Volunteers giving railway station new look

The Friends of Orrell Station hard at work

The Friends of Orrell Station hard at work

Volunteers are on track to transform a railway station after improvement work got under way.

The Friends of Orrell Station have begun giving the grounds of the Church Street transport facility a spruce up after forming at the start of the year.

We wanted to start by making where people normally enter the station presentable so it gives a good first impression

Bernard Lundy

So far three clearing-up sessions have been held, with work initially focusing on removing weeds and thinning vegetation in an overgrown patch of land close to the station entrance.

The group is now considering what to do with the space that has been created and is also planning a series of colourful floral displays to brighten up passengers’ journeys in the summer.

Bernard Lundy, a former Orrell rugby union captain who helped get the group up and running, said the helpers’ efforts had already been noticed by commuters and residents.

He said: “We’re getting a good response and people are turning up. We’ve had lots of comments from people using the trains and when we have said what’s happening some of them have said they will get involved.

“We’ve now got to finish off the top, level part of the station and we’re just discussing what we want to do with the area we’ve cleared.

“We wanted to start by making where people normally enter the station presentable so it gives a good first impression and advertises it well.

“We will then move on to the platforms themselves. We’ve picked up some wooden trays to do planting for the summer months.”

The weekly sessions so far have attracted at least half a dozen volunteers and kind-hearted neighbours have kept the helpers going by providing drinks and snacks.

Mr Lundy says conversations with the rail companies have been positive and he hopes they will gradually increase their support as the friends’ group moves forward. The Orrell volunteers have been inspired by railway-based groups such as the Friends of Hindley Station, who have created an award-winning wonderland of flowers, plants and artwork by school pupils and community groups.

The Friends of Orrell Station meet on Tuesdays, from around 2pm until 4pm. To find out more or get involved, email Mr Lundy at bernard.lundy@blueyonder.co.uk