BRIDGNORTH AND BROADWAY SHARE SUCCESS
Severn Valley Railway is over a third of the way to its target, less than four months after launching share issue.
FUNDS RAISED by the Severn Valley Railway’s Bridgnorth station share issue are close to the £1 million mark - just under four months since the share issue was launched on November 1 last year.
With £936,000 in the bank as this issue of Steam Railway closed for press, the SVR now has over a third of the £2.5m it wants to raise for its ambitious project to redevelop Bridgnorth station. The news comes just days after the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway announced that its ‘Broadway - The Last Mile’ share issue had passed the seven-figure mark, leaving only £250,000 to be raised by the April 2017 deadline. The milestone was passed on February 2, almost ten months to the day since the share issue was launched on April 6 by GWSR President Pete Waterman. The railway’s volunteer finance director, Chris Bristow, says: “This is such an important milestone and a huge encouragement to the many volunteers involved with building Broadway station and extending the line northwards to this delightful Cotswold town. “The rate that money has been coming in means that we can, with confidence, say the extension will open to the public on March 30 2018. I’m deeply grateful to the many hundreds of people who have invested sums large and small, and from all walks of life.” The news rounds off a successful 12 months for the Cheltenham-Toddington line, which welcomed over 100,000 passengers for the first time in preservation (SR463), and saw the northern extension to Broadway crossing the county border into neighbouring Worcestershire (SR461). The current railhead is only a quarter of a mile from Broadway, and within sight of the former station goods shed. However, Mr Bristow warns that: “in many ways the last quarter-mile will be the most challenging. “The line will run over a short stretch of high embankment which, through decades of lack of maintenance and poor drainage, has become unstable and needs strengthening. We will be starting work on this soon but it will cost a significant five-figure sum: when done, it will secure the line for generations to come. “That’s why we must reach the full £1.25m we’re seeking in this offer.”