Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Company Tragedy Spurs Reinstatement of Popular Charity Rail Tour Around the UK

Summertime Country Wide Trip is Back - and This Time it's Personal!
Shipping News Feature

UK – The popular outings run by GBRf Charity Railtours, the fundraising arm of GB Railfreight, are back! 2020 will see another 4-day charity rail tour around some of the country's most interesting routes and the third such event since 2016.

GBRf had decided to retire its tours in 2018. However, after much-admired colleague Des O’Brien passed away at relatively short notice having suffered an aggressive stomach cancer in 2018 and in June 2019 Paul Taylor was also diagnosed with prostate cancer, the team at GBRf decided restart the tours with the strapline: ‘This Time it’s Personal’.

Therefore this year, from 24 September to 27 September the charity organisation will be raising money for Prostate Cancer UK. The GBRf train will visit different parts of the country and will be accompanied by GBRf’s more ‘unusual’ locomotives. Commenting on the decision to organise the Charity Railtour, GBRf Managing Director John Smith said:

“After GBRf 2018, the team behind these trains took some time to reflect and opted against doing another. Then, following the sudden passing of our colleague Des and the diagnosis of Paul Taylor with prostate cancer, the team decided it was time to return the tours in aid of Prostate Cancer UK, which is also our charity of choice for our company-wide fundraising efforts.

”We are absolutely delighted to be returning these incredibly popular tours and we will be hoping to raise even more money than before for Prostate Cancer UK because for us, this issue is personal.”

These tours come at a cost to GBRf staff, the train crews give their time for free, stewards are needed constantly on board, for what this year looks as if it will be four days of operations and an overnight on the Friday. Despite the work involved the team say they are looking forward to what they hope will be another successful event.

More details will be announced in February before a full announcement of the itinerary in March 2020. Bookings will open in early April, and the release date will be announced in advance.

Photo: A shot of a passing rail tour from 2018 on the Midland Line.