27 people attended an exploratory meeting on 5th July 2011 to discuss setting up a new group, initially as part of the Sustainable Living in the Heatons, to then become the Friends of Heaton Chapel Station group an inaugural meeting on 24th July 2011 was in St. Thomas’s Church.
The first chairman was Rory Aiken 2011-2014, followed by Clyde Raine 2014 – 2017, currently Phil Rowbotham 2017 – onwards
FofHCS has won many numerous awards over the last 10 years the first award was a national ACoRP [Association of Community Rail Partnerships] first prize award for the Running Man panels on platform 2 [the panels were are are still generously sponsored by local businesses] In 2020, FofHCS won for the third time, a Cheshire Best Kept Station Award.
Northern Rail has 479 stations FofHCS currently is the largest Friends group in Northern Rail with 129 members and it is one of the most active
FofHCS only has volunteers and all projects are funded by grants, local sponsors and the £2 membership fees. In 2018 over a million passengers used Heaton Chapel Station [HTC] Heaton Chapel Station is the busiest two platform station in Greater Manchester, still without disabled access. The access ramps are extremely steep, have no relief landings, and are not suitable for wheelchairs. Two lifts are urgently needed. On platform 1 [Stockport bound] from road level to platform level. On platform 2 [Manchester bound] : a lift will provide access from road level via the booking office down to the platform, and also up to the eight large Station House Community rooms on the first floor.
Funding is now in place to upgrade all the upper rooms in Station House all the eight rooms will be for community use. Station House is expected to be upgraded soon, between late 2021 to early 2022, which will be open to selected community groups
Our M.P. Navendu Mistra kindly attended the 10th birthday event as a VIP guest he unveiled a plaque on platform 2 on Saturday 24th July 2021 at 2p.m. refreshments were provided to invited guests. Nav made a speech followed by a toast to the future of FofHCS.