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Most Enhanced Railway Spaces

This category recognises the work of community rail or other community organisations to revitalise railway buildings and larger areas of railway land.  Any space which has either been brought back to useful life or significantly improved is eligible.

We are looking for initiatives that have enhanced, rejuvenated, or repurposed a railway space and brought it back into the heart of the community, to provide new value for passengers and/or wider communities.

While many projects may involve restoration work to improve appearance and celebrate the heritage of spaces, given that many revitalisations are in non-heritage locations or are land re-use projects this is not a heritage restoration award. Judges are looking for projects that have engaged the local community effectively, demonstrated social value, and have sound plans for how the space will deliver ongoing community benefits. 

Note: This award is not primarily concerned with attracting new passengers to the railway, but rather making use of disused railway assets for wider community benefit. Small gardens, and flowerbeds won’t be considered in this category, these should be submitted within an entry to ‘It’s Your Station’ or ‘Small Projects Award’ and art/creative projects should be submitted in the ‘Community Creative Projects & Station Arts’ category.

Entries invited from:

We invite entries from community rail partnerships, station-based groups, station adoption or friends’ groups, or other community organisations and representatives. Rail industry partners can submit entries where a project was undertaken in partnership with a community rail partnership or community group, but the entry must clearly demonstrate this partnership working, be agreed with the community partner(s), and their contact details provided.

This award is for organisations which have leased/licensed/purchased railway buildings or land to deliver their community project, with a legal right of occupation/access.

Essential requirements:

Before and after images or other evidence clearly showing the change(s) made must be submitted as part of your supporting evidence, along with any other evidence showing how the project was developed and delivered. Details of the ongoing use for the building/land must be included.

Judging criteria:

  • Repurposing a railway space – we can see how railway building(s), or larger areas of railway land have been rejuvenated or repurposed, in whole or in part, to provide community benefit.
  • Relevant approach to rejuvenation/refurbishment – making the building or land ready and welcoming for a new community use, sympathetic to heritage where the project is taking place in a historic/heritage building and appropriate for the new use where it is not.
  • Clear benefits to users – there is evidence the project has achieved its planned outcomes and has benefited and is appreciated by its target audience/clientele;
  • Building positive links with the community – the space has been brought more into the heart of the community and delivers benefits to local people e.g. through local volunteering, community events, communications, outreach, and/or new people using station buildings;
  • Great partnership working – we can see how collaboration with the rail industry and others has helped to deliver improvements and overcome challenges, or bring in wider expertise, involvement and ideas;
  • A well-considered plan for how the space is intended to deliver ongoing social benefits.