It’s a busy time of year for gardeners at Midsomer Norton Station. They have been doing their usual Monday work of weeding and mulching as well as planting new seeds and hanging baskets. The bank border of Perennials by the buffet coach is being trimmed, weeded and mulched and that will continue during spring flowering time.
The front border needs light weeding at the station building end as spring weather encourages the seeds lying dormant. A strong team of students is helping to extend the front border down to the traffic lights by carting composted material down to fill in the gap. The hedge plants are already in position ready to be planted when they are finished.
One of the early spring tasks was to plant young hedge plants along the field boundary of the railway line. The hedge plants have all been donated by members of the Somerset and Dorset Heritage Trust and are all native ranging from Hollies Hawthorns and Field Maples to Dogwood and Beeches.
Volunteer Gardener and Trustee Gail Coleshill would like to welcome more volunteers for the gardens.
“Midsomer Norton Station was always known for its gardening skills when the Somerset and Dorset Railway was running. We are keeping up the tradition and have also extended the garden area – and we sell plants. Anyone who would like to help come up on a Sunday and Monday and you will be very welcome."
The station on Silver Street is open on a Sunday and Monday from 10 till 4 for volunteers and visitors. The next Open Day event will be the May Day Bank holiday when trains will be running on Sunday 6th and Monday 7th.
The photos shows Doug Auckland, David Lacey - Goodman, Tony White and John Bridges, volunteer gardeners on their way to plant the boundary fence through the nature reserve.
The railway is seeking expressions of interest from any persons who have experience of fund raising and who are willing to provide to the railway on a voluntary basis their expertise and time to help to increase the railways income significantly over the next five years. Funds generated will be used to enable the railway to expand and deliver a number of new projects which are currently in the early planning stages and provide benefits to both the railway and the surrounding community and help the S & D to become a major tourist attraction in this part of the South West.
The post at this time is on a purely voluntary basis and would suit someone who can devote several hours a week to the role, has good interpersonal and communications skills, strong writing and influencing skills, together with experience of fundraising across a range of areas and audiences. A passion for railway preservation will be a bonus!
The role will be to raise awareness of the railway within the local and regional area, develop goals and plans for raising money and;
Identify and explore donor pools
Assist with the application of grant proposals and manage endowments
Plan and manager marketing campaigns
Plan fund raising events and develop alliances with other organisations.
The ability to be an effective, creative and raise money for the railway is what this role is all about.
For an informal chat, please contact Stephen Lacey 07905 775373, Brian Litherland 07745 113635 or send a letter for our attention to Midsomer Norton station address details below with a brief overview of your experience and what you think you can bring to this role.
Volunteers at the Somerset and Dorset Railway at Midsomer Norton Station welcomed visitors from Welton school who are learning about engineering as part of their curriculum.
The party was guided in groups around the station buildings and grounds by Zaida Haworth, Vivienne Taylro and Roger Taylor, who was dressed for the part in a station uniform, with the children showing an active enthusiasm for all they saw. Will George was in the signal box explaining the all the levers which were a similar size to his audience.
Barry Bax, Museum Curator, opened the Museum for the children to see the splendid collection of railway artefacts and memorabilia including a life size horse.
"We are very impressed that Welton school considers the history of engineeering in this neighbourhood to be important. These children have grown up without the benefit of a railway here so would know nothing about the importance of the Somerset and Dorset railway until now."
The visit culminated in a trip down the line in the Queen Mary brake van behind the British rail 08 class Diesel shunter.
The next event at the station will be a Steam Gala with a visiting Jinty Steam locomotive when The station will be open to visitors to ride the trains on March 10th and 11th and March 18th.
The track gang held two very successful working weekends in February, the first was held on the 10th & 11th February and the second on the 17th & 18th. The weather wasn’t particular kind on the first of these with rain all day on the Saturday, followed by a cold but dry day on the Sunday with even a few flakes of snow in the afternoon.