Delight at new era for Rasen station

Juliette Keeping and Eileen Neal, with their nephew Duncan Kew and the boards display their own story of life at the station.EMN-180909-232501001
Juliette Keeping and Eileen Neal, with their nephew Duncan Kew and the boards display their own story of life at the station.EMN-180909-232501001

It was a long time coming, but on Saturday the restored Market Rasen Railway Station building was officially opened - and the crowds turned out to see the end result.

The once derelict building has been lovingly brought back to life thanks to a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the skill of traditional craftsmen.

Da Capo entertained the visitors during the afternoon EMN-180909-232450001

Da Capo entertained the visitors during the afternoon EMN-180909-232450001

Where once there was a bustling booking office, stationmaster’s office and postal area, there is now a suite of offices, a heritage room and, from October 1, a cafe.

The transformation was well received by Saturday’s many visitors, some of whom had a personal interest in the building.

Among those were Juliette Keeping and Eileen Neal, whose father was Rexford Bernard Charles Kew, Market Rasen’s last stationmaster.

Juliette said: “My dad would have been so proud of how the building is today.

David Chambers, Amanda Turner, Market rasen Mayor John Matthews and Emma Wardell EMN-180909-232537001

David Chambers, Amanda Turner, Market rasen Mayor John Matthews and Emma Wardell EMN-180909-232537001

“It has been brought back to life - it is a happy building now.”

Juliette’s personal memories and those of her sister Eileen are included in the heritage displays, both in visual and audio form.

Eileen said: “It (the project) has brought back many memories.

“When we were first asked (to contribute), I wrote some rough notes and then added to them over time. It all looks wonderful.”

The audio board of memories EMN-181009-160557001

The audio board of memories EMN-181009-160557001

The official opening was performed by Amanda Turner, grants officer for the Heritage Lottery Fund, who praised the work done on the building.

She said: “As well as thanks to the lottery players for making this possible, we must thank Lindum for their commitment to this project.

“The work done will ensure this building continues for a long time into the future.

“The building has changed dramatically from the empty hulk I saw when I came here first of all, and I hope people will now love it and use it for years to come.”

In formation on the building's past is on display throughout EMN-180909-232513001

In formation on the building's past is on display throughout EMN-180909-232513001

Chairman of the Lindum Group, David Chambers was also present and was equally delighted to see the work come to fruition and thanked everyone for going along to celebrate the completion of the work.

Mr Chambers continued: “It is a great to see a project like this completed - that five years ago was in rack and ruin.

“It was a pleasure to be involved in this project.”

The project has been managed by a Community Interest Company (CIC), the Market Rasen Station Community Project, which was set up especially to progress the renovations, with the Lindum Group as their Development Partner.

Speaking at the opening, chairman of the CIC, Emma Wardell said: “This building has found a place in the hearts of many local people and they turned out in great numbers today to see it restored to its former glory, following lots of hard work.”

As part of the project, Lindum is holding two specialist heritage skills one-day training courses.

Alford Silver Band played at the official opening in the morning EMN-180909-232525001

Alford Silver Band played at the official opening in the morning EMN-180909-232525001

The first, on October 24, is in stonemasonry, with an introduction to lime mortar and why it is used in heritage projects. The second, on November 1, will look at different joinery techniques used in heritage projects. Open to all, both courses run from 10am to 3pm in Lincoln and are free.

To book a place email training@lindumgroup.co.ukor call 01522 500300 .

Nostalgic images of the station's busy past EMN-180909-232549001

Nostalgic images of the station's busy past EMN-180909-232549001