Over £63,000 raised by CrossCountry HST farewell tour

More than £63,000 was raised for The Brain Tumour Charity by the HST farewell tour organised by CrossCountry in partnership with Modern Railways on 26 September.

The final total of £63,022.12 was announced and a cheque presented to representatives of the charity at the Golden Spanner Awards in London on 24 November. A collection taken at the awards raised a further £1,866.90 for the charity, taking the final total to nearly £65,000.

CrossCountry withdrew its HSTs in September, and to mark this milestone a special farewell trip ran on 26 September from Leeds to Swanage. The trip was organised by CrossCountry and Modern Railways with the support of the Swanage Railway, the Branch Line Society and 125 Group.

The Brain Tumour Charity was chosen as the recipient of proceeds from the tour in memory of former CrossCountry colleague Jo Taylor. The total of more than £63,000 came from ticket sales, merchandise and food and drink sales on the day, plus the auctioning of one of a ‘Pines Express’ headboard worn by the train.

Philip Sherratt, Editor of Modern Railways magazine, said: ‘It was a privilege for Modern Railways to work with CrossCountry to mark the withdrawal of their iconic HST fleet and to see the interest the farewell tour generated, as well as to have raised such a phenomenal amount of money. It was great to celebrate this achievement alongside colleagues from CrossCountry and the Brain Tumour Charity at our Golden Spanner awards.’

Tom Joyner, CrossCountry’s Managing Director, said: ‘It was important to mark the contributions of not only our High Speed Trains that have served us so well for over 40 years, but also the generations of colleagues who have worked tirelessly to maintain them. ‘It’s also been a privilege to raise so much money for such a worthy cause - just another example of what can be accomplished by colleagues across the rail industry working together.’

Hannah Bowler, Corporate Partnership Manager at The Brain Tumour Charity, said: ‘We are so grateful for the support of everyone at CrossCountry. It’s been such a pleasure working with the team and it’s incredible that nearly £65,000 has been raised in memory of their colleague Jo Taylor. The effort from everyone involved will allow us to continue growing our support services, accelerate change in brain tumour diagnosis and treatment, and to invest in vital research for all those affected.’