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Author Topic: ps Waverley 2011 Season  (Read 12354 times)

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Offline Clydebuilt1971

ps Waverley 2011 Season
« on: Apr 13, 2011, 01:16 PM »
Hi Folks,

Waverley is due to kick off her 2011 season on Good Friday with her annual trip to the magical Western Isles. She sails to Oban via the Mull of Kintyre on the Friday which is a unique voyage as there is no other direct sailing from Glasgow to Oban offered by any other company. Other stops on the way include Greenock, Campbeltown and a call either at Islay or Colonsay prior to arrival in Oban.

On a serious note folks Waverley and Balmoral need our support more than ever this year. Fuel costs have soared by over the 55% from the end of last season - the furnace oil Waverley uses in her boilers is now over £500 per ton (she uses approx 0.7 tons per hour's sailing at cruising speed) and Marine Gas Oil (ie diesel) is now £560 per ton. Waverley uses MGO to fire her boilers when alongside for more than 2-3 hours (emissions regs requirement I think) and also burns MGO to drive her generators. Balmoral is a motor ship so uses this fuel type in her main engines as well as generators.

So if you can afford to sail please do so and bring a whole load of your friends and family. Its not a cheap day out but it is unique and if costs continue to rise then it may end up a case of "if you dont use it you'll lose it".

Sorry to be a bit morbid but truth is usually the best policy.

Gav

Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #1 on: Apr 16, 2011, 02:04 PM »
Thanks for the update Gav.

This is all very worrying.  55% increase in fuel costs since the end of last season is horrendous.

I feel that the contents of your message here, need to be widely known by Glaswegian Waverley supporters.  Your use-it-or-lose-it line is profound.  

I think the big problem is that the traditional type of Glasgow punter who enjoys the Waverley, is also the type of person who is really suffering during the recession just now.

It is a shame that it is not the Waverley being positioned in front of the new transport museum as i feel that would get her some much needed attention.  Where she is now, if you have seen the Science centre once, you would not generally be there again.

If fuel really becomes a critical problem, and she is not making money doing trips each day, could she spend more time open but static?  Then on the days when she *does* run, she'd be full and profitable (hopefully).  This would allow her, surely, to raise more revenue?  I've witnessed people (tourists) wandering up to her, and then being surprised to find out that they can't pay to go on board for a snack or a tour.

Incidentally when I was at the BBC a couple of weeks ago, I was being asked why they cannot use the Waverley for meetings and lunches - they are chronically short of this type of space because their restaurant is about half the size it needs to be.  
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Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #2 on: Apr 18, 2011, 01:08 PM »
Just visiting Waverley just now on my bike - looking good, and the beer s being loaded aboard!
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Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #3 on: Apr 18, 2011, 01:59 PM »
I know that Carlsberg is "probably the best beer in the world" (and I also know plenty of Danes who would prefer Tuborg...) -- but is there no Scottish beer that would satisfy the taste buds of the Waverley passengers?

Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #4 on: Apr 18, 2011, 04:12 PM »
At a guess, I'd say that the lorry isn't entirely full of carlsberg, and that there are a choice of beers on board :)
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Offline Alistair

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #5 on: Apr 18, 2011, 11:57 PM »
You can always get Tennants on board...and Bellhaven!  ;D

Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #6 on: Jun 02, 2011, 06:51 PM »
Glasgow Evening Times

12 May 2011
Her iconic red, white and black funnels are usually seen gliding gracefully across the waves of the Clyde.  But today the paddle steamer Waverley is back on dry land for a makeover ahead of the new sailing season.

http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/editor-s-picks/high-and-maybe-dry-1.1101039


The Herald

Efforts to keep Waverley afloat hit stormy seas
31 May 2011

http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/transport-environment/efforts-to-keep-waverley-afloat-hit-stormy-seas-1.1104371
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Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #7 on: Jun 02, 2011, 11:22 PM »
Save the Waverley

Apparently " A national fundraising campaign, 'Save the Waverley', has been launched to raise vital funds and ensure that the world's last sea-going paddle steamer can continue to sail." - they should get it on Facebook though...

http://www.clevedonpeople.co.uk/aboard-great-day-help-Save-Waverley/story-12475960-detail/story.html
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Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #8 on: Jul 24, 2011, 06:18 PM »
We had an absolutely lovely day out on Waverley yesterday, and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone wealthy enough to be able to afford to do so.  However for Glasgow, her current pricing excludes the majority of the population that she was built to serve.  The total for two people for the day trip we did, without being particularly extravagant, including what can only be described as a 'basic' dinner (my companion used a rude word to describe his expensive curry...) was around £140.

I think they have increased the prices in an effort to bring in more money, but this is a terrible, terrible mistake.  They need to LOWER their prices, and get people on board and spending and enjoying her and spreading the word that they had a lovely day out.  My sister, with 3 children, says she simply cannot afford to go on her.  Children should go FREE for a start.

The big trouble is, if people try to book a trip, and then realise they can't afford it, they simply will not consider it again and you'll then have an uphill struggle to ever get them back.

I've been told by various people that she is in a perilous state financially, and could even stop running quite soon.

She needs some brilliant business people - with proven commercial experience and qualifications - to look at the entire operation of her.

I think we'll lose her unless there is a radical rethink on the way she is operated.
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Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #9 on: Jul 30, 2011, 02:30 PM »
Fabulous scenic photo of Waverley here :

https://www.flickr.com/photos/zak355/5963816205

One of these days, I shall sail on her too and it will all feel so familiar :) .

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #10 on: Jul 30, 2011, 06:16 PM »
Fabulous scenic photo of Waverley here :

https://www.flickr.com/photos/zak355/5963816205

One of these days, I shall sail on her too and it will all feel so familiar :) .

You should try to come to Scotland to sail on the Waverley as you would so enjoy the experience.  

Beautiful photo!  Some people can capture the moment so well or are they just at the right place at the right time.  
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Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #11 on: Aug 01, 2011, 01:21 PM »
Save the Waverley

Apparently " A national fundraising campaign, 'Save the Waverley', has been launched to raise vital funds and ensure that the world's last sea-going paddle steamer can continue to sail." - they should get it on Facebook though...

http://www.clevedonpeople.co.uk/aboard-great-day-help-Save-Waverley/story-12475960-detail/story.html

Hi Rob,

Waverley and Balmoral are now on Facebook
http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages/Waverley-and-Balmoral-Pleasure-Steamers/229950527030863


With regards to the pricing policy I agree with you - lower prices would attract a wider audience. There are kids go free days rather than having a blanket kids free policy - this is one thing that I agree with WEL on as not everyone wants a boat rammed with kids on a 12hour cruise. Cunard opened our Med cruise on QV to kids free 3 weeks before sailing and didnt even bother to tell us. The holiday we had was good but was ruined by the inevitable disrespectful behaviour from certain parents on board - letting their kids run riot - Cunard did nothing about it either mind you! Changing nappies in the self serve area is just not on!!

The recent period of settled weather will have done no harm at all but the main focus has to be raising enough funds to have the ship(s) overhauled and ready to generate revenue in 2012 - this means having enough cash to support the company through the winter - or indeed looking at other ways to run the operation which could reduce winter overheads.

Your are right Rob - they need people on board in the organisation that have a track record in running tourist attractions.
We shall see what happens this year.

Glad you enjoyed your day.

Gav


Offline Tyne Turbine

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #12 on: Aug 08, 2011, 10:52 PM »
We had an absolutely lovely day out on Waverley yesterday, and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone wealthy enough to be able to afford to do so.  However for Glasgow, her current pricing excludes the majority of the population that she was built to serve.  The total for two people for the day trip we did, without being particularly extravagant, including what can only be described as a 'basic' dinner (my companion used a rude word to describe his expensive curry...) was around £140.

Hi Rob,
Just picked up on this thread and may I put the other side of the story:

I am the first to admit that fares on the Waverley are not cheap, but neither are many other attractions these days. I am old enough to remember an adult day ticket on the Waverley being available for under eighteen shillings or ninety pence in decimal currency but that was fifty years ago.

By my reckoning your sailing was a trip from Glasgow to Loch Long, one which will be repeated next Sunday with a fare from Glasgow of £29.95 per adult which for 10.25 hours equates to about £2.89 per hour on board. The balance of your spending was discretionary and would be the same situation at many other attractions.

I have just selected at random a steam railtour also taking place next week, a standard class ticket works out at over £5 per hour. It is interesting to note that the only available space is in standard class, the vastly more expensive first and premier class are both sold out.

I believe it is unfair to compare passenger fares with the vastly state subsidised Calmac operation but a passenger return by Western Ferries to Hunters Quay from McInroys Point is priced I see at £7.50 for a return journey advertised at 40 minutes or £11.25 per hour.

A ticket for a football match in Glasgow selected at random on the internet is advertised at £28.00, even if we said there was alot of extra time this would be £14.00 per hour.

Even to pay for only for petrol in a car doing 40mpg at 40mph would still cost about £6 for an hours travel.

Yes the food, and I cannot speak with authority about the drink, may be expensive but on a straightforward measure of basic cost per hour the Waverley appears to be a bargain.
« Last Edit: Aug 08, 2011, 11:03 PM by Rob Lightbody »

Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #13 on: Aug 08, 2011, 11:02 PM »
I will think about this overnight, some good points!

However it doesn't apply to the food... here they are shooting themselves in the foot by pricing it so high that people simply can't afford to eat, and when they do, are disappointed because it does not live up to the luxury price. 

If they lowered the price of the food, more people would eat, and they'd make more money.

Our fixed price for 2 to Tighnabruaich from Glasgow was £76.  The difference between the Waverley and your family car, is the more people you take with you on the Waverley, the more the price shoots up!  For my sister, with 3 kids, this means she simply can't go.
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Online cunardqueen

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #14 on: Aug 08, 2011, 11:21 PM »
Quote
   However it doesn't apply to the food... here they are shooting themselves in the foot by pricing it so high that people simply can't afford to eat, and when they do, are disappointed because it does not live up to the luxury price. 

If they lowered the price of the food, more people would eat, and they'd make more money.

   
Why couldnt they do some sort of online promotion, East Coast allow you to purchase meal voucher along with your tickets at a slightly reduced price.

On the trip last year, l didnt think it was expensive, and the food seemed to be reasonable enough. I would be interested to know which brings in more revenue the food or the drink?  The bar at the front seemed very busy by what l remember. What l did think seemed unusual was the very small bar, it wasnt at all busy, couldnt that have been turned into the crew canteen and turn the crew canteen into a eating venue ? 
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Offline Tyne Turbine

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #15 on: Aug 09, 2011, 12:04 AM »
Sorry Rob,

I had thought reading your post it was probably the Sunday journey, so yes the Saturday trip is more expensive but for fairness if you deduct the stopover time at Tighnabruaich it still only works out at £3.93 per hour.

Yes you are quite correct about the car and being able to achieve economies of scale by carrying passengers but one should also bear in mind the further costs of insurance, road tax and depreciation. Nor do you have the opportunity to take extra people into the football match, or on board the ferry or train under normal circumstances for the same charge, even if family tickets are available there is usually some extra charge even if it does reduce the prorata rate.

I did say that the food was a discretionary item as you were not forced to buy it, nor alcohol or beverages. Obviously it would be better for Waverley if passengers considered the offer to represent value for money and to avail themselves of the food on offer. I would also agree with Miles that other organisations such as East Coast have a twenty per cent discount if food vouchers are purchased in advance. (Incidentally I have absolutely no knowledge of what the catering standards and prices are like at football grounds or leisure parks).

I merely make these comments as an enthusist who is outside the management structure of the operating company but who felt that the comments about the day being unaffordable to the average person was a something of a broad brush statement without looking at other activities where many, many people are content to pay at an even higher rate even if, possibly like Waverley, these ventures have to be seen as a special treat rather than an every day experience.

Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #16 on: Aug 29, 2011, 01:02 PM »
Today (Monday) sees Waverley complete her main 2011 Clyde Season - she sails for the South Coast either tonight or tomorrow. She will sail on her home river again in 2011 on Sat 15th and Sun 16th October.

I hope some QE2 Story posters will sail on her during her time on the South Coast and Thames. Details of sailings can be found at www.waverleyexcursions.co.uk

On behalf of the Scottish Branch of the Paddle Steamer Preservation Society (PSPS) could I say thankyou to everyone who supported our beautiful ship and let us all hope that we can enjoy her in 2012.

Gav
(Chairman PSPS Scottish Branch)

Offline Tyne Turbine

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #17 on: Aug 30, 2011, 12:38 AM »
Members of the Forum may be interested that a BBC film crew were on board Waverley on her sailing on Monday. They were also using a rib for shots of the Paddler.

I believe that the resulting piece is due to be shown on BBC1 on The One Show on Wedneday night which usually starts a few minutes before its advertised start of 19.00.

Offline Andrew Collier

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #18 on: Aug 30, 2011, 06:51 PM »
Can't wait for it to get down here, think i'll go on Saturday round the IoW if the weathers fair....
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Online cunardqueen

Re: ps Waverley 2011 Season
« Reply #19 on: Aug 30, 2011, 07:10 PM »
And from todays Daily Mail..

From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!