|Archived Save the Train forum articles - 2005 to 2010. See below
Off the rails - Bristol Evening Post - 1496/4063
Written by Nick Field on Sunday, 25th February 2007
Re: Off the rails - Bristol Evening Post - 1496/4072
Written by admin (Graham Ellis) on Monday, 26th February 2007
Some quotes from that article:
Thirty-six-year- old Sarah Mills is squeezed next to me. I ask her if it's often like this and she nods, adding: "All the time. Last week, because there was some bad publicity, they put another two carriages on, but now it's back to normal."
It's also still very much a hidden gem and few people even know it exists.
But Jo Skelton, 26, who commutes from Redland to Bath Spa, said: "Using the train is cheap and quick but it's a shame that the current service is not more accommodating."
These people, you can tell, have heard it all before, "the train's coming ... sorry, the train's not coming... the train's coming but there isn't any room for you...", says Michael, a civil servant who has a talent for mimicking the soothing yet stern, synthesised voice from the speakers. "Never trust the announcements, they just give you false hope," he warns with a smile.
The picture painted is of a lottery of an inappropriate, overcrowded and unreliable service, compounded by an information system that doesn't keep the user properly informed as to what's happening and what his / her options are.
I have no desire to copy and paste whole articls here, and indeed for me to do so would break copyright law. However, short quotes for critical review / comment are allowed.
link to index of articles
Save the Train was the campaign to bring an approriate train service back to and through Melksham.
Most big contributors are still around writing at the Coffee shop forum where new members are very welcome.
The train has been saved - sort of - we have stepped back up from an unusable service to a poorish one but it's doing very well. We did that through setting up the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership. That fulfilled its early objectives; it has been taken over by local and regional government types who are now doing medium and long term work. The team from this forun can also be found at the Melksham Rail User Group (which was the Melksham Rail Development Group at the time these articles were written and we had no users.
We mustn't loose sight, though, that the train service remains poor and needs our community support in marketing and campaigning to keep it going in a positive direction ... and all the more so when we're expecting to find a different normallity once we get out of the Coronavirus Pandemic and head for zero carbon via the climate crisis. Yes, it's saved ... it's now a key community facility ... the need for enhancement and the strong and near-universal local support remain, and the rail industry and goverment remain slow to move and provide the enhancements even to level us up with other towns. Please support the Melksham Rail User Group - now very much in partnership rather than protest with the rail industry and local government, including GWR, TransWilts and unitary and town councils. And please use the trains and buses, and cycle and walk when you can.
-- Graham Ellis, (webmaster), February 2021
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