As funding pledges for new Gresley class P2 steam locomotive No. 2007 Prince of Wales pass the £1m milestone less than ten months after its launch, a new ‘be-spoke’ fundraising campaign has been launched – sponsor a driving wheel spoke. The new scheme will initially be open only to those who joined The Founders Club which funded the project’s dramatic racing-start and its new ‘P2 for the price of a pint’ monthly covenantors and is part of a broader Dedicated Donation scheme where supporters can sponsor a variety of components.
Dedicated Donations will initially only available to members of The Founders Club and Covenantors. In addition to being able to sponsor one or more of the 18 spokes of the 6ft 2in driving wheels for either £600 (or £25pm for 24 months) supporters have the option to sponsor a range of different components from a ‘Drag box wing plate LH rolling and profiling’ at £50 to a ‘6ft 2in driving wheel casting and proof machining’ at £12,000 (or £200pm for 60 months). Supporters who subscribe to the scheme will have their names inscribed on the official roll of honour at Darlington Locomotive Works listing the components sponsored, receive a certificate recording the sponsorship and copy of the drawing of the component. New components available for sponsorship will become available as construction progresses.
Mark Allatt, chairman, The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, commented, “We are delighted with the level of support that the project to build Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive has received since its launch less than ten months ago. With over £1m pledged we are now at the stage we were with Tornado some five years into the project.
“We are hopeful that we will have completed the rolling chassis for No. 2007 Prince of Wales towards the end of 2015 and we remain on-track for completion in 2021. However, to maintain this progress we need to continue to raise in excess of £700,000 per year. We are therefore taking the opportunity of the frames dedication to launch the Dedicated Donation scheme.
“This major fund-raising initiative is a unique opportunity for supporters to have their name associated with a component of No. 2007 and the funds raised will help to ensure that Prince of Wales will be completed within the next seven years. Just as with the similar scheme that helped to fund the construction of Tornado, supporters who subscribe to the scheme will have the satisfaction of pointing to the part of the locomotive they paid for when No. 2007 enters service.
“With the dedication of No. 2007’s frames, the ordering of all of the wheels and the casting of the first driving wheel, no-one can now doubt that we really mean business. 2014 will see further major announcements as the construction of Prince of Wales gathers pace.”
The first wheel casting was delivered to the Works in time for the dedication weekend - Graham Langer