Showing the way on the Tarka Line

group shot Copplestone

Two pieces of colourful artwork, Direction of Travel signs, have been installed at Tarka Line stations, one at Copplestone, the other at Umberleigh.

The artwork was designed by Exeter College of Art students Jasmine Liu and Estha Ferris.  Jasmine designed the sign at Copplestone station and Estha the sign at Umberleigh.

Installation of the striking artwork was during the recent engineering work and line closure when Network Rail replaced a number of areas of track between Barnstaple and Crediton. The new track is making rail journeys smoother and more comfortable for passengers.

A partnership between Great Western Railway, Network Rail, the Devon & Cornwall Rail Partnership and local users’ group, the Tarka Rail Association organised a range of initiatives around the engineering work including the artwork, refurbishing the waiting room at Yeoford station, gardening at Barnstaple and other stations and, to follow in 2020, a heritage display in one of the waiting rooms at Crediton station.

Rebecca Catterall from the Devon and Cornwall Rail Partnership said “The idea behind this project was to create something that passengers could enjoy once the line was reopened after the line closure. We love Jasmine and Estha’s artwork and it will be seen by many thousands of people for years to come.”

Jasmine Liu said “I enjoy working with digital art and for this project, I was deeply interested in the landscapes and history of the Tarka Line”

Estha Ferris said “I hope my illustration of the playful otters brings a smile to people at Umberleigh station as well as adding to the views across the fields which can be seen from inside the train carriage.”

Lecturer Nigel Lowe from Exeter School of Art, who oversaw the artwork project, said “ Exeter School of Art is delighted to have been able to enhance stations along the Tarka Line with bespoke artwork created by its students.”

Great Western Railway station manager for the Tarka Line, Melanie Harvey said “Throughout the Great Western Railway network community rail groups play a leading role, adding value to projects designed to improve services and make stations safer, friendlier and greener.   I am incredibly grateful to all those involved in this project, helping to brighten these highly valued stations.”

The Tarka Line Engineering Works Project has been part funded by Great Western Railway’s Customer and Communities Fund and the Community Rail Development Fund, which is backed by the Department for Transport and ACoRP, the Association of Community Rail Partnerships.

Photo caption – the main photo shows the new direction of travel sign at Copplestone Railway Station with, from left, Rebecca Catterall of the Devon & Cornwall Rail Partnership, Andy McRae from GWR, artist Jasmine Liu, Nigel Lowe from Exeter School of Art and John Phillips from the Tarka Rail Association.