18 JUL 2015

East Kent Railway Gala

It was a pleasure to celebrate the East Kent Railway's 30th anniversary gala. The railway has received new lottery funding to develop facilities and continue to employ and train more young people. I opened the new car park and spoke to local patrons and volunteers about the continuing success of the line.

The heritage line has been running trains on the old Kent Colliery Line for the past two decades. It's a brilliant local success story and has a fantastic local apprenticeship scheme. The railway has helped train over 100 young people in the past two years. Many of these young people had low job prospects or little chance of finding work. Every single one of those over 100 young apprentices have gone on to work in the rail industry.

I look forward to visiting the railway again soon and hope they continue to train young apprentices and go from strength to strength.

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Charlie Elphicke

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