Community support

Funding level: £5,001 to £10,000

Description

The East Lancashire Railway’s canopy project will provide shelter from the unpredictable north western weather all year round. Our station is used by 150,000 visitors a year; from day trippers and local residents to school children, all taking a step back in time to travel on a nostalgic steam hauled train run by volunteers.

Recovered from Oldham Mumps station as part of the Metrolink conversion in 2010, the canopy is currently the subject of a £70,000 appeal in order to renovate and erect it at Bury Bolton Street station – the canopy will be the final piece of the station jigsaw to complete a scene reminiscent of the 1950’s.

Restoring the canopy will benefit a multitude of people, not least the children visiting as part of an evacuee experience who will be able to have enhanced tutoring under the canopy before boarding a train. Furthermore our audience of elderly visitors will reap the rewards of being able to stay in the dry whilst boarding or disembarking, as will travellers on the dining train, the jewel in the East Lancashire Railway’s crown. On a cold dark night in Bury any kind of inclement weather can put a downer on the experience and so we must provide a cover to enhance the overall visitor experience at Bury for all to enjoy. The canopy will be a real focal point for all of the local community who use the railway week in week out and look forward to them reaping the rewards.

Additional funding is required in order to complete the project. Already generous supporters have donated to the project which has so far seen all of the steelwork refurbished and foundations constructed ready to start the erection. The major funding hurdle is the one-off purchase of glass for the canopy roof which had been paid for and ordered, however on Wednesday 1st April Paperlinx the company supplying the glazing went into administration.

The railway had paid nearly £18,000 to Robert Horne Group subsidiary, Paperlinx, only the day prior to the Administrators, Deloitte, being appointed and indications are that we will not see either the glazing delivered or their money returned.

We’re absolutely devastated by what’s happened and we’re still struggling to come to terms with what this will ultimately mean for the future of the canopy project. The sum of money involved is very substantial for a charity such as ours and it is particularly upsetting bearing in mind the funds were raised through donations and other benefaction. We need to see what options are open to us in terms of keeping the project on-track and for completion by mid-July, as raising a similar amount of cash to that we've already paid out is going to be a tall order. However, one thing is for sure, our volunteer workforce will do everything within their power to ensure the job gets done!

Project Video

East Lancashire Railway

Moment of Pride

With this latest setback we are all the more determined to complete the canopy this year. Volunteers have been fundraising for 3 years and so naturally devastated by what has happened. We believe this project will make a significant difference to the local community who use the railway every week.

Location: Bury