A Letter from Nantwich

March 2008                                       Nantwich Now projects | Nantwich Station update

LNWR returns to Nantwich Station

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the shrub beds on the Nantwich Station platform.

Picture: Alderman Doug Butterill, Chairman of Nantwich in Bloom Committee.

THE old London and North Western Railway company has returned to Nantwich Railway Station - well, their company colours have, at least.

   And it is thanks to the Nantwich in Bloom Committee who do such good work for the town in the Britain in Bloom annual competitions. (As I have said before, that is not to belittle the excellent work done by the hundreds of Nantwich residents who toil very had to present a colourful picture of the town).

   With the finance provided by Nantwich Now Market Town Project, the committee have provided the expertise and time to create three raised flower beds like the one above - and two smaller ones like that on the left.

  If you're worried about the bare patch in the front centre of the larger beds, don't be. As Alderman Butterill, Chairman of Nantwich in Bloom, told me: "The area between the shrubs will be planted with perennial herbaceous plants and in October we will interplant bulbs of white narcissi to represent salt. We hope the initial work will be completed by the end of May."   

  That work will include 10 hanging baskets on the station "front" and each lamppost will have two baskets. That's 34 in all - as Beverley Cope, Project Manager of Nantwich Now, confirmed. See below.

  The "front" of the station is, in fact, the rear of the Bengal Station tandoori restaurant (right), which is now situated in the old station buildings - and is currently undergoing a refurbishment. (The restaurant was later named Natraj - see the updated picture in the Nantwich Now report below).

   These buildings used to house the waiting rooms, the Station Master's office, the ticket office and goods department and, of course, that necessary requisite for rail travellers, the public toilets. Unlike its larger neighbour, Crewe Station, the Nantwich buildings didn't run to a restaurant.

   The rather drab face fronting the platforms (pictured left) will be brightened up by the railway company, Arriva Trains Wales, who manage the station - again backed financially by Nantwich Now. (See the panel below).

   The idea is to put up large pictures of the station in its hey day and the town in the now-bricked-up windows and doorways.

   These should give the old station buildings a very welcome bright face. Overall, the station looks fine - more so now after the planting work.  

"Greater Improvements"

 

Beverley Cope, Project Manager of Nantwich Now, told me: "The Railway Station project will see much greater improvements over the next three months."

   She listed the work to be done as:

l "THE old station building will be vastly improved and we will be painting the station side. The owner of the Bengal Station tandoori restaurant, Mr Sharaf Ahmed, is fully refurbishing his restaurant and tidying up the area generally. He has been a tremendous help on the project and his co-operation has been exceptionally helpful. (The restaurant was called Natraj by May 2008 - see picture right).

l"SIX new cycle racks will be secured on the platform on the Crewe line (the one on the left in the picture).

l"A NEW side gate will be built to replace the existing rotten one next to the restaurant.

l"THE walls will be cleaned on the main platform side.

l"THE paintwork on the shelters and lampposts will be redone and the colour scheme modified to reflect Nantwich more effectively. That is, a black and white theme with elements of the Arriva branding still retained.

l"VISUALS which highlight the station history and views of Nantwich as a means of encouraging more tourism.

l"COMPLETION of a Station Feasibility Study. This will be used as evidence of necessary improvements that need to be carried out. We will use this to secure (hopefully) additional funds for the station."

   And that is not all. There are longer term plans:

   Beverley told me: "Network Rail have confirmed that they have set aside money for improvements generally to the site. That is, to those areas we cannot touch for Health and Safety reasons, such as the footbridge and railings. We are awaiting a date when this work will start.

   "Improvements to the ‘car park’ area: It is the intention to pursue major improvement to the land alongside the station, which is mainly owned by Network Rail, with the aim of a converting it into a vastly improved car park area."

   Finally, Beverly said: "The station project has been done in conjunction with Cllr John Lewis (of Nantwich Town Council), Nantwich in Bloom, Arriva, Cheshire County Council, Nantwich Town Council, and Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council with the assistance of the Bengal Station restaurant.

   "We are all very proud of the progress we are making with this project as it has taken some time to come to fruition and has involved a lot of negotiation with a large range of people."

 

WELL DONE, to everyone concerned. You should be very proud of all that has been achieved. As if the above list isn't enough, Nantwich Now has been involved in the new footbridge in the riverside (see here).

 

l Picture: The railway station as seen from the footbridge in Wellington Road over the lines, looking towards Crewe.

For a list of the work done by the Nantwich in Bloom committee

to enhance the town, click here

lSee a Letter from Nantwich on a new footbridge in the riverside. lFor another view of the station, see this letter.  lGo to Letters index page.  lGo to the index page of this website.

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