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Over £370,000 offered to support community led projects in the South West

By June 15, 2018January 26th, 2021Member News & Updates, Transport


In the final year of a scheme to support community led projects, train operator GWR has announced the latest successful schemes in the South West to benefit from a share of a multimillion funding pot.


Designed to help boost local communities, up to £770,000 a year was available for three years as part of a £2.25 million Customer and Communities Improvement Fund (CCIF), and today the final successful bids for 2018 have been announced.


The fund will see 10 projects in the South West receive a total of £372,164 from GWR:


  • The Avocet Line Rail User Group awarded £60,088 for improved passenger information at Polsloe Bridge

To install a Customer Information Screen at Polsloe Bridge railway station


  • Dawlish Town Council awarded £19,212 for Dawlish Play Park

To install a new play park in Dawlish, which will include a train in GWR colours


  • Devon and Cornwall Community Rail Partnership awarded £28,000 for an App history of the Looe Valley Line

To explain and educate the history of the Looe Valley Line through a series of short, modern, innovation videos; triggered through GPS to be displayed on an app


  • Exeter College awarded £60,000 for Exeter St Davids gateway to college

To improve and enhance the pedestrian link from Exeter St David’s railway station to Exeter College, and provide new and improved signage


  • Exeter Community Centre awarded £9,000 for an Exeter St Davids Neighbourhood Warden

To provide a warden to monitor the station and surrounding area at Exeter St David’s to aid crime reduction and anti-social behaviour


  • Looe Town Council awarded £500 for Looe Community Noticeboard

To install a new community noticeboard at Looe railway station


  • Plymouth City Council awarded £65,550 for Plymouth Mayflower 400 Trails

To introduce three “Mayflower 400” heritage trails which will be part of the national Mayflower Heritage Trails project. The project will also install real-time passenger information, and design a phone app


  • Saltash Town Council awarded £102,314 for Saltash Station Building renovation

To rebuild and fit-out the disused station building at Saltash


  • Taunton Deane Council awarded £2,500 for East and West Deane Way

To improve and map (through physical and digital sources) the East Deane and West Deane Ways, and to extend both walks to include the GWR station at Taunton


  • Vintage Trains awarded £25,000 for Vintage Trains Education Trips

To re-design and fit out an heritage coach to be used to educate young people on the history and engineering of the GWR.


GWR Managing Director Mark Hopwood said:


“We are committed to improving the journeys of our passengers, as well as the economic prosperity and social footprint of the regions and communities we serve.


“Now in the third and final year of the £2.25 million scheme, I am delighted to be able to announce the successful applicants, and those who will benefit this year, as we continue to put our communities at the forefront of what we do.”


All the proposals were presented to a panel of representatives from GWR’s Customer Panel (made up of local customers), the Advisory Board (made up of local stakeholders), and the executive management team. Final recommendations were then put to the Department for Transport (DfT) for approval. 


Devon & Cornwall Rail Partnership Manager Richard Burningham, said:


“Thanks very much to GWR for the grant which will help enable our lovely project celebrating the history and heritage of the scenic Looe Valley Line to happen. The line has such an interesting story and we look forward to making people more aware of it through the videos, app and other elements of the project.”


Exeter College Vice Principal Steve Campion said:


“Exeter College is really excited to be a leading this project, on such an important gateway between the station and the city centre. Working with Devon County Council and the local community, the capital funding will allow us to improve surfacing, lighting and way finding on the St Clements Lane pedestrian route way. This will provide significant benefits to residents, students who use the real network and the many visitors to Exeter who travel via St Davids Station.”

Supported by the DfT, the Customer and Communities Improvement Fund (CCIF) was established to recognise and back projects identified by the communities where GWR operates, with projects requiring local authority match funding.


With match funding a requirement of successful bids, over £2 million has been committed to good causes.


A full list of the successful schemes across the GWR network can be found at