SaveTheTrain, TransWilts and Melksham RUG
Public and sustainable transport in Wiltshire

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For 2023 (and 2024 ...) - we are now fully retired from IT training.
We have made many, many friends over 25 years of teaching about Python, Tcl, Perl, PHP, Lua, Java, C and C++ - and MySQL, Linux and Solaris/SunOS too. Our training notes are now very much out of date, but due to upward compatability most of our examples remain operational and even relevant ad you are welcome to make us if them "as seen" and at your own risk.

Lisa and I (Graham) now live in what was our training centre in Melksham - happy to meet with former delegates here - but do check ahead before coming round. We are far from inactive - rather, enjoying the times that we are retired but still healthy enough in mind and body to be active!

I am also active in many other area and still look after a lot of web sites - you can find an index ((here))

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Extras module Z406
TransWilts Community Rail Partnership
Resources from the web site of Well House Consultants on the subject of TransWilts Community Rail Partnership. We provide open source training course and business hotel accommodation in Melksham, Wiltshire, England

From December 2013, train services on the TransWilts line increase from 2 to 8 each way per day, as a result of co-operation between Wiltshire Council, First Great Western, the Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership, Network Rail, the Department for Transport, Members of Parliament, Chambers of Commerces, Rail user and other community groups. I'm press and publicity officer for the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership - the community organisation that provides an interface between residents, businesses and visitors to the area and the rail and government sectors.
Articles and tips on this subjectupdated
4739A year of changes for Lisa and Graham Ellis, and Well House
Our IT training business has been running at Well House Manor (48 Spa Road) since 2006, and during that time has grown in all sorts of unexpected directions - into a guest house, an event venue for outside customers, a museum, and a base for the local Community Rail Partnership. With changing metrics ...
4726TransWilts Partner Update for Melksham Area Board
Report for Melksham Area Board ... an excellent chance to take stock of where the TransWilts is. As this report is for the MELKSHAM area board, it concentrates on the Melksham aspects of the TransWilts though of course through traffic from Swindon / Chippenahm to Trowbridge / Westbury / Frome / Warminster ...
4706Melksham trial train service is to be made permanent
From December 2013 through to December 2016, an extra 6 trains each way per day have supplemented the underlying service of two trains a day - and these extra trains have carried so many passengers that they are to continue after December as part of the base franchise. Journey times from Melksham are ...
4704Three months in community rail pictures
Three months in pictures - 158 of them taken from thousands I have taken to show just how varied the Community Rail Officer role is. It's my mandate to get help the trains and other public tranport serve the communities along the TransWits line and wider through Wiltshire - largely by co-ordinaing resources ...
4695 Melksham Rail Development Group becoming Melksham Rail Users Group
In 20 years, the Melksham Rail Development Group has helped improve (Develop!) Melksham station. Passenger journeys have risen from 3,000 a year to 60,000 a year – that's 20 times the passenger numbers. A consultation on our service becoming an officially designated community rail service has ...
4688Melksham Station - as at May 2016 - Part 5 (services and prices)
Concluding this series .... people using the trains, timetable for summer 2016, and fare chart. Links: part 1, part 3, part 3, part 4 and part 5 (conclusion, fares and timetable)       ...
4647On the problems of a printed train timetable
My mailbox brings me notifications that someone got on the 20:00 from Paddington on Saturday night last heading for Chippenham, according to our printed timetable ... only to discover too late that the 20:00 was actually a Penzance train last Saturday, and the Chippenham service had left at 19:57 ... Unfortunately, ...
4638TransWilts Community Interest Company AGM - 13 Feb 2016, Swindon
A year is a very long time in the life of a Community Rail Partnership ... and as I wrote my piece for the annual report and AGM I had to do an awful lot of cutting! The AGM (of the parent CIC) takes place in Swindon from 10:00 for coffee at Jury's Inn, Swindon, next Saturday (13th February) and all ...
4612TransWilts - robust these days - no longer the first service to be cancelled
Even in the best regulated systems, things will occasionally go wrong. And the question comes for the people who's role it is to look after these things "what do we do when it happens?" The TransWilts train service - currently from Swindon to Westbury - is operated for 90% of its journeys by a train ...
4601Management view - TransWilts and transport at the end of 2015
There are stories to tell of the tail of 2015. Of traffic levels well beyond target on the TransWilts. Of volunteer and professional help in nurturing and monitoring it. Of wider stratgies looking at upcoming opportunities via franchise changes and other means. Of learning meetings where we meet with ...
4568Moderation - and the tendency to over-moderate
I find myself out of step with the administrators and moderators of many of the facebook groups and forums that I'm a member of. Whilst there is a need to provide some sort of framework on the activity and direction of the board, I can't help feeling that many board's teams are far too controllingly ...
4512The Weymouth Wizard - Saturdays in August from Wiltshire
The summer Saturday train service from Bristol and Bath to Weymouth has been strengthened over the past many years by an extra service, which is often run using extra stock that's not normally seen there, and the "Bucket and Spade special" has been popular and necessary to relieve overcrowding on the ...
4513Yesterday, Weymouth
The Weymouth Wizard is running every Saturday in August from Swindon and Chippenham to Weymouth, with good connections from Pewsey, Kemble, Stroud and Gloucester. I went yesterday - great trip; rather nice train, half full so plenty of space for more. And there's so much to do in Weymouth - I watched ...
4510Learning from the others - Community Rail
When looking at aims and objectives for the TransWilts train service, I've always personally looked to compare us to other services with a view to setting some sort of "Control". And looking at lines (a) in the same sector of the uk, (b) operated by the same train operator and (c) run with a single ...
4500The TransWilts Community Intergrated Transport Corridor
Here's a vision for the future. Marketing, intertickets, and connections between buses and trains along the TransWilts corridor. Using buses for the shorter journeys and to link some of the smaller communities, together with trains to provide the travel between main towns and hubs. Most of these bus ...
4497Around the world from Melksham
Looking back over the last 18 months, I've used the new train service to or from places in no fewer that 12 different countries. How many can you identify? ...
4494Monday to Friday / TransWilts train times from 18 May to 11th December 2015
CNM d  Cheltenham Spa- (07:29)  (09:18)  (11:20)  (13:20)  (15:20)  17:39  (18:34)  (20:01)  GCR d  Gloucester 05:17  (07:45)  (09:33)  (11:33)  (13:33)  (15:33)  17:54  (18:49)  (20:12)  PAD ...
4467Neighbourhood Plan - travel and transport thoughts
The future of travel and transport in Melksham - the next 20 years - what may we see? These are things that need to be considered in putting together the neighbourhood plan, the work of which was launched to the public on Friday and Saturday at the Assembly Hall. It's a mammoth job to get people ...
4463Rail Conference, Nottingham
I think this is the first week that I'm NOT training this year (!) ... so I'm at a rail conference organised by the Association of Community Rail Partnerships today and tomorrow, in Nottingham. A wonderful opportunity to network, to meet and talk with a wide range of our rail partners and also (during ...
4435Images of our rail promotion campaign
It's only when you're asked for pictures of what you've been doing that you realise you've been so busy doing it that you've not stopped to take the pictures. We have had dozens and dozens of people out helping us promote the train services ... but a request for recent pictures (and I've looked back ...
4424Looking Forward - TransWilts Community Rail Partnership and TransWilts CIC
There's a big difference between Twenty Thousand (20,000) and Two Hundred Thousand (200,000). There were somewhat under 20,000 train journeys made on the Chippenham to Trowbridge (via Melksham) railway line in the year to December 2013, and we anticipate that the number will be close to 200,000 in the ...
4397TransWilts / Press and Publicity report for AGM / 30th January 2015
Blogged here for the record 2014 saw the development of traffic on the Swindon to Westbury service from around 20,000 passengers annually in the previous year to around 160,000 passengers, aided by significant train service enhancements from 8th December 2013. In order to inform people of the availability ...
4371Why are people using the TransWilts?
Although the TransWilts train service just runs (at present) from Swindon to Westbury, with a few extensions to Salisbury, people are making use of the line to connect far and wide. Here's a map showing start and end stations from the surveys (over 3 days) in October 2014: There were over 100 different ...
4362What a difference a year makes
Until December last year, just two trains ran each way per day on the TransWilts, at times of day that fitted well with neither long distance single journeys nor daily commutes nor leisure days out. In Winter, the only time we saw a passenger train in the daylight was on a Saturday, when two ...
4353Celebration pictures, year 1
Pictures from yesterday - 14th December 2014                 ...
4351A little thing can make a big difference
The "TransWilts" train from Swindon - to Melksham, Trowbridge, Westbury and with some services extended to Dilton Marsh, Warminster, Salisbury and beyond - usually leaves from the terminus platform that inset into the west end of the station. And it often leaves from the front (far end) of that platform ...
4343Politics 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 ...
4328Folk music train, Westbury to Swindon round trip, 14th December 2014
On Sunday, 14th December 2014, the TransWilts Community Rail Parnership is pround to present "The Folk Train". We're taking over a carriage on the 17:20 train from Westbury to Swindon (running as a two coach train that day) and will be featureing Emily Jones and Angeline Morrison who will keep us entertained ...
4313Moving community rail support from amateur to professional
You'll have noticed an absence of posts recently on this blog - "overworked" I think is the term. Important immediate things like training courses and making sure our hotel customers require and have had attention, and I've been spending a great deal of time on voluntary stuff that's been immediate ...
4309Even in the dark of night, the train comes bearing passengers
I've noticed how we've been getting a full, or nearly-full hotel ... with an empty, or near-empty car park recently. And it's happened again tonight. Four rooms out of five occupied (and full tomorrow night) and yet only one guest has brought her own car. I was down at the station meeting ...
4291Train Online article - ACoRP / TransWilts introduction
Our community railway line can learn so much from other community railway lines - see what they have done, listen to what has worked for them and what hasn't, and adopt best practise, piggy-backing on the experience of others ... while at the same time taking a fresh look and trying out new things. So ...
4288Some questions on how our Community Rail Partnership works
"I've paid for my train journey, so why should I do anything else to support the railway service. It's being run by a commercial company, isn't it, so I've paid my dues". Personally, I do more to support the train service that just travel on it, and I'm going to explain why in a moment - but before ...
4287TransWilts CRP - walking in Melksham Carnival
Well ... I've not seen anything like it. Several dozen of us - TransWilts Community Rail Partnership and friends (Friends of Bristol Suburban railways of special note) walked in the Melksham Carival Parade yesterday, themed on "things you can take on a train". We had pushchair, bicycle, luggage, ...
4284Talk and walk to promote train service - Melksham Carnival
This Saturday - 12th July - at Well House Manor on Spa Road. A gathering of TransWilts users and supporters. Social from early afternoon, talk on Melksha's Railway - the Wilts, Somerset and Weymouth - at 4 p.m., and then we'll all go down to "The Avon" to walk in the Melksham Carnival parade and ...
4243Taking Greyhounds and Lurchers to London for the day
A wonderful day in London! Lisa, Linda (her friend), my Dad and myself caught the 07:48 from Melksham, changed at Swindon and got into London about 2 hours later. Lisa and Linda went off to an exhibition at Olympia, and Dad and I (and we had the two dogs with us) caught the tube aroud to Embankment ...
4229Thin end of the wedge - plan to be thicker in 2014
In the lead up to Christmas, we had the first two weeks of a 'marketable' TransWilts train service running from Swindon and Chippenham via Melksham to Trowbridge and Westbury. All our past theoretic work has suggested that the service will work operationally, has good flows of potential passengers, and ...
4225Melksham Resident? Commuter? Save yourself 2000 pounds and 100 hours in 2014, and have a better journey!
Save time, Save money, Save hassle, Save resources in 2014. Does it work for YOU? It won't work for everyone, but our new train services bring big cost, time, quality of life and even environmental gains. There's extra free parking at Melksham station (for rail users). Twelve extra trains are calling ...
4219TransWilts train services - up from 2 to 8 per day
The day that many people thought would never come has arrived... there are more train services on the TransWilts line - currently running Swindon, Chippenham, Melksham and Trowbridge to Westbury, with onward connections including Dilton Marsh, Warminster and Salisbury - than there have been in living ...
4218A THANK YOU to those who have brought the new train service to fruition
A new train service such as the TransWilts one doesn't just materialise out of thin air. All aspects of the service need to be checked and validated and good cases made and then a mechanism for delivery and promotion of the service has to be provided. This takes a long time, and a great deal of commitment ...
4198New trains for 2014 - Swindon to Westbury. Meetings Melksham, Swindon, Trowbridge, Chippenham and Westbury
On Tuesday, it was decided by Wiltshire Cabinet that the train service from Swindon to Westbury will be increased from 2 to 8 trains each way per day from December. This decision is based on analysis and groundwork by Wiltshire Council and First Great Western. with community input, and is funded for ...
4196Official - Trowbridge and Melksham to London train improvements
Marvelous news today that the Wiltshire Cabinet has approved the financing of additional TransWilts trains from Westbury via Trowbridge and Melksham to Chippenham and Swindon. Here's an example of what it will mean... in this case for passengers to London. Monday to Friday from 9th December PaddingtonMelkshamTrowbridge ...
4194TransWilts Link - meeting notes from 19th October
A very successful TransWilts Link meeting yesterday in Westbury. What we lacked in numbers of delegates we made up in quality of people and knowledge, and the discussions were really useful, forward thinking and brought together people from Bedwyn in the east to Westbury in the west, and from Royal Wootton ...
4191Getting people to and from Melksham Station - not 20 but 700 times a day
There are currently around 20 train journeys made per day to / from Melksham. That represents well under one journey per year per head of population. By comparison, journeys at Warminster are 48 journeys per head of population - that's the next lowest for a station serving a major urban area - rising ...
4163TransWilts Community Rail Partnership - formally constituted
Yesterday's Special General Meeting for the formalisation under a constitution of the Community Rail Partnership went just about perfectly. A dozen of us met for an update on the what's been going on, to formalise our position so that we have our groundrules and everyone knows where we fit in, and then ...
4160Bank Holiday Monday - pictures of a great train trip to Weymouth
Bank Holiday Monday in Melksham and we woke to an overcast (almost threatening) sky... and I wondered how many people would be joining me on the train (change at Westbury) to Melksham. Publicity has been purely through the 'flyer' printer for us by First Great Western and distributed in the Melksham ...
4148Special General Meeting, Adoption of Constitution for TransWilts Community Rail Partnership
Saturday, 31st August. ANYONE with an interest is welcome. Please sign up [here] to express an interest, whether or not you'll be coming along, and whether you want to become a formal member or just add your support. See also TransWilts Community Rail Partnership web site for more details. 10:00 ...
4142Passenger survey at Chippenham - report and pictures
Yesterday, fifteen volunteers joined me to assist Wiltshire Council and Aktins survey passengers travelling from Chippenham station. There's quite good data available as to ticket sales and journeys from the stations, but rather less as to how people get to the station in the first place, where they ...
3986Rail services in Wiltshire - up in the air? We need to say what is best required.
Until last October (2012), we were all on course for a new franchise to be awarded to operate train services in the Great Western area - with four bidders (First, National Express, Arriva and Stagecoach) all finalising their bids, with an award of the franchise being due for announcement about now (January ...
3881Wiltshire Public Transport User Group co-ordination
Public Transport is all about linkage - which is why it's so devilishly difficult to make local recommendations and decisions - of all areas of community involvement, this is the one where co-operation is needed. And, alas, specifying running and tuning transport systems is a highly technical business ...
Topics covered in this module
What is the TransWilts Community Rail Partnership?
Linking Swindon to Chippenham, Melksham, Trowbridge and Westbury by train.
Onward connections to Dilton Marsh, Warminster and Salisbury, also to Frome.
Part of the wider railway network of 2,537 stations in Great Britain.
Connecting Communities, Connecting Businesses, Connecting Wiltshire.
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