The Severn Valley Railway (SVR) is celebrating after winning a £853,800 grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. It will use the grant, along with other funds raised, to restore Falling Sands Viaduct in Kidderminster, and to launch an programme of community engagement and exhibitions that explore the railway’s early history.
News of the grant comes soon after the SVR announced the success of its appeal to raise £397,000 in donations from thousands of individuals, community organisations, charitable trusts and foundations, and businesses. It means the railway can now go ahead with essential repairs to the 142-year-old viaduct, as Shelagh Paterson of the SVR Charitable Trust explains, “Our iconic structure has suffered badly over the years, with water seeping deep inside, causing cracks and erosion to the brickwork. Now, thanks to the support of National Lottery players and our many generous donors, we can get it back into shape.
“When the work is completed, we’ll be able to lift the current speed restriction on our heritage trains and look forward to at least another century of service from the viaduct.”
The SVR is gearing up for its Step Back to the 1940s weekends on June 29 and July 6 – visit svr.co.uk to find out more.