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Railwatch 068 - July 1996

More money and more members

By Mary Acland-Hood

RDS needs to keep increasing its income and expanding its membership fast if we are to make real progress. We need to create a post for a new full-time administrator. But to start in 1997, we need more money and more members now.

That's where I come in. I am working four days a week for the society for three months. So who am I? An RDS member, who has worked in research institutes and industry associations in the UK and internationally for many years. I am delighted to help RDS in its fight for a more sensible transport policy.

I have experience of dealing with senior people in industry and government and, for three months, I worked in the fund-raising arm of St Mungo's, the charity for the single homeless. Now on behalf of RDS, I have begun work on applying for grants from trusts.

I have started investigating the pros and cons of charitable status for all or part of RDS activities and seeking major donors, influential supporters and increased corporate membership. I aim to develop and introduce fund-raising and expansion methods which will pay off longer term. I will look into suitable ways of advertising to increase membership and awareness of the society and also build up lists of potential members to approach by post and I will explore the potential for expanding current fund raising.

Some of this I can do on my own, but much depends on members' contributing their expertise, contacts and help. Right now individual members can recruit a new member. Or they can send in the names and addresses of people (friends, acquaintances, colleagues, family) who might want to join. They can also send newspaper cuttings about prominent or activist people, which indicate their support for rail or awareness of any of the disadvantages of over-reliance on roads.

Members are also invited to contribute any information about grants and trusts which might give RDS support. And they can always organise some fund raising for RDS on their own.

Please send your comments, suggestions and contributions to Mary Acland-Hood, 9 Fentiman Road, London SW8 1LD, tel and fax: 0171 735 3193, or you can e-mail me.

And a plea from Lionel

The strength of our voice is partly based on the number of people on whose behalf we speak. That is our membership. Every member of the society can help to increase the membership of the society. This is not always easy, but there is one way you could help.

Scan the readers letters in your newspapers and, should you see one supportive of rail transport, or you feel the writer may be a potential member, please snip it out and send it to me so I can send details of the RDS and an invitation to join. In the past we have gained many new members in this way so the exercise is known to be productive.

Thank you for any help you may be able to give.

Please send your cuttings to Lionel J Boylett, Recruitment Officer, Railway Development Society, 15 Athenaeum Road, Whetstone, London N20 9AA.

Note: contact details (postal and email addresses, along with telephone numbers) in old editions of Railwatch out of date. Click CONTACT US for latest contact details.

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