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The train now arriving…

kinghamstationsignDo you travel to or from Kingham station? If so take a moment to look at and enjoy the flower beds, pots and hanging baskets.

There is a story behind them.

Four years ago a small advert appeared asking if anyone would join the team of volunteers looking after the gardens at Kingham station.

It seemed a good idea. Imagine how we felt when we found we were the team of two and still are.
We had to have training – wear a high visibility jacket, (they gave us one to share which reads Community Rail Gardener on the back which rather suggests we are serving a community sentence for an ASBO), do not step on the track and always acknowledge the train drivers with a wave of the hand.

The old footbridge was removed and large flower beds were created from the baulks of timber from the steps. No compost was provided.

We ordered and then transported 170 bags of compost to fill the beds helped by a willing group of friends from MUWAGA. It is 30 steps up, 30 steps across and 30 steps down the new bridge to Platform 2; and it was raining.
Now the beds are planted and we are grateful for donations of plants received. Some are flourishing, some have been dug up by squirrels and some have suffered from the drought and high temperatures this summer. The metal birdbath was stolen after three days!

We receive lots of comments and advice from the travelling public – one lady said “well you’ve made a start” when we thought we had just about finished!

We add value to the station in more ways than the gardening. We possess a key to the toilets, we know the telephone numbers of the local taxi firms and the times of the buses. We can advise on the hire of a Bainton bike, how to purchase a ticket when the booking office is closed, which platform a London or Worcester train leaves from and where the lift is. There is not a lift, so heavy luggage has to be carried over the footbridge and we have been known to help with this too. Beats going to the gym.

If anyone would like to help, particularly with watering, we would love to add to our team. It is great fun as long as you are happy to share the high visibility jacket! We can be contacted on 01993 830090.

David and Joanna van de Poll

October – November 2018