AGM 2017 – Chair’s Report

Crowle Peatland Railway

Chair Report AGM 2017

Yet another year passes and unfortunately our building is still not up and running and I make no apologies for this.
During the last year, we have had far too many setbacks with planning which are still ongoing with many clashes of opinions which have been detrimental to good progress.
However, we now appear to be on the move yet again and are very close to finalising the planning process, the consulting period has been completed with only one major objection mainly unrelated to normal ways of thinking, however one point that needs making is the need to reflect our project as being a tramway not a railway as a railway needs an act of parliament. Until we deal with this objection it will continue to rear its head.
The future of our project is assured and we need to move rapidly forward with the ordering of the building and ensure that base is laid as soon as we have been able to secure the specification which is nearly complete. We will then need to get the tenders out to enable us to select a suitable contractor, who can not only deliver the spec but on time. The progress of tendering will be lead and facilitated by North Lincolnshire Council under their laid down procurement procedure which has already been agreed by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
All the monies have now been allocated by the Isle of Axholme and Hatfield Chase Landscape Partnership (IOAHCLP) and has been confirmed to all the various projects and we are one of seventeen from an initial list of 40. We are in a fantastic position as we updated our needs and our funding has been secured. This including the SSE Windfarm fund to pay for the building, this fund was classed as a match fund and therefore we need no further permission from anybody to order and take delivery of the building. We just need to store it when it arrives in a secure indoor area. this will enable us to get access to it to when we get the base finally laid. We can then commence building. All other service work can be completed after this point and can be delivered by our own members (or sub contracted with the correct procedure for procurement in place). The lottery fund clock is ticking and we are already behind. However, I believe we are very able to catch up with the project and with the positive attitude and effort of the clear majority of able bodied members be on target for each and all of the phases we have to cover over the next four years.
We have now got a massive range of skills amongst our members and an increasing membership/enquiry of great interest. if we need to expand on any skills then we can attempt to facilitate that.
Recently I was contacted by North Lindsey College who are looking towards a close working relationship

Finally, I want to thank the Humberhead Levels Partnership (HLP) for putting us forward for part of the Isle of Axholme and Hatfield Chace Landscape Partnership (IOAHCLP) Bid. The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The SSE windfarm fund for providing the money to purchase the building. Natural England for donating the first Loco and equipment that got us started. Also, North Lincolnshire Council and our councillors John Briggs and Julie Reed for supporting us. The North Lincolnshire Council environment team Mr Tim Allen and his dedicated team for all their help and assistance in finding a suitable site for our building.
And of course, you the committee and members who without your support and effort we would never have got off the ground in the first instance.
Let’s hope we can go from strength to strength in the coming years.

Mel Bailey