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Crest of the Furness Railway Trust


Registered Charity 1005211

1. Objects, Powers and Method of Governance

Click here to see the Objects and Powers of the Furness Railway Trust.

The business of the Furness Railway Trust (an unincorporated association) is managed by a Committee in accordance with a constitution approved by the Charity Commission. The Committee is elected at each Annual General Meeting. Three Trustees are elected to stand for a period of three years, one Trustee standing for re-election each year. All other members of the Committee are elected annually. The Committee meets on a number of occasions throughout the year in order to manage the Trust's affairs and agree required courses of action.

The Trust's banker is the Royal Bank of Scotland, Talbot Square, Blackpool FY1 1LE.

The Trust's Independent Examiner is Mrs. M.L. Shrapnel ACMA, Midway House, Brow Edge Road, Backbarrow, Ulverston, Cumbria. LA12 8QT

2. Trustees and Committee Members

The following were the appointed Trustees and Committee Members of the Furness Railway Trust during 2003:

Trustees: N.R. Gard
  J. Houghton
  J.M. Kay Snr.
Committee Members: T.D. Owen (Chairman)
  D.M. Hewlett
  J.M. Kay Jnr.
  D.A. Rimmer
  E.V. Smith
  N. Smith
  J.E. Tricker
  Mrs. L. Weldon

Mr N.R. Gard was re-elected as a Trustee for a three-year period at the Annual General Meeting on 5th April 2003.

3. Summary of Activities

The restoration of the Furness Railway Trust's Victorian, former North London Railway (NLR) coach body, funded mainly by the Heritage Lottery Fund, was completed to schedule and within budget. Whilst restoration of the structure of this historic vehicle was contracted out to the Appleby Training and Heritage Centre, Trust volunteers undertook the project management work and the application of the internal and external finishes to the coach body and chassis. The coach was safely transported from the Appleby Training & Heritage Centre to the Trust's base, the Lakeside & Haverthwaite Railway, on 27th March, an event that evoked considerable press coverage.

The vehicle passed its examination by Her Majesty's Railway Inspectorate, under the Railways and Other Tramways Regulations, 1994, and was granted an exemption to allow legal operation under the Rail Vehicle Accessibility Regulations, 1998. The coach then successfully entered passenger service on charters and evening 'Victorian Train' services, to much acclaim.

As a direct result of the NLR coach project, the Trust was gifted a second unique coach body, built for the same railway, which was transferred from a garden in Solihull to safe storage at Appleby on 25th March. Restoration of this vehicle will depend on suitable long-term covered accommodation being found.

The standard of work achieved by the Trust in its restoration activities was again recognised when the National Railway Museum requested the presence of the North London Railway coach and Furness Railway locomotive No. 20 at the week-long Railfest 2004 celebrations, to be held at York at the end of May.

The Trust's other major restoration project, former Great Western Railway 0-6-2T locomotive No. 5643, progressed satisfactorily during the year. The overhaul of the boiler had, as previously reported, been contracted to Steamtown Railway Museum at Carnforth; this work is expected to be completed early in 2004. Meanwhile, Trust volunteers have been assembling the locomotive's motion on the frames at Haverthwaite, with a view to this task being completed in time for the return of the boiler. It is now hoped that the locomotive will be returned to operation during 2004 after a layoff of over forty years. All the expenditure on this project, over the last seventeen years, has been funded by entirely by donations and the Trust's own fund-raising activities; no grants have been received.

As a result of a Risks and Vulnerabilities review during 2002, the Trustees awarded a contract, after a competitive tendering process, to Porter-Brown Solutions and MJN Associates for the preparation of an Options Analysis Report; the work, the majority of which was externally funded, was completed in the second half of 2003. Taking into account the limited space available at Haverthwaite, the Report confirmed the need for the Trust to identify suitable accommodation elsewhere to display and maintain some items of its collection of railway rolling stock and other historical artefacts. The Trustees are currently seeking further external funding in order to commission a professionally prepared feasibility study and business plan. During 2004, the Trustees explored the possibility of purchasing the former Cumbria County Council Highways Depot, close to Haverthwaite Station, which was offered for sale by open tender. This initiative was suspended, however, after the Planning Officer for the Lake District National Park indicated that he would oppose planning permission for the Trust to use the site as a maintenance and storage depot for rail vehicles.

Fund raising activities were concentrated through the sales stand, which visited various transport related events in the North West to promote the activities of the Trust, and the proceeds of concerts performed by the Trust's folk group, Live Steam.

All activities of the Furness Railway Trust are undertaken by volunteers. There are no paid staff employed by the Trust.

4. Financial Position

The Trust's accounts show net outgoing resources of £5,913 and a cash holding of £30,154 at the end of the year. They have been prepared in accordance with the Trust's constitution and to the requirements of the Statement of Recommended Practice for Accounting and Reporting by Charities.

Incoming Resources during 2003, £32,065, were lower than 2002, mainly due to a reduction in grant income as the restoration of the North London Railway coach drew to a conclusion in the first quarter of the year. £5,000 of external grant funding was received to assist with the production of the Options Analysis Report by consultants, which cost £5,757.

Sales Department income, £3,059, was static compared with 2002, although the net profit from this activity increased from £975 to £1,406, partly assisted by the bulk purchase of some second-hand railway video stock. Live Steam income was reduced following changes to the management of two regular venues. Costs of £620 were incurred mainly as a result of the need to renew some of the public address equipment, and also the acquisition of a banner promoting the band and its work for the Trust.

Having reviewed the fund raising activities for 2003, the Trustees are satisfied that these have been conducted in an effective manner.

Locomotive restoration expenditure, at £15,318, is slightly less than that incurred during 2002 (£18,761). The majority of this outlay was in respect of the overhaul of the boiler for locomotive No. 5643, which should be completed early in 2004.

Reserves policy

The Trustees believe that the Furness Railway Trust's current finances are satisfactory and will enable the Trust to meet its short-term objective of restoring its steam locomotive, No. 5643. It is envisaged that the Trust will be required to contribute towards the production of a Feasibility Study and Business Plan during 2004/5, and future budgets will be planned with this in mind.

The above report was approved by the Trustees on 23rd March 2004.

Tim Owen
23rd March 2004

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İFurness Railway Trust

Annual Report of the FRT Committee for 2003