North Yorkshire Moors Railway has been awarded £1.9million as part of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund to help the organisation survive the financial challenges caused by the Covid-19 crisis.

North Yorkshire Moors Railway is one of eight organisations receiving grants totalling £18,760,865 today, as part of the second round of grants between £1 million and £3 million from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund. This follows a previous round of similar sized grants and two rounds of grants under £1 million announced last month, which supported over 2000 organisations.  Announcements on further funding will follow in the coming weeks.

Chris Price, General Manager at NYMR comments: “Let’s face it, 2020 has been a whirlwind of a year, and there has been so much uncertainty. Here at NYMR we’ve launched a number of crisis appeals and had to call on the generosity of members of the public to help us pull through and it’s been bloody tough, but we’ve made it this far. 

“But I can’t tell you the sigh of relief we’ve breathed today after receiving the news from Arts Council England that we’ve been awarded such a significant grant, which we believe is the largest awarded to a heritage railway in the UK. It will enable us to continue to offer a safe, revised service and build back to our 300,000 annual visitors as well as secure jobs and our heritage skills.

“It’s a real testament to the work that we do to have recognition of the importance of NYMR to the region, both economically and culturally. It also means our Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey (YMJ) project can carry on, enabling us to continue with building our conservation and heritage apprenticeship programmes, our lineside ecological conservation work, offer fuss free access for disabled visitors, grow our learning offer at Pickering and Goathland, and of course reach out to individuals, groups and communities to share our passion for the history of the region through steam travel.

“Thank you to Arts Council England and the Culture Recovery Fund.”

Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden said “These grants will help the places that have shaped our skylines for hundreds of years and that continue to define culture in our towns and cities.

"From St Paul’s and Ronnie Scott’s to The Lowry and Durham Cathedral, we’re protecting heritage and culture in every corner of the country to save jobs and ensure it can bounce back strongly.”

Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair of Arts Council England said “Culture makes a huge and increasing contribution to our national life, bringing communities together, fuelling our creative industries, and representing our country on the world stage.  These grants add to those announced last month, and will put these organisations in a better position to bounce back and help their communities recover from this crisis.  The Arts Council is grateful to the government for the special support being made available to the arts and culture through the Culture Recovery Fund and we’re proud to support all the organisations receiving awards today.”

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway is an award-winning charitable trust that carries 300,000 unique passengers every year. It is Britain’s most popular heritage railway and is one of the best visitor attractions in the North East.

  • The NYMR cares for operating and developing the railway it owns from Pickering to Grosmont.
  • The heritage railway operates over Network Rail from Grosmont to Whitby.
  • The charity provides a high quality, safe and authentic evocation of the steam age for the public.
  • The NYMR is an Educational Charitable Trust. Providing education for all ages.
  • The railway is a fully accredited museum.

Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision.

Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of several bodies administering the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund and unprecedented support package of £1.57 billion for the culture and heritage sector. Find out more at