Welcome for 50th anniversary of ESTA

MP Peter Aldous names a class 156 train the 'ESTA 1965-2015' in recognition of the Suffolk rail tra

MP Peter Aldous names a class 156 train the 'ESTA 1965-2015' in recognition of the Suffolk rail travellers' association work in helping keep the rail line from closure 50 years ago. Jonathan Denby, Peter Aldous and Trevor Garrod. - Credit: Nick Butcher

Trevor Garrod joined ESTA in the early 1970s when he returned to his home town of Lowestoft – and has been an important figure in the association ever since.

He is now the organisation’s chairman and spokesman on transport matters in East Suffolk.

He said the role of the organisation had changed over the years – but it still had an important job to do.

“We have always done all we can to promote the rail line – and the events of the last few years have been very welcome. But it is increasingly important for us to campaign for buses as well.

“There are many people who do not have access to private cars and we will continue to do what we can to represent them.”

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The rail industry – British Rail, Anglia Railways, National Express, and now Abellio Greater Anglia – has welcomed the work of ESTA over the years. Jonathan Denby, head of corporate affairs for Abellio Greater Anglia, said: “We would like to congratulate ESTA at the time of their 50th anniversary for the tremendous work they have done to champion and promote public transport in Suffolk over that time.

“Not only did they play a pivotal role in the campaign to save the route from closure in the 1960s, but they have also consistently worked to promote the benefits of rail travel in the decades that have followed.

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“As well as effectively highlighting issues and areas for improvements on behalf of customers and local communities, they play an active and constructive role in helping deliver rail service improvements.

“The East Suffolk line is thriving following the introduction of an hourly service. ESTA can be justifiably proud of their role in that success.

“We hope the years ahead are equally successful for ESTA and we look forward to working with them to further develop and promote the East Suffolk Line in the future.”

Suffolk Coastal MP Therese Coffey added: “ESTA are great champions for passengers and I have always found them very constructive.

“Having nine railway stations in my constituency, their continued promotion of the hourly train service along the East Suffolk Line has been very helpful.

“A regular timetable with hourly trains benefits residents, commuters and tourists.

“Congratulations to ESTA on their 50th anniversary and I look forward to continuing to work with them for the benefit of Suffolk passengers.”

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