcement about library access until after the members' weekend. I appreciate that those involved are busy with the official opening and the members weekend, but I'm still incredulous that the Society can invest all this time and money in a new facility, hold an official opening ceremony, yet not post a report on its website immediately after. Any organisation with one foot in the 21st century would have had a pre prepared news release to go to the commercial railway press, the bulk of which could have been reproduced on the society website.

Let's not make the same mistake with the presentation at the members' weekend! I expect the webmaster to be grabbing the presentation material as soon as the presentation is over, and turning it into something suitable for the website that can delight us next week.

It is also essential that the next RO includes proper coverage of this.

But a timetable of fixed opening times is probably premature at this stage. The archive team have no information yet on when are the best times to be open. I suggest that those who wish to use the library make contact with the archivist (but after this weekend!) to arrange a visit by appointment. The times that members wish to visit by appointment will then give the archive team some indication of the best times for advertised opening.
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Re: Library

Postby Andy Davies » Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:57 am

Train Spotter,

I refer you to my previous comment regarding access:

The initial arrangements for access to the Archive and Library at Leatherhead are published on Page 640 of the September RO. It is intended to have a regular opening time in due course but that does depend on volunteers (All volunteers welcome!).

You could follow that guidance as another member has already done......................

Andy
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Re: Library

Postby Dampflok » Sat Oct 13, 2018 5:12 pm

Hello all,

My first post since re-registering on the forum (not sure what happened to my original account...).

I was lucky enough to be invited to the opening of the new library facilities in my capacity as Chairman of the Watford Branch and many thanks to the powers-that-be for that.

Despite the weather it was a great day and, obviously, many people have put in a lot of work to get to this stage. The opening day itself must have taken a lot of organisation.

I took a few photos on the day and if anyone is interested they are available to view on my website (no point in me sending them to the RO, nothing I submit ever appears...). At present they are in an "unlisted" gallery, so don't appear on the "browse" menu page, but if you follow this link, you should be able to view them:

https://plumbloco.smugmug.com/Trains/RC ... /n-PcWHWd/

This takes you to the menu thumbnail view, click on the large image on the right of the screen to view individual images, then click on the left/right arrows to go to the next image - the site is best viewed in full screen mode. Captions are included.

Regards,

Geoff Plumb
Please visit my photo gallery at: www.plumbloco.co.uk
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