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Station Information Board and passengers

Melksham Rail User Group - into a new decade

For 2019, we have had an exciting program of meetings and events ... with the longer platform and longer trains we were able to promote the service widely. Now in 2020, we now have a significantly amended timetable, which started on 15th December 2019. We'll complement this with a program to continue the success of the line and the group.

Our first 2020 public meeting on 22nd January included a useful presentation from GWR on fares.

All meetings (unless otherwise advised) are held at 19:30 in the hall at the back of the United Reform Church just off Melksham Market Place. Remaining meetings for 2020 are 18th March, 20th May, 22nd July, 16th September and 18th November - and no doubt more to be added!

A full report on 2019 and plan for 2020 document is available in print, or may be downloaded [[here]]

A review of the last decade and a look forward

We started the last decade with around 3,000 journeys per annum, and with Save the Train as the online campaign group for TransWilts services, looking to save the vestiges of the service that had been cut back a couple of years earlier.

We ended the last decade with around 75,000 journeys per annum, with the Melksham Rail User Group providing local encouragement and support - a rebranding of the Development group - but very much a "station friends" group, working as partners with the rail industry and our local CRP which grew out of "Save the Train".

Although passenger journeys have risen from 3,000 to 75,000 in a decade, that's based on a service that's risen only from unusable to "thin and poor". Gaps of 2 and half hours (10:01 to 12:32) in a service for short journeys such as Melksham to Swindon (25 minutes) or Trowbridge to Chippenham (19 minutes) put most people off using the service. Step up to a reliable hourly service, and passenger numbers at Melksham by the end of this new decade should exceed 300,000.
2009 -


2019 -


2029? -


Train and passengers at Melksham Station

About the station and the group

Our mission is to maintain and enhance facilities at Melksham station, and to act as an independent voice of the station users.

Melksham is served by up to 18 trains a day on the line from Swindon to Westbury via Chippenham and Trowbridge.

Melksham Railway Station was closed in “the Beeching Era” - 1966. It re-opened in 1985, with British Rail, local councils and passengers partnering to bring back at least a part of the facility that had been so missed in the area.

The Melksham Railway Development Group (MRDG) was a community group that has worked hard over the years to support the station, though sometimes when the service was so poor it looked like it was lost again, and indeed if it weren’t for MRDG, Melksham might not have a station or train service today. Five years ago, MRDG working with the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership, persuaded Wiltshire Council to sponsor, the Department for Transport to fund and GWR to run a three year trial of addition trains, and they have been very successful – for the first time since its re-opening, Melksham now has sufficient trains for passenger numbers to have grown well, and although the group is still very much concerned with further development, it has been renamed the Melksham Rail User Group (MRUG)

Melksham Rail User Group runs on a small budget kindly funded by Melksham Town Council and Melksham Without Parish Councils, and our membership includes representatives of both organisations. Events such as the Santa trips are costed to break even - their main intent is to publicise and promote the station and trains that serve it; any profit made is ploughed back into group funds. All work done for "MRUG" by the members is on a voluntary basis, for which the group is grateful.

The Group is also a member of the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership, supporting the use and growth of local and regional passenger train services on the Swindon to Westbury line via Chippenham, Melksham and Trowbridge, with service on to Dilton Marsh, Warminster and Salisbury. It is also a 'friend' of the Association of Cimmunity Rail Partnerships (ACoRP).

 

News and Upcoming ....

New: • Emergency contactsResources

Nest MRUG public meeting
18th March 2020 - see [here]

Sundays in January 2020 - due to engineering works, buses replace trains. Timetable here

Current timetables - January 2020
Train times [here]
Most bus times Faresaver
Bus times [First D3] - [here]
Other bus times Swindon's Bus Co.
Other bus times Town Bus
Long distance coach National Express
No changes expected in February or March

Rail fare pages - updated for 2020
Local fares [here]
London fares [here]
Bristol and Bath fares [here]
Day out and rover tickets - 2020 prices awaited

Report on 2019 and plans for 2020 - Pick up a copy of our report at area board, council and MRUG meetings in January or email to ask for a printed copy. Also availabe for download here

Report on reduction of station dwell time – three specific ideas for Melksham proposed by the Melksham Rail User Group in reply to request for suggestions from Mark Hopwood on 18th July 2019 for input by 24th July 2019 - [[here]]

New "Great West Way Discover" tickets launched - travel as much as you like on selected routes, two of the tickets include Melksham - great for a Staycation or for visitors to the UK who are staying with you for a while. There are now 10 different rangers and rovers that include Melksham - see [here] for a list including maps and prices.



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