Chairman's Report for 2006
by Steve Millington
As I reflect over the last 12 months, the achievements of the Group were considerable considering our numbers. The construction of the storage shed continues and the outline of the building transforms weekly. It has now been work in progress for Bob and Mick for just over a year and by now they must be wondering if it 'will ever be complete'. The answer is yes, in the first quarter of 2007.
I feel it important to re-emphasize the importance of this shed. As anybody knows who has been around the parcels platform and in the workshop we cannot move for lack of space. Once this storage facility is complete it will provide dry and safe storage for all of our artefacts (some now very rare) and allow us to compile our inventory properly, which I aim to complete by summer 2007. Inside the building the three carts are kept dry and with minor attention could be released back on display. One of the carts is not actually ours but in my opinion offering it a dry place to temporarily reside is a good idea for all.
The GWR Thornycroft lorry has continued steadily in the background as it is one of our more long term projects due to the level of restoration required. I envisage having a complete rolling chassis capable of being driven by the end of this year, and the cab and coachwork following in 2008. The cost will be high so we are pacing ourselves.
Last year also saw the removal and renewal of the station V-Boards which were worked on by all and were re-mounted in time for the Station festival. The ladies waiting room entrance lobby received a fresh coat of paint and four period framed prints to make this area complete. In addition to the above there has been much work done on station benches, notice boards, fittings and fixtures. So in all, it has been quite a busy year for our working members.
So what will 2007 bring? Well, the January committee meeting outlined the following aims for this year. The gent's toilet end screen will hopefully be erected; in fact construction of the supporting steelwork has already begun. Two GWR wooden benches are already inside the storage shed to be restored and we aim to modify the station clock to include its original iron scroll work to suit our new canopy. The restaurant will also benefit from our group as we will start to examine how to enhance this building. We already have ten picture frames to French polish. This list is not exhaustive and much more will be underway.
Funding is always an issue and we have to carefully plan which projects to take on and when, hopefully we can raise enough money this year to allow us to complete our objectives.
In all 2007 will be another busy period for the Friends. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our members for their support and donations to allow us continue our work, which benefits Kidderminster Town Station, the Railway and its visitors.
Finally I look forward to another challenging 12 months and to working with our unique group of railway volunteers.