Scaleforum 2015

Announcements, recommendations, visit reports etc. Discussion of the Society's own shows.
BrianBailey
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby BrianBailey » Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:47 pm

I sweated blood laying that track.

Brian Bailey

Terry Bendall
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Terry Bendall » Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:59 pm

martin goodall wrote:and I have no problem with the gauge/profile of the wheels.


And neither do I. A good model is a good model regardless of the scale or gauge.

Terry Bendall

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Steve Carter
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Steve Carter » Fri Sep 25, 2015 3:46 pm

Terry Bendall wrote:
martin goodall wrote:and I have no problem with the gauge/profile of the wheels.


And neither do I. A good model is a good model regardless of the scale or gauge.

Terry Bendall


'Like' button :thumb
Steve Carter

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David Thorpe
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Thorpe » Fri Sep 25, 2015 3:53 pm

Hmmmm..... It's all very well saying that, but however good it may be otherwise, an 00 loco is always let down to at least some extent by the fact that its wheels are much too close together.

DT

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randallb
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby randallb » Tue Sep 29, 2015 12:23 pm

Well done to the organising team, helpers at the event and everyone concerned!

What a fantastic 'Forum' - it was superb, I came away enthused and revitalised.

The layouts were all exceptional, the demonstrators engaging and informative. My only problem is that there was so much useful information / good ideas / great tips - that I cannot remember it all....

looking forward to next year already.
Randall

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dcockling
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby dcockling » Sat Oct 10, 2015 4:18 pm

I didn't take many pictures this year, but here a few:

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Best to start them young...well done Roger


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and the ever young Brian Pearce with Lower Exbury


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Michael Godfrey (and Mrs Godfrey) with his latest PW masterpiece


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And more PW with Howard Bolton


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Chris Gough's Cadhay Sidings


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Ian Everett's Clecklewyke


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J15 on Coldfair Green


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Lever Frame on Barry Luck's Plumpton Green


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Jim Summers and Richard Chown


All the Best
Danny

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Jo Palmer
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Jo Palmer » Sun Oct 11, 2015 12:03 am

That's a lovely one of my Dad and my layout, thanks for posting that Danny :D
Jo Palmer

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CDGFife
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby CDGFife » Sun Oct 11, 2015 4:49 pm

Danny you must have picked the only 10 minutes in the weekend I was not behind the Cadhay layout!

Chris

David Bigcheeseplant
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Bigcheeseplant » Wed Oct 21, 2015 7:22 pm

What was the attendance this year was it up on last year. Sunday seemed busier than in previous years.

David

Terry Bendall
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Terry Bendall » Sat Oct 24, 2015 9:44 pm

David Bigcheeseplant wrote:What was the attendance this year was it up on last year


Unfortunately attendance was down this year. A 6% decrease in the number of members attending - 24 people which is in line with the normal fluctuations in the number of members attending but a more substantial 14% drop in the number of non members which is disappointing. Sunday was busier than it often is and it seems that either more people came on Sunday or those who came on Saturday came back for a second visit on Sunday.

It has been suggested that the fine weather caused some of the downturn in numbers although the Scaleforum weekend is usually sunny and others have suggested that people gave priority to watching the Rugby. The change from the usual last weekend in September may have made a difference. We cannot find out the exact reasons so there is not a lot of point in speculating. What we do know is that many visitors liked what was presented for their enjoyment.

Terry Bendall

Derek
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Derek » Sun Oct 25, 2015 1:49 am

Apart from the very useful EMGS North a few weeks earlier, Aylesbury was the first "non-commercial" exhibition I had been to since the early '90's- and has been the only exhibition that I have felt compelled to attend both days.

If there was any reason for a reduction in attendance I cannot believe that it was in any way related to the exhibition. I for one could not find even the slightest reason to fault it. 100% top marks to Terry & co.

Why the generally reduced figures? Greater minds than mine will have to work that one out.

Derek

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David Thorpe
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Thorpe » Sun Oct 25, 2015 8:56 am

Disappointed to hear that, Terry. It seems to have been a cracking show and everyone who went there seems to have enjoyed and benefited from it.

There has been some discussion in RMWeb about falling attendances at shows with particular reference to Scaleforum. The best reason, I felt, came from Chris at High level Kits who in one of his rare postings suggested that more and more people are avoiding shows because they just can't face the journey. Up here in rural Scotland I'm quite fortunate because our roads are pretty clear and driving can still be a pleasure, but when I venture south of, say, Lancaster, it can become a nightmare. Public transport? All too often expensive, unreliable and sometimes rather unpleasant. He added that a national show, such as Scaleforum, is likely to be worst hit by the reluctance to travel.

Looking at how I personally feel about going to shows I think that there's quite a lot in that theory and, unfortunately, there's nothing that the organisers can do about it.

DT

P.S. I should perhaps add that this is not meant to knock Aylesbury as a venue. I think that it applies throughout an increasingly crowded and congested country.
Last edited by David Thorpe on Sun Oct 25, 2015 12:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

David Bigcheeseplant
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Bigcheeseplant » Sun Oct 25, 2015 10:12 am

It is a pity numbers were down, considering the effort made to get more visitors this year. I do not know the answer, I wonder maybe if the general public do not know what Scalefourum means, I don't think model railway exhibition is mentioned in the leaflets or publicity, which could have an effect. Although is Scalefourum an exhibition? it seems like one with layouts, traders and demos but not in the same percentage ratio.

As for the weather I think Scalefourum weekend has always been nice for as many years as I can remember. So don't think that has any influence.

David

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jim s-w
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby jim s-w » Sun Oct 25, 2015 11:09 am

Hi David

Are the visitors to railex constant or do they change too as a percentage? Certainly many shows report a gradual downward trend hese days

Jim

David Bigcheeseplant
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Bigcheeseplant » Sun Oct 25, 2015 11:53 am

Railex visitors tend to be quite similar each year over eleven years it has varied between 2300 and close to 3000 paying visitors. the lowest number was in 2006 our second year then it grew to our highest attendance in 2008 and dropped back slightly and stayed around 2700 for a few years before jumping to the second highest attendance in 2015 again around the 3000 mark, this year it dropped back to our average attendance.

Looking at our two highest years 2008 & 2015 Dewsbury Midland was there both years, but we had quite a few big headline layouts in both of those years so maybe that's the secret.

One thing that has changed over the years is the was computers and social media have come in and effected the way the show is publicized. When we started off in 2005 it was all about printed info in the modelling press and flyers, that is still important but now its about forums facebook etc. Back in the old days there was no feedback until after the event now people can comment straight away and that can have an effect if someone is deciding to visit Sunday.

You may knock RM Web but is the biggest forum and a bit like Railway Modeller in that if you want to get seen you need to be on there.

Each year at Railex we try and introduce new ideas and things move on, and I also try to ensure the hall layout works, It is not that easy but try and compose the show rather than just make things fit, I try to ensure there is a wow layout as you walk in to set the first impression, It was not quite right this year but I was talked out what I planned originally! Next year I think the floor plan is more or less spot on.


David

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jim s-w
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby jim s-w » Sun Oct 25, 2015 12:15 pm

That might be the case but have things changed? For example rmweb quotes a membership of 27,000 but of those members only 12% have logged in, in the last 5 years. Compare that to hornby's Facebook page which was only launched earlier this year and they have 40,000+ followers already. I recently posted a brettle lane picture on a Facebook modelling group and over 150 people clicked like within 2 days. Perhaps a focused Facebook campaign is an avenue worth investigation?

I too think there's something in the big name layouts but in the wider scheme of things, does our society have any? (no disputing the quality but how many are known outside of the society?). This is something I touched on before.

I don't see how the floor plan makes any difference to the visitor numbers mind you.

Jim

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grovenor-2685
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby grovenor-2685 » Sun Oct 25, 2015 1:46 pm

I don't see how the floor plan makes any difference to the visitor numbers mind you.

Perhaps this year's floor plan will influence attendance next year?
Regards

David Bigcheeseplant
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Bigcheeseplant » Sun Oct 25, 2015 2:25 pm

The floor plan makes no difference to visitor numbers but the way both first impressions and the general feel of the show I think do. I am not saying Scaleforum is badly laid out but some other shows are, it may not be one thing that makes me decide to visit or not the following year, but if a number of things get most things right and the visitor will go away feeling positive.

One thing I have found is that the shows are normally judged on what the previous year was like.

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Steve Carter
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Steve Carter » Sun Oct 25, 2015 3:16 pm

David Bigcheeseplant wrote:One thing I have found is that the shows are normally judged on what the previous year was like.


I hope you're right David because I thought this years Scaleforum was a cracker.
Last edited by Steve Carter on Sun Oct 25, 2015 5:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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David Thorpe
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Thorpe » Sun Oct 25, 2015 4:51 pm

Other than its location, I don't think that Railex can be compared to Scaleforum. Although perhaps concentrating on what might be called finescale, Railex is an all-gauge show with a high public profile that will inevitably have greater general appeal, even if not particularly to me. Scaleforum, on the other hand, is a show catering for a niche section of the market which does not have general appeal.

So things that may attract people to Railex are not necessarily going to do the same thing for Scaleforum. I don't think that big layouts are of particular importance at Scaleforum, for example - indeed, it would be interesting to see just how highly many society members going to Scaleforum rate layouts in importance compared to, say, trade, demonstrations, the social aspect, and so on. As for the general feel of the show, and what last years was like, every Scaleforum seems to be well liked by those who actually attend and i agree with Jim that floorplan at a show like Scaleforum will have little bearing on attendance numbers.

I also think Jim's idea of a Facebook page is excellent as Facebook has a huge public profile, but that brings with it the obvious problem as to who would be willing to look after the Society's Facebook presence.

As has been remarked in the past, the Society demographic, is, shall we say, not all that young. I still maintain that it isn't the show, or layouts, of floorplan, or weather that's putting people off - it's a general reluctance to travel on today's congested roads or public transport system. Speaking personally, the older I get, the more reluctant I am becoming to spend several hours driving, particularly in heavy traffic, and my experiences of rail travel this year have been generally unsatisfactory. Unlike local shows, the Society has to rely on a lot of its members having to travel a fair way to get to Scaleforum and if, like me, these members are not really wanting to travel far, then attendances will suffer, regardless of where the show is held. And I don't really think that there's anything to be done about that.

DT

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Steve Carter
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Steve Carter » Sun Oct 25, 2015 5:37 pm

The Society Is on Facebook and also has a Twitter presence.
You can find links to these at the bottom of the Society home page.
Steve Carter

Derek
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby Derek » Sun Oct 25, 2015 5:53 pm

My apologies if this has already been discussed or tried.

Real preserved railways (or even National rail depot open days I suppose) will always attract a wide range of people to them- not just typical rail enthusiasts (real or model).

Has any thought been given to setting up a mini-exhibition at one or two of those? I do appreciate it is easier to type the idea into a forum than actually do it. It seems to me that getting people interested once they've walked through the door is not a problem- to get them through the door in the first place is far harder.

As for this continual worry about the average age of finescale modellers- whilst it is commendable trying to encourage young members, I suspect that such efforts will be in vain. I would put it akin to radio two worrying about why it isn't attracting younger listeners- it does attract new listeners, but most start on radio 1 or similar before moving onto radio 2 or 4 as they get older.

Derek

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David Thorpe
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby David Thorpe » Sun Oct 25, 2015 6:16 pm

Steve Carter wrote:The Society Is on Facebook and also has a Twitter presence.


So there is! I suppose I'd missed this as I seldom look at the website home page and also don't use Facebook (or Twitter, for that matter). Anyway, who administers the Facebook page? Hats off to you, whoever you are. I just hope that Facebook doesn't take over from this forum....

DT

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dcockling
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Re: Scaleforum 2015

Postby dcockling » Sun Oct 25, 2015 8:01 pm

David Thorpe wrote:who administers the Facebook page? Hats off to you, whoever you are. I just hope that Facebook doesn't take over from this forum....

DT


That'll be mostly the usual suspects David. I joined facebook simply to be able to create a Society page and started the Twitter account too. There are a number of other people with admin or editor access: John McAleely, Paul Willis, Steve Carter, Jonathan Hughes, Will Litchfield and John Sherratt, essentially I've opened it up to anyone who is willing to represent the Society and post in a positive and upbeat way and the same still applies. If any other member would like to help or take part, then please let me know.

On Facebook we presently have 414 likes and on Twitter 164 followers. The two accounts are linked, so that a post on one appears on the other.

And no they won't take over from anything else that we do, their purpose is completely different. These accounts are a way of reaching out to people, some of whom wouldn't otherwise be aware of the Society and let them know about the Society and what we do: we have even got some new members as a result.

I know that many people don't like social media and I'm not a great lover of them myself, but they exist, they are out there and I felt that we were missing an opportunity of promoting the Society in a positive way if we didn't get involved.

All the Best
Danny


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