The 4253 sponsorship scheme

Even before the arrival of GWR 4253 at Rolvenden Works in June 2011, we recognised the importance of ensuring that advance funding should always be in place to cover the next stage of the restoration.  Consequently, there has never been a time when work has needed to be slowed or, worse, stopped due to cash constraints.

To ensure that the rapid rate of progress for which we are well known is maintained, many fundraising initiatives have been put in place including raffles, the manufacture and sale of our boiler tube products, running a sales stand at various local events and even selling donated items at boot fairs.  However, our Sponsorship Scheme, launched in mid 2014, has proved extremely successful in terms of money raised with the total currently standing at over £45,300.

Work has also progressed dramatically since that time.  The re-wheeling of the frames, a major milestone, was completed in March 2017 followed by the fabrication and fitting of all the steam heat and vacuum pipework.  The installation of the lubrication lines and braking components is currently well under way.  In light of these changes we have again reviewed and updated our Sponsorship Scheme.

The result is the two lists below: the first shows the parts fully sponsored to date, the second covers many of the remaining items; some of which have already been partially sponsored.  The higher value components have been divided into a number of lower cost ‘units’ to give everyone the opportunity of helping to sponsor them.  That way you choose the number of units you wish to sponsor from one up to the full number remaining.

All sponsors will receive a certificate detailing their contribution while donors of £1,000 will be included (if agreeable) on a Roll of Honour and all those donating £3,000 will be invited to spend a day on the footplate of 4253. 

To sponsor any of the items listed below please click on the link at the end of the list to download an application form.  Complete the form and return it with your cheque (payable to 4253 Supporters) to 34 Henley Meadows, St Michaels, Tenterden, Kent TN30 6EN.


We would also like to express our grateful thanks for the support shown by the following:-

Giles Aviation                                                    Rother Valley Brewing Co

Kent & East Sussex Railway                            Rother Valley Timber Ltd

Kingswood Boilers                                            Shepherd Neame Ltd

Orient Express                                                  Swindon College

Railway Wheelset & Brake Ltd                       Victa Rail

8 x Suspension Springs to be refurbished     £5,200
16 x Spring Adjusters and Nuts     £5,280
2 x Brake Shaft Arms     £1,725
8 x Brake Blocks        £600
Brake Cylinder Piston Seals and Band        £300
Metal Spraying and Machining of Vacuum Pump Piston Rod        £450
2 x Pony Truck Underkeep Felt Pads        £400
Smokebox and Sacrificial Plate     £1,180
Smokebox Door        £500
Chimney     £1,700
Blower / Ejector Ring        £320
Lubricator Warming Cock and Hand Wheel          £50
Cab Side Number Plates        £500
Hydrostatic Lubricator Casting     £1,200
Horn Grinding Machine     £1,600
Cab Roof        £725
Boiler Plate – Pair of Pressed Side Wrappers     £2,328
Front Section of Boiler Barrel     £1,500
Trailer for Transporting 4253 Display Stand and Sales Stock        £200
235 Boiler Fire Tubes     £8,695
2 x Clack, fully machined    £1,995 
Boiler Barrel Repair Section        £400
Condensing Coil 3-way Selector Control Valve         £80
TOTAL £36,928

 Bold italic = Partially sponsored     

LIST 2      ITEMS STILL TO BE SPONSORED Total CostUnits LeftUnit Cost
Brake Ejector Casting       £750    27       £25
Brake Ejector Machining    £2,120    21     £100
2 x Brake Shaft Bearings       £300    12       £25
8 x Underkeep Mops and Cages    £1,000      9     £100
200ft Copper Pipework for Lubrication Lines       £960    15       £60
Smokebox Door Ring    £2,800    28     £100
2 x Safety Valves    £3,100    31     £100
4 x Rocking Shaft Bearings    £2,300    20     £100
Condensing Coil    £1,000    10     £100
Smokebox Lubricator ‘Y’ Splitter       £190      5       £38
Steam Heat Isolating Valve       £120      1     £120
2 x Buffer Beam Steam Heat Valves       £600      4     £100
Brake Ejector Air Clack & Cover Castings + Control Disc       £155      1     £155
2 x Snifting Valves    £1,000    10     £100
2 x Smokebox Lubrication Shut-off Cock Regulator & Elbow       £200      2       £50
2 x Piston Rod Stuffing Boxes       £240      2     £120
4 x Packing Springs for above       £240       8       £20
6 x Cylinder Drain Cock Castings       £468      6       £78
6 x Cylinder Drain Cock Machining    £1,800    36       £50
2 x Water Tank Control Valve with Plugs & Springs       £600      6     £100
2 x Water Tank Control Valve Machining       £750    30       £25
Machining of Hydrostatic Lubricator    £3,000    30     £100
Hydrostatic Lubricator Combining Valve       £125      1     £125
2 x Injector Machining    £3,400    33     £100
2 x Refurb of Expansion Link with New Die Blocks    £2,000    20     £100
Hot Pressed Boiler Backhead  £22,176    89     £250
Hot Pressed  Boiler Half Throatplate  £19,752    60     £250
Hot Pressed and Drilled Front Tubeplate    £7,434    30     £250
14 x Flue Tubes for Boiler  £10,416    83       £50
6 x Longitudinal Stays for Boiler    £4,716    94       £50
Valve Rings & Fitting Heads to Spindles    £4,560    20     £120
New Pistons, Rings & Rods – Assembled    £8,400    60     £140

Application form