A Trio of National Short-Listings for The Bentham Line

The Leeds-Morecambe Community Rail Partnership (the Bentham Line) were delighted to receive the splendid news, from the Community Rail Network, this week, that they have been shortlisted for all three of the entries they made earlier in the year to the National Community Rail Awards 2022.

 The first shortlisting is in the ‘Influencing Positive Change and Sustainability in the Railway’ category for the work by the Partnership, with the assistance of consultants, Stantec UK and AllanRail on the ‘Bentham Line Strategy to 2042’ which was based on over 500 positive responses from members of the general public along and beyond the line and 30 in-depth discussions with interested stakeholders including rail bodies and councils across Yorkshire and Lancashire. The final strategy and the associated executive summery have already been well received by a wide cross section of groups.

The Bentham Line’s work alongside Northern’s Year in Industry students on the ‘Access for All to the Bentham Line’ project, over the past 10 months, has been shortlisted in the Most Effective Communications Campaign’ category. The project involved creating an accessibility guide to the line and its trains and each of the stations. This was complemented by the production of 22 three-minute interactive videos using 360-degree filming technology, covering all the stations and the diesel units in use on the line. A series practical station accessibility improvements were also completed at Bentham, Long Preston, Steeton and Silsden and Shipley stations.

The final short-listing acknowledges the photographic work of one the Partnership’s young volunteers, Ollie Rouse from Morecambe. He has been nominated in the photographic competition, ‘The Essence of Community Rail’ for one of his amusing shots of the Partnership ‘in action’ at a promotional event at Leeds station earlier this year and has been given the title ‘Follow the Beard and Try the Train’. This is in contrast to his many scenic and train compositions adorning the Bentham Line website.

Members of the public can vote for their favourite of the ten photographs in the competition online by visiting the link here. The competition is open to until August 30th.

The winners will be announced later in the year at an awards ceremony and gala dinner at the Manchester Central Convention Centre on 5th October.

The Partnership is also pleased to have assisted with three other projects relating to, dementia-friendly station signage, a line guide and a seaside adventure for a group of families with children under five, which have also reached the short-lists in three further categories for the Awards.