Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
DfT Community Rail Partnerships - 7606/12309
Written by Lee on Thursday, 15th May 2008


Re: DfT Community Rail Partnerships - 7606/12360
Written by Lee on Monday, 19th May 2008

BBC article link.

Re: DfT Community Rail Partnerships - 7606/12364
Written by Industry Insider on Monday, 19th May 2008

I had the pleasure of using one of these Community rail lines for the first time to attend a wedding near Clitheroe over the weekend. Although a slightly dated Class 150 sprinter is used for the hourly Manchester Victoria<>Clitheroe service, the train service looks healthily patronised. It was re-instated in the mid 90's after being a Beeching casualty.

The outward trip from Salford Crescent to Clitheroe on Friday afternoon was standing room only as far as Bolton after which there were few seats available until Blackburn, and probably around 40 people still on board at the terminus of Clitheroe.

On the way back on the 10:27 Sunday service, around 20 boarded at Clitheroe and the same number at the intervening stations to Blackburn where the train again got steadily busier until being full on arrival at Manchester Victoria.

Despite recovering from a hangover, I also managed to observe one of the two 'DalesRail' services which run on summer Sundays from Blackpool via Blackburn and Clitheroe and on towards Hellifield and the Settle & Carlisle line. These are the only passenger services that continue on the double-tracked section from Clitheroe to Hellifield. About 10 people joined at Clitheroe on a 4-car train that was over half-full of walkers and tourists.

Clitheroe station itself is a great example of integrated transport with the station being linked up with the adjoining bus station in an award-winning Interchange - [url][/url]

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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