The Association of Community Rail Partnerships will be known as the Community Rail Network (CRN) from today (April 6), bringing together a growing membership of 70 community/rail partnerships across the country as well as hundreds of station ‘friends’ and other groups.
The CRN says that while face-to-face engagement and events have paused due to COVID-19, work continues to strengthen the role of community rail.
Many bodies are considering how they can step up their role as the railway rebuilds after the pandemic, developing their work to help communities make our railways and transport become more sustainable, inclusive and caring.
It argues this will become increasingly important as the Government, industry and communities work to decarbonise transport and to make public transport and active travel the “natural choice” in the future.
“As well as supporting our members through these unprecedented times, we are very much looking to the future,” said CRN Chief Executive Jools Townsend.
“Becoming the Community Rail Network marks our commitment to helping community rail, and our railways, to make an ever-growing contribution to sustainable development, inclusion and wellbeing.
“As we rebuild from COVID-19, this work will be more important than ever. Within community rail and across the wider community sector we will need to redouble efforts, with our partners, to create confidence and connectedness, and re-orientate ways of thinking and living around more socially and environmentally responsible means - especially as we grapple with the longer-term crisis we face, the climate emergency. This is at the heart of our community rail network.”
For the FULL story, read RAIL 903, published on April 22, and available digitally from April 18.