Webmaster's Note - This Editorial, is aimed mainly at those members who receive the 'paper' editions of 'Semaphore' and the accompanying 'Ground Signal' newsletter.

Major changes are due to take place with both the production and overall look of 'Semaphore' magazine, as of the next issue.  This has been brought about partly by my increasing workload (meaning less time to produce 'Semaphore') and partly by the Trustees decision to further increase the quality of the magazine to enable it to compete with the very best offerings from the rest of the U.K.'s Hertage Railways.  

An Editorial Team of around four or five people will now produce the various publications that members will receive in the future, i.e. 'Semaphore' (the magazine), 'Ground Signal' (the newsletter) 'Whistle Blower' (the internal newsletter for working members at Bitton) and 'Semaphore Online', this website.

Semaphore will be produced twice a year, but will undergo a drastic change over the next few weeks.  It will become an A4 publication (i.e. twice the physical size of previous magazines), will contain around 32 pages, and will be full colour throughout.  Obviously there will be some black and white photographs included (for instance the historical ones) but we will be producing a magazine with the capability to have full colour on every page.  To the best of my knowledge there is no other Heritage Railway in the country that produces a publication to this specification, so we will, quite literally, become a 'market leader'. In addition, the design and page layout (whilst based on ideas from the Editorial Team) will be carried out largely by professionals in the print industry to ensure the highest quality end product possible. I must admit, I am very, very excited about how the next 'Semaphore' will look!

As stated above, there will be two issues per year, and these will differ somewhat from each other. The first issue of the year will contain information such as an up to date guide and stock list of the railway and will be printed in much larger numbers than before, with the aim of it being sold to the public throughout the year. With this much larger print run we will also be looking at developing advertising income - something that was virtually impossible when faced with a print run of just six or seven hundred. This first issue will still contain news, reports, historical articles etc., as before, but 'sharing' the available space with the guide/stock list side of things. The second issue will return to the more 'normal' format of mainly containing news, reports and articles as its main content. Both issues of 'Semaphore' will take advantage of the professional production being undertaken and will be heavily photograph orientated, backed up with an accompanying 'Ground Signal' newsletter that can carry more detailed news and reports. 'Ground Signal' will continue to be produced on a regular basis (around every two months), and with the new printing machine the Railway now owns we are looking at introducing some photographic content in it, but these will obviously be of a lower quality than the professionally produced, full colour photographs that will dominate 'Semaphore'.

The very first of these new style 'Semaphore' magazines will also contain extensive coverage of the building and opening of Avon Riverside station, along with hopefully a guide to the many attractions that our visitors can partake in once they reach our new station. It is planned to bring out this first new 'Semaphore' as soon after the opening of Avon Riverside as possible - with this now planned for the start of May, we should be able to get the first issue out by the end of that month.

I can't wait!!

Anthony Wray.

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This page last updated by Tony Wray on 13/4/2004.

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