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Community Rail News – 17 April 2024

Hello everyone. We hope you are all keeping well.

If you haven’t already, please send the details of your Community Rail Week (20-26 May) activities to our comms & policy team, ideally by end of this week, to help us gain maximum coverage. The theme of this year’s campaign, sponsored by Rail Delivery Group, is ‘More Than a Railway’, showcasing the importance of our railways to communities and the inspiring work CRPs and station groups deliver. See our briefing sheet on how to get involved.

Following the arrival of our new director of member support & development, Rob Hattersley, we have reviewed our S&D team structure to improve efficiency and focus.

Paul Webster is now Regions Support Manager, leading a location-based team of support officers, the first point of contact for CRPs and station groups. We are currently recruiting for a new support officer for England South and Midlands and we’re aiming to start recruiting for Scotland soon, following the departure of Caroline Thompson-Noble (Scottish support requests should go to Paul in the interim). Support in Wales continues from Rhiannon-Jane Raftery and for North of England Ian Davis. Paul also supports CRPs in East Midlands and Greater Anglia, and Martin Clarke will support CRPs working with Southeastern and GTR.

Martin now leads a thematically focussed team as Programmes Development Manager, covering topics such as education, training, integrated travel and stations. This is the subject specialist team whose expertise and support members can tap into. The team will also be working to develop these areas at a national level.

If your support officer has changed, your new contact will be in touch with you shortly. Contact details and roles are also available on our website.

Following last month’s webinar, we will be holding bi-monthly online sessions with Railway 200’s project manager Emma Robertson for members to ask questions and share plans: we will provide details in due course. In the meantime, submit your Railway 200 stories for a chance to have them featured on the website, and contact our comms & policy team for planning support.

The DfT has published a consultation on adapting the UK’s transport system to the impacts of climate change. The deadline is 31 May, and we are currently reviewing to consider a response.

The Institute of Welsh Affairs has published a report setting out the next steps for transport in Wales. Recommendations include widespread investment in behaviour change initiatives and the creation of stronger targets to direct transport policy. Read here.

If you have any news stories, please email our communications team on See here for guidance on submitting stories.

Your next bulletin is on 1 May. Keep up-to-date in between on Twitter, Facebook, InstagramLinkedIn and TikTok.

Best wishes,
Jeremy and Jools

Thanks to the efforts of Southeast Communities Rail Partnership and just £250 from our Small Grants Fund for England, a digital copy of the water-damaged Tonbridge Station mural will be printed onto Correx and installed in the waiting room – preserving the artwork for future passengers to enjoy.
With the support of Southeastern and Network Rail, White Cliffs CRP hosted a ‘Safety in Sandwich’ event. The CRP engaged with residents, the local Age Concern and members of the community in an inclusive and welcoming space, inviting people to learn about how to stay safe when travelling by rail.