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SCRP supports community’s connection to the railway as ‘A Town Explores a Book’

Southeast Communities Rail Partnership (SCRP)’s Platform Panel Project has helped to raise awareness of local railway history during a literary festival.

A Town Explores a Book is a community arts festival in which each year, the ExploreTheArch theatre company supports local people (particularly young diverse readers) to gain familiarity with their literary heritage via accessible exploration and activities.  

This year, the book at the heart of the festival is Edith Nesbit’s The Railway Children.

As part of the celebrations, SCRP commissioned the heritage artwork, which focuses on The Station, The Tunnels and Who Built the Railways, to be displayed on the platform at St Leonards Warrior Square Station.

The official opening of the artwork took place on Easter Sunday (30 March) with three young festival ambassadors, Rupert, Aisha and Ghost, acting as the ‘railway children’ who cut the ribbon.

Photo credit: Etienne Cutmore-Kourouma.

Kevin Boorman, a director at SCRP, said: “We had such a brilliant day, the area was packed with rail-related activities! It was great to see so many people enjoying themselves, the atmosphere was fantastic.

“A huge amount of work went into making the day a success, and I’d particularly like to thank artists on the project including Yasmin Aishah, ARRAN and Jules Earl; Andy Pope, the local SCRP line officers; Southeastern for using their station; and the Network Rail team who gave up their Good Friday to install the exhibition at Warrior Square Station. We are also grateful for funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Chalk Cliff Trust.

The Platform Panel project highlights workforce stories including the navigators and rail labourers who built the original railway and the tunnels at either end of the station. I do hope local people and visitors using the station will be interested in the outdoor museum we have created at the station.”

Keep up to date with future news, projects and events from Southeast Communities Rail Partnership via their website.