Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
A First Monopoly? - 100/209
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Saturday, 24th December 2005

I understand that there's to be some sort of enquiry / investigation into the running of nearly all the public transport services - road AND rail - in certain areas by the First Group.

Re: A First Monopoly? - 100/212
Written by mark-scott on Saturday, 31st December 2005

First's bus service in Melksham leaves a lot to be desired but again it could be a lot worse than it is now.

We get an hourly service to Bath, Chippenham and Devizes (more often to Trowbridge).  This would be better as a more frequent service, especially to Bath. Also, until very recently, the busses have been uncomfortable and very old (L or N reg) but now they havebeen updated to Y and 55 reg vehicles which give a nicer journey especially for those with longer than average legs!!!

Now that Frist have the railways as well, they have missed a trick or 2 to try and give people of Melksham a decent service:  how about London - Southampton, Cardiff - Southampton with the trains coming off the GWR via the melksham branch and onto the wessex line? 

I can see that First will try and say that because we can get to Bath and Chippenham we can use the bus and transfer onto the main line there, however, it costs

Re: A First Monopoly? - 100/213
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Saturday, 31st December 2005

I may not be hugely popular by suggesting this, but I do think that people would be happy to pay - say - a 20% increase in real terms in rail fares to provide a better and more reliable service and to make it cost effective for First.  Looking at the new prices that come in in a couple of days, that would put the new 7.30 fare to Swindon up to about 8.90. 

However, if the fares rose to the same rate that First charge on routes such as Swindon to London (50p per mile), that would put Melksham to Swindon up to 24 pounds return which I think would cause outrage and would loose them most of their traffic.

Re: A First Monopoly? - 100/218
Written by Nick Field on Tuesday, 3rd January 2006

I think thats another nail hit on the head.  People are happy to pay a bit more IF the service is regular and reliable

link to index of articles

Save the Train was the campaign to bring an approriate train service back to and through Melksham.

Most big contributors are still around writing at the Coffee shop forum where new members are very welcome.

The train has been saved - sort of - we have stepped back up from an unusable service to a poorish one but it's doing very well. We did that through setting up the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership. That fulfilled its early objectives; it has been taken over by local and regional government types who are now doing medium and long term work. The team from this forun can also be found at the Melksham Rail User Group (which was the Melksham Rail Development Group at the time these articles were written and we had no users.

We mustn't loose sight, though, that the train service remains poor and needs our community support in marketing and campaigning to keep it going in a positive direction ... and all the more so when we're expecting to find a different normallity once we get out of the Coronavirus Pandemic and head for zero carbon via the climate crisis. Yes, it's saved ... it's now a key community facility ... the need for enhancement and the strong and near-universal local support remain, and the rail industry and goverment remain slow to move and provide the enhancements even to level us up with other towns. Please support the Melksham Rail User Group - now very much in partnership rather than protest with the rail industry and local government, including GWR, TransWilts and unitary and town councils. And please use the trains and buses, and cycle and walk when you can.

-- Graham Ellis, (webmaster), February 2021

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