Abellio Greater Anglia to run rail enthusiasts' charity train

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

 Class 37 locomotive railtour to raise fundsfor East Anglia's Children's Hospices


Abellio Greater Anglia (AGA) is to run arail enthusiasts' charity charter train on Saturday 30 April to raise funds forEast Anglia's Children's Hospices (EACH).


The special trip will operate with 4 MkIIcarriages "top and tailed" by two Class 37 diesel locomotives. Itwill run from Norwich to Ely and back, then from Norwich up the Great EasternMain Line to London Liverpool Street and back - both routes with which thistype of locomotive has been closely associated for much of its life.


The price for this "one-off" tripis £60, with all profits from the event donated to EACH.


Bookings can only be made on-line via www.greenrailtravel.co.uk/special


The planned timings for the trip are asfollows:


Norwich depart                                 10.15

Ely arrive                               11.20

Ely depart                              11.55

Norwich arrive                                  12.55

Norwich depart                                 13.33

London Liverpool St arrive 15.33

London Liverpool St depart            16.27

Norwich arrive                                  18.21


The train operator is also auctioning twoopportunities for a cab ride - one from Norwich to Ely and the other from Ely toNorwich. Anyone booking on the tour can bid for this very rare opportunity toexperience a driver's eye view of a rail journey. The participants making thetwo highest individual bids, received on the site by the end of Sunday 24April, will win the cab rides.  Again,the money raised will go to EACH. An on-board trolley service of lightrefreshments will be available on-board throughout the day, further increasingthe charitable contribution from the event. Anyone with any queries about the event can ring 0345 600 7245 andchoose option 3, followed by option 2 to find out more details.


The Class 37 locomotives are usually usedon some weekday passenger services between Norwich and GreatYarmouth/Lowestoft. Although they have been a common sight in East Angliathroughout their 50 years of operation, it is over 30 years since they wereregularly in use on passenger services on the Norwich to Ely and Norwich toLondon routes. So it is hoped that this chance to travel behind these populardiesels on their former "stamping ground", will prove veryattractive. With just over 200 seats available, a sold out trip would generatesignificant funds for this very worthwhile cause.


With hospices in Milton (Cambridgeshire),Quidenham (Norfolk) and Ipswich (Suffolk) and offering support across thosethree counties and for families from Essex too, EACH provides services across asimilar area to AGA and the itinerary for the trip takes the train quite closeto all three hospices. The charity has previously been chosen by AGA employeesas the recipient of charitable funds linked to the company's employee survey,as well as more localised fund-raising initiatives. In addition to its widerfund-raising work, the charity is currently raising money towards "TheNook", a new hospice for Norfolk to succeed Quidenham.


Jonathan Denby, Head of Corporate Affairs forAbellio Greater Anglia said: "We're delighted to be running this specialClass 37 railtour to raise funds for East Anglia's Children's Hospices. It's anextremely worthwhile cause focused on the region we serve and supported by manyof our employees. Taking in two routes which have been synonymous with Class 37locomotives in the past, we hope it will be very popular and generate animpressive contribution to EACH funds. It promises to be a great day out forall involved."


Mark Loades, EACH Corporate and SupporterDevelopment Manager said: “We’re thrilled this special one-off charter trainwill benefit EACH. It’s a wonderful opportunity for rail enthusiasts to travelbehind such popular locomotives, while also supporting local families. We’revery grateful to Abellio Greater Anglia for their generosity and support, andwould urge people to book their place quickly to avoid disappointment.”