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Last Updated: Tuesday, 24 June, 2003, 14:42 GMT 15:42 UK
Museum aims for female recruits
Volunteer Katy Bowser
Volunteer Katy Bowser enjoys her train cleaning work
The National Railway Museum is flying in the face of stereotype to launch an appeal for more female volunteers.

The rail enthusiasts' paradise currently has about 190 workers in various departments at the attraction in York.

Unpaid staff fill a variety of roles from manning information points to restoration projects on the museum's collections.

But just a handful of those volunteers are women and museum bosses are keen to attract more of women.

Museum volunteer co-ordinator Kate Waddon told BBC Look North that applicants need not be train spotters.

'Stirring' project

She said: "We say to women who may be interested in volunteering, 'Look, you don't need to be a railway enthusiast and you don't need to be an engineering expert'.

"Really, we're just looking for people that will get stuck in and throw themselves into something new."

One project at the museum sees a team gather every Tuesday to clean up steam locomotives that are used for special charter trips.

And although workers do not have to be steam enthusiasts, volunteer Katy Bowser hinted that it certainly helps.

She told BBC Look North: "Nothing stirs you quite like an engine with its fire beating."

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