Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
Melksham line use for diversions this morning - 58/119
Written by Nick Field on Monday, 21st November 2005

Just spoken to Dave.  Due to some overunning engineering works between Swindon and Didcot that section of the main line is closed.  The train he was on went from Chippenham to Swindon, then back through Chippenham to Westbury then to London via the line througth Melksham. I am not sure if this had any knock on effect to local services.


Re: Melksham line use for diversions this morning - 58/120
Written by David Preston on Monday, 21st November 2005

This is correct,

the line at Swindon was blocked for most of the morning rush hour, therefore the Melksham line became a VITAL diversionary route for London bound trains.

I went through Melksham on my HST at around 6:55 am



Re: Melksham line use for diversions this morning - 58/121
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Monday, 21st November 2005

Yes, it has had an effect on the local service ...

We had a customer due on a course this morning and we got a phone call from Swindon to say that the train was late / they didn't know by how much of if it was going to run.  She got a taxi ...

I never cease to be amazed that if they're diverting trains through they can't actually stop them at Melksham rather than running roughshod over the loyal local users.  I know ... it's been explained to me that they don't have limited door controls but I can remember many times in the past stopping in stations with insufficient platforms, and where the doors were NOT secured.  Can't people just walk along the train these days?

Re: Melksham line use for diversions this morning - 58/122
Written by Nick Field on Tuesday, 22nd November 2005

Hi Graham

I think I may know why your client was having problems - I read on BBC Ceefax last night an article about the overrunning engineering between Swindon and Didcot and it also mentioned that the problem was made worse by a broken down local service between Chippenham and Swindon.

Re: Melksham line use for diversions this morning - 58/123
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Tuesday, 22nd November 2005

Hmm ... that sould explain why the online timetable didn't show it up as cancelled until very late on!

We have a customer drop-off this evening and another pick up tomorrow morning .... let's see if it works a bit better!

Re: Melksham line use for diversions this morning - 58/149
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Sunday, 4th December 2005

It's only two weeks since this thread was written ... and yet I can come up with two more sets of diversions effecting / using our line in thosw two weeks.  On one day, a problem at Box tunnel caused main line trains to be diverted via Badminton and all the Chippenham passengers for Bath were sent via Trowbridge.  And something was going on at Swindon last Friday morning but I don't know the details of that one.

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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