Full steam ahead for fundraising for Caledonian Railway

Brechin Caledonian Railway events and marketing director Andy Pegg is pictured accepting a cheque for �800 from Strathmore Foods logistics and administration manager Michelle Forfar.

Brechin Caledonian Railway events and marketing director Andy Pegg is pictured accepting a cheque for �800 from Strathmore Foods logistics and administration manager Michelle Forfar.

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The community and local business have rallied round Caledonian Railway following an arson attack last month that destroyed a brake van.

Following the incident, which took place on April 6, the volunteer-run attraction received an overwhelming amount of support.

An online appeal to help with the cost of restoration the brake van was set up, and raised £1000 of the £5000 target in just 12 hours. Since then, the Railway has exceeded its original target, with the latest donation coming from Strathmore Foods.

Andy Pegg from Railway said: “The appeal has been running for just over a month now and thanks to the generosity of the community, we have managed to exceed our initial fundraising goal of £5000. Including Strathmore Foods generous donation of £800, we have raised a just over £6400 towards the rebuild costs, with an additional £2500 being awarded from GrainCorp Limited to be used to improve security around the station.

“We estimate that the rebuild of this historic vehicle could cost us as much as £20,000 and we are now well on our way to that goal thanks to the generosity of many individuals and companies, both locally and internationally.”

Sarah and Michelle from Strathmore Foods added: “Our Finance Director of Strathmore Foods, Dain Egan, read about the damage to the railway in the local newspaper and immediately wanted to try and help. He was devastated by the damage and was aware that so much hard work had gone into it in the first place. To see it all ruined was very sad and devastating for the local area.

“Right away we knew we wanted to help, as a large producer local to Brechin we were very happy to offer funding to support the restoration of the train.

“We’re very much aware of the success of the Brechin Railway and the numerous amount of activities and events which are available to families throughout the year – we were happy to support the rebuild of the LMS Brakevan to help restore this much loved project for the Community.”

The brakevan, which was built by British Rail at Derby Carriage and Wagon works in 1949, was restored in 2014 by five volunteers at the railway over a period of four months and at a cost of £5000.