Station adoption

What is Station adoption?

Station Adoption enables individuals, groups or organisations to get involved with their local station. The project is voluntary and encourages local communities to have involvement in smaller stations, from creating a flower border to providing community information.

What are the benefits?

When communities get involved with their local station it can have a very positive impact including;

  • Creating a more attractive and cared-for station environment, which improves perceptions of safety and security.
  • Putting the station back into the heart of the community
  • Promoting train travel to local people
  • Reducing the risk of vandalism

Who does it?

Lots of people volunteer their time to adopt their local station, including;

  • Rail users
  • Schools or youth clubs
  • Community groups
  • Environmental and horticultural groups
  • Local businesses
  • Parish councils
  • Neighbourhood Watch Schemes.

How can you get involved?

There is a range of activities that you can be involved in depending on the time that you are able to commit. Broadly, Station Adoption covers three types of activity;

  • Gardening (station gardens, flower tubs, weeding, manual vegetation clearance)
  • Cleaning and painting (rubbish clearance, painting out graffiti)
  • Information (having a 'community notice board' at the station or a 'rail information board' in the community, also fault reporting on unstaffed stations).

There are a number of Station Adoption groups already set up across the First Great Western network. Below are some examples of what can be achieved;

  • St James Park. Exeter City FC has adopted this halt on 'The Avocet Line'. A team of 40 volunteers from the club joined with railway staff to clear the embankments of encroaching shrubs and remove litter, with local TV and radio in attendance. The second phase was painting the station in the football team's colours.
  • National Trust Rural Stations Project. This has secured funding from a variety of sources to enable volunteers to carry out gardening schemes on over two dozen stations, ranging from St Erth in Cornwall to Kemble in Gloucestershire.

What do you do next?

If you are an individual or a group interested in the Station Adoption project, please download and complete the application form and return it to:

Customer Services Team
First Great Western
Plymouth, PL4 6ZZ

All potential adoptees will need to meet with the local station manager and receive formal safety briefings and checks.