Press release 29th August 2014

Last call for rail user group award bids 

Local rail campaign groups across the country have just a month left to enter for Railfuture's annual rail user group awards.  Nominations for the awards, now in their third year, close on 30th September.

"We're looking to recognise and reward the hard work of grass-roots rail campaigners" said Railfuture Director and principal awards organiser Roger Blake.  "Successful campaigning by local rail users can be a drawn-out and thankless task - but usually with bits of fun on the way!  We want to do our best to encourage those who fight the good fight up and down the country, and to highlight their successes and innovative campaigning ideas."

“For instance, last year's winner of the Judges' Special Award, East Anglia Branch Chairman Peter Wakefield was singled out for his particular contribution to the successful campaign to re-open the line to Wisbech, and the 2012 multi-award-winning Meldreth-Shepreth-Foxton Rail User Group has gone on to pioneer a new Community Rail Partnership by transforming its relationship with the train operating company.”

Awards will again be presented for the rail user groups with the best web site, best newsletter, most effective campaign, most effective new group, and outstanding individual campaigner (open to Railfuture members only), and there will also be the judges' special award.  Entries will be judged by Railfuture Vice-Presidents such as Adrian Shooter, Chris Green, Ian Brown, Roger Ford, and Barry Doe.  They'll be under the watchful eye of Railfuture's President Christian Wolmar, who will announce the winners and present the awards at Railfuture's next national conference on 1st November, in London.

"Anyone can nominate anyone for these awards, and the process couldn't be simpler.  You just drop me an e-mail" says Roger.  His e-mail address is roger.blake at railfuture.org.uk

"These awards are unique.  Only Railfuture is rewarding the efforts and successes of committed local volunteers campaigning for a better railway for passengers.  Almost every successful rail campaign there's ever been in this country started off with a voluntary group of users campaigning at the grass-roots level.  It's their knowledge and energies which are absolutely vital to improving our railways for everyone's benefit.  These annual awards are Railfuture's way of promoting them."

Notes to editors:

For guidelines on how to enter, and to see previous years' winners, see http://www.railfuture.org.uk/Rail+User+Groups

The conference, with an all-female platform of speakers from the very top of the rail industry, will be held on 1st November in London, and early bird tickets for Railfuture members are available until the end of August.  For more information and bookings up to 30th October see http://www.railfuture.org.uk/conferences

Meldreth-Shepreth-Foxton Rail User Group: http://melbourn.org.uk/railusergroup

Campaign to re-open the line to Wisbech: http://www.railfuture.org.uk/March+-+Wisbech

Railfuture is the UK's leading independent organisation campaigning for better rail services for both passengers and freight.

Railfuture's website can be found at: www.railfuture.org.uk

Follow Railfuture on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Railfuture

For further information and comment please contact:

Roger Blake
Director, National Board, and Vice-Chair, London & South East regional branch
e-mail: roger.blake at railfuture.org.uk
mobile: 07538492501

Bruce Williamson, media spokesman
e-mail: media at railfuture.org.uk
Tel: 0117 927 2954 Mobile: 07759 557389