DFRS Emergency Fund
Following the onset of the Coronavirus outbreak in March 2020, the Dean Forest Railway had little choice but to close temporarily, not reopening for limited services until 1st August, and losing a huge amount of visitor income. We are now facing another lengthy shutdown in 2021. Help us to keep the DFR on its feet, and preserve 50 years of hard work!
On Monday 16th March 2020, the Dean Forest Railway announced the suspension of services, after just one weekend of the new running season. Following Governmental advice that the public should not undertake non-essential travel and to avoid social gatherings where possible, it was felt that there was no other alternative to protect the safety of both visitors and volunteers alike. Unfortunately, the daily overheads of a 4 and a quarter mile long heritage railway do not stop when trains do, and with this loss of visitor income the Railway now faces a severe threat to its existence. Although we have run limited services in 2020, further lockdowns have hit the railway hard, and this is made all the more disappointing when 2020 marks the 50th Anniversary of the inauguration of the original Dean Forest Railway Preservation Society. As such, we are appealing to the public and our valued supporters for much-needed funds to help secure the existence of our Railway for future generations to enjoy. Although we have now reached our initial target of £50,000 for which we are hugely grateful, we are keeping the appeal running whilst the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect the railway.
Thanks to your generosity, we have raised a total of £77,818.50! In June 2021 the Society Trustees decided to close the Emergency Fund Appeal; fundraising efforts will now turn to priorities focused on moving the Railway forward.