Thursday, October 27, 2016

Farewell MREmag

On behalf of the DRM ePublishing Board: 

As many of you are aware the MREMag site crashed on Monday and despite the ongoing best efforts of our technical director the problem has proved unable to be fixed. On analysis our expert discovered that there is a major error in the program used to host MREMag and although the problem has not been created by MRE we have been advised that fixing the problem would incur a nonspecific fee for the situation to be rectified.

Our future plans had taken into account the creation of a new website and the fact that we are now having a problem with the existing site has forced us to bring forward our plans and introduce the new site as quickly as possible. This may take a few weeks, possibly four or five but we believe that to bring forward the launch of the new site, which will contain a moderated forum in place of ‘Having Your Say’ is the most effective solution to the current situation.

With this in mind do please keep sending in your contributions and. and if they are still relevant by the time the new site goes live they will be posted.

Sometimes situations can force changes to plans sooner than expected and the problem we are experiencing with the current site is just one of those occasions. We do apologise to all those who enjoy a cup of tea while reading ‘Having Your Say’ but we are convinced that our decision is the most practical.

Please keep checking back to the website though as we will also be monitoring incoming emails and will continue to provide updates on progress. We will also provide a link to the new eMagazine from there in November.

Once again, our apologies for the untimely changes and please bear with us. We really are doing our best to get something in place.


As you will gather from the above,, in the form I ran it is no more. There have been plans for a couple of months to evolve it into an e-magazine, possibly with an attached forum. This change would have taken place over the rest of the year, at which point I'd have bowed out. 

Sadly, the site broke down before the Tuesday edition appeared and it looks like it can't be fixed. Not really how I'd hoped to go out, but that's life. 

My first issue of the magazine appeared on the 15th October 2012. Since then I've put out an edition 3 times a week, apart from the last month when it wound down to twice a week. Total number of editions - 627.

I'm proud to say that I never missed one, even when I was out and about. Editing has taken place in Leamington Spa, The Isle of Man, Hong Kong and Australia.

Sydney View - Daytime
Not a bad view from the editors desk.

Along the way I've been to some interesting events. Press days with manufacturers, London Toy Fair, 3D print shows and a few others. I'll miss these a bit.

More importantly, I've met, sometimes only by e-mail, some wonderful people. And a few aresholes, but I forget about them.

Firmly in the wonderful camp is Brian Macdermott - Wishlist poll supremo, constant contributor and ardent supporter of the magazine. He'll be embarrassed that I mention this, but he is well known within the hobby as an incredibly helpful bloke. I'm not the only person to have benefited with his assistance along the way and he doesn't get nearly enough credit.

I should also thank Pat Hammond, creator of MREmag. He's always been on the end of an e-mail to help out, answer questions (especially those on the history of railway models) and write most of the reviews for the magazine. It was always great to find a stack of Pat's ready-to-use words sitting on a sever waiting for me.

Compiling a comprehensive list of others is impossible, but here's a start: John Cherry, Steve Mann, Simon AC Martin, Steve Grantham, Graham Hobbs, Dennis Lovett, Simon Kohler, Tim Mulhall, Andrew Emmett, Andrew Carter and many, many more. Sorry to all I've forgotten, problems accessing the e-mail and writing this after a long day so my mind is not at it's sharpest. Your help and contributions are appreciated all the same. I hope we can stay in touch in the future.

So, now I find myself with big chunk of free time. No longer do Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday afternoons herald editing sessions and I won't have to plan around being near a computer for the next day's issue. I'll miss the morning check to see all is fine however as I was always proud of each one. Maybe I'll get the sequel to my novel finished at last, or perhaps a bit more modelling.

If you were a regular MREmag reader, I hope you've enjoyed the ride with me. MREmag will continue in a different form but without my assistance. Keep an eye on the website for updates.

Thank you again.


Khris said...

It should be us Thanking You Phil, for the job you have done so admirably all this time an d without a hiccup.
None the less I look forward to new and revived Mag as and when it appears and wishing you all the luck with your future endeavours.
Either way will still be following this, you blog anyway.

Apple Tree said...

What are you going to do with all this free time ? Need you ask ? Start a Have Your Say edited blog ofcourse !
Seriously, thanks for all your work on MRE Mag; always a joy to read.

Chris Thomas said...

Many thanks to you for your hard work over the years on MRE. It's difficult to understand how the IT problem is such that it cannot be fixed, and the site will be missed by many. I too will miss the contributions from the regular correspondents, and thanks to them too for their input. At least we still have your daily blog...
All the best
Chris Thomas

Mike Bellamy said...


Sorry to learn of the problems and regret that MRE is no more - it was an amazing resource and the first site I looked at each morning whilst waiting for the kettle to boil - even looked there before the other place and quietly smiled to myself when on a couple of occasions you were first with the news that hadn't yet appeared there!

Good Luck with where ever you find yourself in the future - and thanks for the memories.

Best wishes


Mikkel said...

Thanks very much Phil for all the time and effort, and thanks to Pat Hammond before you. We obviously expect a gargantuan layout (or even better: many small ones) as a result of the freed up time!

Jeffrey Showell said...

As a regular reader of both MREMag and your blog, I offer my thanks for a job well done. I too will miss the enthusiasm of MREMag's regular contributors and am interested in what the new e-mag will offer.
Time for an etched brass kit?

Ben A. said...

Thanks for all the hard work you've put in, all the support you've given to Mike and me and all the smaller enterprises, and all the best for the future.