Railway Benefit Fund auction prizes include a trip on Sir Peter Hendy’s bus

Sir Peter Hendy and his Routemaster Bus are prizes in the Railway Benefit Fund’s Auction of Experiences.

A trip out on Network Rail charman Sir Peter Hendy’s own London Routemaster bus is one of the prizes in the Railway Benefit Fund’s Auction of Experiences.

The prize winner and up to 63 guests will be chauffeured around the key sights of London – a unique and not to be forgotten experience.

The Auction of Experiences has seen the rail industry come together to donate fabulous prizes all for a great cause. All money raised from the auction will go directly to the Railway Benefit Fund – the only UK charity solely dedicated to supporting railway people and their dependants.

In the past 12 months, the RBF has seen a real increase in demand for its services, which is why it has organised Railway Family Week – a fundraising event designed to bring the entire rail industry together, held from 26 April to 2 May.

Another unusual prizes up for grabs in the auction is a Hovercraft VIP Experience with Hovertravel, operator of the fastest service between Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight. This special experience for up to 70 people will include a behind the scenes look at the world’s only commercial scheduled passenger hovercraft service. There will also be a chance to meet the pilots and crew who fly these 45-tonne craft just metres above the sea, at speeds of up to 45 knots.

Hovertravel is offering a ‘behind the scenes’ experience.
Neil Chapman, RBF.

Neil Chapman, managing director of Hovertravel, said: “We are delighted to donate a Hovertravel VIP Experience to the Railway Benefit Fund’s Auction of Experience.

“We know that the RBF do amazing work and we believe that our VIP experience will appeal to people of all ages, who want to fly on our unique craft and learnt about this great British invention.”

Network Rail has also donated a range of exclusive ‘money can’t buy’ rail experiences. Among these include a trip on Scotland’s helicopter, a walking experience across the Ribblehead Viaduct, and the opportunity for someone to record their own announcement at London Euston station.

Sir Peter Hendy, Network Rail.

Sir Peter Hendy, chairman of Network Rail, said: “I’d like everyone in the railway family to show their support for the Railway Benefit Fund. The railway family has done its very best in the last 12 months.

“Railway people have made an enormous impression on Britain by keeping going during these tough times, and the Railway Benefit Fund stands behind our family to help them when help’s needed.

“I think it’s a great thing to support. Please do all you can – I am.”

One prize which has generated a buzz is a visit to the British Transport Police Dog School. The winner of this prize will receive a behind the scenes tour and see the training in action. BTP has over 60 working dogs across the network, and they all begin their careers at this training school, which is located in Kent.

These are only a few of the incredible experiences up for grabs. There are over 30 prizes available to bid on in this online auction, ranging from behind the scenes tours, a bus driving experience, cab rides and even a cottage stay in Northumberland.

Claire Houghton, RBF.

Claire Houghton, CEO of RBF, said: “We are delighted to have launched our Auction of Experiences, which has so many ‘money can’t buy’ rail experiences up for grabs. RBF would like to say thank you to all those who have donated a prize for our auction- your generosity will raise a lot of money for the charity!”

The Auction of Experiences for Railway Family Week closes on 26 April at 18:00. View all of the prizes on offer and make your bid here: go.eventgroovefundraising.com/rfwauction

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