Partnership and Campaigning
Friends of Marple Station exists to improve and promote our local station. To do this, we improve the station physically, market the station and services and lobby for improvements where we feel this is justified by the facts. We do all this in partnership with Northern Rail, Transport for Greater Manchester, Stockport Council, Goyt Valley Rail Users, ACoRP and our elected representatives (both Councillors and MP). Occasionally we may be critical, but always in a constructive way. In our short existence we have lobbied on waiting rooms, services(including peak, weekend and evening), trains, the need for a coffee shop, making the crossing of Brabyns Brow safe and better car parking.
What do we want? - new waiting room ... when do we want it? Now!
One of the main reasons our group was formed was to improve conditions for people waiting in the dank, leaky, unappetising concrete bunker (waiting room). We have brightened it up, but the only real, sustainable solution that will attract and retain rail passengers is a replacement that provides a decent level of comfort. And we don't mean the mean, bus shelter-type waiting rooms that the railways seem to specialise in. We mean weatherproof, warm, used by and integrated into the community. And is a cup of coffee and a pastry too much to ask?
We have secured grants to allow consultants to come up with a plan. They will be beavering away in summer 2017 to come up with a solution. Contact us if you have any ideas.
· Train services from the Marple area are well used;
· Most trips are towards Manchester, with only 3% in the Sheffield direction;
· There is a high level of peak commuting, but also significant off peak use;
· The number of inbound trips to Marple is low;
· Two-thirds of journeys are from Marple with the remainder from Rose Hill.
· The number of people taking cycles on trains is low; and
· On the survey day 92% of trains were less than 5 minutes late but only 40% were on time;
Compared to the 2015 survey, overall usage has increased slightly but with some shift from Marple to Rose Hill and towards travelling earlier in the day. The punctuality of trains from Sheffield was worse than in 2015.
The results indicate that we need a fast train from Marple to Manchester shortly before 08.00 and that there is demand for a better evening service. More passengers towards Sheffield could be attracted by a better service and promotion.
Some campaigning photos
The new Marple waiting room could look like this ... and we could win more awards like this ...