Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
Melksham to Coventry this evening .... - 413/1221
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Friday, 18th August 2006

Melksham to Coventy this evening. 

Not Possible Says National Rail Enquiries Web site when I put in a 17:00 departure.

Putting in a departure from Chippenham, it offers me a 17:10 via Bristol and Birmingham, getting to destination at 20:15.

Possible says I ... by splitting my request at Oxford, a 17:02 departure from Melksham is shown  gets my customer to Coventry at 20:22 - just 7 minutes after the Chippenham alternative offered.

How unfortunate that one has to really know the system to get at the viable options!

Re: Melksham to Coventry this evening .... - 413/1231
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Friday, 18th August 2006

Here's the reason that the National Rail Website can't offer me journeys from Melksham to Coventry ....

Dear Graham Ellis,

Thank you for your eMail.

Unfortunately this journey can only be displayed with the use of a not via option which we do not currently have on the Journey Planner.

To get the journey times you will need to split the journey Melksham to Didcot Parkway and Didcot Parkway to Coventry.

We trust that this information is of use to you.


I asked them to tell me how people who don't know where they're likely to have to change can use their system to find the journey, which is supposed to be national, comprehensive and unbiased ...


Dear Graham Ellis,

Thank you for your eMail.

At the moment it is not possible to plan this journey using the Journey Planner unless you split the journey at Didcot Parkway and allow at least 5 minutes for connection.

Using Didcot Parkway as a via station will not work as the problem is due to Reading. The fastest journey is to change at Reading but this involves travelling between Didcot Parkway and Reading in both directions. The only way to prevent this would be to enter Reading as a station to avoid, as stated this is not possible at this time.

We do supply downloadable maps on our website for assistance in planning journeys. These are available in the 'Train Companies and Maps' section of the website in PDF format. Adobe acrobat is the recommended viewer for these maps.

Unfortunately, this will not allow you to view the fares. This information is available from National Rail Enquiries on 08457 48 49 50 or from your local manned station.

An alternative route is available via Birmingham and services will be displayed by using Kemble as the via station in the Journey Planner.

We have reported the problem to the relevant department.

Once again, we thank you for your eMail.


I've always felt that Reading was a problem and would have been better built somewhere just to the South of Leeds ;D ;D

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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