Keeping a heritage railway on track

Ensuring North Yorkshire Moors Railway didn't run out of steam

£500,000+

DONATED TO THE APPEAL

1.4 billion +

TOTAL MEDIA REACH

223

PIECES OF COVERAGE INCLUDING 5 BROADCAST FEATURES

What was the challenge?

COVID 19 hit and the UK went into lockdown right as the NYMR was preparing to fire up the engines ahead of its 2020 season. As a charity, it was unable to claim insurance compensation for business interruption and the only government help available at the time would put the railway into significant debt, which could take years to pay off.

Projections forecast that the charity could lose up to £1 million over the coming weeks. Figures of this magnitude threatened the very existence of the railway, which is why we worked with the attraction to develop a series of appeals for help from members of the public to generate much-needed financial aid. 

Our approach

During the five-month period that NYMR was forced to remain unoperational, we worked hand-in-hand with the team to create and launch a number of topical talking points that we knew would cut through the media noise and give the charity share of voice at a critical time, but ultimately, help generate vital funds at the same time. 

We:

  • Opened a virtual shop where consumers were able to purchase a virtual journey along the stunning heritage line, a tour of a steam locomotive’s footplate, and even a piping hot cup of Yorkshire brew or a bacon sarnie - all of which could be enjoyed whilst self isolating on the sofa
  • Launched an online silent auction to give people the chance to dine on a Pullman with Piglet (Popular real-life character from Channel 5’s hit programme, The Yorkshire Steam Railway: All Aboard which is filmed at NYMR), accompany the General Manager Chris on a Footplate along the heritage line, or experience a week’s stay in the Levisham camping coach, amongst other things
  • Created a limited edition cask beer,  ‘We’ll Steam Again’ in partnership with Pickering-based Cropton Brewery. For every bottle sold, 10p is donated to North Yorkshire Moors Railway charitable trust and for every crate of 12 bottles sold, £2 is given
  • Partnered with Yorkshire Post to launch an exclusive photography competition that would result in a 2021 NYMR calendar

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awareness

cab campaign are Team Awesome

LAURA STRANGEWAY HEAD OF MARKETING, NORTH YORKSHIRE MOORS RAILWAY

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