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The Association of Community Rail Partnerships

The Value of Community Rail Partnerships and Community Rail Volunteering Report 2015 published.

ACoRP on behalf of the National Community Rail Development Implementation Steering Group has today published this new report on the Value of Community Rail.

The key findings are

  • 2.8% additional growth per annum on community rail routes
  • CRPs more than pay for themselves, adding economic, social and environmental value.
  • 3,200 community rail volunteers give 250,000 hours  per year in support, giving an annual financial value of £3.4m.
  • Station adoption is an outstanding low-cost/high-benefit measure. This can be particularly so where security or other problems can be addressed without high capital expenditure.

Factors for Success and Challenges Facing Community Rail Partnerships (CRPs)

The study identified a number of key factors for success of CRPs and challenges that face them including:

• CRP success relies on the provision of a CRP Officer resourced for at least three days per week

• Continuity of funding, particularly from non- train operator sources, remains a key challenge

• Opportunities for CRPs include engaging with Local Enterprise Partnerships to inform regional investment priorities and ongoing outreach to the 42% of people identified as not using rail

• Future growth on some lines may also be constrained by the shortage of appropriate rolling stock and infrastructure

Community Rail Volunteers

The report also looked at the work and motivation of CRP volunteers and found there was scope for volunteers to be better supported.

Recommendations included:

• Continuity of funding for Community Rail Partnership officers who coordinate volunteers and station adoption schemes

• Raising the profile and public awareness of rail volunteering

• National Policy Statement and best practice guidance for train operators to follow

• A clearly defined and formalised definition of the volunteer role, with appropriate ongoing training, mentoring and guidance

• Established, formalised and clearly communicated safety procedures

• Low cost / high value measures of recognition designed to boost morale, for example, notices at stations to acknowledge the existence and work of volunteers.

For more information contact Neil Buxton at neil@acorp.uk.com

Download the full report here!

Value_of_CRPs_and_Volunteering Report 2015

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