* A gift that will keep growing for years * Own a piece of a real railway - and a lifetime to travel opportunities! For the person who ‘has everything' or for a really unusual but lasting Christmas gift, the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway (GWSR) has just the ticket. And it's a gift that would suit any age.
It is a piece of a real working full-size railway that is expanding, with a lifetime of free travel opportunities.
Alan Bielby, chairman of the GWSR "Many youngsters and those who are young at heart hope for model railway equipment at Christmas - but here's a chance to own a bit of the real thing!
"For as little as £100 - which is less than the cost of many model locomotives - you can be a shareholder in the ‘Bridges to Broadway' share offer.
"Not only will you get a rather fine share certificate but as a shareholder, you get tickets to ride on the steam railway every year - in fact, in just three years you will more than repay the investment in travel concessions and there aren't many investment opportunities that can promise that."
He points out that the railway has ambitious expansion plans - once it has reached Broadway, its sights are set on continuing northwards to Honeybourne, and a main-line connection.
"That means that shareholders' travel concessions will become increasingly valuable as the railway grows." Alan Bielby points out.
What's more, taxpayers will get 30% back from the Government under its Enterprise Incentive Scheme, under which the share offer has been established.
The Bridges to Broadway Share Offer was launched on 30 September and it has already raised £245,000 in just two months. The money raised will be used to repair five bridges that lie between the northern end of the present 12-mile long line at Laverton and Broadway station, just two miles away.
"At Broadway, a new station is rising phoenix-like from the site of the original which was demolished by British Railways.
"Broadway station closed in 1960, severing the railway link with Cheltenham.
As a shareholder you could be one of the first to travel between the two
towns in nearly half a century.
"That is quite some Christmas gift!"
For delivery of share certificates before Christmas, applications should be received by 18 December at the latest.
The railway is currently operating its popular Santa Specials which are booking up fast with many trains already fully booked.
The Bridges to Broadway share offer was launched on 30 September. As at 02 December, the scheme has raised over £245,000 of the £500,000 needed to repair five bridges that pass beneath the line over two miles between Laverton and Broadway station. Minimum number of shares that can be bought is 100 at £1 each and multiples of 25 thereafter. Investors may be eligible for 30% tax relief under the Government's Enterprise Initiative Scheme (EIS), which means that for every £100 invested, a tax refund of £30 is available. Full details of the Offer are contained in the Offer Document here: http://www.gwsr.com/BridgestoBroadway.pdf
The Gloucestershire Warwickshire Stream Railway presently operates over 12 miles from Cheltenham Racecourse to Laverton via Gotherington, Winchcombe and Toddington. It started operations over just a quarter of a mile of track at Toddington, 30 years ago next year (1984) and has steadily grown since. Its aim is to restore as much as possible of the former Stratford-upon-Avon to Cheltenham railway line as possible, over which local train services ceased in 1960. Once this major heritage railway attraction reaches Broadway (which could be in a little as three years) it plans to continue extending northwards to Honeybourne Junction where Network Rail has made provision for eventual arrival of the line.
The railway is operated almost entirely by 800 volunteers.
For news, information and train times visit www.gwsr.com
Source: Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway Plc