This Bulletin comes hard on the heels of the latest Warrior magazine, whose distribution has taken a little longer than usual because of the coronavirus emergency. (It was mailed to members on June 1st)

On the engineering front, the good news is that West Shed is still expected to re-open on the 1st July.  Our contract is now signed and plans are being made in conjunction with PRCLT to establish task priorities. Funding has been agreed for three months and will continued to be managed carefully on a rolling basis.

At HBSS, we have very recently paused the work for the time being for budget reasons, but good progress has been made on the cladding.

Work on the tender frames has continued at Leaky Finders although at a much slower pace than we thought, due to the lockdown restrictions. They now expect to complete in around 3 weeks.

In anticipation of West Shed’s reopening, we are starting to plan for components such as the driving and bogie wheels, motion, valve castings, reverser etc., to be transferred to West Shed from various contractors where work had been completed before the lockdown intervened.

Our AGM has now been provisionally diarised for 31st October at the Kidderminster Railway Museum, but we will be keeping this closely under notice as the coronavirus restrictions evolve. Unfortunately our hoped-for July Members Day at West Shed will not be possible because of continuing access restrictions there, but we will look for other opportunities.      

On the money front, we are delighted to report that all four of the boiler loan lenders whose interest was due to be paid in May have donated the amount due (plus a little extra) back to the project. The total amount donated was £905 with all four qualifying for gift aid, generating an additional £226. Although Neil, our treasurer has acknowledged them all individually it is worth reporting this here and saying a big thank you to them, and to all the other lenders who have donated back to the project since January.

We are also very grateful to be able to report that general financial support from members and non-members alike appears to be holding up well in the circumstances. We received in excess of £37,000 in May, including a gift-aid payment from HMRC and donations and sales through PayPal off the back of our daily posts on Facebook.

However, we are entering a critical financial phase. Our forecast income against expenditure for the next 6 months is going to be very tight as we prioritise funding the increasing work at PRCLT. We appreciate the understanding which our contractors continue to show in these straitened times. Your generous support is going to be needed more than ever.

Sales have, not surprisingly, suffered due to the consequences of lockdown for our sales-stands activities, but online sales continue to tick over.  Our web shop is open 24/7 to respond to your needs for our distinctive merchandise!

The LMS-Patriot Company Ltd. • The Hub, 17 Eastgate Street, Stafford, ST16 2LZ
Registered in England & Wales No. 6502248 • Registered Charity No. 1123521
Tel: 01785 244156
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