TransWilts CRP, CIC and Melksham RUG
Public and sustainable transport in Wiltshire

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Politics and the railway the connects Wiltshire

The train service from Westbury to Swindon, via Trowbridge, Melksham and Chippenham links Wiltshire's major urban communities with one another, and with places beyond. Early results from analysing the survey from mid October 2014 show well over 100 source and destination stations, and also show a majority of users didn't have the alternative option of driving. So these new services - running just a year - are already making a significant difference. Passenger numbers are good too, with journey numbers very much towards the upper end of what we might predicted, even in the most optimistic of moods.

A major part of why the service has done so well is that everyone has been working well together. Wiltshire Council, First Great Western, the Department for Transport ... and been supported by community volunteers and community groups. We also enjoy excellent support from politicians from all the political parties that have significant representation in the area. They agree that the service makes a significant positive difference for the area, and for its voters, standard and style of living and future. That cross-party support is something we cherish, as looking back a few years there were politicians elected in Wiltshire who considered that helping us meet our aspirations (as they then were) wasn't worthwhile, and indeed would be wasteful of resources.

The constitution of the TransWilts Community Rail Partership (in common with other CRP constitutions) very clearly states that we are not a political body, and that also applies to the Melksham Railway Development Group. That cannot mean that we don't engage with politicians - but rather that we work with them all equally and in balance, and don't get involved above and beyond the direction and constitutional objectives of the groups. "Equallity" and "Balance" are difficult things to define, though - indeed I'll contend that you can't have "equallity" between several inherantly different backgrounds; our MP, who represents the Liberal Democrat Party has been superbly supportive and indeed without Duncan Hames I doubt we would have seen the service improvements. He's rightly representing the area in Westminster, and the other government party (the Conservatives) are campaigning hard in the area, as "Chippenham" was a marginal seat at the last election, and goodness only knows what will happen next May.

Policies of other political parties in the area may not be quite so supportive. A former Wiltshire Councillor from Melksham who stood for one of these parties at a by-election (and failed to win) was a strong advocate of "private cars for all" to the exclusion of any support for public transport. At the other extreme there are those who advocate full state oweneship and control of public transport; that's not so clearcut as to whether it's positive or negative in terms of local travel plans and the elements of the Transwilts - but for sure it would be a big shakeup if implemented, and at the current time what the TransWilts needs is stable uniform support from all around, "above politics", as we go through our three years of a trial service.
(written 2014-12-06, updated 2014-12-07)

 
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
Z406 - TransWilts Community Rail Partnership
  [3881] Wiltshire Public Transport User Group co-ordination - (2012-10-05)
  [3986] Rail services in Wiltshire - up in the air? We need to say what is best required. - (2013-01-20)
  [4142] Passenger survey at Chippenham - report and pictures - (2013-07-24)
  [4148] Special General Meeting, Adoption of Constitution for TransWilts Community Rail Partnership - (2013-08-01)
  [4160] Bank Holiday Monday - pictures of a great train trip to Weymouth - (2013-08-27)
  [4163] TransWilts Community Rail Partnership - formally constituted - (2013-09-01)
  [4191] Getting people to and from Melksham Station - not 20 but 700 times a day - (2013-10-12)
  [4194] TransWilts Link - meeting notes from 19th October - (2013-10-20)
  [4196] Official - Trowbridge and Melksham to London train improvements - (2013-10-22)
  [4198] New trains for 2014 - Swindon to Westbury. Meetings Melksham, Swindon, Trowbridge, Chippenham and Westbury - (2013-10-24)
  [4218] A THANK YOU to those who have brought the new train service to fruition - (2013-12-06)
  [4219] TransWilts train services - up from 2 to 8 per day - (2013-12-09)
  [4225] Melksham Resident? Commuter? Save yourself 2000 pounds and 100 hours in 2014, and have a better journey! - (2013-12-20)
  [4229] Thin end of the wedge - plan to be thicker in 2014 - (2013-12-26)
  [4243] Taking Greyhounds and Lurchers to London for the day - (2014-02-23)
  [4284] Talk and walk to promote train service - Melksham Carnival - (2014-07-11)
  [4287] TransWilts CRP - walking in Melksham Carnival - (2014-07-13)
  [4288] Some questions on how our Community Rail Partnership works - (2014-07-13)
  [4291] Train Online article - ACoRP / TransWilts introduction - (2014-07-25)
  [4309] Even in the dark of night, the train comes bearing passengers - (2014-09-28)
  [4313] Moving community rail support from amateur to professional - (2014-11-16)
  [4328] Folk music train, Westbury to Swindon round trip, 14th December 2014 - (2014-11-24)
  [4351] A little thing can make a big difference - (2014-12-13)
  [4353] Celebration pictures, year 1 - (2014-12-15)
  [4362] What a difference a year makes - (2014-12-23)
  [4371] Why are people using the TransWilts? - (2014-12-29)
  [4397] TransWilts / Press and Publicity report for AGM / 30th January 2015 - (2015-01-17)
  [4424] Looking Forward - TransWilts Community Rail Partnership and TransWilts CIC - (2015-02-12)
  [4435] Images of our rail promotion campaign - (2015-02-21)
  [4463] Rail Conference, Nottingham - (2015-03-16)
  [4467] Neighbourhood Plan - travel and transport thoughts - (2015-03-29)
  [4494] Monday to Friday / TransWilts train times from 18 May to 11th December 2015 - (2015-05-17)
  [4497] Around the world from Melksham - (2015-05-25)
  [4500] The TransWilts Community Intergrated Transport Corridor - (2015-05-29)
  [4510] Learning from the others - Community Rail - (2015-07-12)
  [4512] The Weymouth Wizard - Saturdays in August from Wiltshire - (2015-07-31)
  [4513] Yesterday, Weymouth - (2015-08-02)
  [4568] Moderation - and the tendency to over-moderate - (2015-11-02)
  [4601] Management view - TransWilts and transport at the end of 2015 - (2015-12-25)
  [4612] TransWilts - robust these days - no longer the first service to be cancelled - (2016-01-03)
  [4638] TransWilts Community Interest Company AGM - 13 Feb 2016, Swindon - (2016-02-05)
  [4647] On the problems of a printed train timetable - (2016-02-15)
  [4688] Melksham Station - as at May 2016 - Part 5 (services and prices) - (2016-05-30)
  [4695] Melksham Rail Development Group becoming Melksham Rail Users Group - (2016-06-21)
  [4704] Three months in community rail pictures - (2016-08-27)
  [4706] Melksham trial train service is to be made permanent - (2016-10-02)
  [4726] TransWilts Partner Update for Melksham Area Board - (2016-11-07)
  [4739] A year of changes for Lisa and Graham Ellis, and Well House - (2017-05-27)

Z300 - Politics and Religion
  [216] Cheap purchase - votes paid for with selfish promises - (2005-02-15)
  [257] Politics gets nasty. Must be an election coming up. - (2005-03-25)
  [280] Spotted - the local MP - (2005-04-15)
  [289] MP for Devizes, Wiltshire - (2005-04-23)
  [301] General Election day, UK - (2005-05-05)
  [313] Making bona fide international marriages more difficult - (2005-05-16)
  [326] UK Tax payment totals and where the money is spent - (2005-05-27)
  [335] Sad priorities - (2005-06-03)
  [377] A Strengthened City - (2005-07-14)
  [384] Managing conflict and disappointment - (2005-07-20)
  [415] Campaign Drift and efficiency. - (2005-08-15)
  [469] Yesterday was Kiss and Ride - (2005-10-19)
  [505] Would you steal ... petrol? ... a training course? - (2005-11-26)
  [539] rich and famous - (2005-12-23)
  [602] MP face to face - (2006-02-12)
  [607] On being British - (2006-02-14)
  [671] Both ends of the animal - (2006-04-05)
  [674] Wiltshire to get an extra MP - (2006-04-07)
  [682] Iran has enriched uranium ... - (2006-04-12)
  [696] Is than an uphill or downhill task? - (2006-04-23)
  [750] Almost everyone loses - (2006-06-07)
  [780] Separation and Integration - (2006-06-27)
  [875] Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones - (2006-09-22)
  [967] Realistic on line shoot'em up - (2006-12-05)
  [1003] Room at the Inn, Guy at the station - (2006-12-21)
  [1060] What a relief from the tax office. - (2007-02-01)
  [1109] False imprisonment - a contrast from the news - (2007-03-15)
  [1135] Government pressure on me to shut up after I make the papers - (2007-04-05)
  [1175] Local elections - choosing who to vote for - (2007-05-03)
  [1247] An afternoon at a public enquiry - (2007-06-27)
  [1260] An inspirational business talk from one of our prospective MPs - (2007-07-06)
  [1350] FSB (Federation of Small Businesses) Western Region - (2007-09-13)
  [1386] New software product for warmblooded programmers - (2007-10-10)
  [1428] Travel Across Wiltshire - the game - (2007-11-11)
  [1526] Carers at work - court case changes - (2008-02-01)
  [1573] Budget tax increases hit vehicle market - (2008-03-14)
  [1579] Rome, and the faith of Rome - (2008-03-17)
  [1729] Back from the future - (2008-07-30)
  [1769] July child ponders on August children - (2008-08-23)
  [1872] Barack Obama wins US Predidency - (2008-11-05)
  [1881] Wiltshire Council says - part 1 - (2008-11-13)
  [1882] Wiltshire Council says - part 2 - (2008-11-14)
  [1987] One Cheer for Local Democracy - Asda in Melksham - (2009-01-11)
  [2012] The Wiltshire Police - (2009-01-29)
  [2028] Things people say on the phone - (2009-02-06)
  [2075] Supporting Parkinsons and Trains - (2009-03-11)
  [2178] Melksham Candidates for Wiltshire Unitary Election - (2009-05-12)
  [2206] Spot the odd one out - (2009-05-29)
  [2257] Ramblings on church and state linkage in Melksham - (2009-06-25)
  [2270] Wiltshire - a chance to improve life for everybody - (2009-07-05)
  [2279] Understanding the new local government structure in Wiltshire - (2009-07-11)
  [2288] Wiltshire Community Area Partnerships - (2009-07-15)
  [2353] All change - Wiltshire Parliamentary - (2009-08-13)
  [2640] How is your tax pound spent? - (2010-02-18)
  [2689] Can my dog eat potatoes? Doggie Dietary Research, and political sleaze! - (2010-03-23)
  [2712] A more informed decision than ever before - (2010-04-08)
  [2740] Melksham Hustings at George Ward School - (2010-04-26)
  [2752] Voting day - UK General Election - (2010-05-06)
  [2757] Bodicea, Lincoln, and our new MP - (2010-05-09)
  [2792] Should Government compete with private industry? - (2010-06-03)
  [2824] A pint of Black Rat, and a lazy barman - (2010-06-25)
  [2856] Two sides of the coin - (2010-07-06)
  [2864] Changing with weather and seasons - (2010-07-10)
  [2870] Old prices - what would the equivalent price have been in 1966? - (2010-07-14)
  [2948] Melksham shamefully makes the national headlines - (2010-09-07)
  [2971] Should the public sector compete with businesses? and other deep questions - (2010-09-26)
  [3051] Positively reforming the system - could it be done? - (2010-11-14)
  [3264] Alternative Vote (AV) - explaining and an example - (2011-04-25)
  [3313] What does our MP do on a Bank Holiday? - (2011-05-30)
  [3323] Is Melksham town centre dying? - (2011-06-11)
  [3325] The Olympic Torch, and Melksham House - (2011-06-14)
  [3438] Melksham to become a part of Trowbridge? - (2011-09-13)
  [3592] Are we one man, one vote? No, and we never have been. - (2012-01-26)
  [3676] Rising prices, changing habits and society - (2012-03-31)
  [3806] 2011 Census results - initial figures for Wiltshire. - (2012-07-17)
  [3845] Good cause giving - getting the charity beggars off the street - (2012-08-21)
  [3905] How should we choose our Wiltshire Police and Crime Commissioner? - (2012-10-27)
  [3921] On rememberance, on war, and on preventing the war cycle - (2012-11-11)
  [4079] Melksham Area - Unitary Council results, May 2013 - (2013-05-04)
  [4223] Democracy - alive and well with the beauty pagent starting up again - (2013-12-16)
  [4275] Eurpoean Elections, and other elections ahead. Some thoughts on campaigns and policies - (2014-05-08)
  [4286] Reaction in Radstock to new First bus prices - (2014-07-12)
  [4354] Wiltshire Police - assuming someone is guilty just on the say-so of a member of the public? - (2014-12-16)
  [4476] Upcoming election - Chippenham Constituency - the major candidates compared - (2015-04-29)
  [4485] Misusing statistics? - the seedy side of election campaigning - (2015-05-04)
  [4489] Election results - what if we had a party list system? - (2015-05-08)
  [4548] Melksham - two small townships, or one big one? - (2015-10-22)
  [4597] Not standing as your local councillor - (2015-12-18)
  [4614] PC Plod - alive and scaremongering in Wiltshire? - (2016-01-04)
  [4625] Where does Wiltshire bus subsidy money come from? - (2016-01-19)
  [4720] Celebrating our diversity rather than discriminating for it - (2016-11-02)
  [4725] Writing Python 2 such that Python 3 is easy - (2016-11-06)
  [4729] The oldest part of Los Angeles - (2016-11-23)
  [4734] Thoughts on the new Blackmore Ward of Melksham Without Parish - (2017-02-22)
  [4735] Revisiting - should I stand for Melksham Without Parish Council in May? - (2017-02-24)


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Python base and inherited classes, test harness and unit testing - new examples
Politics and the railway the connects Wiltshire
My first official measure - Passenger Entrys and Exits - revisited 9 years later
Segmentation Fault, Segmentation Violation, Bus Error, Stack Smashing
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