A Clay Country railway station’s track record for improving access and nearly doubling passengers has won it a national award.
Bugle railway station, which is on the Atlantic Coast Line, between Par and Newquay, scooped third place in the Innovative Projects at Small Stations category at the recent 2013 National Community Rail Awards.
The accolade was part of an annual awards ceremony to acknowledge the work carried out to promote and enhance Britain’s local and rural railways around the country.
Back in 2011 the station -once a no-go area for wheelchair and pram users - was transformed following a successful project to install new level path avoiding the steep set of steps.
The idea was the brainchild of a volunteer from the Friends of the Atlantic Coast Line. (FoCal)
It led to a near doubling of passengers using the station, from 3731 in 2010 to 6786 in 2012.
Funding for the £10,000 project came from Cornwall Council, the Devon and Cornwall Rail Partnership, the Designated Community Rail Development Fund and a bequest from the late John Hobby, founder and co-ordinator of the Rural Stations’ Project until his death in 2007.
FoCaL chairman Jim Cleare said “I am thrilled this project has been recognised. Many local people use Bugle station and the new access is a far cry from the perilous flight of stairs from a very busy road that used to be there.”
Richard Burningham, manager of the Devon & Cornwall Rail Partnership said “I am very pleased this project, which involved a number of organisations, has won an award. I know that John Hobby, who left money in his will to enhance Cornish stations, would be too.”
The path at the First Great Western station was constructed by Network Rail and Cornwall Council helped with the new station signs.
Mike Trotter, First Great Western Station manager for the Atlantic Coast Line said “Community Rail is all about local people deciding what is important to them, and it’s great to see a locally inspired project like this being recognised.”
The 2013 awards were held in north Wales.