Fighting Fund Awards

Examples of Fighting Fund Awards

Railfuture awards money from its Fighting Fund towards schemes that provide a 'bigger and better railway' (which is Railfuture's key purpose), such as promoting and producing studies for new station. It also awards money to promote the railway, in order to increase patronage. The third criterion, and one that is thankfully rare with our growing railway, is to fight closures or service reductions (where there is sound business justification to continue with the current service).

Priority for awards is given to Railfuture branches. It is vital that any external applicants show how Railfuture will benefit from making an award.

Rail Defence

Railfuture awarded £200 to ESTA (East Suffolk Travellers' Association) towards its campaign against the relocation of Lowestoft station, from its ideal location, 400 metres away from the sea-front in order to release railway land. This campaign was won.

Rail Line Reopening - SELRAP

Railfuture gave £500 to SELRAP (Skipton – East Lancashire Rail Action Partnership) towards the £10,000+ cost of a study by JMP Consulting into the re-opening of the Skipton – Colne route. Produced by the Leeds office of the national firm JMP in full compliance with DfT (Department for Transport) guidelines, the report looks at the costs and benefits associated with the re-opening.

SELRAP publicised the results on 30 November 2007. "The study shows a benefits-cost ratio approaching 2.5", said SELRAP chairman Derek Jennings, "which is well above the figure at which Network Rail and the Department for Transport can take the reopening proposal forward.

"It also allows us to campaign at a new level, and SELRAP now plans to discuss its ideas with Network Rail and the many other bodies that will be involved in the coming years."

In addition to the benefits within the scope of this benefits-cost ratio calculation, JMP has identified and assessed various other benefits which will all positively impact on the quality of the lives of people in Craven, Pendle and the wider community.

These include: regeneration, that is new or better businesses and more jobs; environmental (less pollution, car journeys and collisions); and social inclusion (more mobility for, for example, the young, elderly or those without a car).

Rail Line Reopening - Stratford-Honeybourne

Railfuture paid Stratford on Avon District Council (as lead) £2,000 from its Fighting Fund in April 2012 to produce the Stratford-Honeybourne Rail Study costing £70,000. Other funders included Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire County Councils, Centro, TOCs and several rail promotion groups.

The study looked at the reinstatement of a 6-mile section of railway line between Stratford upon Avon and Long Marston linking to the Cotswold Line at Honeybourne. It identified a benefit-to-cost ratio of (BCR) of 2:1 for the reopened route.

Railfuture was also represented on the steering group.

Rail Line Reopening - St Andrews Rail Link

Railfuture's Fighting Fund added £500 to the £2,000 already contributed by Railfuture Scotland to produce a case to reopen the railway line to St Andrews.

Rail Improvements - Lea Valley

In 2012 a joint bid for £5,000 by the London and South East regional branch and the Railfuture-affiliated Chingford Line Users Association, and supported by the branch's Eastern division, was rewarded with a grant to support lobbying for various improvements to the Lea Valley line of specific benefit to Waltham Forest. A report by JR Consulting was presented to CLUA's AGM in June 2012. See Eastern for further details.

One of the key proposals from the Railfuture-funded report was the reopening of Lea Bridge station. Thanks to the business case that Railfuture funded this is scheduled to open in May 2016.

Rail Improvements - Wealden line, Uckfield-Lewes-Sussex coast

In March 2013 the Fighting Fund made an award to engage JR Consulting to start building a strategic alliance of stakeholders to promote a bigger better Wealden railway, including reinstating the Uckfield - Lewes rail link.

This has been followed up with further awards for Railfuture's Thameslink 2 concept.

New Rail Stations

Railfuture has awarded £500 towards a case being produced for the Beattock Station Action Campaign in Scotland, and up to £10,000 towards a GRIP3 study for a station at Magor in Wales.