Community Rail News – 21 Feb 2024

Hello everyone. We hope this newsletter finds you all well and feeling the benefits of these slightly lighter evenings – spring is on its way!

The DfT has set out its vision for the future of Britain’s railways via the publication of a draft Rail Reform Bill. We welcome the draft bill, which we hope represents the start of a new era for rail, with it playing a more central role in our communities and helping us to create a sustainable transport future. Read our summary and response here.

The 2024 George Bradshaw Address took place on Tuesday. With an election due within the next year, the event took a different format, providing the main political parties with an opportunity to set out their vision for the future of the railway, followed by a Q&A. Read more here.

We had a productive meeting with West Yorkshire Mayor Tracy Brabin last week and discussed several opportunities relevant to community rail. We will be having quarterly meetings moving forward so we can update the Mayor and her team on community rail insights in a timely manner – a model we would like to replicate in other areas.

We still have money available in our Small Grants Fund, which is available to all members in England for grants of up to £2.5k. We’re keen to award the remaining funds before the financial year ends, so CRPs and station groups are encouraged to submit your applications. As always, our support and development team are on hand to support with your application. More details here

Don’t forget to join Bus Users UK at tomorrow’s webinar, 11am-12pm, to hear about how CRPs and station groups can feed into updated Bus Service Improvement Plans and influence improvements in your localities. Members only. To register, contact

If you’re interested in creating and maintaining planters at your station that utilise limited resources and benefit wildlife all year round, join our next session with Garden Organic on Monday 11 March, 6.30-8:30pm. Members only. Book your place.

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

Your next bulletin is on 6 March. Keep up-to-date in between on Twitter, Facebook, InstagramLinkedIn and TikTok.

Best wishes,
Jeremy and Jools

TransWilts CRP is pleased to showcase the first fruits of its partnership with Siemens in Chippenham. Siemens employees volunteered their time to brighten up Trowbridge Station with a spring clean – the forecourt and car park were combed for litter and other debris, with 12 bags of rubbish collected.

Find out more about Community Rail Network’s corporate partnership with Siemens here