SEVERN Valley Railway has announced how many redundancies are set to be made as part of cost-saving measures.

The heritage railway, which runs from Kidderminster to Bridgnorth, previously announced a redundancy plan and other measures as the attraction faces soaring costs.

Helen Smith, Severn Valley Railway's managing director, has now provided details of how much it needs to save, with up to 18 people set to be made redundant. 

She said: "Taking 2022 and 2023 together, existing measures mean we will have identified a saving of £650,000 in staff costs.

“This has been achieved by not filling vacancies, and redeploying existing staff to cover. We are also having to allow for a significant statutory increase to minimum wage levels.

"Additionally, we’ve been tasked by the board of directors to make an additional £300,000 of savings in staff costs this year.

"This means we are about to begin a consultation period for compulsory redundancies, likely to affect up to 18 paid roles, across the railway and at all levels".

The railway, which is set to reopen in March, is also taking other cost-saving measures, which include running services on fewer days, and a “large-scale reduction in salary costs.”

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Helen Smith, who will leave her post at the railway later this year, added: "For the first few months of our season, we will run on fewer days than last year, with fewer departures. We will review this in mid-May.

"We’re running between Kidderminster and Highley only for the weekends in March because engineering work is taking place at two locations north of Highley.

"Ticket prices have been reduced because of the shorter journey that will be available.

"We reopen the full line on Saturday 1st April, with our exciting Open House Weekend, when people get chance to glimpse behind the scenes, at areas of the railway not normally accessible to the public.

"We will also undertake an ambitious reduction of utility costs, and only carry out essential work on rolling stock and infrastructure.

"Additionally, we will make a large-scale reduction in salary costs".