Gobowen Railway Station booking office will be back open soon

A railway station booking office will reopen its doors next month as travellers start returning to rail transport.

Gobowen Railway Station
Gobowen Railway Station

Severn Dee Travel, a not-for-profit social enterprise, runs the booking office at Gobowen Station on the Shrewsbury to Chester line.

It also hosts the cafe run by Derwen College, which provides valuable work experience for its students.

Sheila Dee, one of the volunteer directors at Severn Dee Travel, said it was working towards reopening on May 17.

"We believe that the time is now right to reopen," she said.

"Train services have returned to normal and attractions are reopening. We think people are now wanting to travel to see their friends and family that they haven't seen, many since last summer and we want to be there to help them plan their journeys."

Sheila said that it was important for Severn Dee Travel to reopen not just for rail passengers but for the local community and Derwen College.

"The students gain wonderful work experience working at the cafe and the college is extremely grateful for our venue where they can run such an enterprise," she said.

"We have heard that villagers are really missing the cafe. One person was heard to say recently that the heart had been taken out of the community. A lot of people meet up at the cafe for a drink and to socialise and we want to give that opportunity back to Gobowen."

She said that Severn Dee Travel was working with the college to ensure that the re-opening could be Covid secure and said certain restrictions should be in place to ensure the safety of passengers and its three paid staff.

"During lockdown we used a grant we were given to design the cafe with the work done by a volunteer, it looks great. We have also completely refitted the kitchen."

Initially the booking office will be open between the hours of 7.30am until 1.30pm to see what the demand is.

"During the past year a couple of ticket machines have been installed on the platform. However we can provide a personal service and our expertise means that we can help plan longer and more complex journeys. We can also tailor them to the individual's needs."

"We are a social enterprise that last year would have celebrated 25 years at the station. We hope people will return and continue to support us when we reopen. We are looking forward to seeing our customers again."

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