A station adoption group in Radcliffe-on-Trent has scooped a national accolade for their relentless hard work in making their railway stop inviting, colourful, clean and tidy for rail travellers.
The Friends of Radcliffe Station have been acknowledged with an Association of Community Rail Partnerships (ACoRP) award for recognition in weeding its platforms, planting beds for flower displays, scrubbing signage and even creating a community herb garden.
Their work has also included clearing old vegetation, sowing a large area of wild flowers and planting over 1,400 spring bulbs.
They installed a plaque recognising the award, together with a permanent mosaic of artwork created by children from Radcliffe-on-Trent Junior School that will welcome passengers using the station.
Representatives of Rushcliffe Borough Council, Radcliffe-on-Trent Parish Council, East Midlands Trains and the Poacher Line Community Rail Partnership attended the plaque and mosaic unveiling to meet members of the group and the children who worked on the design.
Head co-ordinator of the volunteer group, Phil Thomas, said: “We are so pleased to win this national award for all our efforts at Radcliffe-on-Trent station.
“Not only does it highlight the hard work of our volunteers, but also the sense of community spirit we all share.
“Many many hours have been spent in recent years ensuring the station is kept up to scratch and we’re proud of the impression it creates for residents and visitors when they arrive or catch a train.
“We hope it helps the efforts towards more investment and trains to run on the Poacher Line.”
More plans for the group’s work at the station this spring and summer are expected soon.
Kaye Robinson, community rail partnership officer for the Poacher Line Community Rail Partnership, said: “I am so proud of the work the Radcliffe-on-Trent station adoption group delivers, the station has undergone a massive transformation over the past 15 months and we’ve also worked with the local junior school to install a fantastic piece of artwork.
“It is great to see the group being recognised at our national industry awards and look forward to even more improvements over the coming year.”
Donna Adams, from East Midlands Trains, said: “The unveiling of the ACoRP award plaque and the junior schools artwork is a great example of community collaboration.
“Over a short period of time the station adoption group have grown not only in numbers, but also in stature within the community and this is credit due to effective partnership working of all those involved.
“The efforts are all aimed to help integrate the railway back into the community at Radcliffe-on-Trent and enhance the lives of which it touches.
“We hope that for all those involved, either with the award achievement or the artwork, the local community will take pride in what has been achieved so far.”
The Friends of Radcliffe Station started in November 2017 and with 30 volunteers are now one of the largest groups in the region, with more plans for the group’s work at the station are expected this spring and summer.
The group have been supported by the Poacher Line CRP, East Midlands Trains, Network Rail, the Parish Council and Streetwise, Rushcliffe Borough Council’s associated grounds maintenance team, who have regularly collected the waste vegetation.
Radcliffe-on-Trent Swimming Pool Association and councillor Roger Upton have also been supportive of the group, the latter with a £200 donation as part of the authority’s Community Support Scheme Grant.
Across Britain, around 60 community rail partnerships, with over 1,000 station adoption groups together with other groups and social enterprises, make up the community rail movement.