Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
Norwich - Lowestoft Line To Shut For Three Weeks - 482/1422
Written by Lee on Monday, 11th September 2006

This is slightly worrying (link below.)

Here is how the Eastern Regional Planning Assessment views the group of lines of which Norwich-Lowestoft forms part (link below.)

"The key issues identified are as follows:

The combination of relatively low frequencies and slow journey times leading to limited competitiveness of rail versus car and bus.

The routes are heavily reliant on subsidy, with low passenger volumes and revenues compared to costs.

Performance problems. Existing track layouts with long single-track sections can cause performance problems in the event of service perturbation.

Relatively unattractive rolling stock."

The Norwich - Lowestoft line , interestingly , is on the "the least-used lines in Britain." list contained in the link below (as are the rest of the lines in the area.)

Also in this section of the Eastern RPA :

"Some further incremental improvements to services in support of regional planning objectives are worth further investigation. But it is unlikely that any new rail lines will be justifiable over the RPA timescale. The East West Rail scheme west of Bedford (although it largely is outside the geographic scope of this RPA) is one exception that, and subject to business case and funding, may be justified. East of Bedford, the East West Rail scheme is unlikely to be justified until beyond the timescale of the RPA. Therefore, for those regional links not served by rail, it will be necessary to look to improve the public transport offer in other ways, for example by investment in the inter-urban coach network."

"The East Anglia rural routes are affected by, and will be a factor in the delivery of the regional planning objective to regenerate the Norfolk coastal towns, including Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and Cromer. On this basis, the key recommendation is to roll out Community Rail Development measures, with the aim of developing community participation, growing patronage and avoiding unnecessary costs. Opportunities to enhance service quality through improving timetable robustness, better integration with other modes at stations, and taking advantage of rolling stock refurbishment programmes to improve on-train service quality, should all be looked at as part of the overall community rail strategy for each route."

Nope , Im afraid that I dont like the look of this. I hope that there are no usage surveys planned (see links below.)

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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