Rail group is on the look-out for new chairman

A group which has lobbied for improvements at Alnmouth Railway Station for more than a decade is looking for a new chairman.

Sunday, 5th June 2016, 10:30 am
Alnmouth Railway Station Picture by Jane Coltman

The role has arisen on the Alnmouth Rail Users Group (ARUG), as the current chairman Murray Davies is standing down in the summer because of family commitments.

The group has not yet been able to find a replacement for Mr Davies and is making an appeal to anyone who might be interested in taking over, helping users of the railway service at Alnmouth for the future.

ARUG has certainly achieved a lot since forming in 2001, following a chance meeting on the platform between businessmen Neil Forsyth and Peter Groves.

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Through its ongoing lobbying, meetings with the various railway authorities, politicians and the district and then the county council, the group has helped to improve the offering at the stations.

Improvements include the enhancement of the railway service that users enjoy today, particularly with the near doubling in frequency of the East Coast services to London from May 2011, including retention of some rush-hour services which were under threat.

ARUG has lobbied for five extensions to the car-parking facilities to reflect the rise in passenger numbers.

It also fought for and provided a watching brief on station improvements to staff numbers, booking office opening hours, CCTV, customer information systems, public address, help points, lighting and disabled-access arrangements.

ARUG has highlighted common concerns and complaints from customers when the service reliability has dipped and suggested ways things might be improved.

It has also created ideas for improving customers’ travelling experience.

All this would not have been possible without the intrepid ARUG committee and its three chairmen who have, over the last 15 years, steered, guided and championed the railway-travelling public’s cause at Alnmouth.

If you are interested in taking up the role of chairman or have used Alnmouth on a regular basis, contact Jean Barr on 07762 195516 or Murray Davies on 07713 988309, or attend ARUG’s general meeting on Tuesday at The Oaks Hotel, in Alnwick, at 8pm. Or leave a message via www.arug.org.uk with your contact details on.