Andrew Harrowell Community Rail Manager has put forward two of our stations Gillingham and Yeovil Junction for DfT funding.

Andrew says ‘this is a £330 million programme which all train operators bid into, for the DfT to then decide how the funds will be split across the country. There are a number of criteria that stations are assessed on and SWR’s Regional Development Managers worked closely with stakeholders to help create the final shortlist, balancing passenger need, with feasibility and third party funding.

We expect a decision in late spring on whether any of our bids were successful. We will then work with Network Rail, who deliver the projects over the next five years.

As there is a lot of submissions from across the country we can make no guarantees if any of our stations will be selected for this funding, however I thought you might find this of interest. Stations on CRP lines include:Blackmore Vale Line – Gillingham and Yeovil Junction

Click here to read the booklet outlining which stations SWR put forward for the Department for Transport’s Access for All funding.

BVCRP Christmas Events Calendar

Please use the arrows on both sides of the slideshow below to view dates and times of each event.

BMVCRP Christmas Station Competition

Enjoy some festive fun by taking part in our Christmas station competition.

Score each category you see at your local station and post your sheet in the on site box provided.  

Judging opens on  1st December 2018 and closes on 15th December 2018.

Download your score sheet by clicking here, or you can find it on our publications page.

Announcing Decoration Station Christmas competition!

Blackmore Vale Line Community Rail Partnership is pleased to announce the launch of our ever popular ‘Decoration Station’ Christmas competition.

As the festive season looms ever closer volunteers from our station groups will be busy creating wonderful festive scenes in the booking halls.  Always an enjoyable time of year when our volunteers work hard to provide rail users with celebratory cheer and captivating Christmas displays. There are many talented crafters amongst our volunteers and this is evident with the high standard of hand-made decorations, garlands and wreaths.   We also have a number of very creative volunteers who always produce some wonderful surprises and little touches to make booking halls look so fabulous during the Christmas period.

Decoration Station competition aims to celebrate and promote the hard work of our volunteers and station staff during this season. It is an inter-station event between the six stations belonging to the rail partnership:  Crewkerne, Tisbury, Gillingham Templecombe, Sherborne and Yeovil Junction and we always include the talented crew from Yeovil Railway Centre.  Our volunteers get on really well, a friendly spirit thrives and the event is viewed as a bit of seasonal fun.

This year there are nine categories to tickle the taste buds of our volunteers:

  1. Deck the Halls – Best Christmas Wreath or Garland
  2. Coolest Santa
  3. Most Captivating Christmas Tree
  4. Winter Wonderland – Most Imaginative Window or Table Scene
  5. Best Christmas Feature
  6. Finest Hand Crafted Christmas Decoration
  7. Star of Wonder – Most Original use of a Christmas Star
  8. Scenic Railway – Ritziest Christmas Train
  9. Most Festive Booking Hall

We are pleased to work with local people with various areas of expertise who form our judging team.  We couldn’t do this without them. Our volunteers are renowned for providing a warm welcome at stations when the judges visit.  Once scored and winners of categories decided, we hold our annual awards ceremony, hosted at one of our stations, where certificates and prizes are given out.

Last year we wanted to engage more fully with rail-users, many of whom expressed appreciation of the efforts of their local station, so we introduced a public vote inviting people to score station displays. The station with the most overall votes (counted as the number of scoresheets) won a big shiny trophy sponsored by BVCRP, now in the hands of Friends of Templecombe Station.  We will be running this again and score sheets will be in stations during the first week of December.

We do hope you will enjoy visiting our stations over the coming weeks and encourage you to have a look at the displays and vote for your favourites. Many groups are holding stations events where a convivial welcome, seasonal refreshments and festive hospitality awaits.  Santa will be putting in an appearance and a little elf told me he will be at Crewkerne Station on Saturday 1st December.  

Major Changes to Train Services between Crewkerne and Exeter St Davids Saturday 15th September to Saturday 10th November

The rail line between Crewkerne and Exeter will be closed between Saturday 15th and Sunday 23rd September inclusive. No South Western Railway services will operate between Crewkerne and Exeter between those dates. This does not affect Great Western Railway services between Exmouth and Exeter / Paignton which will operate normally. The closure is to allow Network Rail to carry out works to reduce the impact of flooding on rail services in the future.

Please note there will be a different service level on Saturday 15th September due to the planned RMT strike action.

In addition, there will be some changes to train services between Monday 24th September and Saturday 10th November inclusive as part of the same works. For most stations between Salisbury and Exeter, this will mean some minor re-timings of trains. There will, however, be fewer station stops than normal at both Feniton and Templecombe – this is because the restricted speed of trains in the Axminster affects the timings of services at the passing locations on single track sections of the route.

There are further engineering works that will affect services on Sunday 30th September, Sunday 7th October and Sunday 21st October.

Saturday 15th to Sunday 23rd September (Inclusive)

Important: Saturday 15th September only

The RMT union have announced further strike dates, one of which is Saturday 15th September. On this date a different service pattern is expected to operate. Detailed arrangements are still to be confirmed but it is anticipated that train and replacement bus services will be similar to those operated on Saturday 18th August.

Sunday 16th to Sunday 23rd September

Buses will replace South Western Railway trains between Crewkerne and Exeter St Davids. Train services will run to a slightly amended timetable between Crewkerne and London Waterloo. The timetable for Monday 17th to Friday 21st is available on the website

Monday 24th September to Saturday 10th November (inclusive)

Most services will be retimed by a few minutes and some calls at both Feniton and Templecombe will be replaced by buses connecting at nearby stations.

The Monday to Friday changes in the above period are as follows:

Most of the alterations will be re-timing of train services, but to maintain the timetable we will need to take station stops out of some trains and replacement buses will run for these stations. See the website for detailed information.