The North Downs Line Community Rail Partnership (CRP) has welcomed a new line chair, Hannah Godfrey, Senior Surface Access Manager at Gatwick Airport. The North Downs CRP, which promotes the line between Gatwick and Reading, is part of the Southeast Communities Rail Partnership (SCRP), which works to connect local communities with their railway.

Hannah said:- “We were sad to lose Mike Goodman, former Surrey County Councillor who has moved to the West Country, and I am delighted to carry on promoting this gem of a line. It is a vital link to Gatwick Airport and is one of the most scenic lines in the country, travelling through the Blackwater Valley and Surrey Hills area of outstanding natural beauty.

“We have very strong station partnerships at many of our stations, who do sterling work at an important time for the rail industry. We will be increasing participation of groups who want to improve their stations, celebrate local attractions, encourage visitors to leave the car behind and help people get to school, college and work safely. I look forward to meeting, and working with, our partners and volunteers and continuing to promote this beautiful line, and train travel in general.’’

GWR Community Manager Emma Morris said: “We wish Mike all the very best for the future and extend a warm welcome to Hannah as the new chair of the North Downs Line Community Rail Partnership.

“The North Downs Line is a key part of our network, particularly with its connection to Gatwick Airport, and Hannah brings a wealth of local knowledge which will be of huge benefit.

“Community rail partnerships play a vital role throughout the GWR network, bringing local people and communities together to add value to projects designed to improve services, and make stations safer, more welcoming and greener spaces. We know Hannah will only enhance the fantastic work already being by the North Downs Line CRP.”