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Hereward CRP encourages communities to engage in local transport planning

March, one of the main stations on The Hereward Line.

Hereward Community Rail Partnership (CRP) has launched a new guide to help people get on board with transport planning.

The Transport Planning Guide for Local Communities is designed to encourage people to have their say on plans for transport schemes in their local communities, empowering them to shape and influence future developments.

As well as providing a vital resource for local councils and community groups, the guide is aimed at anyone with an interest in transport or transport issues in their local area, and people who use a range of travel methods, including rail, for work and leisure.

The guide has been funded by the CrossCountry Community Fund, and developed by Cambridgeshire ACRE (Action with Communities in Rural England). While the resource is set in the context of North Cambridgeshire, its examples, principles, and solutions can be adapted to address the needs of different locations.

Councillor Chris Seaton, chair of Hereward CRP and Fenland District Council portfolio holder for transport, said: “Transport planning is about ensuring people can get to workplaces, shops, leisure facilities, vital services and other places they want to go.

“It includes all modes of transport from pedestrian routes to road and rail. Good transport planning is of vital importance for quality of life and the prosperity of an area. It has a daily impact on businesses and individuals.

“The Transport Planning Guide for Local Communities demystifies the process and encourages everyone to get involved and share their vital local knowledge.

“We’d like to thank all our partners who collaborated to produce this excellent guide.”

As well as supporting individuals to get involved in transport planning, the guide is intended to be a tool for community representatives including parish and town councillors.

Hereward CRP is a partnership of local councils, train operators, railway user groups, station adoption groups and local residents who look after the Hereward Line in Fenland. Fenland District Council is lead partner.

John Robson, CrossCountry regional director East Midlands & East Anglia, said: “Good transport planning is essential and can have a positive impact on our daily lives in our local areas and our overall quality of life.

“Local transport planning can be complex, so it is important that the issues involved are understood by communities so they can help influence the transport systems provided in their locality.

“CrossCountry are delighted to support Hereward Community Rail Partnership in their aims to promote greater usage of the railway network and other means of sustainable transport, including local buses, cycling and walking.”

Alison Brown, of Cambridgeshire ACRE, added: “As a charity we were pleased to use our expertise to support the development of this vital guide for rural communities.

“The guide provides a good starting point for parish councils and volunteers when considering the challenges and opportunities faced when planning for sustainable transport solutions.

“Local knowledge of their residents’ travel needs coupled with an understanding of transport planning policy will ultimately provide for better access to services, work and leisure activities for people across Fenland.

“We look forward to using this guide to support our work with rural communities in the future.”

You can find more information, and access to the guide itself, on the Hereward CRP website, here.