More and more community groups and individuals are adopting their local station. It’s all about local pride and seeing the station as an important part of the community. Railway companies have seen a rise in the use of adopted stations, less vandalism and in many cases externally-funded improvements.
Station Adoption Groups can undertake a wide variety of activities, ranging from feeding in comments, the provision of station enhancements such as gardens and planters, cycle racks through to art work and signage. Station adoption is a way of transforming stations, bringing them into the heart of the community and encouraging greater use of environmentally friendly public transport.
But there are some simple things which groups need to be aware of. Safety must be paramount! You also need to make sure that whatever you do has the agreement of the train operating companies and Network Rail, though they are very supportive of communities adopting their station.
To find out more about Station Adoption you can contact us at the Kent Community Rail Partnership or you can download the Station Adoption Toolkit. This tells you how to go about setting up an adoption group and has lots of examples of what station adopters have achieved at stations around the country.
Network Rail’s Community Scheme
If your station adoption scheme also covers land that is not in the Southeastern lease then you may be able to do something with it via Network Rail’s Community Scheme. This enables voluntary groups to look after disused areas of Network Rail land, such as disused platforms, land adjoining stations, or land underneath viaducts. Groups keep the area tidy, pick up litter and trim vegetation. Some grow flowers in tubs or planters.
Network Rail has devised precautions, based on the safety procedures for their track workers, to keep volunteers away from the danger of moving trains and make sure they don’t cause problems for the operating railway. They assess each proposal for a scheme in the light of these.
If you have an idea for a scheme please contact Kent CRP using the Quick Enquiry Form at the bottom of this page.
The Kent CRP is currently working with individuals and groups at Maidstone Barracks, Wateringbury and Snodland.
If you would like to help at those stations we can put you in contact with the people concerned.
We can put you in contact with the right person at Southeastern if you are interested in a station on lines other than the Medway Valley or SwaleRail lines.