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Update from community rail across Wales & Borders

Rhiannon-Jane Raftery, community rail development coordinator at Community Rail Network, gives an update on activity across the Wales & Borders region.

Llandudno Station was transformed into Wonderland for a special Platinum Jubilee tea party on 27 May. Up to 50 volunteers and friends of the Conwy Valley and North West Wales Coast Community Rail Partnership joined Transport for Wales at Llandudno Station for afternoon tea, entertainment and magic! Hundreds of rail passengers were greeted by the Mad Hatter, White Rabbit, Cheshire Cat, Queen of Hearts and, of course, Alice herself. Local residents and visitors passing through the station loved the entertainment and asked for more events throughout the year. Huge well done to Jessica Wragg, Karen Williams, Sian Jones, Mayor Carol Marubi and station staff, as well as to the production and events team at HTC Entertainments and The Magic Bar Live for organising a great day. 

In addition, Conwy Valley & NW Wales Connected CRP have also been celebrating Bike Week with the promotion of their latest cycling initiative, Miles of Smiles, that provides inspiration for people interested in exploring the Conwy Valley Line on two wheels. The initiative also highlights useful information on bike hire and tips for travelling with bikes on the train. Find out more about Miles of Smiles here.

South West Wales Connected (SWWC) have had a very busy few weeks, including a very productive reaccreditation meeting – it was great to hear about all the inspiring projects they’ve delivered over the past year alongside exciting new projects planned for the future. Earlier in June, SWWC were pleased to announce twenty organisations and community groups in South West Wales were awarded grants to help them improve their local communities. The funding, totalling just over £15,000 comes from the 2022 Community Changemakers Fund, an initiative by SWWC, supported by Transport for Wales and Great Western Railway. Details were publicised widely on social media and in the local press.

It’s all change as the former Chester-Shrewsbury CRP expands and is renamed the 3 Counties Connected Community Rail Partnership. This new initiative aims to develop and promote the Chester to Shrewsbury to Crewe railway line as a green railway and is supported by Groundwork North Wales, Transport for Wales and community partners. The CRP will cover communities close to stations including Chester, Wrexham General, Wrexham Central, Ruabon, Chirk, Gobowen and Shrewsbury, Yorton, Wem, Prees, Whitchurch, Wrenbury, Nantwich and Crewe.

Sian Jones – Community Rail Ambassador at Transport for Wales, Melanie Lawton – Community Rail Manager at Transport for Wales, Jessica Wragg – Community Rail Officer at Groundwork North Wales