Chelmsford Railway Station is set to become brighter and more welcoming for people and wildlife thanks to a team of volunteers helping to transform the platform with plants.
Following an appeal by the Essex and South Suffolk Community Rail Partnership (CRP) in partnership with Greater Anglia for green-fingered local people to ‘adopt’ the station, members of the Rotary Chelmsford Phoenix and Chelmsford resident, Robert Jones, came forward.
The volunteers have already started work to install 12 large planters on the platforms, thanks to funding from Community Rail Network. Plants were provided by nearby RHS Garden Hyde Hall and Rotary Chelmsford Phoenix, and the RHS Communities Team even ran a ‘planet-friendly planter’ workshop at RHS Garden Hyde Hall to help the volunteers decide on the best plants to thrive in Essex’s drier climate and support insects and pollinators.
Greater Anglia will provide funding to help cover the costs of small projects, tools and materials to help improve the station environment through its Station Adoption initiative.
Jayne Sumner, Rail Engagement Manager at Essex & South Suffolk CRP, said: “We are delighted to have our new volunteers on board and they are already doing a great job, helping to bring some colour and life to the station through pollinator friendly planting schemes which will help our local environment as well as creating a nice welcome for station users.”
Paul Webster, Support and development manager at Community Rail Network, said: “Stations are at the heart of local communities, so we are pleased to see local volunteers taking pride in the station with this display, providing a bright and colourful welcome to the City to be enjoyed by regular commuters and visitors too.”
Alan Neville, Greater Anglia’s Customer and Community Engagement Manager, said, “I’m delighted to welcome the new volunteers to the Station Adoption initiative and look forward to seeing the planting scheme develop under their care. It makes such a positive difference when the community is actively involved in their local station.
“Station adoption creates mutually beneficial relationships and dialogue to help us understand what improvements are important to local people and promotes civic pride and wellbeing by bringing people together and enhancing public spaces.”