GCR Admin

Great Central Railway AGM

Notice is hereby given that the Company's annual general meeting will be held at Lovatt House, Loughborough on the 24th October 2020 at 10 a.m.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic (and having taken the advice of our auditors) with the need to conduct our business safely, this meeting will be held by the Directors behind closed doors.  We will be unable to allow entry to any other persons, due to the overriding need to protect everyone, and the sheer impracticality of holding a Covid-safe meeting for a large number of individuals.

Arrangements are being made to issue the formal notices of the meeting to shareholders in the usual manner. This will include the normal proxy form enabling shareholders to vote on the formal resolutions.

GCR board welcomes new director…

Great Central Railway PLC announces the appointment of The Rt. Honourable, The Baroness Morgan as a director.

Nicky Morgan, now appointed to the GCR PLC board, cutting the first sod as construction began on our bridge across the Midland Main Line .
Photo by Graham Wignall.

The Board of Great Central Railway are delighted to announce the appointment of The Rt. Hon the Baroness Morgan of Cotes (Nicky Morgan) to the GCR Board as a non-executive director.

Baroness Morgan, formerly Loughborough’s Member of Parliament and Cabinet Minister for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and now a Member of the House of Lords has already been a strong supporter and friend to the Railway for many years. She will take up the directorship from 1st June.

Commenting on the news, GCR’s Managing Director, Michael Gough said; “I am so very proud that Nicky has accepted this position – she will bring an entire new level of advice and gravitas to our corporate governance. As the Railway grows in popularity and strength, it will be so useful to have her massive experience and knowledge to hand”

Nicky said “I am very excited to be joining the GCR Board. The GCR has a very special place in the hearts of Leicestershire residents and beyond. I’ve worked with and enjoyed the Railway as their MP, as the founding Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Heritage Rail and also as an enthusiastic GCR local member for over 15 years now. I look forward to supporting the Railway’s exciting future and working with all GCR employees and volunteers.”

Test trains – Sunday 31st May

We are running some further test trains on Sunday of this weekend (31st May) and will open up the car park field adjacent to Quorn station for those who want to get a “steam fix” and photographic opportunities of one of the first heritage railways to run trains since lockdown.

As it stands, Standard Class 2 locomotive 78018 will be in traffic but this is subject to change as circumstances dictate. There is a strong chance that we will also be running some tests and equipment movements involving our diesel Class 37 during the course of the same day, albeit again subject to confirmation.

There will be no access to platforms and the cafés will not be able to open.

Approximate departure times from Loughborough are 13.00; 14.30 and 16.00.

We also suggest that to maintain social distancing, people remain in their cars to watch the trains, although if you decide to step outside, please ensure that you are at least 2 metres away from anyone who is not from your immediate household

Annual General Meetings – Postponed

The Great Central Railway Annual General Meeting scheduled for the 4th July 2020 has been postponed due to the Covid-19 crisis. Even allowing for the fact that we are hopeful that social distancing regulations will have been relaxed by then, our auditors are currently closed due to the crisis and have confirmed to us this week that it will be impossible to complete audited accounts in time for the AGM to proceed. A new date will be announced as soon as the Railway and auditors are able to return to normal working.

Under advice from our auditors we have applied for and been granted the government’s 3 month filing extension and thus a new AGM date is likely to be late September or early October.

Weekend Shed Tours Saturday 14 & Sunday 15 March

Volunteer members of the Boscastle team will be offering informative tours of the Loughborough Locomotive Shed on Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 March.

The tours will be at:

  11 00, 11 45, 12 45, 13 30, 14 15, 15 30 and 16 15.

Party size is limited at the discretion of the guide.

Please assemble outside the loco shed door and await guide.

Tours last approximately half an hour; please allow 10 minutes to walk to the shed prior to the tour and 10 minutes to walk back again.

 

Loco Shed Scene - Dennis Wilcock

YOUR CHANCE TO SEE RESTORATION, OVERHAUL AND REPAIR WORK IN PROGRESS AND HEAR ABOUT THE PLACE OF 'BOSCASTLE' IN THE STORY OF THE GREAT CENTRAL RAILWAY.

There is no charge for the tour, but donations towards the overhaul of Rebuilt 'West Country' Class 4-6-2 no. 34039 Boscastle will be much appreciated - especially in view of the major work needed on the firebox.

PLEASE NOTE:  Visitors are required to be in possession of valid GCR travel tickets or platform tickets.   Tours are not suitable for children under 6, or for pushchairs.

All locomotives and attractions appear subject to availability. Great Central Railway reserves the right to amend or cancel any service.

7027 “Thornbury Castle” coming to GCR

GWR ‘4073’ CLASS “THORNBURY CASTLE” TO BE RESTORED AND BASED AT THE GREAT CENTRAL RAILWAY

GWR 4073 Class number 7027 “Thornbury Castle” has been sold to a private buyer, the present owners JJP Holdings have announced today. Under the sale and purchase agreement, the Great Western locomotive is to be restored at the Great Central Railway in Leicestershire and will run there for the duration of its next 10-year ticket.

The new owner, who is a significant supporter of the GCR, has confirmed that it will not be made available for any mainline operation. It requires significant restoration which will be carried out at the Great Central’s locomotive works in Loughborough under the watchful eye of their Chief Engineer, Craig Stinchcombe.

The loco, currently housed at the West Somerset Railway’s Williton depot, will be transported by road to Loughborough during week commencing 27th January.

Built in 1949 by British Railways at the Swindon works, N0. 7027 was initially allocated to Plymouth Laira before moving to Old Oak Common some 10 years later, with its last shed allocation being Reading before being withdrawn from service in 1963 and being transported to Woodham Brothers Scrapyard at Barry. It was purchased by the Birmingham Railway Museum and left Barry in 1972. Subsequent to this it was purchased by the Waterman Railway Heritage Trust and remained in scrapyard condition for stays at Crewe Heritage Centre and Peak Rail until being purchased by the current owners in July 2016

Jonathan Jones-Pratt (JJP) said, “We are obviously sad in many ways to lose this iconic engine from the Group but, at the same time, very pleased as I always wish to see the right decision being made for these wonderful engines.   For me, this is a good move for Thornbury and we have been pleased to play a key part in ensuring the engine is restored as a Castle and we are satisfied that there is the right commitment to rebuild the engine to the right standard.  We wish the Great Central team well with the project and, personally, I welcome the chance to help them along the journey.   The engine will now leave the WSR over the coming weeks for her new home where I am sure the team will be waiting to get started!

GCR’s Managing Director, Michael Gough commented “We are very excited that this iconic locomotive is coming to the GCR and very proud that the new owner has chosen to have it restored in our works and for it to run here at the Great Central once completed. This is a major project and will involve significant hours and expense but we are ready for the challenge and looking forward to its arrival next week.

Eric Boulter

We are very sorry to report the passing of Eric Boulter who passed away on Sunday after a long period of illness.

Eric will be fondly remembered for his years of service on the Griddle Car, with his customary shouts of "plates are hot" as he served many a satisfied customer their all-day breakfast.

Eric was a well respected member of the GCR family and will be sorely missed.

We will publish details of Eric's funeral arrangements when these are known.

FoGCML 2020 Calendar

Crossing the Canal appeal reaches £376,000

We're delighted to report that the Crossing the Canal appeal total has now reached £376,000! 

Meanwhile on the bridge itself, work has been continuing inside the protective sheeting which surrounds the scaffolding and the bridge.

The entire top section has been grit blasted and painted in the protective coating as shown in the photograph, and the top flange plate of the east girder has been replaced. The west girder top flange and ballast retention plates are to receive attention in the coming weeks.

With the structure revealed following grit blasting, an inspection has been undertaken to determine the condition of the bridge in greater detail, and a report is being prepared to allow the project to continue to the next stage.

We're very grateful for your tremendous support and look forward to bringing more news soon.

For the latest news on the project, and to donate to the appeal, please visit www.gcrailway.co.uk/unify

Bridging the Gap – Works at Midland Main Line bridge site

Work has started to relocate the pile of earth from its temporary location on the paddock owned by Loughborough Grammar School back onto the EMRT site where it will be stored until work starts in the future to reconstruct the northern embankment as part of the Bridging the Gap project.

To facilitate the construction of the abutment supporting the new bridge over the Midland Mainline, part of the old embankment and an area of the EMRT paddock were removed to accommodate the machinery and materials needed to erect the new bridge.

Now that the bridge has been completed and signed off by Network Rail, we are able to restore both paddocks to their former levels.  The cost of this work was included in the original budget for the bridge project and we are grateful that the Grammar School allowed us to store the spoil free of charge.

Meanwhile, work continues on the next exciting stage of our project to reunify the two halves of the Great Central Railway, Crossing the Canal. For more details please see www.gcrailway.co.uk/unify

Our next running day





We're running passenger trains from Quorn & Woodhouse station on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday this week for our Half Term Fun event.

Advance booking is essential.
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