Flyer funds spent on advertising

The Kingston Flyer
The Kingston Flyer

Money raised and donated for the purpose of getting the Kingston Flyer back on its tracks has been spent, the man in charge of the fundraising endeavour said.

More than $55,000 was raised for Kingston's biggest tourist attraction between 2009 and last year, when it was eventually bought out of receivership by David Bryce, a Marlborough vineyard owner.

The money was collected by the Southern F Locomotive Trust, and the man who created the trust, train enthusiast Karl Barkley, said $20,000 of it was spent advertising the train.

The other $35,000 was in pledges from supporters of the train and had not yet been collected, although Mr Barkley planned to "wind up the money" and donate it towards Mr Bryce's proposed Kingston Flyer Trust.

"We've currently got nothing left in the account."

The Southlander, who said he was the driving force behind the trust, said the money was spent on "promotional things" for the train.

Mr Barkley said the pledge money was from people "from all around" and he had the receipts to show what the $20,000 was spent on.

"If there is anything left over and David doesn't open this trust, we would put it in another rail trust."

Mr Barkley is now trying to raise funds for the ORB Wairio Railway near Nightcaps, Western Southland, which has been out of action for more than five years.

Mr Bryce told the Otago Daily Times yesterday he had not heard from Mr Barkley since he bought the train last August.

When asked if he had heard about the money from the fund being donated to his proposed Flyer fund, he said he had not had confirmation of this.

"If the money was available, this [the Flyer fund] is where it should be."

Mr Bryce said once the fund was established the purpose would be for trustees to "own the locomotive, carriages and rails".


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