The Annual General Meeting of the West of Lancashire Community Rail Partnership was held on Wednesday 12th April 2017 in the offices of the West of Lancashire Borough Council in Ormskirk.
Elections of the posts of Chair, Vice Chair and Secretary were held and the following were all re-elected nem. con:
+ Chair – Marion Atkinson (Merseytravel)
+ Vice Chair – Roger Bell (Ormskirk, Preston & Southport Travellers Association)
+ Secretary – Richard Watts (Lancashire county Council & CRL)
The Chair then gave a report saying that she was pleased with the good work going on within the CRP. Marion also commented on the possible formation of additional Friends of Stations groups and noted that the CRP would need to reconsider how it engages with these and existing groups. Marion proposed setting up an event later in the year for all the WoLCRP Friends groups and that she and Brian Haworth would make the arrangements.
A routine management Group Meeting was held after the AGM and covered topics including the Partnership Secretary’s report. Richard covered details of the grants for the forthcoming year from Northern which include the continuation of the education programme expansion.
Richard also reported that the Department of Transport and the Association of Community Rail Partnerships had signed off the 2016 Action Plan and noted that the key areas of work for 2017 would include, updating the Action Plan, continuing education engagement – especially the Bee Line Project.
Northern’s Regional Community & Sustainability manager, Martin Keating gave an update and in particular about the ongoing industrial action by RMT members. He noted that on the last strike day Northern ran 850 trains plus bus replacements.
Martin also spoke about recent visits to local Friends of Stations groups and welcomed the applications for funding via Northern’s Station Adoption Fund. Martin gave a brief update on May 2018 timetable proposals, especially those into South Manchester. Martin reported on his visit to the DfT’s Community Rail Seminar that was held in Lincoln and spoke about the different workshops including, best practice, innovation, community-diversity and inclusion. Martin closed his report by introducing the new station manager Trevor Armitage to the meeting.
The meeting also heard from Andy Griffin (Network Rail) who reported a very good last period with no major issues. The ongoing discussions around the future of the interchange building at Burscough Bridge were briefly mentioned as was the flooding issue sat Burscough Junction station car park.
CRL’s Daisy Chapman-Chamberlain gave a brief update on the education programme in the West of Lancs and noted that this was funded by a grant from ComREG.
The various Station partnerships gave brief updates on their much appreciated work and it was noted that the Rufford Village Society were hoping to get involved at the station as well.
Finally it was noted that an Action Plan for the next Ormskirk MotorFest has been produced and a proposed timetable for the Sunday service has been drafted.