Aln Valley Railway Monthly Newsletter - March 2018
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Monthly Newsletter - March 2018

What with the Beast from the East, the Pest from the West and now a MiniBeast, the weather has definitely been against us.

With an early Easter, the pressure is on to be ready in time for the season opener, but our volunteers are working hard to make it happen. Our Annual General Meeting is an opportunity for you to make a difference, either by voting at the meeting or standing as a Trustee.

Winter hits hard

The Beast from the East made its presence felt when it swept in off the North Sea. Although the TV news may have made you think Northumberland got off quite lightly, it was quite the opposite.
Drifting snow caused numerous problems - the main A1 was closed for a couple of days north of Alnwick, despite the heroic efforts of Highways Agency and local council gritting teams, farmers and the emergency services. Drifting snow prevented access for a few days but Mike Christian managed to get on site to get these pictures.

Blizzard in station

Snow drifts

615 in snow

Model rail cabin in snow
A lack of water on site has been a continuing issue since the spring supply was damaged at the end of last year. The recent cold weather has compounded the problem but thanks to the sterling efforts of staff from Northumberland Estates, the supply is now running again. We still have a couple of issues on site but at least we no longer have to flush the toilets with buckets!

Continuing on the water front, the installation of mains water continues, again this was delayed due to the weather. However, the pipe is now in, pressure tested and chlorinated. We're now awaiting a date from Northumbrian Water to come along and connect our pipework to supply, which should be within the next few weeks.

Play Area Progress Continues

Despite the bad weather, Ron and David have been carrying on getting the new play area constructed. The main frame is now up and work is ongoing with the ancillary climbing parts. Still a fair bit to do, including fencing, footpaths and the safety surface under the frame. If only the gnome hiding underneath would grow up and come out and help too...
Photo: D Malone.
Play area progress

Elsewhere, the model rail team have been able to spruce up the outside of the model rail cabin, giving it a good wash to remove the algae that had built up on it. Looks a bit different now from the picture above. Photo: R Hidson.
Clean model railway cabin


Fancy being a Trustee?

Every year at the Trust's Annual General Meeting, this year on 24 April, our Trustees retire in rotation and they get the opportunity to be re-elected or stand down to allow others to take on the role. This year we have seven vacancies and for various reasons, not all are standing again.

As a trustee, you have ultimate responsibility on how the railway, which is a charity, is run. This means you have to make a wide range of decisions, including strategic decisions that may involve significant costs and risk. Being a trustee can be rewarding for many reasons - from a sense of making a difference to the railway, to developing new experiences and relationships. It can be of benefit to those looking for work or a new direction in life, however it's also likely to be demanding of your time, skills, knowledge and abilities. There is plenty of help and guidance in being a trustee - they are not expected to be perfect but they are expected to do their best to comply with their duties. Charity law does generally protect trustees who have acted honestly and reasonably.

If you are a member of the AVR Trust and think you can make a difference, or have skills that you think you have use to bring to the Board, or would like to expand your horizons, then please check out our AGM pages on our website. You need your Trust membership number to access - this is on the envelope of the latest The Link magazine that will be popping through your door anytime soon, if not already.

Easter Bunny Weekend Poster

Tourism Awards Logo

Upcoming Events

Saturday 31 March 2018
Steam Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Sunday 01 April 2018
Easter Bunny Hunt
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Monday 02 April 2018
Easter Bunny Hunt
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Tuesday 03 April 2018
Diesel Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Thursday 05 April 2018
Diesel Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Saturday 07 April 2018
Steam Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Sunday 08 April 2018
Steam Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Tuesday 10 April 2018
Diesel Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Thursday 12 April 2018
Diesel Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30

Sunday 22 April 2018
Diesel Rides
Lionheart Station, 10.30-16.30


Regulars to the AVR may very well remember Davy Gray who sadly died shortly after Christmas.
A private and quiet person, he was often seen doing those jobs many of us may find mundane - whether it be sweeping the platform edges or emptying the bins.
He will be missed by us all.

Looking for something different to do?

The railway is always looking for more help. It's a new year and a new you, so why not volunteer and be part of an award-winning team?
Many different opportunities are available... including drivers / engineering / painting / cafe / shop / construction / administrators / electrical / organisation / maintenance / event planning / gardening / training / dealing with the public / first aid / looking after kids / graphic design - in fact almost any role you can think of (except astronaut or deep-sea diver!)

Training Days

We are holding training days on 24 and 25 March 18. Volunteers are asked to attend either of these days if possible. The bias is on operational running, including incident control and emergencies.

We'll also be holding general safety, fire training and Tracksafe classes. Details are still being firmed up, but will strat from about 11am. More details will be sent out to volunteers by the HOPs messaging system.


Contact Information

Secretary / General Info:
Mark Hayton
Tel: 07754 765632
Press and Publicity:
Roger Jermy
Tel: 01665 606168
Donations/Gift Aid:
Tom Spence
Tel: 01665 572028
Membership Matters
Gavin Head
Tel: 01665 510828

Volunteer Team

EAFRD logo
AVR Monthly Newsletter. Written and edited by Mark Hayton
Copyright © 2018
Aln Valley Railway Trust, All rights reserved.
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Aln Valley Railway Trust
Lionheart Railway Station
Lionheart Enterprise Park
Alnwick, Northumberland NE66 2EZ
United Kingdom

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Aln Valley Railway Trust · Lionheart Railway Station · Lionheart Enterprise Park · Alnwick, Northumberland NE66 2EZ · United Kingdom

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