East Suffolk Lines Winners at Adopter Awards

Graham Elliott (Beccles), Steve Mitchell (Wickham Market), Jacqui Dale (Lowestoft) and Bob Webb (Wickham Market) at Greater Anglia's 2017 Station Adopter Awards

Volunteers who look after four East Suffolk Lines stations scooped several awards at Greater Anglia’s 2017 Station Adopters Awards in Ipswich.

This year the annual event took place at Portman Road Football Stadium with dozens of entries from across the Greater Anglia network. Four awards went to individuals or groups within the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership area: Most Improved Station, Best Newcomer, Best Community Project and a Special Recognition Award.

BEST NEWCOMER – Tom Hatrick – Trimley

Tom is one of Greater Anglia’s newest adopters having taken on Trimley station just a few short months ago. In that time Tom created an extensive and colourful flowerbed along the platform.

MOST IMPROVED STATION – Graham Elliott, Nicky Elliott, Anneke Van den Berg, Dave Mills – Beccles

The group of adopters won first prize in recognition of their efforts to keep the station clean and tidy, undertake a unique project to clear and maintain sections of the non-operational platform, and along with Beccles Town Council, install new planters and flowers along the Ipswich bound platform.

BEST COMMUNITY PROJECT – Steve Mitchell, Caroline Fisk, Bob Webb, Rosamund Webb – Wickham Market Station refurbishment and canopy reinstatement.

The project saw the redundant Wickham Market station building restored, installation of a full replica platform canopy, new community facilities including a café, tourist information, disabled access, toilets and meeting rooms available for hire.

JUDGES SPECIAL AWARD – Jacqui Dale – Lowestoft

Jacqui went above and beyond the call of duty in her efforts in support of the Community Rail Partnership, the brilliant flowers and planters along the concourse, and her assistance in dealing with a serious medical emergency involving a passenger.

Andrew Goodrum, Greater Anglia’s Customer Service Director, said: “Our station adopters are real community heroes who give so much time and enthusiasm to bring rural stations to life and restore their links to the communities they serve. The adopters know their stations and the needs of their community well and we are happy to support their aims through small grants and facilitating improvements. I am delighted that we can also recognise and thank them through the Adopter Awards – we’ve seen some fantastic and innovative projects this year and I would like to thank them all for their continued hard work.”