The Leighton Buzzard Railway Museum has announced that it is one of 2,700 organisations to receive financial help as part of the second round of funding from the Culture Recovery Fund.
The money will be used to pay for costs incurred whilst the railway was closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Leighton Buzzard Railway is one of the few remaining railways that was built solely for industrial use, and is now an all-volunteer organisation with no paid staff.
Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, said: “Our record breaking Culture Recovery Fund has already helped thousands of culture and heritage organisations across the country survive the biggest crisis they’ve ever faced. Now we’re staying by their side as they prepare to welcome the public back through their doors – helping our cultural gems plan for reopening and thrive in the better times ahead.”
Terry Bendall, Chairman of the Society said “This award will provide much needed financial support to help us meet the costs that have occurred during the time that we have been closed which included the curtailment of our popular Santa Specials and the delayed opening of our new operating season. Although much of our usual expenditure had been placed on hold, some costs such as utilities, insurance and similar costs have to be paid, and we have a backlog of restoration and repairs to our historic fleet of locomotives which has had to be delayed due to the lack of income whilst we have been closed. It will also enable us to expand our audience base. Our application for Cultural Recovery Grant finding was helped significantly by help and advice provided by SHARE, the East of England museum support network and the Museum Development Office for Bedfordshire and we are very grateful for the advice provided by these sources.”
Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair, Arts Council England, said: “Investing in a thriving cultural sector at the heart of communities is a vital part of helping the whole country to recover from the pandemic. These grants will help to re-open theatres, concert halls, and museums and will give artists and companies the opportunity to begin making new work. We are grateful to the Government for this support and for recognising the paramount importance of culture to our sense of belonging and identity as individuals and as a society.”
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