1). Our railway is part of the heritage of the area and an important local amenity. We wish to ensure that it can be enjoyed by everyone without causing undue inconvenience to our neighbours and those who live and work in the area. This policy has been adopted in furtherance of those objectives.
2). As a registered charity, and a railway company providing public services, the role of the Trust is to maintain the line for posterity and for the benefit of the nation.
3). A senior member of the Trust (“the Community Relations Officer”) will be appointed to deal with all complaints about the railway.
4). If the Community Relations Officer is not a trustee he/she will attend meetings of the trustees to report on and discuss complaints.
It is his/her duty (if not a trustee) to report on all complaints as soon as possible to a designated trustee
5). The name and contact telephone number of the Community Relations Officer will be displayed on our premises, and published in our literature, on our website and in the Parish Magazine or equivalent. These details will be updated regularly.
6). The text of this policy and any replacement policy will be displayed at our stations and on our website.
Investigation of Complaints
7). It is the duty of the Community Relations Officer to investigate every complaint as impartially as possible.
8). The Community Relations Officer will keep a log of each complaint and, where, possible the steps taken to eliminate or minimise the cause of the complaint.
9). Complainers will in every case receive a letter of acknowledgement within 14 days and where appropriate a description of the cause, and the steps to be taken to resolve the problem.
10). The Community Relations Officer will report back to the trustees on a regular basis. In particular he/she will highlight to the board any complaints that have not been addressed to the satisfaction of the complainant so that the trustees may endeavour to resolve any outstanding issues.
Good Neighbour Policy
11). All locomotives and rolling stock used on the railway will be properly maintained, serviced regularly and operated so as to minimise noise, smoke and pollution. Records of servicings and repairs will be kept.
12). We will take reasonable steps to ensure that engines do not idle on the track for excessive periods of time.
13). We will maintain our land and buildings in good order so as to ensure that they are not unsightly or a source of annoyance.
14). We will take reasonable steps to maintain the wooded area screening the track, in accordance with any requirements of Dover District Council and in consultation with occupants of properties adjoining the railway.
15). Where possible we will try to ensure that our activities do not give rise to problems on the public highway and other areas not under our control.
16). We will keep a timetable of our opening hours on display at our premises and will take reasonable steps to ensure that locomotives are not in operation outside the published hours unless this is unavoidable (for example, for the purpose of track maintenance or other works).
17). We will take appropriate steps to inform our neighbours of any non-routine activities, which may affect them or may cause locomotives to be in operation outside the published hours. These include major works and special events such as might generate noise, crowds or traffic problems.
New schemes and policies
18). We will consult the District and Parish Councils and local residents on new schemes which may affect those who live and work in the area, including proposals to dispose of land.
19). In the case of schemes such as the erection of buildings and structures, the consultation referred to in paragraph 18 shall be over and above that required by the planning authorities and/or prescribed by law.
20). We will keep in touch with the District and Parish Councils and other public authorities responsible for environmental and similar matters, and will have regard to their advice.
21). We will keep our policies under review and update them as necessary in consultation with the parish councils for the area where the railway is situated with a view to ensuring that the policies maintain good community relations.