Langford Halt renovation - autumn 2016 - spring 2017
Langford Halt on the Blackwater rail trail has been one of the places that our volunteers, under the supervision of our Ranger Tom Hamilton, have visited and worked for many years now. Our tasks have mainly involved cutting back encroaching bramble, clearing the path way for access and cutting the grassy area in front of the disused platform to allow the lesser calamint that grows there to thrive.
We have always wanted to improve the footpath, add benches and give visitors a sense of the history of the place so we applied for a grant of £8,000 from Tescos Bags of Help scheme. We were were fortunate to be awarded an additional £4,000 funding so we were able to employ a builder to remove the trees growing out of the platform, repair and re-point damaged brickwork, resurface the top of the platform and install a new Langford and Ulting sign.
Two interpretation boards were prepared and sited at the entrance to the southern section of the path and in front of the platform showing wildlife and historical information about the railway line.
Our volunteers first task was to clear the whole of the platform and upright posts of all the greenery, trees and ivy this had to wait until September, October to ensure we were not disturbing nesting birds and other wildlife. This was a time consuming job and took many visits before it was all removed the ivy on the posts was the hardest to remove as it was intertwined 6 inch stems creating a large thick trunk in places. Builders were asked for estimates to make the repairs to the platform and our chosen builder started work early February and completed the job in 2 weeks. We were pleased with the results and the next task was to install the interpretation boards and the platform sign. These were installed by two groups of volunteers over two days in February.