Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
Income from railway to pay for part of road program - 227/580
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Sunday, 7th May 2006

A rumour I had heard before - but repeated as part of a keynote speech by a presenter  at yesterday's RailFuture meeting, and who's views and information I respect:

The Deparement for Transport hadn't budgeted for anything like the 1.3 billion that First Group bid for the franchise - it's some 300 million more that they  thought they would get. The Treasury is allowing the Department to keep the money which will be used to pay for overspends on road building programs.

In other words, a decent train service between Swindon and Westbury, which would cost 10 million pounds to run for 10 years, and 30 other such services, have been sacrifised by First in their keenness to win the bid, and the extra money that First will have to charge customers to make its payments to the government will in part go to the funding of overbudget / mismanaged road building programs.

Re: Income from railway to pay for part of road program - 227/584
Written by Nick Field on Monday, 8th May 2006

Its a complete disgrace if Rail Money is being used to fund the Roads overspend. 

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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