Friends of Buxton Station honoured at community rail awards

The Friends of Buxton Station collect their prize at the Association of Community Rail Partnerships (ACoRP) Community Rail Awards gala dinner. Photo contributed.
The Friends of Buxton Station collect their prize at the Association of Community Rail Partnerships (ACoRP) Community Rail Awards gala dinner. Photo contributed.

A community group has scooped a national award for its life-saving improvements to Buxton’s railway station.

The Friends of Buxton Station (FoBS) fought off strong competition to win the Most Enhanced Station Buildings and Surroundings Award at the Association of Community Rail Partnerships’ 14th annual Community Rail Awards.

The Friends of Buxton Station and their guests toast the new equipment with beer provided by the Red Willow Brewery

The Friends of Buxton Station and their guests toast the new equipment with beer provided by the Red Willow Brewery

On a showcase night for the community rail movement in Glasgow on October 4, FoBS was honoured for a project which saved a classic piece of British street furniture as well as potentially saving lives.

The award recognised the group’s work in relocating Buxton’s last iconic red K6 telephone box to the town’s railway station and refurbishing it with a lifesaving automated external defibrillator (AED).

Jools Townsend, chief executive of the Association of Community Rail Partnerships, said: “The efforts of the Friends of Buxton Station, and all our winners, show how important community rail is, connecting local people with their railways, and building happier, more inclusive and sustainable communities.”

The FoBS project also involved an innovative marketing strategy to make the community aware of the kiosk’s new role by licensing it as a pub - the “smallest” in the region. In conjunction with the town’s Red Willow Brewery, the group unveiled the kiosk with the brewery’s ‘Heartless’ ale, heralding the new defibrillator’s availability.

The kiosk was opened by Councillor Simon Spencer, deputy leader of Derbyshire County Council, who had survived a heart attack with the assistance of an AED that he himself had helped to install.

The project was funded by High Peak & Hope Valley Community Rail Partnership and Arriva Rail North (Northern).