Something is Happening?

East Midlands couple recognised by PM for saving local tourist attraction


Dedicated Derbyshire volunteers Anne and Chris Deeth, who stepped in to keep local tourist attraction and historical treasure, the Midland Railway Trust, on track when its manager sadly passed away, have been named Points of Light by Prime Minister David Cameron.


The Deeths are the latest recipients of a Point of Light award, which recognises outstanding individual volunteers, people who are making a change in their community and inspiring others. Each day, someone, somewhere in the country is selected to receive the award to celebrate their remarkable achievements.


Chris and Anne Deeth, have been committed volunteers for 34 years at the Midland Railway Trust, and when the attraction was left without a manager they immediately stepped up and took it upon themselves to ensure the tourist attraction could still continue, allowing hundreds of local people and tourists to enjoy the museum and Railway. Over the years they have turned their hands to almost every activity: dressing in period costumes for guided tours, wrestling with the Trust’s budget, organising events, chairing committees, developing the museum and many more, but have still found time for their passion of restoring old railway carriages.


The Midland Railway Trust at Butterley Station in Ripley is a unique tourist attraction, featuring preserved steam and diesel hauled passenger trains and a popular museum. The Deeths have had a wide ranging involvement across the three decades they’ve volunteered for the Trust, both being Trustees since the early 1990s, with Chris being Chairman from 1994-2014.


Prime Minister David Cameron said:

“Great British historical attractions like the Midland Railway Trust need commitment and enthusiasm if they are to continue to entertain and delight families and communities.

“Anne and Chris Deeth have shown those qualities in spades, and I am very pleased to be able to recognise their service by making them both Points of Light.”


Upon receiving the award, Chris and Anne said: “We are absolutely thrilled to receive this award.  The fact that it is a joint award is particularly pleasing as it reflects the way in which we work.  Volunteering in railway preservation is an integral part of our lives and helping to celebrate our local and national heritage gives us a great deal of pleasure.”

  

Gloria De Piero MP for Ashfield said:

“I’m delighted that my constituents have been recognised for their outstanding work at the Midland Railway Trust. People like Anne and Chris who have devoted so much of their own time to help keep a popular attraction going for the enjoyment of families across the area are real stars and deserve this award. Congratulations.”

 

The Deeths are the 263rd and 264th winner of the Points of Light award which has been developed in partnership with the hugely successful Points of Light programme in the USA and was first established by President George H. W. Bush. Over 5,000 US Points of Light have been awarded and both President George H. W. Bush and President Barack Obama have publicly supported the partnership with Points of Light UK which honours shining examples of volunteering across the country.


Regardless of whether it’s a doctor restoring local monuments in her free time, a father teaching young people life skills, or a local musician giving a voice to lonely people, the Point of Light award honours shining examples of volunteering across the UK.   

Chris and Anne Deeth1. The Points of Light awards recognise outstanding individual volunteers, people who are making a change in their community and inspiring others.

2. The Prime Minister makes daily announcements of the winners to celebrate, encourage and promote volunteering and the value that it brings to the country.  

3. Groups and organisations that are demonstrating the Big Society in their work or activities will continue to be recognised by the Prime Minister through the Big Society awards.

4. If people know someone who could be a Point of Light they should write to the Prime Minister at 10 Downing Street.


Visiting Narrow Gauge Steam Locomotive at Midland Railway - Butterley


The Golden Valley Light Railway is the narrow gauge railway at the Midland Railway – Butterley and runs from the museum complex at Swanwick Junction through the country park. Over the summer it will be host to a historic steam locomotive dating from the First World War.


Number 3014 was built by Kerr Stuart in Stoke on Trent in 1916 for the French military railways. Kerr Stuart built 70 of these useful locomotives and named the class after the French General Joseph Joffre.  


After the war this locomotive was sold for industrial use and finished up in a quarry near Calais where it was used until 1956. It remained derelict in the quarry until it was brought back to Britain in 1974. It finally moved to the Moseley Railway Trust collection in 1998 where it was restored and returned to steam in 2011.


Number 3014 has been restored to the condition that it was delivered to the French military in 1916 and will be seen operating trains on the Golden Valley Light Railway on a number of dates over the summer. These will be:



The Railway Museum, Country Park, Golden Valley Light Railway, West Shed Experience, Demonstration Signal Box, Victorian Railwayman’s Church, Model and Miniature Railways, Shops and Buffets will all be open during these events.


Alan Calladine said “This is a great chance for visitors to see and travel behind a locomotive  that was built for use in the First World War battlefields and saw a lot of use in French industry before its extensive restoration to working order.”  


Trains to the Seaside


The Midland Railway – Butterley is running trains every day from 24th July until 6th September and is re-creating the seaside special excursions that were so popular for summer holidays to the coast.


From the earliest days of railways excursion trains were very popular and soon holidays by train were firmly established with the railways even creating their own resorts. One of the very first excursion trains was operated on the Midland Railway on 5th July 1841 by a gentleman named Thomas Cook who would soon make his name organising holidays.


The Midland Railway – Butterley seaside trains will be taking holiday makers on a short trip to a beach specially created by volunteers at the Museum Complex at Swanwick Junction. Complete with sand, pebbles, and a promenade the beach is next to the station at Swanwick Junction.


Alan Calladine said, “Creating a beach in Derbyshire which is about as far from the sea as you can make it in this country might seem a bit strange but we are sure that it will be popular. We hope that it will bring back memories of those trains that took so many holiday makers to the seaside before the advent of package holidays.”  For further information please get in touch with the Midland Railway – Butterley here.


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The Midland Railway Trust Ltd. is a company registered in England No. 1097382 and as a charitable trust No. 502278.

The Retail, Catering and Engineering operations are operated by the Midland Railway Enterprises plc, a subsidiary company of the Midland Railway Trust Ltd.


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