COUNCILLORS have approved spending £150,000 on repair and refurbishment works on one of the oldest railway buildings in the world.

The grade II-listed former goods shed, part of the Head of Steam museum, in Darlington, is occupied by Darlington Railway Preservation Society (DRPS).

Darlington Borough Council has warned that budgetary pressures mean it will no longer in a position to fund the museum after 2016.

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Efforts to secure its future under a community-led management structure are ongoing.

The council’s cabinet agreed the release of the funds for the work, which will ensure the goods shed meets legal requirements as well as providing a workshop for DRPS, which has welcomed the investment.

DRPS chairman Barrie Lamb said he hoped the refurbishments would enable the society to attract younger members.

Councillor Anne-Marie welcomed the decision. She said: “Having been in the goods shed and seen the need for some upgrading, this will be a well-received improvement.”