Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
Santa Special on 6th December - Trowbridge and Melksham to Swindon - 8040/13024
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Saturday, 24th October 2009

Santa Special!

The Melksham Railway Development Group is delighted to announce that Father Christmas will be on the train from Trowbridge and Melksham Stations on Sunday, 6th December 2009.

Leaves from Trowbridge - 17:10 (Ten past five)
Leaves from Melksham - 17:20 (Twenty past five)

* Seasonal drink and minced pie for each adults, a present from Santa and a soft drink for every child.

The train will travel on the "TransWilts" line to Chippenham and Swindon, and return by the same route

Arrives back at Melksham - 19:00 (Seven O'Clock)
Arrives back at Trowbridge - 19:10 (ten past seven)

Tickets - Adults 9 pounds return (from Trowbridge) or 7 pounds return (from Melksham).

Re: Santa Special on 6th December - Trowbridge and Melksham to Swindon - 8040/13030
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Thursday, 26th November 2009

SOLD OUT at Melksham TIC.

Last few tickets remain with me or at Trowbridge TIC until Saturday.  Looks like a full compleiment of 110 of us!

Re: Santa Special on 6th December - Trowbridge and Melksham to Swindon - 8040/13041
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Thursday, 3rd December 2009

All seats gone ... tickets and mined pies and kiddies' drinks bought and stored at my place.  Presents in store for Santa to distrubute at Louise's place / the elves are having a wrapping party on Friday night.

Re: Santa Special on 6th December - Trowbridge and Melksham to Swindon - 8040/13045
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Monday, 7th December 2009

Great trip .... pictures and report to follow.  In summary "Full train, great time had by all"

Various bits of paperwork available to participants ;) including this brief update flyer:

Re: Santa Special on 6th December - Trowbridge and Melksham to Swindon - 8040/13046
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Monday, 7th December 2009

Oh - text reads as follows:

Thank you for coming along to see Father Christmas, who is on the train from Trowbridge and Melksham to Swindon and back today - Sunday, 6th December 2009.

TransWilts Railway line.

The TransWilts line runs from Swindon to Salisbury, via Chippenham, Melksham, Trowbridge, Westbury and Warminster ... providing a fast, efficient and user friendly link between the five largest population centres in Wiltshire.

The train only runs twice a day at present, but "Save the Train", the Melksham Railway Development Group, the West Wilts Rail Users Group and other passenger groups are campaiging for improvements. Network Rail, Wiltshire Council, First Great Western (who run the trains) and the Department for Transport have all been looking at the case carefully and have concluded that the line justifies an hourly service, with a good "Benefit Cost Ratio", and the groups are working with all parties to do their best to get improvements, although the mechanisms involved make it very difficult to achieve.

Use the train!

35 minutes from Trowbridge, 25 minutes from Melksham direct into the centre of Swindon. Monday to Friday - commuter service leaves at 07:06 from Trowbridge, and 07:17 from Melksham, returning at 18:45. Saturday - shopper service leaves at 09:06 from Trowbridge, 09:18 from Melksham, returning at 15:20 or 21:08.

Picture - the TransWilts train at Chippenham

At the weekend, the Saturday train service gives you an excellent opportunity to go shopping in Swindon, to visit the Outlet Centre or steam museum, or to carry on for a day in London.

Want to know more about train travel?

Do you want to find out more about travelling by First Great Western - go to their customer site at or the passenger's forum at

Prepared by the Melksham Railway Development Group, 12.09

Melksham Station News

Wiltshire Council recently purchased land that includes the approach road to Melksham Station, and various premises to the east comprising the old good yard and sheds, to safeguard it from sale by its previous owners for purposes which could have severley restricted access to the station, and prevented developments such as opening up an access through to North Melksham to make the station easier to access (including buses), and providing additional car parking and a taxi rank which would be needed if services and usage increased to a level comparable to other Wiltshire stations.

Wiltshire Council have asked for our (community) input as to what we would like to see done, even in the short term, to improve the area that they are now responsible for, and perhaps the station itself, in Melksham. The question was put to the Melksham Railway Development Group meeting at the end of November, but rather than just consider the narrow question within the group, we are looking wider at strategic plans, so that we can ensure that short term work also has community support and long term gain.

Here's a list of ideas / options to move forward. Which would YOU like to see?
Can you think of anything you would like so see added?

1. Integrated Transport
2. Signs and Welcome at the Station
3. Footpath through; road through
4. Information point
5. Diner / Coffee Shop
6. Publicity in Press
7. London outing
8. Community Area Partnership
9. Community Rail Partnership
10. Leaflets
11. More trains
12. Ticketing agency in Melksham
13. Better waiting room facilities
14. Groupathon
15. Taxi rank
16. Lighting for signs
17. Interactive touch screen
18. Weekend trains
19. Sign at Market Place

Dates for your diary.

22nd January 2010 - Launch for Community Rail Partnership / Meeting date for Melksham Railway Development Group.

20th March 2010 - London, 30 pound return for an adult, 10 pounds return for a child. 09:06 from Trowbridge, 09:16 from Melksham. Times and pricing provisional, back at 15:45 or 21:42 (Melksham), 15:55 or 21:52 (Trowbridge)

Do you support an improved service?

If so, please add your name to the list of supporters at

Do you want to find out more about travelling by First Great Western - go to their customer site at or the passenger's forum at

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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