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21 Mar 2016

Policy updated

2016-10-26T21:58:09+00:00 March 21st, 2016|Shed Notices|Comments Off on Policy updated

An updated Policy and Procedure for the Management of Harassment, Bullying, Violence and Aggression has been posted on the Policies page of the Association web site.

Mike Riley, Company Secretary

19 Feb 2016

February mailing

2016-10-12T13:53:39+00:00 February 19th, 2016|Shed Notices|Comments Off on February mailing

Dispatch of the large February mailing is now imminent. The pictures below show SMT going through the binding process, where the 76 pages are put in order and stapled prior to stacking. SMT was printed on Wednesday and bound on Thursday, meaning that the last of the material for the February mailing is now complete. We expect packaging to occur on Friday.

Royal Mail may collect it on Friday afternoon, in which case (and based on November’s experience) the package will start arriving at UK addresses on Saturday. Royal Mail make two collections a day from Warners, but if the package is not available by the time they make the second collection, most UK residents will receive it on Monday. Delivery by Air Mail to overseas addresses takes longer and members overseas well know how long it typically takes.

There are two changes from the previous mailings:

  • We are using thicker film to wrap the package. This will reduce the potential for tearing but cannot completely eliminate it. As in the past, please advise Warners of any damaged/missing items (email, phone 01778 392016, or +44 1778 392016 from overseas) and they will replace them promptly.
  • The annual DVD will be tack glued to the cover of SMT. I am assured that the glue will not damage SMT having viewed a sample personally. This will help to guard against the DVD becoming separated from the rest of the package if a tear to the wrapping occurs.

I hope you enjoy yours when it arrives.

Alan Regan, Chairman & Membership Secretary

16 Feb 2016

February mailing

2016-02-19T12:25:42+00:00 February 16th, 2016|Shed Notices|Comments Off on February mailing

All elements of the very full February mailing are now with our printers. We have met the schedule agreed with Warners Midlands (who print and distribute), so I expect they will complete packaging and collection by Royal Mail this Friday. Some UK addresses may receive the package as early as Saturday 20th. Most members should have received theirs by Saturday 27th. Some countries take much longer to process Air Mail – affected member are well aware. Any change will be communicated via Shed Notices.

Members should thank the various editors and compilers of the material they will receive. Of all mailings, this one has involved more members of the board than any other in the year.

Alan Regan, Chairman & Membership Secretary

10 Feb 2016

Online renewal invitations

2016-10-12T13:53:40+00:00 February 10th, 2016|Shed Notices|Comments Off on Online renewal invitations

Invitations to renew your subscription online are being sent today to most members who elect to use this facility. The email will not come from an Association address as in the past but it will be clear that it’s from the Subscription Management team at Warners (look for “on behalf of …” in the sender’s email address). To enable you further to reassure yourself that the invitation is genuine, if available, a fragment of your personal data in included in the invitation. This won’t compromise your security as it’s a very small fragment. If the data isn’t available then “No data held” will be shown.

The email can also be opened in a Web browser if the formatting in the invitation has been lost. The link to do this is top right in the email.

A small number of members who elect to renew online will receive their invitation later in the week. This delay will enable us to reduce and hopefully avoid any need to enter the delivery address for SMT manually. This affects about 200 UK and overseas members with addresses where, for example, our data stores a house name but no street address, or where local address formatting puts the house name after the street name. We will work hard to avoid any compromise to delivery address and the reliable receipt of you magazine. A further post will be made when the necessary changes have been made.

The renewal process has been tested extensively and as part of this, a how-to document has been created. I do not think that members will need this as the testers found everything required in the instructions within the invitation, but it is here if needed. There are two things which this testing shows should be highlight to member who elect to renew via Direct Debit:

  • When entering account number and sort code on the online direct debit mandate, use the tab key to move between boxes
  • Don’t be concerned if an unexpected name and/or street address if you look this up from the sort code using the button provided on the same form – this data base been provided by the banks and building societies and may reflect where they want direct debit mandates to be sent.

Finally, if you have problems with your renewal please contact Warners by phone or email. Their contact details are provide in the invitation. I cannot fix individual problems but I am very interested in feedback on your experience. As I have already said, it’s different to last year but offers facilities which we were unable to offer in the past.

Alan Regan, Chairman & Membership Secretary

8 Feb 2016

Online renewals

2016-02-19T12:27:00+00:00 February 8th, 2016|Shed Notices|Comments Off on Online renewals

As my initial post on this topic perhaps betrayed, I was concerned about the number of clicks necessary to complete renewal.  Warners have continued to work on the site and as a result the need to create an account, supply (and remember) a password has been avoided.  When the options to maintain data are ready later this year, you’ll be invited to return to the site and create the necessary account.  My original post has been amended to reflect the reduced steps to renew your subscription.  I still anticipate that renewal emails will be sent out later this week.

Alan Regan, Chairman & Membership Secretary

5 Feb 2016

Online renewals

2016-10-12T13:53:40+00:00 February 5th, 2016|Shed Notices|Comments Off on Online renewals

The annual online renewal process is scheduled to start next week. Subscription rates have not changed for 2016 and remain at their 2015 (and 2014) levels, which I trust will be welcomed by all members.

You will as usual receive a personalised email inviting you to renew. Please read it carefully because the process is quite different to previous years, partly because we’re using a web site provided by Warner Group Publications as part of their management of subscriptions, and partly because this makes new functionality available to members. We are using Warners standard infrastructure, so those who renew a subscription online to a Warners managed magazine may be familiar with some of what I outline.

This site is designed for renewals and for new member subscriptions. You will be asked to select the Renewal option, after which you’ll need to validate with the site. The data needed to do this will be provided in the email which you receive. You may find it easiest to copy and paste the three data items concerned from the email to the web site when you validate.

This site will allow you to manage your subscription and, in the future, elements of your membership data, both on a secure basis. You will therefore need to create a unique user ID and password for the site. The email address stored in your membership record will be pre-filled as your user ID. The site will validate the password you enter and advise you as to how strong it is. You should record your user ID and password securely for future use. If you forget your password then a reset facility exists elsewhere on the site.

Once you have registered, you will need to select the Subscription Offer you wish to renew. This will enable you to change subscription if necessary, e.g. from Junior to UK – Full if you were a Junior member and are no longer in full time education. You can also change from one class of membership to another if you have moved countries, by changing your Delivery Options. Both of these situations affect a number of members each year. Selecting the subscription adds it to your shopping cart, at which time you view it and check out.

You will be given the opportunity to review the delivery address for your magazines. Clicking Set to billing address to use the address currently held on file, or amend it if needed. Again, some members notify me of address changes during the renewal process – now this can be handled securely online as part of the renewal.

The remaining steps of the renewal process follow a standard online check out process. Payment is collected via SagePay, a worldwide market leader in secure online payment collection. After you’ve made your payment, you’ll receive an email acknowledging this. Your subscription will then be renewed for a further year and you can ignore any renewal notice that you receive with February’s issue of ’16mm Today’. Your current membership card does not carry an expiry date and will remain valid if your annual subscription has been paid.

If you don’t wish to renew online, you can renew over the phone by calling 01778 392016 (outside the UK call 00 44 1778 392016). Telephone lines are open 8 am – 6pm Monday to Friday and 9am – 5pm on Saturdays and Bank Holidays, excluding Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day. Alternatively, you can wait until you receive the printed renewal notice with the February issue of ’16mm Today’ and make your payment by cheque or money order.

I am sure that some members will contrast the number of clicks they need to make with this process with the fewer clicks needed with the prior process, particularly for members who had a PayPal account. This process applies your renewal to your membership record as it is made and sends you an email within moments of the renewal. The prior process required me to download and review PayPal payments each morning, load them to the Association database, verify that the subscription had been updated and finally send an email to each person who had renewed to confirm renewal. The new process avoids all of that, so please view the additional clicks on your part in that light.

I will make a further announcement and will post a document with screen shots to help members as the renewal process opens.

Alan Regan, Chairman & Membership Secretary

29 Dec 2015

16mm Association Heritage

2016-10-12T13:53:40+00:00 December 29th, 2015|Shed Notices|Comments Off on 16mm Association Heritage

The Association of 16mm Narrow gauge Modellers is, without putting too fine a point on it – knocking on a bit! Certainly we have grown massively in the past thirty odd years, but no one has, to date, built a database of photographs, drawing and scans of catalogues etc. We are starting from scratch and it will take a while as my commercial publishing activities run down. While a history of the Association is in course of preparation, we need both information and digitised photographs to be held as an association resource. The idea is that this resource will be held in the cloud by not only myself, but by other Association Officers as well – just in case I get flattened by a number 17 bus, I run off to Brazil with the vicar’s wife and Church funds, or some other problem arises. This way, whatever happens, the resource will remain with the Association for the benefit of members.

The idea is that we may all contribute 300dpi scans of photographs (or they can be sent to me to be digitised then returned), be it of early events, the first commercial locomotives or rolling stock, members that have contributed to the association who are no longer with us, scans of early catalogues and advertisements and indeed, anything else that you consider may well be of interest. The copyright of the photographs will of course remain with the contributor and, if used in SMT or an association publication, the copyright holder will be acknowledged. Ian Pearse of Accucraft UK has very kindly handed over the Merlin archive, which I am currently digitising and he has asked that, if the photographs are used in a commercial publication such as a book or magazine, then a receipt for a donation to the user’s favourite heritage railway be passed to the Heritage Officer. The copyright must also be acknowledged in this case. This seems an eminently suitable way of proceeding for an association such as ours, and this is what I intend to do with any of the archive material that we collect.

I have a very large digital collection (and an equally large collection of slides) that I am working my way through currently, but it is a long slow job. I hope eventually to have a low-res watermarked on-line catalogue for members use, but meanwhile, email and hunt will be the modus operandi.

I may be contacted by telephone via the members list, email with any of mine that you have to hand, or directly via Your contributions will be very welcome and you will be helping to build Association history…

Tag Gorton, Heritage Officer

3 Dec 2015

We need your video footage for the 2016 Association DVD

2016-10-12T13:53:40+00:00 December 3rd, 2015|Shed Notices|Comments Off on We need your video footage for the 2016 Association DVD

Contributions for the 2016 Association DVD are now being sought from Members. If you have any footage that you think would be suitable we can accept it in any digital format. Either edited or raw footage is fine, but please no music unless you are able to supply written copyright permission for us to use it.

We would like to see video of anything 16mm related, it could be a video of your railway, an area garden meet, a guide to constructing something, footage of the garden railway show, or anything else you think might interest members. Zach Bond has produced this guide, “On Filming”, to help you in your planning and filming.

In the UK and elsewhere, please forward your video content on a CD or DVD by post to Zach Bond – the address can be found on page 49 of the November “Bulletin”.

You can alternatively submit your contributions on SDHC, Micro SD, or USB memory stick. Please enclose a stamped addressed envelope and sufficient return postage, if you wish your media returned to you.

Please try to mail in your contributions before the UK Christmas postal rush.

NB. Anything received after Christmas is unlikely to make it on to the DVD. This is due to time constraints in compiling, editing, mastering, submitting for duplication, verifying the mastered DVD, and then final duplicating and distribution in time for the February mailing.

1 Dec 2015

16mm Association signs up 4,500th member at Warley Show

2016-10-12T13:53:40+00:00 December 1st, 2015|Shed Notices|Comments Off on 16mm Association signs up 4,500th member at Warley Show

Exhibiting at the Warley National Model Railway Show for the second year running the Association of 16mm Narrow Gauge Modellers has been delighted with the response to its stand and the interest in the Association from modellers in all scales.

The appeal of live steam trains in your own garden has proved increasingly attractive over recent years and along with a highly professional approach to its publications, membership services and events, has seen the Association grow to be probably the largest garden railway organisation in the world as the current membership topped 4,500 at the Warley show.

The Membership Secretary and current Chairman returned from exploring the exhibition just in time to welcome the 4500th members.

The Membership Secretary and current Chairman returned from exploring the exhibition just in time to welcome the 4500th members.

“Having 4,500 current members is another milestone in the development of the 16mm Association” said Membership Secretary and current Chairman Alan Regan “It can be quite a challenge for a small group of volunteers to manage what is in effect a worldwide business with a multi-thousand pound annual turnover, but one of the advantages of our continued growth in membership is that it has allowed us to keep the actual cost of membership down”.

One of the benefits to members over the last few years has been additional publications. This year there has been not only a 90 minute DVD, but also the latest in an occasional series of modellers guides, the topic this time being the early years of the Festiniog Railway.

It is expected that the addition of these to the 2015 membership package will see a further boost in membership, since the guide alone has a retail price (where sold) of £10 making annual personal membership in the UK at £17.00 a bargain, and family membership at just £18.00 even more so!

25 Nov 2015

Greeting message on Association’s dedicated telephone subscription phone number

2016-10-12T13:53:40+00:00 November 25th, 2015|Shed Notices|Comments Off on Greeting message on Association’s dedicated telephone subscription phone number

I was alerted earlier today to the fact that the greeting message on the Association’s dedicated phone number was incorrect. This has now been corrected. Thanks go to the member who took the time to alert me and to the team at Warners for their rapid intervention.

Alan Regan, Chairman & Membership Secretary