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The Talyllyn Railway has secured further funding towards its first two Apprentices. The Hendy and Pendle Charitable Trust has donated £5,000 to aid the training of Oscar Hutchinson and Ross Waddington who were both employed last year.

Oscar is working in the Railway’s Permanent Way department (the track and infrastructure) and is studying at Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor in Dolgellau. Ross is employed on the Signal & Telegraph department and is studying at MPTC College Newtown. Both are working towards recognised NVQ 2 and 3 qualifications alongside their on the job training.

Sir Peter Hendy CBE, who with his wife Sue, are the trustees of the Hendy & Pendle Trust, were both enthusiastic to help fund the ‘grass roots’ of Heritage Railway workers. Sir Peter, who is Chairman of Network Rail, has visited the Railway several times and met with Oscar on his last visit.

Sir Peter comments:

“Sue and I are very keen to fund the next generation of heritage railway engineers and operators so these wonderful railways have as secure a future in the 21st Century as the main line railway does.”

Stuart Williams, the General Manager of the Railway said:

“We are delighted with the grant from the trust. The money has helped us set the two apprentices up with equipment and tools for their trades. Investing in two local boys is very important to us and helps secure the future of the Railway. I hope this is the beginning of a programme of apprenticeships in many disciplines”

David Ventry, the Railway Company chairman commented:

“As with many Heritage Railways our experienced workforce is ‘senior’ in age, so securing the two apprentices will provide the start of a sustainable future for the Railway. We are indebted to the trust for this donation.”

For further information about this press release please e-mail: [email protected] or phone 01654 710472.