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Ceremony celebrates Cotswold Line rail campaigner’s life
THE life of the driving force behind the Cotswold Line Promotion Group, which supports the railway route through West Oxfordshire, will be marked at a special celebration next week.
Oliver Lovell, the founder chairman of the CLPG in 1978, died after collapsing on the platform at Moreton-in-Marsh station in Gloucestershire in June after suffering a heart attack.
The 76-year-old, who lived in the town, was still an active member of the group’s committee, serving as promotions officer, encouraging increased use of the line, which links Oxford with Worcester and Hereford, serving communities including Long Hanborough, Charlbury, the Wychwoods and Kingham.
A memorial celebration of Mr Lovell’s life will take place at Moreton-in-Marsh station at 12.30pm on Saturday, September 14, at which a plaque will be unveiled in the booking hall.
Members of the CLPG and passengers who use the line are welcome.
Derek Potter, the vice-chairman of the CLPG, said the plaque would be placed next to a noticeboard that Mr Lovell maintained.
“The memorial event is for people who couldn’t be at Oliver’s funeral and also for members of his family to be there and a plaque to be unveiled,”
The group’s committee is also working on plans for another lasting way to remember Mr Lovell.
A memorial fund is to be set up and launched in the next issue of the Cotswold & Malvern Line News, the group’s newsletter.
“I think the favourite idea is to do something with the waiting room on the platform used by passengers going towards Oxford and London,” said Mr Potter.
“The building that’s there at present is a rather nondescript wooden cabin.
“It would be a replacement for the present room. Oliver was such a figure in the group we must do something as a permanent memory of him.
“If it wasn’t for him the CLPG wouldn’t have come into being and arguably the train service on the line wouldn’t be anything like it is now.
“We would like something significant on Moreton station so people will say ‘I wonder who this Oliver Lovell was’.”
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