Eco-friendly Water Solution for Westerfield Wildlife Garden

Sandy with her watering can at Westerfield
Sandy with her watering can at Westerfield

Taking care of the expansive wildlife garden at Westerfield rail station is now a bit easier thanks to the installation of a permanent and eco-friendly water supply.

The East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership and Community Rail Network, working with train operator Greater Anglia, have funded the installation of a water butt on the Ipswich / Felixstowe bound platform shelter. The water butt will help the team of volunteer station adopters get water more easily to where it is needed. Before it was installed water had to be carted from the Lowestoft-bound platform across the busy level crossing which sees more than 100 trains a day.

One water butt holds enough to fill up a watering can 25 times.

Aaron Taffera, Chair of the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership, said, “The team of volunteer station adopters do an absolutely amazing job that is appreciated by everyone who lives near or uses the station. The huge, wildlife-friendly garden they have created is delighting visitors and contributing to improved biodiversity locally. We, and our partners, were only too pleased to provide funding to help make life a little easier for the team and make the garden even more sustainable.”

Alan Neville, Greater Anglia’s Customer and Community Engagement Manager, said, “Wildlife-friendly projects at stations like this, coupled with the more environmentally friendly features of our new trains, not only bring huge benefits locally but are helping the railway in East Anglia to lead the green revolution as the most sustainable way to travel.”

Greater Anglia’s team of station adopters – who help to look after their rail stations for the benefit of their communities – increased the total area of station garden across the network by 14% last year and devoted much of it to creating wildlife-friendly areas.

Across the network the volunteers have transformed land the equivalent of five Olympic-sized swimming pools into thriving gardens.

The installation of the water butt was part of a larger planting scheme at Westerfield station, undertaken by the station adopters and supported with funding from the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership and Community Rail Network.