Kidderminster, Worcestershire
£30,000 - £35,000 FTE per year
Permanent, Part-time, 22.5 hours per week
Job description

Communications Manager

This is a fantastic opportunity to bring your communication skills to this vibrant and growing heritage charity. The Severn Valley Railway Charitable Trust is a separate entity to the SVR Holdings Company who operate and run this much-loved attraction.  The Trust’s focus is to help secure the future of the Severn Valley Railway through donations, grants, and sponsorship.  The position of Communications Manager is key to our future success, bringing to life the impact of the Trust’s work to our different audiences.


You will work closely with the Executive Director and the Fundraising Manager to create and deliver a communications strategy to dovetail with our fundraising plans.  You will be able to demonstrate your experience in achieving this at other not-for-profit organisations.


We are seeking a resourceful, proactive team player who demonstrates initiative and takes ownership and responsibility for completing and finishing tasks, including setting and achieving targets.  You will naturally identify opportunities and maximise these for the benefit of the Railway.



Post:                            Communications Manager, part-time

Reporting to:               Executive Director

Employer:                    Severn Valley Railway Charitable Trust

Hours:                         Initially 3 days per week, 22.5 hours

Salary:                         £30,000 to £35,000 FTE

Primary location:        Kidderminster / remote

Holiday:                      FTE 31 days (inclusive of Public holidays)



Main responsibilities

  • Plan and deliver a coordinated and integrated communications plan to dovetail with the fundraising plan.
  • Create engaging case studies on the impact of the Trust.
  • Create compelling articles/publications for fundraising and engagement purposes across electronic and paper platforms.
  • Review and update the website, analysing visits to the site.
  • Work closely with the SVR Holdings marketing team to ensure there is a co-ordinated approach to our supporters.
  • Provide bespoke updates for high value supporters.
  • Take an active role in producing the organisation's social media platforms.
  • Utilise technologies and channels such as e-newsletter, social media, video, blog and podcast to creatively communicate with our stakeholders and supporters.
  • Create fundraising support materials
  • Brief and manage external suppliers. 
  • Recruit and manage volunteers to collaborate on the creation of content.
  • Evaluate and report on the success of communications strategies and make recommendations for improvement 
  • Develop relationships with key press to secure and grow media coverage.



Person specification: skills & experience

  • Excellent writing skills.
  • Creating and delivering communications strategies in a not-for-profit organisation.
  • Developing and delivering communications campaigns on multiple platforms. 
  • Excellent communication skills with experience in producing high quality written materials for diverse platforms and audiences. 
  • Experience of using CRM systems. 
  • Experience of using website management systems. 
  • Experience of using email marketing software including Mailchimp. 
  • Experience using social media scheduling and reporting tools.
  • Good working knowledge of Microsoft Office. 
  • An existing interest in and knowledge of heritage railway would be an advantage; and a willingness to learn about heritage railway is essential.
  • The ability to work independently whilst being flexible to working as part of a busy and dynamic team. 
  • Experience in managing a varied and busy workload. 
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with an ability to build relationships and motivate others. 
  • Highly adaptable with a willingness to work in a way which is agile and flexible to the needs of the team and the organisation.
  • Good working knowledge of SEO.
  • A commitment to learning, listening and personal development.
  • Motivated, reliable and professional.
  • Flexible, able and willing to respond to changing priorities.
  • Strong team player with collaborative working style, who enjoys individual and team working.
  • Willing to participate in all activities relevant to the role.
  • Willingness to work occasional evenings and weekends.
  • Commitment to the principles of equality and diversity.
  • A formal qualification in a marketing-related discipline
  • At least three years in a similar role.



We will offer:

  • Company pension.
  • On-site parking.
  • Travel discounts.
  • Subsidised meals.
  • Flexible working hours/location.



The Severn Valley Railway is run by a team of 120 full-time equivalent paid staff and 1,600 volunteers, as part our commitment and recognition to our volunteers, we request that all paid staff give five volunteer days/evening to the Railway every year, this may involve supporting key events, to include Santa Specials, Halloween and the very well-received Galas.



SVR Family

The SVR Family consists of the three separate companies

1. Severn Valley Railway (Holdings) Plc (Company number 01046274) is a not-for-profit company limited by shares.  No dividend is paid to shareholders with all profit used to support the running of the Railway. It owns the infrastructure and assets of the SVR, employs the paid staff, and is responsible for the governance, operation, finance, planning, customer service and management of the SVR.

2. Severn Valley Railway Company Limited, (Company number 00906842), a company limited by guarantee, supported by a paid membership of 12,500 members and provides volunteer staff who assist in the operation of the Railway from a working volunteer membership pool of 1,700.

3. Severn Valley Railway Charitable Trust Limited, a company limited by guarantee (Company Reg, No.04341280) Registered with the Charity Commission (Reg.No.1092723). The focus of the SVR Charitable Trust is to generate funds:

  • To enhance, maintain and restore SVR rolling stock and infrastructure.
  • To provide educational and interpretive displays for the SVR
  • To provide educational and heritage skill training used in the restoration, repair, and operation of the SVR.

It also owns some rolling stock used on the SVR and employs its own paid staff and volunteers.


Our Staff


The Severn Valley Railway is run by a team of 150 full-time equivalent paid staff and 1,700 volunteers.  As part our commitment and recognition to our volunteers, we request that all paid staff give five volunteer days to the Railway every year, this may involve supporting key events, to include Santa Specials, Halloween, and Gala’s.


Our Objective

SVR is recognised as an outstanding visitor attraction, with great days out and inspiring events, all with consistently high standards of customer service. SVR provides an authentic Heritage Railway experience where you can let your senses take you on a journey through history, with learning opportunities in abundance.

The organisations to support this are professionally led, values-based, and commercially strong. While it may be old on the outside, on the inside, SVR uses 21st century technology to run its activities effectively. It is able to recruit, train and retain the Staff and Volunteers it needs, and brings in the wide range of Financial and other support required to develop further. SVR is known for having good and enduring relationships with its stakeholders, from the diverse local communities in which it sits, to the Loco and Rolling stock owners, the Regulators and Industry partners


On a day-to-day basis the 3 key areas of Management focus for SVR are Safety, People and Heritage. In addition, SVR has an industry-leading approach to the issue of Sustainability.

Application Instructions

To apply, please include a cover letter and copy of your CV.

Refreshed on: 19 September 2021
Closed date: 30 September 2021
Job ref: Comms Manager 21
Tags: Communications, PR, Fundraising