Railway Family Week 2021, a new event organised by the Railway Benefit Fund (RBF) between 26 April and 2 May, saw the rail industry come together to show support for colleagues in need and to raise £50,000 for the charity.
In the months leading up to Railway Family Week, individuals and teams across the industry pledged to complete the 1858 Challenge. Teams worked together to run, cycle and walk 1,858km collectively, some people aimed to complete 1,858 squats or press ups, and one volunteer even completed a virtual train marathon as part of his challenge.
The week’s events commenced with an Avanti West Coast Pendolino being named ‘Railway Benefit Fund.’ The Pendolino, number 390155, has already travelled 10,000 miles since the launch and is expected to travel over a quarter of a million miles in the next year.
The online Auction of Experiences closed on the Friday of Railway Family Week and saw almost £20,000 raised in bids. Organisations and individuals kindly donated over 30 prizes, including station tours, a cab ride, an Island Line experience, a staycation, walks over the Ribblehead Viaduct and Forth Bridge and even a helicopter ride.
Claire Houghton, CEO of RBF, said: “The support we have received this Railway Family Week has been incredible and we are delighted to have raised £50,000, allowing us to support even more railway people going through tough times. We want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has taken part and we hope to see them get involved next year as well.”