A new integrated travel map has been unveiled at Seaford railway station to signpost walking, cycling and bus routes.
The improved onward travel information is designed to help passengers explore the town and venture into the areas beyond including the South Downs National Park with its iconic views of the Seven Sisters chalk cliffs and Coastguard Cottages.
The map on the station platform highlights places to visit and how to reach them. There are also leaflets with a smaller version of the map and additional information for travellers. The leaflets are available on request from the station ticket office and Seaford Town Council/Tourist Information offices at 37 Church Street.
Special stickers have been placed above the windows at the station to welcome people to the area. They show the chalk cliffs and encourage visitors to use Brighton & Hove Buses for the next stage of their journey.
Seaford is at one end of the Sussex Downs Line in East Sussex with stations from Brighton to Seaford.
The map was unveiled on Thursday (17 August) at a special ceremony at Seaford station attended by funders, partners and supporters.
Seaford town crier Peter White welcomed guests to the launch. He said: “The basic message is: don’t drive. Use the train and bus or walk or cycle. There’s more to see and it’s better for the environment.”
The project was the initiative of Southeast Communities Rail Partnership which works to connect people, places and opportunities to their railways.
It was funded with a grant from Community Rail Network to support integrated and sustainable transport along with partners Living Streets and CoMoUK as well as Department for Transport. Additional funding came from South Downs National Park Authority and Southeast Communities Rail Partnership.
In attendance were Seaford deputy mayor Cllr Sally Markwell; Seaford town councillors Richard Honeyman, James Meek and Sam Adeniji; Emily Summers-Mileman, Interpretation and Place Officer for the South Downs National Park; Daniel Wright from Community Rail Network; Nick Price, Director – Personnel & Compliance, Cuckmere Buses; Keith Blackburn, Seaford Community Partnership; Robert McGowan from Riffle & Pool Press; illustrator Benjamin Phillips; and Trevor Field, finance officer from Southeast Communities Rail Partnership.
Norman Baker, chair of the Sussex Downs Line (Seaford to Brighton) within Southeast Communities Rail Partnership, said: “The better mapping and signposting offer rail passengers arriving at Seaford with a range of options to continue their sustainable travel journeys.”
Jools Townsend, chief executive of Community Rail Network, said: “We are delighted to have supported this project helping to bring better, greener, more joined-up travel to Seaford, combining rail with buses, walking, wheeling, and cycling. Across the community rail movement, we believe strongly in empowering communities and enabling healthy, climate-safe, happy journeys – and we understand the benefits this can bring.”
Emily Summers-Mileman, Interpretation and Place Officer for the South Downs National Park, said: “Seaford railway station is such a wonderful stepping stone into the National Park and this project has really enhanced the information and resources we’re offering visitors.
“There are so many opportunities to travel sustainably in the National Park, whether that be by walking, cycling, taking the bus or train, and we want to spread the word about how accessible this treasured landscape is for everybody.”
Ed Wills, Managing Director at Brighton & Hove Buses, said: “With our 12,12A, 12X and 13X services all serving Seaford, passengers have a range of sustainable and affordable options for onward travel. As well as this, our routes offer access to lots of brilliant sights and attractions on the South Downs and along the south coast, all perfect for a day out.”
Philip Ayers, Managing Director from Cuckmere Buses, said: “This is a great initiative to promote integrated travel by rail and bus as an alternative to the private car. Our services from Seaford penetrate deep into the byways of the South Downs locally and we look forward to welcoming new passengers onto those services.”
Mayor of Seaford, Councillor Olivia Honeyman, said: “I am really pleased that there will be an integrated map at Seaford train station and leaflets will be available. On a recent visit to the Isle of Wight, we visited a town by train and were able to use a map of the town to go on a tour – this was really interesting. We are lucky to have this new integrated map in Seaford.”
Stephen MacCallaugh, Southern Railway’s Head of Stations, said: “We’re passionate about encouraging sustainable travel for work and leisure, so we’re delighted to support Southeast Communities Rail Partnership’s initiative, which highlights Seaford station as a hub for environmentally friendly visits to the area’s many attractions.”
Robert McGowan, Publisher at Riffle & Pool Press, said: “It was a privilege to work on a map of this beautiful corner of Sussex. Benjamin Phillips’ illustrations really bring it to life by showing the shape and colours of the landscape. You can clearly see how Seaford is connected to the coastline, the Cuckmere valley, Friston Forest and the countryside beyond.”
Visitors to the Seven Sisters and South Downs National Park are advised to keep away from the edge of the cliffs. They are also encouraged to check tide times and weather forecasts.
Copies of the travel leaflet can be downloaded here.
A full video of the launch is on YouTube.
Photo caption: (Left to right – back row: Benjamin Phillips – illustrator: Robert McGowan – Riffle & Pool Press; Daniel Wright – Community Rail Network; Seaford town councillor James Meek; Seaford town councillor Richard Honeyman; Keith Blackburn – Seaford Community Partnership; Nick Price – Cuckmere Buses; Peter White – Seaford town crier; Seaford town councillor Sam Adeniji. Front row: Emily Summers-Mileman – South Downs National Park Authority; Seaford deputy mayor Sally Markwell)