Profits raised will be shared equally between the Railway Benefit Fund and the Birmingham Children's Hospital

It’s true, James, better known to all of you as Hunslet’s PA is leaving Soho Depot

Hunslet was never formally adopted by West Midlands Railway, his life on the depot was primarily bought to you by james, his family and a few willing (or less than willing) volunteers.

The rags to riches story of a bear thrown off a bridge, hitting electric lines, landing on top of a train on Christmas Eve during those terrible Covid times  . . . . to the much loved railway bear he has become, with over 6000 social media followers across 3 channels, he has donated £1500 to charity and has another £700 ready to go by selling “Hunslet Merchandise” he and a team from soho travelled to Eyri (mount snowdon) and battled storm Kathleen earlier this month, to raise a further £1300 Whilst they did not make it to the summit I’m sure you will all agree they went above and beyond to fight the elements and work hard for the money raised.

James leaves at the end of April, (we did joke at the time of his interview about him taking Hunslet with him dressed in a suit with his own CV) James new role is still in the railway industry but not with a mainline TOC and its unlikely Hunslet would fit in to their bespoke style of working. Who knows, anything is possible for a loveable railway bear 🐻!

This decision left us in a big quandary for Hunslet’s future, Hunslet has never been secretive about his love for the 323s in particular 323221, aka ‘Reggie’ (branded regional railways), Hunslet’s social media was always going to be something we needed to review when the 323s were all gone and the new fleet took over the depot.

 By the time James leaves, more of the 323s will be in the north of the country than in the Midlands. With no clear plan for Hunslet and no one as unique as James to take the reins, We as a family decided we couldn’t bear to be without Hunslet in our lives.

We have always been a bit crazy in this house and 2 x 5ft bears fit in rather nicely! 😂 Hunslet’s followers have enjoyed seeing Hunslets life on the depot and have also got to experience a bear or 2 on a family holiday usually involving the seaside, heritage trains and food. Some of Hunslets most liked posts were crazy Mrs PA stunts!

Going forwards the Hunslet social media accounts will remain open but understandably will feature less 323s and Soho depot updates. But lots of lovable Railway bear activities focussing on his passion for food, trains and bringing joy to others. 

What does this mean for Hunslet’s gronk? The gronk will continue to be overhauled and the current plan is for it to remain on the depot.

Mrs Hunslets PA would really appreciate your support in clearing the remainder of the Hunslet merchandise i know lots of you have supported us more than once, unfortunately she has no need for 46 more jute bags 🤦🏻‍♀️ and every time she opens the cupboards she sees what could be charity money taking up valuable space! There are no immediate plans to order any more stock, just to sell the stock we have to release the funds for Hunslets chosen charities.

This isn’t the end for Hunslet and James but a new Chapter in the story to tell. I hope you will all wish James good luck in his new role and thank him for the laughs and joy both he and Hunslet have brought through this social media

Buy Hunslet merch!
Thank you James 🐻

Thank you James!

Good luck in your new job

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