The Management Committee of the joint CL & ELCRPs met on Friday 13th January 2017 in the home of Community Rail Lancashire at Accrington station.
Partnership Secretary Richard Watts gave a presentation and explained the various developments across the two CRPs. Topics covered included:
+ Details of Office of Rail and Road’s Station Usage Estimates year ending 31.03.16;
° The three main stations in East Lancashire on the Todmorden Curve service saw encouraging increases;
° Other stations, particularly on the Clitheroe Line, saw significant drops in numbers and this was attributed to work on Farnworth Tunnel and the blockade during the doubling works at Darwen.
° Timetable developments with the warning that some of these may be delayed until May 2018; and
+ Details of information going forward to the next Community Rail Executive Group (ComREG) meeting being held on 18th January 2017.
° CRL developing a project with a local primary school and Network Rail around the new diesel depot being constructed on the old Wranglings site close to Blackburn station.
° A Young Arts Arriva project with a school in Burnley and based on revitalising Burnley Central station.
Matthew Worman, Northern Client & Stakeholder Manager (Central) gave an update on the company reorganisation and also a report on recent performance.
Andy Griffin, Network Rail’s Community team updated on activity and noted that they we reworking closely with the British Transport Police on a campaign between Preston and Gannow Junction (Burnley) to reduce trespass and vandalism.
Ribble Valley Rail and the Friends of Pendle Stations the two rail user/friends groups represented on the committee both gave reports and these included:
° RVR – Langho in Bloom – a new ‘in bloom’ group doing great work around the village including the approaches to the station;
° Purchase of another recycled plastic storage bench (Ark Plastics); and
° FoPS – reducing numbers of volunteers due to age.
BTP officer Dax Byrne-Turner gave an update on events and incidents affecting the two routes and also spoke about anti-social behaviour especially at Accrington and pressed for Arriva Rail North to increase the area covered by CCTV at the station.
Dax also spoke about the possibility of utilising the LLPA equipment to play classical music to dissuade groups of youths congregating on stations in the evenings.
Other areas covered included the increased risk of trespass on the railway once electrification was completed on the Manchester to Preston/Blackpool North routes.