Community Rail News – 29 November 2023

Hello everyone, we hope this bulletin finds you well.

Last week the government announced the third and final round of its Levelling Up Fund. Many of the 55 successful projects are developing better transport links, including £47.9m for improving travel on the Penistone Line. The DfT and Innovate UK also announced winners of the First of a Kind competition to develop innovative technologies that improve people’s experiences of rail.

The Transport Select Committee has begun sessions on ‘Accessible Transport – legal obligations’, with the first held on Wednesday 22 November. We will keep members informed of developments.

Profile raising

On Monday, Jools met with the new Shadow Rail Minister Stephen Morgan MP to discuss the crucial role community rail plays in engaging local people with their railways and enabling sustainable, inclusive travel. We hope to host a visit for the shadow minister to see community rail in action in the coming months.

Later this week, Jools will be speaking at a meeting in Utrecht about the development of a community rail umbrella organisation in the Netherlands. Michel Lintermans has been at the forefront of promoting community rail there, and we are delighted that Jools has been invited to speak about the achievements of community rail in the UK. Keep an eye on our social media feeds.

Crowdfunding for CRPs

In collaboration with fundraising experts Spacehive, we are hosting an exclusive webinar focusing on how CRPs can diversify funding for their initiatives via crowdfunding campaigns. The online session takes place tomorrow (Thursday 30 November), 12-1pm. Book your place.

Meet our corporate partners

Members are invited to join this online networking session on Monday 4 December, 2-3.30pm, to meet representatives from Skanska, SLC Rail, Thales GTS and Siemens, to find out how these organisations can support and collaborate with your CRP or group. Book your place.

Skillshare: Trails and walking routes

If you’re thinking about developing trails and walking routes from your stations, our next training session on Wednesday 13 December, 10am-12pm, is for you. Hear from other groups and start thinking about developing your own projects. This session is for members. Book your place.

CRP funding survey

We appreciate that many of you have recently completed our members’ survey, but we need to ask again for your input, this time on funding and impact, to help us champion your concerns. We are asking all CRPs to complete a short survey which we will be sending out in the next week, so please do look out for it.

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

Your next bulletin is on 13 December. Keep up-to-date in between on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Best wishes,
Jeremy and Jools