We've got a year to save Colne Valley Railway

Gazette: We've got a year to save Colne Valley Railway We've got a year to save Colne Valley Railway

VOLUNTEERS have a year to save a popular tourist attraction.

The Colne Valley Railway, in Castle Hedingham, is visited by about 40,000 people each year.

But the site’s owner, an Australian property developer, has given the Colne Valley Railway Preservation Society until next year to find the money to buy the land.

The exact amount has not been disclosed.

Representatives from the railway preservation society have attended parish council meetings in both Sible Hedingham and Castle Hedingham to outline the situation.

It hopes to apply to the Heritage Lottery Fund to help raise the money it needs.

No-one from the society was available to speak yesterday, but Nick Ellis, the society’s volunteer archivist, addressed Sible Hedingham parish councillors about the situation.

He said the site was bought by a developer in 2006, but he nowwants to sell the land.

The original Colne Valley and Halstead Railway was built in the 1850s, but closed in the Sixties before being restored by volunteers.

Castle Hedingham Parish Council chairman Sonia Allfrey said the railway and Hedingham Castle were the key to the area’s tourism industry.

She said: “It is vitally important for us, along with the castle, to keep people here spending money in our villages and make a whole day out of it.

“The railway society came and gave a presentation and we said we certainly support them.

“They are hoping to raise money to make extensions and all sorts of things – they were all very positive and they are trying to get lottery money.”

An Essex County Council spokesman said: “In addition to the support already provided by Essex County Council officers regarding business planning and fundraising options, the county council can confirm that it will be providing a grant of £2,500 this year for Colne Valley Railway to support and develop their bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund.”

Braintree MP Brooks Newmark said: “The Colne Valley Railway is a unique attraction in our district and provides young and old alike with an opportunity to see Britain’s great railway heritage up close.

“I have taken my children there in the past and will do what I can to ensure the Colne Valley Railway has a long-term, viable future.”

Comments (8)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

7:04pm Sat 18 Jan 14

A Very Private Gentleman says...

if you do not reveal how much you need, how do we know how much to donate to you?
there is no need for all the cloak and dagger
the vulcan bomber fund tell you exactly how much they need and what for.
if you do not reveal how much you need, how do we know how much to donate to you? there is no need for all the cloak and dagger the vulcan bomber fund tell you exactly how much they need and what for. A Very Private Gentleman
  • Score: 9

7:35pm Sat 18 Jan 14

jut1972 says...

Any Kickstarter opportunities to donate? I'd buy a go on a train :)
Any Kickstarter opportunities to donate? I'd buy a go on a train :) jut1972
  • Score: 3

8:51pm Sun 19 Jan 14

Green Moggy says...

Dear "A Very Private Gentleman". Your comment is noted but not very helpful to the Colne Valley Railway Preservation Society (CVRPS) at the present time. There is a big difference between the Vulcan Bomber appeal (already in the public domain) and the CVR (a piece of private real estate owned offshore but managed on behalf of the owner by a mutual society formed in 1974 - the CVRPS).

An Australian property developer purchased the CVR, basically a linear mile of flood plain land, from its original owner on an assumption that it was a prime riverside location ripe for development. His bid trumped an original offer from the CVRPS membership several years ago which had been financially supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

From 12000 miles away this may have seemed like a bargain purchase for the developer. I think that after eight years he will now be looking to recover most, if not all, of his investment using a sales process involving a competitive tendering procedures. It would therefore be imprudent for the CVRPS officers to openly publish potential purchase offer prices in the press.

However, if we are talking money and potential donations, a million pounds sterling and a lot of change to spare would be a good starter? That was the confirmed purchase price paid for the freehold by the current owner of the railway lands, I am sure a that a single donation of that nature will be gratefully accepted by the CVRPS and be more than enough to bring the railway back into UK ownership. The railway will then continue to exist as a local tourist attraction close to, and in sight of the other main attraction in the area, Castle Hedingham..

All contributions to the purchase fund, and to the enhancement of the railway's visitor facilities would, I'm sure, be gratefully accepted,
Dear "A Very Private Gentleman". Your comment is noted but not very helpful to the Colne Valley Railway Preservation Society (CVRPS) at the present time. There is a big difference between the Vulcan Bomber appeal (already in the public domain) and the CVR (a piece of private real estate owned offshore but managed on behalf of the owner by a mutual society formed in 1974 - the CVRPS). An Australian property developer purchased the CVR, basically a linear mile of flood plain land, from its original owner on an assumption that it was a prime riverside location ripe for development. His bid trumped an original offer from the CVRPS membership several years ago which had been financially supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund. From 12000 miles away this may have seemed like a bargain purchase for the developer. I think that after eight years he will now be looking to recover most, if not all, of his investment using a sales process involving a competitive tendering procedures. It would therefore be imprudent for the CVRPS officers to openly publish potential purchase offer prices in the press. However, if we are talking money and potential donations, a million pounds sterling and a lot of change to spare would be a good starter? That was the confirmed purchase price paid for the freehold by the current owner of the railway lands, I am sure a that a single donation of that nature will be gratefully accepted by the CVRPS and be more than enough to bring the railway back into UK ownership. The railway will then continue to exist as a local tourist attraction close to, and in sight of the other main attraction in the area, Castle Hedingham.. All contributions to the purchase fund, and to the enhancement of the railway's visitor facilities would, I'm sure, be gratefully accepted, Green Moggy
  • Score: 8

1:27pm Mon 20 Jan 14

julieee says...

It's possible, have a look at how Hastings Pier have done it
http://www.hpcharity
.co.uk/
It's possible, have a look at how Hastings Pier have done it http://www.hpcharity .co.uk/ julieee
  • Score: 2

11:04am Tue 4 Feb 14

Catchedicam says...

Green Moggy wrote:
Dear "A Very Private Gentleman". Your comment is noted but not very helpful to the Colne Valley Railway Preservation Society (CVRPS) at the present time. There is a big difference between the Vulcan Bomber appeal (already in the public domain) and the CVR (a piece of private real estate owned offshore but managed on behalf of the owner by a mutual society formed in 1974 - the CVRPS).

An Australian property developer purchased the CVR, basically a linear mile of flood plain land, from its original owner on an assumption that it was a prime riverside location ripe for development. His bid trumped an original offer from the CVRPS membership several years ago which had been financially supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

From 12000 miles away this may have seemed like a bargain purchase for the developer. I think that after eight years he will now be looking to recover most, if not all, of his investment using a sales process involving a competitive tendering procedures. It would therefore be imprudent for the CVRPS officers to openly publish potential purchase offer prices in the press.

However, if we are talking money and potential donations, a million pounds sterling and a lot of change to spare would be a good starter? That was the confirmed purchase price paid for the freehold by the current owner of the railway lands, I am sure a that a single donation of that nature will be gratefully accepted by the CVRPS and be more than enough to bring the railway back into UK ownership. The railway will then continue to exist as a local tourist attraction close to, and in sight of the other main attraction in the area, Castle Hedingham..

All contributions to the purchase fund, and to the enhancement of the railway's visitor facilities would, I'm sure, be gratefully accepted,
Establish a community interest company and issues shares at £1000 each, you then need 1000 people to be interested, become more commercially minded so that a small return can be made to investors, 1-2% perhaps. It's been done elsewhere, many times. I would question the value of floodplain at £1,000,000 unless this is a huge tract of land around £5-6000 per hectare would be more realistic. He probably paid over the odds for a piece of land that he would never get permission to develop.
[quote][p][bold]Green Moggy[/bold] wrote: Dear "A Very Private Gentleman". Your comment is noted but not very helpful to the Colne Valley Railway Preservation Society (CVRPS) at the present time. There is a big difference between the Vulcan Bomber appeal (already in the public domain) and the CVR (a piece of private real estate owned offshore but managed on behalf of the owner by a mutual society formed in 1974 - the CVRPS). An Australian property developer purchased the CVR, basically a linear mile of flood plain land, from its original owner on an assumption that it was a prime riverside location ripe for development. His bid trumped an original offer from the CVRPS membership several years ago which had been financially supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund. From 12000 miles away this may have seemed like a bargain purchase for the developer. I think that after eight years he will now be looking to recover most, if not all, of his investment using a sales process involving a competitive tendering procedures. It would therefore be imprudent for the CVRPS officers to openly publish potential purchase offer prices in the press. However, if we are talking money and potential donations, a million pounds sterling and a lot of change to spare would be a good starter? That was the confirmed purchase price paid for the freehold by the current owner of the railway lands, I am sure a that a single donation of that nature will be gratefully accepted by the CVRPS and be more than enough to bring the railway back into UK ownership. The railway will then continue to exist as a local tourist attraction close to, and in sight of the other main attraction in the area, Castle Hedingham.. All contributions to the purchase fund, and to the enhancement of the railway's visitor facilities would, I'm sure, be gratefully accepted,[/p][/quote]Establish a community interest company and issues shares at £1000 each, you then need 1000 people to be interested, become more commercially minded so that a small return can be made to investors, 1-2% perhaps. It's been done elsewhere, many times. I would question the value of floodplain at £1,000,000 unless this is a huge tract of land around £5-6000 per hectare would be more realistic. He probably paid over the odds for a piece of land that he would never get permission to develop. Catchedicam
  • Score: 0

4:11pm Tue 4 Feb 14

Hamiltonandy says...

I think the Black buoy pub in Wivenhoe was bought by a group subscribing for shares in the Wivenhoe pub company. Unlike a loan there is no guaranteed dividend although is this case they had hopes of making a 4% return. A bit hopeful as it is a very competitive business.
.
Sounds similar to Jumbo in Colchester where wealthy buyer thought he would make a huge profit on reselling it with planning permission for redevelopment.
I think the Black buoy pub in Wivenhoe was bought by a group subscribing for shares in the Wivenhoe pub company. Unlike a loan there is no guaranteed dividend although is this case they had hopes of making a 4% return. A bit hopeful as it is a very competitive business. . Sounds similar to Jumbo in Colchester where wealthy buyer thought he would make a huge profit on reselling it with planning permission for redevelopment. Hamiltonandy
  • Score: 0

5:38pm Tue 4 Feb 14

Catchedicam says...

Hamiltonandy wrote:
I think the Black buoy pub in Wivenhoe was bought by a group subscribing for shares in the Wivenhoe pub company. Unlike a loan there is no guaranteed dividend although is this case they had hopes of making a 4% return. A bit hopeful as it is a very competitive business.
.
Sounds similar to Jumbo in Colchester where wealthy buyer thought he would make a huge profit on reselling it with planning permission for redevelopment.
The Sorrel Horse in Shottisham is community owned and has 250 'shareholders' at £1000 at time, and a waiting list for subscribers returns are 5-8% or so they claim.
[quote][p][bold]Hamiltonandy[/bold] wrote: I think the Black buoy pub in Wivenhoe was bought by a group subscribing for shares in the Wivenhoe pub company. Unlike a loan there is no guaranteed dividend although is this case they had hopes of making a 4% return. A bit hopeful as it is a very competitive business. . Sounds similar to Jumbo in Colchester where wealthy buyer thought he would make a huge profit on reselling it with planning permission for redevelopment.[/p][/quote]The Sorrel Horse in Shottisham is community owned and has 250 'shareholders' at £1000 at time, and a waiting list for subscribers returns are 5-8% or so they claim. Catchedicam
  • Score: 0

6:58pm Tue 4 Feb 14

stevedawson says...

Forget it.
Forget it. stevedawson
  • Score: -7

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree