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To celebrate the improvements currently being undertaken to Longton bridge, the bridge project team Amco and East Midlands Trains are sponsoring a permanent mural for Longton station.
The mural project has been developed by North Staffordshire Community Rail Partnership, which works to promote and develop the local Crewe, Stoke-on-Trent to Derby service, which serves Longton station.
Designed by local artist and sculptor Anthony Hammond, the mural design, which will be a feature of Platform 1, consists of three panels, celebrating the history of the town and the bridge. The centre panel features the bridge itself, flagged by the lion crest of the North Staffordshire Railway, with a 'Welcome' message for passengers.
Amco and East Midlands Trains (EMT) are to jointly fund the project to support the community rail partnership's on-going work with the community and station volunteers to improve the station.
Barnsley-based Amco is currently ahead of schedule on the bridge project. In response to a request from the partnership, Amco is also to repaint the station underpass between the platforms, where a station artwork project by students of the former Longton High School is displayed.
Faye Lambert, Community Rail Officer for the partnership, said: "We and the volunteers are delighted to have support from Amco and EMT for this station improvement project; it illustrates real goodwill for the station and the town. The 'new' bridge, improved underpass and now a colourful station mural will serve to really enhance Longton station."
Ian Watson, Amco's Contracts Manager for the Longton bridge project commented: "Engagement with the local community and the support of community projects are key business objectives for Amco and we are proud to be able to assist the North Staffordshire Community Rail Partnership with these improvements."
East Midlands Trains manages Longton station and operates the hourly Crewe-Stoke-Derby service. Andy Moore, Head of Stations for East Midlands Trains, said: "Longton station has already seen some great improvements as a result of strong local community support and we were pleased to present the station with an award for Community Partnership in our Best Stations Awards last month.
"The development of the new mural Longton will go one step further in welcoming people and will create a great focal point for the community."