Friends of Crewkerne Station were impressed how quickly the banks beyond the over-bridge had been strimmed, following a recent visit to Crewkerne by managers from Network Rail. FOCS volunteers have worked hard at negotiating agreements between the owner and the developers at the Old Coalyard and Network Rail to enable them to work on the unused down platform. Following the latest licence renewal and safety briefing, the volunteers raised a number of issues with Robert Hodgkinson and Sarah Jason of Network Rail during the visit, including the future provision of water for the planters once the builders have finished, suggesting the possibility of a tap near the platform. They also pointed out the difficulty of weeding the edge of the platform and the overgrowth of brambles at the end of the platform under the bridge, which is a no go area for the volunteers due to safety reasons.
Network Rail manager Robert Hodgkinson was impressed by the achievements of the volunteers and was hopeful of obtaining answers quickly. Mr Hodgkinson said: “I will attempt to get our local maintenance team to strim the overgrown disused platform clear of brambles beyond the over-bridge, as quickly as possible. It is clear that they may start to encroach soon if not manged. The future water supply is very much a challenge but we can look in tandem with the Friends of Crewkerne Station for a possible solution.”
Chairman of FOCS Tony Reese said: “Since obtaining the license agreement we have cleared weeds from the platform itself and put trough planters there to improve passengers visual experience at the station. We were pleased to welcome Robert Hodgkinson and Sarah Jason to the station, to see what improvements we have made.” Secretary of FOCS Gail Coleshill was amazed and pleased at the prompt action taken by Network Rail to clear the brambles. Gail said: “We were amazed to see that the brambly bank had been given a good trim when we went up to do some gardening work on Thursday. We are hoping the other issues raised can also be resolved soon.” The next meeting of FOCS to include the groups AGM takes place in the Council Chamber at Crewkerne Town Hall on Wednesday November 13th at 7.30 pm. Anyone who would like to join FOCS as a volunteer can contact Chairman Tony Reese on 07967947335 or Secretary Gail Coleshill on 07811657798.