Guest column: New CRP group will help boost public transport campaign even more

The new Welcome To Gainsborough sign at Lea Road station
The new Welcome To Gainsborough sign at Lea Road station

The distribution by GRaB of the first ever Gainsborough Travel Guide listing bus and rail services in our town has been well received.

Stagecoach are kindly producing for us a second edition due in December.

The guide will highlight the reduction in most rail fares that took place in September and include minor changes to bus and train times.

This will, however, be the last travel guide to be published by GRaB.

A new community rail partnership (CRP) is taking shape.

It will work to promote rail travel and spread the word that public transport can be an alternative to the car.

Of course, this will be easier once our Pacer trains have been replaced in three years’ time.

The CRP will encourage, help and support station adoption teams such as the excellent Friends of Lea Road station.

East Midland Trains have recently erected a Welcome to Gainsborough sign at Lea Road station.

We should, of course, be welcoming visitors to our town and the sign at Lea Road is a first step in that direction.

The CRP board, when fully operational next year, will be able to contribute to increasing the use not only of trains but also of buses.

Stagecoach buses will be represented along with the train operators, Network Rail, the councils and the four local area groups.

The CRP will be divided into area groups.

Bassetlaw and West Lindsey groups are now formed.

They cover Shireoaks, Worksop and Retford (Bassetlaw) and Gainsborough, Saxilby and Market Rasen (West Lindsey).

A variety of jobs from gardening duties to distributing publicity awaits volunteers.

Contact me if you would like to help, on 01427 678169 or barrycoward@icloud.com

We shall be running a stall at Lincoln Station during the Christmas Market next month.

This is the last column I shall write as GRaB secretary as we are handing this column over to the CRP.

GRaB will of course carry on campaigning for better public transport.

It is four years since GRaB started, following the short lived withdrawal of buses to Morton.

Since then we have lobbied with some success for improvements to rail services, the first of which happens in December 2017 when on Sundays an hourly service to Lincoln and Sheffield starts.

In 2019 new trains are planned to operate a semi-fast service to Leeds.