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Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Network Rail helps Railway Family Week fundraise £50,000

Network Rail has helped the Railway Benefit Fund’s first dedicated fundraising week raise £50,000.

The charity provides support, advice and financial aid to people working in the rail industry during tough times in their lives.

This year saw the first ‘Railway Family Week’ between 26 April and 2 May.

Fundraisers were asked to take part in the 1858 challenge – the year the RBF was founded.

More than 50 people took on gruelling feats incorporating the number, including running, cycling, swimming or even completing 1,858 squats or press ups.

Tim Shoveller, Railway Benefit Fund chairman and Network Rail’s North West & Central region managing director, swam 1,858 metres in his local swimming pool.

Tim said: “I’m fantastically proud of the success of the first ever Railway Family Week, from everybody who set themselves challenges to those who dug deep into their pockets to sponsor them.

“The RBF’s work makes a huge difference in the most challenging of times – often when people are at their lowest ebb. The whole industry coming together, from train operating companies, suppliers and contractors, for such a worthy cause shows that we truly are a railway family.”

Claire Houghton, CEO of RBF, said: “The support we have received this Railway Family Week has been incredible and we are delighted to have raised £50,000, allowing us to support even more railway people going through tough times. We want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has taken part and we hope to see them get involved next year as well.”

An online auction of 33 railway themed experiences raised nearly £20,000 in bids towards the inaugural total.

Despite the week being over for 2021, people are still being encouraged to take part.

Railway Family Week opened with the unveiling of an Avanti West Coast Pendolino named ‘Railway Benefit Fund.’

The Pendolino, number 390155, has already travelled 10,000 miles since the launch and is expected to travel over a quarter of a million miles in the next year.

The charity is asking those who spot the train to email in their photos or tweet @RBF1858 using #RBFPendolino.

Railway Family Week will be back in April 2022 with an even bigger fundraising target and more events.

To pledge your support for next year, please email [email protected]

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