Plans to improve accessibility at stations and projects to address social isolation are some of the 67 schemes to have been awarded community improvement funding from South Western Railway (SWR).
Designed to help boost the local economy, SWR invited bids from its Customer and Communities Improvement Fund (CCIF) and the successful projects from across the South Western Railway network have been revealed.
Local authorities across SWR’s network have matched the CCIF funding to allow further development and support.
The winning proposals were selected by a panel of representatives from SWR’s Social and Commercial Development Board, Transport Focus and SWR’s Board, before final endorsement by the Department for Transport.
Some examples of schemes that received CCIF funding as follows:
- Community and Tourist Digital Information Boards by Shanklin Theatre and Community Trust. This project will install a digital information display board at Shankin Railway Station where it will show transport link information, community activity and rail times for onward journeys to Ryde, Portsmouth and beyond.
- Alton Railway Station Forecourt Improvement Scheme by East Hampshire District Council. This multi-element scheme will improve pedestrian and cycle routes to the station.
- Mind the Gap by Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council. This multi-agency multi-faceted project will support local communities and issues around mental health by increasing community engagement in stations and rail travel promotion of positive wellbeing and stress reduction in secondary schools and Bournemouth University.
SWR Commercial and Business Development Director Peter Williams said: “We at SWR recognise only too well the vital role that rail plays in the local as well as the national economy, and I am delighted that we have been able to further support the communities we serve through this funding.
“The first year’s recipients cover a wide range of, and in many cases innovative, projects, and I look forward to them all coming to fruition.”
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