Save the Melksham Train
Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
TransWilts Case Survives RUS Melksham Ticket Sales Downgrading - 8080/13089
Written by Lee on Monday, 1st March 2010

From Network Rail Final GW RUS (Pages 85 & 86) :

[quote="Network Rail Final GW RUS"][b] West Wiltshire Corridor: Salisbury

Re: TransWilts Case Survives RUS Melksham Ticket Sales Downgrading - 8080/13105
Written by Lee on Tuesday, 9th March 2010

A slightly different take from This Is Wiltshire -

[quote="This Is Wiltshire"]Plan to make rail line one of most advanced

Swindon's rail passengers could benefit from an electrification scheme and new trains, according to a rail industry study.

The Great Western document published by Network Rail says lines could benefit from more trains, better connectivity and shorter journey times

Re: TransWilts Case Survives RUS Melksham Ticket Sales Downgrading - 8080/13106
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Wednesday, 10th March 2010

Although there's no TransWilts mentioned by name / route description, it's implicitly there.

[quote]The Great Western document published by Network Rail says lines could benefit from more trains, better connectivity and shorter journey times, especially in key growth areas.[/quote]

"Key Growth Areas" ... Swindon, Chippenham, Trowbridge, Warminster, Salisbury, Melksham, Westbury ...

Current train timing examples from Swindon - see: to Trowbridge to Salibsury

There are two trains a day Swindon direct via Trowbridge (06:15 and 18:44) taking 36 minutes.  Connections typically take just under an hour.

"Passengers tell us that their future priorities include better punctuality, less overcrowding, later evening trains, better connections and journey time improvements."

Better connections do indeed keep coming up.  Even if there's not to be a through service, journeys such as Chippemham to Salisbury, Swindon to Frome, Westbury to Oxford or Warminster to Melksham which are currently nasty could be made so much better through improved connection.  The fourth platform at Westbury will make this practical; cross-platform connections between trains arriving via Chippenahm and via Bath, then leaving via Warminster and via Frome would be great.

Evening trains, yes. Less overcrowding, yes.  Also ... more trains.  The comment I have quoted is specifically feedback from passengers by an organisation who's remit is existing passengers, so that's fair enough. So it doesn't look at the people who WOULD use the train if it was 47% faster during the day - and not just once before dawn, and once after dark.  There is a substantial market there, and onw which the RUS acknowledges to the extent of coming up with a positive case for a service once an hour rather than twice a day in what is otherwise a very conservative report.

Re: TransWilts Case Survives RUS Melksham Ticket Sales Downgrading - 8080/13122
Written by Lee on Thursday, 18th March 2010

More on the RUS from the White Horse News -

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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