Railwatch

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Railwatch 079 - April 1999

Railwatch - Moving into office with our allies

RDS is expecting to move into a London office this year, providing a focal point for more effective campaigning.

The office at 31-33 Bondway, Vauxhall, London SW8 1SJ — to be shared with the Pedestrians Association — will provide a base for Nat Taplin, our first-ever salaried employee, who could soon be working alongside the Pedestrians' Paula Swords.

This year Nat, currently executive officer, becomes development director with the aim of boosting both membership and revenue.

He will also promote the society's national events and coordinate the membership services section. Joining Nat in the office will be a campaigns director whose aim will be to make sure RDS gets its fair share of media coverage and to lobby politicians and the railway industry. There was a great response to the appeal for funds to equip the office.

A part-time administrator may be appointed and volunteers will be recruited to maintain a presence in the office.

The new structure coincides with the retirement this year of several key RDS officers who have contributed an enormous amount to the society in return for very modest honoraria.

John Bigny, who retired on 31 December, has put in sterling service as chief administrative officer. John also despatched Railwatch with help from his wife Iris. He has been made an honorary member of the society. Alan Crowhurst, who allowed the society to use his home as our permanent address, also retires at the end of March.

Conference secretary David Soames has also retired after a five-year term.

RDS member John Lee from King's Lynn, a former Royal Navy officer, has been appointed as an administrative officer. He is already providing support to the elected national officers.

The national executive has decided that home-based administrative officers will be needed at least until the society has an assured revenue stream to pay for administrative staff and volunteers to work from the office.

In the meantime, key members, including branch secretaries and committee chairmen are being invited to submit their views about staffing on paper for the next meeting of the finance and general purposes committee.

Note: contact details (postal and email addresses, along with telephone numbers) in old editions of Railwatch out of date. Click CONTACT US for latest contact details.


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