Posts Tagged ‘Mayor of Krosniewice’

Mayor lets nature do her dirty work

Friday, 6 June 2008

Krosniewice Station Yard (looking towards MPD) in May

I made myself immensely unpopular in certain quarters when I first announced that the Mayor of Krosniewice’s protestations that she really cared about the future of the Krosniewice Railway were a load of rubbish and that all she wanted to do was to acquire the station site at a knockdown price so that her sponsors could redevelop the site. I am not clairvoyant, but I did have written evidence to the effect that Mrs Barbara Herman wanted to reduce the railway’s footprint in Krosniewice to the bare minimum and that she wanted the railway’s operator, SKPL, to withdraw from the railway’s workshops. SKPL objected, pointing out that the workshops were essential to maintain the freight carrying rolling stock, so Mrs Herman threw them out.

Just to test the water, so to speak, another Polish narrow gauge operator sounded out Mrs Herman as to whether she was looking for a new operator. They were told that she was giving the railway ‘a rest’ for 6 months and that the plan that she was developing with Polish State Railways’ Estates Company, PKP Nieruchomosci, was that the railway land should be parcelled out among the local councils through which the railway runs. If this happens it would spell the end of any hope of ever reviving the railway as a serious transport undertaking.

The optimum solution for the railway would be for another local council to apply to take over the whole line for transport purposes. However, before we can try to bring this about we have to register as many objections as possible to Mrs Herman’s actions with the Ministry of Transport. Hence our campaign of asking our readers to write to Mrs Herman to protest against the closure of the railway, and to send a copy of such a letter to the Minister of Infrastructure. We hope that we will be assisted in our efforts by the visit of a senior delegation from Fedecrail to Poland later this month.

If you have not yet written your letter, wishing to give the Mayor the benefit of the doubt, perhaps these ‘before’ and ‘after’ photographs will persuade you to do so. You will find the appropriate addresses at the bottom of this post. Please don’t worry about not writing in Polish. Both Mr Garbarczyk and Mrs Herman have people working in their offices who are fluent in English.

With best wishes

A similar view on 31.3.2008 the day the last train ran
(Click on pic to see more last day photos by Tilo Rosner)

Please write to:

Mrs Julianna Barbara Herman
The Mayor of Krosniewice
Urzad Miejski
Poznanska 5
99-340 Krosniewice
POLAND

and send a copy to:

Mr Cezary Grabarczyk
The Minister of Infrastructure
ul. 4/6 Chalubinskiego
00-928 Warszawa
POLAND

You’ll find many more posts about the Krosniewice Railway, as well as the story of our campaign to save the line here.

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A letter from you and a letter from me, And we could could save the KrKD!

Monday, 31 March 2008

In an earlier post, I noted that writing letters and lobbying can make a difference. In particular, letters from the UK and USA do make an impression in Poland. I was therefore delighted to receive with the initial support for the campaign to save the Krosniewice Railway. In particular, it was heartening to receive a letter of support from Stephen Wiggs, the chairman of the New Europe Railway Heritage Trust. NERHT have been active in promoting the cause of heritage railways in Central and Eastern Europe and members of the Trust have visited Poland on a number of occasions.

Thanks for your email… . I imagine that you may know that I am the Chairman of the New Europe Railway Heritage Trust, a registered charity set up in the 1990s to help railway preservation in the ex-Communist countries. As well as providing Western expertise we have quite a lot of experience in lobbying the authorities in Eastern Europe on behalf of tourist railway projects.

This is now last chance saloon for the Krosniewice Railway. We now really need as many of you as possible to write to the Mayor of Krosniewice with a copy to the Minister of Infrastructure. If everybody who wrote a letter could get two friends to write, and they in turn go two friends… we would be victorious! This really is a case where the pen (or rather your favourite word processing program) is mightier than the sword. A number of BTWT readers have already copied us on their letters. We particularly like the one from Ed Beale, which we are reproducing in full – not to copy slavishly – but to help you get you to get typing!


** ***** Road
****** *** ***
United Kingdom

Mrs Julianna Barbara Herman
The Mayor of Krosniewice
Urzad Miejski
Poznanska 5
99-340 Krosniewice
POLAND

copy to:

Mr Cezary Grabarczyk
The Minister of Infrastructure
ul. 4/6 Chalubinskiego
00-928 Warszawa
POLAND

Dear Madame Mayor,

I am writing to express my concern about the end of passenger services and closure of the Krosniewice narrow gauge railway. Although I live in England I have made three visits to your unique railway in the last few years. I think it has great potential as one of the main tourist attractions to bring visitors in to a beautiful but little-visited part of Poland, and it can also continue to serve a public transport role, in particular to link Krosniewice with the main line railway stations at Ostrowy and Krzewie. As a much preferred alternative to closure it would be possible to develop a museum at the site and run enthusiast and tourist trains as well as continuing to operate a regular service of passenger and freight trains. With good marketing both locally, nationally, and in cooperation with railway enthusiast organisations in other countries, the number of visitors to Krosniewice could be greatly increased.

On my last visit in February this year I was struck again by the unique atmosphere which the railway has preserved, which makes it very unusual in the whole of Europe as a heritage railway attraction. I was also very impressed with the friendliness of the staff.

I would urge you to please reconsider the decision to terminate the operating contract. Without staff the railway would very quickly fall into decline and could be a target for vandalism. The sheds and workshops and the operational locomotives and railcars are a valuable asset which could very quickly fall into disrepair and would be difficult to restore to working order again. What can currently be operated efficiently with a small subsidy would then require a very large amount of money to bring it back into working order.

I hope you will be able to reply to my letter, and I hope very much that the railway can be preserved for future generations to see and enjoy the railway heritage of the Krosniewice region.

Yours sincerely,

Edward Beale


The battle of Krosniewice – links to previous posts

A word of explanation
We need you
Call to arms II
The end?