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Community rail celebrated at movement’s annual showcase

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The Severnside Community Rail Partnership (SCRP) scooped the top award at the Association of Community Rail Partnerships’ (ACoRP) biggest night of the year.

Around 480 community volunteers, groups, industry leaders and government representatives attended the Community Rail Awards, which was this year hosted by Abelio and ScotRail in Glasgow.

SCRP was given the Outstanding Contribution to Community Rail Award for projects aiming to put railways in the west of England back into the heart of the communities they serve.

Over the past year this has included rail familiarisation and safety visits for schoolchildren, a new families and young persons website for ‘Discovering the Severn Beach Line’ and hosting ‘Fun Palace’ events along the same line during a world-wide weekend celebration of arts and science.

ACoRP CEO Jools Townsend said: “Congratulations go to all our winners and entrants, whose efforts show just how important community rail is in connecting local people with their railways and building more inclusive, sustainable and cohesive communities.

“We will be sharing these inspiring examples throughout the year to come, to help the community rail field to continue to go from strength to strength.”

The full list of winners from the October 4 ceremony is as follows:

  • Involving Children and Young People (Sponsored by Rail Media) – Conwy Valley Railway Partnership for Rail Safety Video;
  • Involving Diverse Groups – Community Rail Lancashire for The Railway Confidence Programmes;
  • Community Art Schemes (Permanent) – SCRP & Crimestoppers for The Fearless Four Seasons Mural;
  • Community Art Schemes (Renewable & Smaller) – Kent Community Rail Partnership, Bradfields Academy & BTP Kent for BTP Text Number Poster Campaign;
  • Most Enhanced Station Buildings and Surroundings – Friends of Buxton Station for Heritage-friendly Life-Saving Improvements;
  • Small Projects Award (Under £500) – Friends of Ally Pally Station for Hop on a Train;
  • Best Community Engagement Event – Community Rail Lancashire for Women Who Wander;
  • Best Marketing or Communications Campaign – Poacher Line Community Rail Partnership for 100 years of Aviation along the Poacher Line;
  • Influencing Positive Change – Women in Community Rail – ‘Achieving Change Together’;
  • Photo Competition | “Community Rail in Action” – Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership for “Carefully does it! Face painting on the Santa Special;
  • It’s Your Station – Friends of Glossop Station – Lead Gold / category winner;
  • Outstanding Volunteer Contribution – Neil Williams, Chair of Friends of Glossop Station;
  • ACoRP Award for Outstanding Contribution to Community Rail – SCRP;
  • ACoRP Lifetime Achievement Award – Chris Austin OBE.

Read more: Guardians of the railway