Rail-y good days out in the East Peak are given a funding boost

Thursday, 3 January 2013

At peak times there are plenty of passengers on the Penistone Line, the train line between Huddersfield and Sheffield, but there is also an excellent off-peak service. Penistone Line Partnership has been successful in securing rural development funding to promote using these off-peak trains for the best reason of all, for having fun.

The Penistone Line Partnership is a voluntary organisation that supports & promotes community involvement along the Huddersfield to Sheffield railway line. This includes stations at Lockwood, Berry Brow, Honley, Brockholes, Stocksmoor, Shepley, Denby Dale, Penistone, Silkstone Common, Dodworth and Barnsley Interchange, stations that are gateways to a feast of cultural activities and countryside trails.

Funding comes via East Peak Innovation Partnership Leader programme that distribute funding from the Rural Development Programme for England, which is jointly funded by Defra and the European Union. The injection of funds will help the Penistone Line Partnership promote the line for leisure use and to promote the economy in the rural areas of the East Peak. Rowena Chantler, Community Rail Officer with the partnership said

“We have direct transport connections to amazing scenery, world-class walking and cycling trails, a wealth of industrial heritage and towns and villages full of character and traditions. Lots of things are going on and taking a day out by train is easy and not as expensive as people may think. We want to encourage people who don’t use the line at the moment to give it a go, or for them to tell us why it’s not for them.”

The Partnership will be organising events and activities to get the word out there, and will be asking local people to tell them about the places that they like to spend precious leisure time.

Penistone Line Partnership Chair, Neil Bentley explained the importance of growing passenger numbers on the Penistone Line

“Making sure that the off peak trains are as full as possible helps to ensure the line has a healthy future and can even justify further improvement s to the line.”