Please follow the link for the latest newsletter: Weekly Newsletter 2014-03-05 09
Join Peppa and her little brother George for an exciting day out for all the family on the 8th & 9th March
Peppa and George have come to the railway lots of times and they’ve loved it so much they’re coming again. You can meet Peppa and have your photo taken with her and then meet George and have your photo taken with him too! There are lots of lovely things to see and do, funfair rides to play on, a miniature railway and to keep you nice and dry we have even put up a special marquee where you can magic and tricks. Take a ride on the big steam train, choo choo, and for an extra special treat why not get your face painted just like Peppa’s, OINK OINK
Great news from the Bridge to the Future appeal. The total has now passed £380,000! The amount is rising all the time and the appeal continues to have plenty of momentum as we head towards the million pound target.
So can you help get us to half a million pounds – the halfway point?! Your support so far has been incredible. Every donation made at the appeal page helps take us closer.
Or you could buy a DVD of the Swithland Gala - an idea Father’s Day present?
Or don’t forget the grand spring draw promoted by Friends of the Great Central Railway. You could pick up an incredible prize and the bridge appeal will certainly be a winner!
As always, huge thanks if you can give, or help spread the word. Together we can get the bridge built and look forward to the reunification of the two halves of the Great Central Railway.
There’s a film of the trial bore holes for the bridge being drilled at the start of the year. Give it a watch and get inspired!
Members of Friends of the Great Central Main Line will have already received their copies of Main Line No.158. Included with the posting there was a book of raffle tickets for the annual Grand Spring Draw run by Friends on behalf of The David Clarke Railway Trust.
This year the draw is in aid of the Bridge to the Future Appeal to enable the GCR to Bridge the Gap across the Midland Main Line and create an 18 mile Intercity Railway. Please give all possible support to this draw to ensure we complete the most exciting project in railway preservation.
Details of the fabulous prizes may be found on the Friends web page.
The draw will be held on 24th May, 2014 at Loughborough Central station.
Please follow the link for the latest newsletter: Weekly Newsletter 2014-02-26 08
Please follow the link for the latest newsletter: Weekly Newsletter 2014-02-19 07
Ever wondered what it must be like to travel behind a named train like the Royal Scot or Flying Scotsman during its prime?
Travel on The Aspergers Flyer and The Adventuring Autisticman, learn about Aspergers and Autism, and step back in time on a vintage steam service and most importantly, have fun! On each of the above dates one of our Great Central Railway locos will carry a headboard, just like the one on the left.
Watch the countryside role by, take time out at the line’s perfectly period cafes and all while the kids are on holiday so why not bring them along to this affordable family attraction for a great time?
Charters 4 Change are a new charitable group which operates The Aspergers Flyer and The Adventuring Autisticman and were born from Asperger’s Fundraiser, a group that set up a lot of the groundwork that enables us to run our charity specials. We tour the country running trains like these.
We are currently in the middle of the ‘Asperger’s Anniversary’, a celebration and commemoration of Hans Asperger’s brave work to stick up for those with Autism in WWII. 70 years have now passed since Hans did his first studies and we’d be delighted if you’d join us to help celebrate his courage.
Further details will be posted in due course, based on information we receive from Charters 4 Change.
A BID for £10 million that will kick-start the creation of a new world-class railway museum in Leicester has today (29 November) been submitted to the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The Great Central Railway – working in partnership with Leicester City Council and the National Railway Museum in York – plans to open the new attraction at its terminus at Leicester North.
The new museum will be filled with priceless locomotives and other artefacts from the national collection, telling the story of how the railways helped Leicester become a thriving industrial city.
Managing Director of the Great Central Railway Bill Ford said, “This is a visionary project. In the last 12 months the partners have worked hard to prepare today’s funding bid. The museum will help people reconnect with Leicester’s railway story and our shared heritage. Together with our thriving steam line, we’re confident tens of thousands of people will visit every year.”
The new attraction will create 300 short-term construction jobs and 9 full-time posts once open. As part of the bid process an economic impact study has been carried out which demonstrates the museum and railway will be worth £43million for the local economy over five years. In turn this additional spending could create more than 900 jobs in the area.
Annual visitor figures for the railway and museum combined are expected to reach around 230,000. The total cost of the project is expected to be £15 million. £5 million of match funding would be required alongside the lottery grant.
City Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby said: “This is a really exciting opportunity to create a heritage railway centre of national standing in Leicester.
“The museum will house items which are of both national importance and local interest, complementing the nearby National Space Centre and Abbey Pumping Station and helping to enhance the city’s reputation as an important visitor destination.
“It will also create hundreds of new jobs, both during construction and on opening, while providing training opportunities in the rail industry for dozens of young people.
“We’re fully committed to this project and will be working with the Great Central Railway to help them deliver this ambitious scheme.”
A striking building is planned to sit right alongside the Great Central Railway’s Leicester North station, close to the Greenacres centre. Uniquely, steam hauled passenger trains will arrive right alongside the exhibition halls giving the displays a vibrant context. With the completion of the separate GCR reunification project, the museum will be a shining jewel of an 18-mile heritage railway. Trains from the national network will also be able to run right to the front door, offering tourists a real alternative gateway to the city.
The museum will be connected to the running lines to allow displays to be changed, locomotives and carriages moved and even operated over the tracks of the Great Central.
The Director of the National Railway Museum is Paul Kirkman. “Leicester had one of the world’s earliest railways,” he said. “It was also a hub of the Midland line. When the GCR opened in 1899 it was a key calling point on the high speed railway of the time. The Great Central Railway museum will see some significant parts of the national collection put on display in the heart of the country and show how the railways changed lives.”
As the bid is submitted the proposed line up of exhibits is being unveiled for the first time. The iconic “Green Arrow” steam locomotive tops the bill. A class V2 engine (designed by the famous engineer Sir Nigel Gresley), this type of locomotive regularly worked along the Great Central Railway before it was closed. The sole surviving GCR passenger engine “Butler Henderson” will also be on display and paired with a wooden ‘Barnum’ carriage. The stylish carriage will be actively restored in front of visitors demonstrating the craft skills necessary to keep Britain’s railway heritage alive.
From the other end of the 20th century comes Britain’s APT-E. It was the first train to tilt which the designers hoped would permit faster journeys along existing lines. While the project was ultimately abandoned, the surviving vehicles are an intriguing glimpse of a lost future and are set to capture the imagination of a new generation. In addition locomotives and wagons which kept freight on the move will be displayed.
As part of the bid a full programme of educational activities has been devised so the attraction engages with families, the local community and schools. Bill Ford concluded, “We already welcome visitors from around the county and country but the museum will help us achieve so much more for Leicestershire. It will be a busy museum telling relevant stories, which are interpreted in the ultimate way, with a ride on a steam train! We hope the whole city will get behind the bid.”
The project partners will learn if they’ve been successful in April 2014. Initially a small grant will be released allowing the plans to be developed further. A successful second round application would see the full grant unlocked with the museum expected to be open around Summer 2018.
Read more about the GCR museum lottery bid
More about the bid as reported on the BBC website for Leicester
More about the bid as reported on the Leicester Mercury website.