The daughter of Alan Pegler – the man who saved Flying Scotsman, Penny Pegler, is asking the public to donate to the £360,000 Save Our Service Appeal to help the Swanage Railway survive past COVID-19.
Since being rebuilt in 1976, the five and a half mile heritage railway carries more than 200,000 passengers a year.
The ‘Save Our Service’ appeal, launched after trains were halted in March, aims to plug the financial hole at the steam railway whilst it is not running trains.
Penny Pegler is lending her support to the Swanage Railway’s appeal.
Penny was the star guest at the Swanage Railway during the three-week visit of Flying Scotsman Penny flew in from Portugal to wave off the first train from Swanage.
Alan Pegler purchased Flying Scotsman from British Railways for £3,000 in 1963, which saved the locomotive from scrap.
Penny said: “The Swanage Railway has been brought back to life over the years and exists today thanks to the enthusiasm, determination, financial support and hard work of those people who believed in the project and made it become a reality. For this great adventure to continue in these challenging times, the Swanage Railway needs our financial help. There is nothing quite like the sound and smell of a locomotive in steam hauling a train through Dorset’s lovely Isle of Purbeck,” she added.
After being launched, the ‘Save Our Service’ appeal currently stands at £159,135 on Friday, 22 May 2020.
Penny said: “My eldest son accompanied me and what a memorable time we had. Apart from the beauty of the countryside, we were overwhelmed by the sight of thousands of happy enthusiastic people of all ages who turned out to see this elegant locomotive and her lucky passengers steaming gently down the track, or standing in the station alongside the Swanage Railway’s beautiful steam engines,”
Swanage Railway Trust chairman Gavin Johns said: “I am delighted that Penny Pegler is very graciously supporting the Swanage Railway’s ‘Save Our Service’ appeal to help the line survive in the wake of the economic effects of Coronavirus. I would like to thank Penny for her support as well as everyone who has made – and will make – a donation to the appeal during these extraordinary and challenging times. Several generations of remarkable people have rebuilt the Swanage Railway from nothing since 1976, and there is still so much more to achieve,” explained Mr Johns.
You can donate to the Save Our Service Appeal by visiting their website www.saveourservice.co.uk
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