Two railway stations in the town gained recognition at the 11th annual awards evening for Cheshire Best Kept Stations.

Ellesmere Port and Little Sutton stations received their accolades at the presentations held at The Grange Theatre in Hartford.

More than 140 guests attended the evening including the chairman of Chester West and Chester Council, Cllr Jill Houlbrook, the mayor of Ellesmere Port, Cllr Bob Crompton, the high sheriff of Cheshire, Martin Beaumont and four other Cheshire mayors.

Announcing the awards, John Hulme, organiser of the competition, said: “Little Sutton Station has won the Cheshire West and Chester Award for best efforts in Cheshire West.

Cllr Jill Houlbrook, Mark Barker, Sally Buttifant, Mike McCone, Ada Royles, Lisan Beentjes (Merseyrail) and Diane Whittlestone at the awards ceremony
Cllr Jill Houlbrook, Mark Barker, Sally Buttifant, Mike McCone, Ada Royles, Lisan Beentjes (Merseyrail) and Diane Whittlestone at the awards ceremony

“This Merseyrail station has seen a transformation in the last two years and this is thanks to the involvement of the local schools, the Beavers, the Scouts and support from local councillors, businesses and local residents.

“The Friends of Little Sutton Station should be commended on their exceptional artwork which tells the story of the village and the flower beds and planters that brighten up the station.

“The community volunteers have done a tremendous job and must be very proud of their achievement.”

Ellesmere Port Railway Station had won the Creative Partnership Award, recognising the partnership working between Merseyrail, the local councils, business and the community volunteers.

“The volunteers have come from all walks of life and are people of all ages,” continued Mr Hulme. “They include young people from the local primary school and high school, local residents and station staff.

“They have all made the station more hospitable and a better place to travel from”.

Both stations gained a national last September and a regional award in October.

Mark Barker, former client and stakeholder manager west with Northern Rail, who presented the awards, said: “Volunteer groups do a tremendous job at many stations across Cheshire, helping to transform them into gateways for their communities that they can be proud of. Many of them also help to promote local train services as well.

“The evening is a wonderful occasion to showcase their work as well as to reinforce the good relations between the rail industry, local communities and the volunteers.”

Cllr Houlbrook commented: “I would like to applaud all the volunteers and staff at the stations throughout Cheshire who have won the Cheshire’s Best Kept Stations awards.

“It is amazing to see how much effort the volunteer groups put into making our stations special. All these people are unsung heroes in our communities.

“The council has been very pleased to support the work carried out at the stations throughout the borough. “Thank you to everyone who has contributed to making our train journeys so much more enjoyable.”