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Swanage Railway Trust



Please help us extend the life of our heritage coaches by providing covered accommodation at Herston, on the approach to Swanage.

Raised So Far: £69,166

Total Updated on 30th June

Visualization: Kevin Williamson

A Critical Project to Help Protect our Heritage Coaches

The latest Carriage Shed Appeal is aiming to raise the final £65,000 required to complete the total £240,000 construction costs. The brand new facility will be constructed over the sidings at the east end of Herston Halt, just on the outskirts of Swanage.


The Swanage Railway's coaches are currently out and exposed to the open all year around. This new covered accommodation is urgently required to help protect some of the Swanage Railway Trust’s most historic and valuable assets, the oldest of which is over 80 years old! The irreplaceable vehicles will significantly benefit from protection against the elements to improve their lifespan between overhauls while also reducing the time and expense associated with their maintenance.


The new carriage shed will be the largest structure ever built by the Swanage Railway that will cover two tracks in an area of over 1000 square metres. It will be fully enclosed on its south side to ensure our vehicles are protected from the most extreme weather that can blow along the Purbeck valley. Meanwhile, the north side, nearest the railway line, will have cladding halfway down from the roof, enabling the natural circulation of free-flowing air for ventilation.


In early 2020 we launched an appeal which raised £30,000, alongside this we started foundation work on site. Fund-raising was paused in March 2020 and our focus instead switched to the Save Our Service Appeal, launched to mitigate against the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic and ensure our railway survived through the winter.


Fortunately, we are currently in a position to return to the Herston carriage shed project and have already raised £177,000 towards the building costs, thanks to successful fund-raising efforts as well as generous legacies and bequests. We had hoped to secure a grant to part-fund the construction but it was no longer available as the grant administrators had changed their requirement to enable them to finance organisations affected by Covid-19.


Without the grant, because of the early closure of the original appeal and allowing for inflation, we need your help to raise the final £65,000 to turn our vision for undercover accommodation for our carriage fleet into a reality.


It is vital we raise the remaining money by the end of June, so that the steel structure of the carriage shed can be manufactured and installed on the site in November, enabling us to complete the new shed by early 2022.

Find Out More

Watch our video to find out more about the importance of this project and hear from Swanage Railway Engineering Director Nathan Au as well as Swanage Railway Trust Chairman Gavin Johns.

Video: Kevin Babey

Ways to Help

The Swanage Railway operates over a narrow piece of land with very few places where rolling stock can be stored. Having any equipment stored in the open is not ideal and especially so in a coastal location. The impact of these conditions is most noticeable on our older coaches which are nearly ninety years old. 

Having identified a site where we can provide covered accommodation and gained planning approval, we needed to split this project into a number of phases. We are now tantalizingly close to achieving our aims and are looking for further support at this critical point.


The initial stages saw the site being cleared and extensive earthworks to build a retaining wall. The foundations for the steelworks were constructed before lockdown and now we are seeking to raise the remaining funds needed to construct the actual carriage shed.  

The project is being led by Swanage Railway Trust volunteer and trustee Nick Coram who said: "I do hope that you will be able to give generously to what is a vital project – and an investment in the future of the Swanage Railway’s carriages – through a one-off donation or a regular Standing Order".


Gift Aid - however you choose to donate, if you are a UK tax payer then the Trust can reclaim an additional 25% at no cost to you if you complete this Gift Aid form

Social Media - we would also be grateful if you could help publicize this project through social media using the button below



The quickest way to donate is online using the button below

PayPal ButtonPayPal Button

You can also make a donation using these methods:


Internet banking or bank transfer:

  • Account: Swanage Railway Trust.

  • Sort code: 20-68-79.

  • Account number: 60539112.

  • Reference: 'Carriage Shed Appeal'.


Please make cheques payable to the Swanage Railway Trust and send to:


Swanage Railway Trust,
Station House,
BH19 1HB.

Please write 'Carriage Shed Appeal' on the back of the cheque

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