AFL Partners with Swindon and Cricklade Railway to Preserve Environment

Swindon, United Kingdom and Spartanburg, SC – AFL, a leading global fibre optics manufacturer, and Swindon and Cricklade Railway, Wiltshire’s only standard gauge railway running heritage steam and diesel trains, partnered to establish a native hedgerow along a restored section of railway line. The project was part of AFL’s Take Root program which aims to plant or provide 12,000 trees by 2015.

The AFL volunteer team joined Swindon and Cricklade railway volunteers to plant 370 trees and hedgerow bushes, contributing 18 hours of time to enhance the surrounding area alongside the railway line at Oakhurst, Swindon. The planting of hedgerow is an important element in the restoration and maintenance of the railway as it creates habitat for wildlife as well as a boundary and natural safety barrier to the farmlands or communities that the railway line passes through.

“Safety is the most important consideration when running and maintaining the railway,” said James Howes, signalling manager for Swindon and Cricklade Railway. “Where the remote sections of line pass by local communities, it can be tempting for some people to risk crossing the line as a shortcut or for children playing. When the trees we planted mature, they will help keep people away from the line whilst also enhancing the local wildlife habitat.”

Formed in 1978, the Swindon and Cricklade Railway’s objective was to reconstruct and preserve a section of railway than ran from Andover to Cheltenham. Since then, the railway has expanded and a third station will officially open soon. The Railway is planning additional stations as it progresses toward Cricklade.

Throughout the year, AFL hosts Take Root events on its worldwide campuses and with organisations in communities where AFL has facilities. AFL’s extensive Community Outreach Program provides many opportunities to connect with its local communities and encourages associates to volunteer for activities throughout the year. For additional information on AFL and its community initiatives, visit

About AFL
AFL provides industry-leading products and services to the electric utility, broadband, communications, OEM, enterprise, wireless and transit rail markets as well as the emerging markets of oil and gas, mining, nuclear, avionics, medical, renewable and intelligent grid. The company’s diverse product portfolio includes fibre optic cable, transmission and substation accessories, outside plant equipment, connectors, fusion splicers, test equipment and training. AFL’s service portfolio includes market-leading positions with the foremost communications companies supporting inside plant central office, EF&I, outside plant, enterprise and wireless areas.

Founded in 1984, AFL is proud to offer engineering expertise, exceptional products and reliable service that help our customers improve their critical and electrical infrastructure. AFL has operations in the U.S., Mexico, Europe, Asia and the South Pacific. The company is headquartered in Spartanburg, SC, and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fujikura Ltd. of Japan. For more information, visit

About Swindon and Cricklade Railway
The Swindon & Cricklade Railway (Preservation Society) was formed in 1978, with the objective to reconstruct and preserve a section of the (former) Midland & South Western Junction Railway (MSWJR), that ran from Andover in Hampshire to Cheltenham in Gloucestershire. Since its formation, the Railway has slowly expanded to reach its current passenger working length of two and a quarter miles, four and a half miles round trip. For more information visit

Corie Culp
Public Relations Manager

Joanne Lawrence
Sales and Marketing Coordinator
AFL (Swindon)