Community rail groups in Hastings and Rother welcome increased use of stations

Usage for our local East Coastway and Marshlink rail stations has seen more record breaking increases for the year to March 31 2020.

Tuesday, 12th January 2021, 3:45 pm

They continue to build on the success following the improved Southern rail timetable introduced in May 2018 promoted by the local rail groups such as Ore Transport Group and ‘THWART’ for Three Oaks and Winchelsea, as well as Railfuture.

Ore Transport Group’s Trevor Davies said: “New records have been set at every Southern-served Hastings and Marshlink station, other than Doleham, in either or both of the two years since the new timetable.

“Passenger numbers at Rye continue to be almost 500,000, showing the importance of the railway to the local economy.

Ore Station community rail SUS-211201-102613001

“The largest increase of 15% was again at Ore, following the 38% increase the previous year after all-day every day Ashford services were added at the station.

“There are now later evening Marshlink services Monday to Saturday.

“I want to thank Southern both for keeping the levels of service operating during these difficult times, with 4-car trains as standard to enable social distancing, and also the extra cleaning they are doing to ensure train travel is as safe as it can be.

The records set at Three Oaks and Winchelsea show the importance of these stations to their local communities, shown by these stations, and Ore, having active members of the Southeastern Communities Rail Partnership.”

Kevin Boorman, chair of the Marshlink Community Rail partnership, added: “These are excellent figures, especially as they cover the first two weeks of the first Covid lockdown in March. They show just how important the Marshlink is to the local community.

“It is absolutely vital that we all work hard to ensure that these passengers return to the line once the pandemic is over, and it continues to act as an essential transport link for work and leisure.”

Members of Ore Transport Group worked with Sussex Community Rail Partnership to make improvements to Ore Station, including installing six planters to brighten up the platform.

Improvements have also been mae to Winchelsea Station in recent years and work is underway to improve Rye.