THE search is on for someone to lead a heritage railway's huge campaign to raise £2.5m.

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway is looking for an individual to help lead its Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey campaign.

The North York Moors Historical Railway Trust has been successful in securing an agreement with the Heritage Lottery Fund to move forward to a grant application stage.

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And the campaign aims to raise £2.5m over the next five years to secure the future of the much loved railway.

A spokesman said: "Keeping 18 miles of railway with more than thirty bridges through the difficult countryside of the North York Moors in top-notch condition is a continuing challenge.

"The 180-year-old railway already invests around £1m annually but there’s only so much the fare box can generate and much more is needed for the railway bridges and its 50-100 year old vehicles to remain viable."

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway is a not-for-profit charitable trust providing memorable experiences for visitors and fulfilment for volunteers and staff through the operation of Britain’s most popular heritage railway, which runs between Whitby and Pickering.

The charity also prides itself on providing a high-quality, safe and authentic evocation of the steam age for the public.

A project director is now required to lead and coordinate Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey campaign.