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Last push for shares to transform Bridgnorth railway station

By Sophie Madden | Bridgnorth | News | Published:

A last push is being made for shares, as a fundraising bid to transform a heritage railway station enters its final weeks.

Construction is ongoing at Bridgnorth Railway Station but the Severn Valley Railway needs a last push for shares to continue its work.

With its Bridgnorth share offer closing on October, the Severn Valley Railway is urging anyone who is thinking of buying shares in the project to apply as soon as possible, so that applications can be processed before time runs out.

The grand total currently stands at just over £1.7million, putting the Railway within reach of its £2.5million target, following an upsurge in applications last month.

All money raised will go to the transformation of Bridgnorth Station site – the biggest redevelopment project in the SVR’s history.

The Bridgnorth Share Offer campaign was launched in November last year, with the entire proceeds destined to provide improved visitor facilities, access and parking at the Railway’s Northern terminus, and conserve the Grade II listed, neo-Jacobean station, built in 1862.

Money raised so far will pay for phase one of the ambitious project, covering the construction of a brand new refreshment room and toilet building, refurbishment and renovation of the existing station building and the first part of an extensive tree-planting scheme.

However, the amount raised to date will not pay for all of phase two, which includes the installation of a locomotive turntable, the creation of additional car parking, a new access road, extensive tree-planting and landscaping.

Long-time volunteer and SVR board member Tony Bending said: “Time is really of the essence now, with just a matter of days to go until the share offer must close.

“We would encourage anyone who can help us by buying shares to apply as soon as possible, to allow enough time for the information pack to reach them and for paperwork to be processed before the deadline closes.”

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He added: “Our much-loved Bridgnorth Station is desperately in need of updating – much of its infrastructure dates back more than 150 years and is not fit for the sheer volume of passengers that it welcomes today.

“We would dearly love to raise as much money as possible so that we can protect and enhance this historic station, not only providing passengers with a much-improved experience, but also encouraging more people into Bridgnorth, to start their journey at this end of the line.”

Signalwoman Karen Hammond, a volunteer for more than 30 years and staunch supporter of the Bridgnorth plans, said: “The station desperately needs this proposed upgrade – I’ve seen no real investment at Bridgnorth in the 35 years since I started volunteering and the temporary buffet I found on my first day in the early 80s is still struggling on, unable to meet the demands of visitors in the 21 st century."

Full share offer information can be found at www.svr.co.uk/shareoffer or by calling 01562 757900 (Option 2).

Applications must close on 31 st October 2017 so would-be purchasers are encouraged to allow sufficient time to complete their purchase.

Alternatively, those wishing to donate to the Bridgnorth Development Fund without purchasing shares can do so via the Severn Valley Railway Charitable Trust, which may be able to apply for a further 25 per cent Gift Aid on donations from taxpayers. Go to www.svrtrust.org.uk to download a Bridgnorth donation form.

Sophie Madden

By Sophie Madden
@SMadden_Star

Senior reporter based out of the head office in Ketley covering the Telford area.

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