The Helston Railway is appealing to volunteers, members and friends of the railway to help preserve Cornwall’s heritage and donate to their emergency appeal.
In a statement by James Packman, chairman of the Helston Railway, he urges: “At the very moment when we were looking to reopen with a renewed energy of our volunteers and some exciting changes to show our visitors, we have been hit hard.
“We have been forced to close and the bulk of our revenues which comes from visitor income have dropped to zero. We are more fortunate than many other heritage lines in that everything we do is on a voluntary basis and so we have no wage bill.”
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Mr Packman concedes that the railway is not immune from the impacts of closure. The railway still has to cover expenses such as rent, insurance and telephones. Plus, cash that is reserved for larger post-season maintenance tasks is now exhausted.
Helston Railway has applied for the Government’s Emergency Funding Grant of £10,000 but they face restrictions and can only pay this over to the Operating Company if it relates to Fixed Assets.
Mr Packman states: “When this lockdown is over, we want to hit the ground running and urgently need to build a modest fighting fund so we can crack on with our important work. So, I am taking the unusual step of asking you directly to help the operating company continue by donating directly to it.
“With a fantastic team we have worked tirelessly over the last 12 years or so to bring Helston Railway from absolutely nothing to where it is now, an operating railway, running with both steam and diesel locomotives, rolling stock, stations and providing visitors with over 10000 journeys in the last year. It is a vital community and visitor attraction and I will do everything I can to see that this achievement is not wasted.
If you would like to help the Helston Railway and donate, click here and find bank and cheque details.