Community Rail News – 3 May 2023

Hello everyone, we hope you are well. Best wishes to all of you involved in local celebrations around the Coronation this weekend, and our congratulations to volunteer Barbara Mine of Friends of Bishopstone Station for the special recognition she’s been given as part of the festivities (see below). As always, do share your stories and pics with our comms team or on social media.

CRP funding

We understand that a few CRPs have heard from some train operators that confirmation of their funding for 2023-24 is temporarily paused while budget reviews are ongoing. We understand this is a temporary step, and want to reassure that we are working proactively with DfT and train operator colleagues to better understand the position and help ensure CRP core funds are released as soon as possible. We will update the CRPs concerned as soon as we are able to.

Meeting with Welsh Minister

Jools was delighted to meet Welsh Government Deputy Minister for Climate Change Lee Waters in Swansea, discussing how we can make more of the thriving community rail movement in Wales to empower communities and make a shift to sustainable, inclusive transport. The meeting was hosted by South West Wales Connected, who showed the Minister some of their projects, and joined by Heart of Wales Line and Wales on Rails representatives, plus Rhiannon and Martin in our team. Read more.

Community Rail Week toolkit

It’s great to see the variety of activities planned for this year’s Community Rail Week (22-28 May). To help you make the most of your activity and link with the national campaign, we’ve developed a digital toolkit with templates, social media graphics and guidance. Simply tell us your brief activity plans here and you’ll be directed to the toolkit. Get in touch with our comms team if you’d like advice on how to get involved or read our members’ guidance. Our partners’ toolkit will be sent out by the end of the week.

Training and development bursary scheme

If you are a staff member or volunteer at a Community Rail Network member group or organisation in England and Wales, and you would like to attend a course or conference to increase your skillset and knowledge in your role, you can apply for a training and development bursary of up to £200. Last year, members used bursaries for courses on subjects such as first aid, food hygiene, funding, and project management. Bursary guidelines and forms can be found here.

Getting volunteers involved

Do you want to get more people involved with your station friends group or CRP? Our online workshop will open up conversations on how we can bring new volunteers on board, spread the word about our work, and make people feel included. This session is for members, Tuesday 13 June, 9.30am-12.30pm. Book your place here.

Equality and diversity survey

There are two days left to complete our equality and diversity survey, which was sent to members via email on 19 April. Please take a few minutes to complete it and pass to colleagues/volunteers in your CPR or group, before 5pm on Friday 5 May. If you have any questions, please get in touch with Rob.

World Cup of Stations shortlist

Congratulations to the 48 stations shortlisted by railway historian and TV presenter Tim Dunn for this year’s World Cup of Stations. Rail Delivery Group will be holding a public vote during Community Rail Week. See the shortlist and how to vote.

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

Your next bulletin is on 17 May. Keep up-to-date in between on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Best wishes,
Jeremy and Jools