£475,000 raised for improved Severn Valley Railway locomotive works in Bridgnorth

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£475,000 has been raised for desperately needed upgrades to Severn Valley Railway locomotive works at Bridgnorth in Shropshire.

The Severn Valley Railway Charitable Trust announced that the fund had achieved its goal thanks to the generosity of 3,000 donors and grantmakers from around the world.

The locomotive factory transformation projects are progressing. The roof needs to be repaired as it is full of holes and leaks a lot. In addition to being repaired, energy efficiency measures will be installed, as well as better lighting and better insulation.

Another welcome part of the project will be the installation of an overhead crane, which will allow engineers working on the locomotives to move heavy objects safely and easily.

After detailed evaluations of the competitive bids submitted by the shortlisted companies, four contractors were selected to carry out the works. Particular emphasis will be placed on meeting requirements efficiently and safely in a real working environment. Work is expected to be completed later this year.

Railway volunteers are at the heart of the project, who have contributed over £40,000 of their time in addition to donations. The project will be managed under the expert supervision of volunteers who include a professional structural engineer and project manager, one with experience with contracts and project scheduling, and a qualified architect.

SVR volunteers and staff celebrate success, Roger Whitehead, Paul Bates, Martin Managhan, Dave Fulcher-Insull, Tony Howard and Steve Tyler. Credit: Severn Valley Railway

Martin White, SVR Engineering Manager. “This project will make a huge difference to the volunteers and paid staff who work hard to keep the locomotive fleet operational.

“Volunteers are already clearing the way and carrying out small-scale construction work that needs to be completed before the main contractors start work. A deposit has also been placed on a refurbished used overhead crane which provides a high value solution to the requirements.

Shelagh Paterson, Executive Director of the SVR Charitable Trust, said: “Thank you to all the donors who, despite the challenges of the Covid pandemic, stepped up to help raise funds for the Home & Dry appeal. The locomotive works are essential to the operation of the Severn Valley Railway, helping to create memorable experiences for so many. We can’t wait to see the transformation.

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