The York Area Group, a registered charity (1073653) which fundraises for the North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR), will close its doors after 40 years of raising funds through recycling paper and aluminium products. The volunteers have recycled over 3,100 tonnes of waste paper and cardboard, 7 tonnes of aluminium cans, 32 tonnes of aluminium foil and 103 tonnes of glass, raising over £113,000 of funds for the railway.

The group started collecting waste paper in the old waiting room on Pickering Station in late 1973 and in 1974 moved to the location at Poppleton on the outskirts of York. They have enjoyed rent free accommodation with three owners over the years but now, this location is now required for redevelopment and so the group’s operations will end in August 2017.

In recent years the group has raised funds for a variety of projects including the railways rolling stock. Projects have included funding and repairing the NYMR’s track maintenance vehicles, which are now highly mechanised with ever more sophisticated and costly equipment used for tamping, aligning and levelling the track bed. The group also funds and helps maintain the railways ‘behind the scenes’ rolling stock for carrying rails, sleepers, ballast, and other Permanent Way equipment.

Also works include the upgrading of lineside furniture such as mile posts, gradient and whistle boards. They have also had fabricated and erected a pair of rather fine signs to mark Goathland Summit on the railway, close to the where the Lyke Wake crosses the line at Ellerbeck, and many other smaller projects.

Chris Price, NYMR’s General Manager said “The York Area Group have been an integral part in the railways wider fundraising effort and without the groups valuable support over the past 40 years many of the projects would not have come to fruition. Many of the projects carried out by the group have been vital for the railways development and ‘behind the scenes’ work, including storage for our Permeant Way department, which cost in the region of £100k.

The railway costs around £6.4 million each year to operate and without fundraising groups like the York Area Group, we would not be able to keep the railway functioning.”

David Rice, York Area Group, said “I would like to congratulate all the hard work and achievements of its members over the past three decades. After losing the rent-free site at Poppleton and not being able to source a central York location, the group have decided to recycle its last can for the final time in August”.  

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway Trust is a not for profit charitable organisation run as part of the local community. Day to day operation is carried out by volunteers with railway operations and business experience. A core team of paid staff together with approximately 100 full time staff and 50 seasonal staff, plan and operate the train service and work steadily to improve the quality of the infrastructure, the railway vehicles and experience to our visitors travelling on the railway.

For regular news, updates and competitions, North Yorkshire Moors Railway is also on Facebook and Twitter



For further information please contact Gough Bailey Wright on 01527 579 555

Louise Iles – PR Account Director: [email protected]

Sara Gillespie – Junior Account Manager: [email protected]

Sam Wright – Account Executive: [email protected]


Notes for editors

Image: The team at the Poppleton recycling centre, with what looks like another nearly full container. Left to right, Simon Cox, Mick Watson, Mike McDonald, Doreen Williams, John Meredith, John Hasler and Graham Robinson.

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway is a not for profit charitable trust providing memorable experiences for visitors and fulfilment for volunteers and staff through the operation of Britain’s most popular heritage railway between Whitby and Pickering.

  • The NYMR cares for operating and developing the railway we own from Pickering to Grosmont.
  • Operating over Network Rail from Grosmont to Whitby.
  • Provides a high quality, safe and authentic evocation of the steam age for the public.
  • Educational Charitable Trust. Providing education for all ages.
  • The NYMR is a fully accredited museum.