Re­gional News

Rail (UK) - - Network News - Com­piled by Howard John­ston

WEST­ERN

Bar­brook: The Lyn­ton & Barn­sta­ple Rail­way has pur­chased another half a mile of trackbed on the out­skirts of Lyn­ton. A sim­i­lar length has been se­cured be­tween Black­moor and Wist­land­pound.

Bridg­wa­ter: A third of the cost of the £1.2 mil­lion sta­tion im­prove­ments will be met by EDF, as part of its gain­ing per­mis­sion for the Hink­ley Point nu­clear power sta­tion. There will be a bet­ter frontage, car park, and bus links.

Lyd­ney: The Dean For­est Rail­way has se­cured fund­ing for re­pairs to its Sev­ern & Wye Junc­tion Rail­way foot­bridge, which has been out of com­mis­sion since 2007 be­cause it is un­safe.

Patch­way: Net­work Rail has dou­bled the es­ti­mated cost of a re­place­ment bridge over Gypsy Patch Lane from £ 25 mil­lion to £ 50m. Car­ry­ing the Bris­tol-South Wales main line, the bridge needs to be widened in con­nec­tion with one of three planned Metrobus routes. Swin­don: Fol­low­ing a £1 mil­lion re­fur­bish­ment, the for­mer Great West­ern Rail­way car­riage and wagon re­pair works, closed over 30 years ago, has been of­fi­cially opened as a busi­ness cen­tre with 130 units.

EASTERN

Brad­ford: Plans for the re­design of Forster Square sta­tion, in­clud­ing re­place­ment of the main build­ing,

have won an 86% ap­proval rat­ing in a pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion. Bridling­ton: The sta­tion cafe, which still has some of its orig­i­nal 19th cen­tury fea­tures, has been put up for sale by its re­tir­ing owner.

Ch­ester- le- Street: The clo­sure of the Ch­ester- leTrack ticket sales busi­ness in April left the sta­tion with­out a wait­ing room or toi­lets.

Golds­bor­ough: The for­mer York- Har­ro­gate sta­tion could be re­opened, fol­low­ing the sub­mis­sion of a plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion for 2,750 new homes on the site of the dis­used golf course. The orig­i­nal sta­tion closed to pas­sen­gers in May 1965, and the cur­rent house cu­ri­ously in­cor­po­rates the wartime- de­sign sig­nal box.

Mid­dles­brough: A. V. Daw­son is con­struct­ing a new £ 2 mil­lion han­dling fa­cil­ity, af­ter win­ning a long-term con­tract to han­dle im­ported gyp­sum and despatch it by rail to the East Mid­lands.

New­cas­tle: Net­work Rail ap­pears to have changed its mind and re­in­stated the re­cently lifted sid­ings in Forth Yards, which will not now be taken over for a new en­ter­tain­ment arena.

Northaller­ton: The sta­tion has 78 new cy­cle park­ing spa­ces, al­most dou­bling ca­pac­ity.

York: The Na­tional Rail­way Mu­seum has shelved its £ 600,000 search for a de­sign team for its £12 mil­lion re­vamp of the main hall, af­ter it failed to se­cure fund­ing from the Her­itage Lot­tery Fund. Over 150 com­pa­nies ex­pressed in­ter­est in tak­ing part.

MID­LANDS

Birmingham: New Street power box has lost three more routes to the new West Mid­lands cen­tre - the Hamp­ton- in- Ar­den- Proof House Junc­tion, Stetch­ford South Junc­tion- River Cole Viaduct and Proof HouseDud­de­ston lines.

Not­ting­ham: The city coun­cil has ap­proved £ 200,000 for a study into two tramway ex­ten­sions - from Clifton to a new 3,000- home de­vel­op­ment at Fairham Pas­tures next to the main A453 road, and the HS2 hub at To­ton. In the longer term, it would like to ex­plore new lines to Gedling Col­liery, Nether­field, Gam­ston and Kim­ber­ley.

NORTH WEST

Ains­dale: The new ticket of­fice at the Merseyrail sta­tion has opened, re­plac­ing the tem­po­rary struc­ture. Old build­ings on the north plat­form have also been re­moved and a new shop and com­mu­nity po­lice fa­cil­ity set up in their place.

Castle­ton: A main line con­nec­tion for the East Lan­cashire Rail­way from Hey­wood is be­ing ex­plored again by Net­work Rail, al­most a decade af­ter the pro­posal was first aired. The moth­balled track and struc­tures are re­ported to still be in good or­der, but

a new plat­form would be re­quired.

Hal­ton Junc­tion: The 24 lever-frame 1897 LNWR sig­nal box has been of­fi­cially de­com­mis­sioned, as has Run­corn ( LMS, 1944, 45 levers).

Manch­ester: Two mem­bers of a graf­fiti gang of five who blighted the na­tional rail net­work be­tween July 2015 and last De­cem­ber were each jailed for a year by Manch­ester Crown Court on July 18, for 43 of­fences of crim­i­nal dam­age. The oth­ers re­ceived sus­pended sen­tences and were or­dered to do un­paid com­mu­nity work.

SOUTH­ERN

Al­ton: The Mid- Hants Rail­way will re­ceive sub­stan­tial com­pen­sa­tion for the clo­sure of the 4½ - mile sec­tion to Med­stead & Four Marks in the first half of 2019, while its bridge at Butts Junc­tion is re­built to ac­com­mo­date a new hous­ing de­vel­op­ment. The old struc­ture, which for­merly car­ried the Meon Val­ley Line, is too nar­row for large ve­hi­cles to pass through.

Brock­ley: Lewisham Coun­cil wants the high­level plat­forms at the South Lon­don sta­tion to be re­in­stated to serve the Nun­head- Lewisham route. They were closed in 1917.

Spetis­bury: The group restor­ing the for­mer Som­er­set & Dorset main line sta­tion is in talks with landowner Dorset County Coun­cil about tak­ing out a lease on the site. It wants to ex­tend its bound­aries 25 yards be­yond both ends of the plat­forms, to in­clude the foun­da­tions of the sig­nal box.

Uck­field: Au­gust 3 marks the 150th an­niver­sary of the open­ing of the Lon­don, Brighton & South Coast route from Groom­bridge.

Vaux­hall: The South Lon­don sta­tion’s new lift and stair­case from the con­course were com­mis­sioned on July 6.

SCOT­LAND

Ayr: South Ayr­shire Coun­cil is­sued a ‘ Dan­ger­ous Build­ing’ no­tice on the closed Sta­tion Ho­tel on June 30, be­cause ma­sonry is fall­ing onto the sta­tion. The south­ern half of Plat­form 3 is closed to the pub­lic, along with the main front en­trance, con­course, en­try to the main car park and a large part of the space, cof­fee area and book­stall area. The owner, be­lieved to live in Malaysia, has been un­con­tactable.

Bo’ness: The Bo’ness and Kin­neil Rail­way is pre­par­ing the fund­ing case for its new £ 2 mil­lion mu­seum with a di­rect link from the sta­tion plat­form. The Her­itage Lot­tery Fund will be asked to meet 40% of the to­tal cost.

Plains: There is now all- party con­sen­sus over the need for a new sta­tion on the Air­drie- Bath­gate line, af­ter pre­vi­ous ar­gu­ments over the high con­struc­tion cost, es­ti­mated at be­tween £ 8 mil­lion and £11m.

WALES

Beddgelert: A hun­dred pas­sen­gers and the driver of a steam- hauled Welsh High­land Rail­way train were un­hurt fol­low­ing a col­li­sion with a car on a level cross­ing on July 6. How­ever, more than £ 5,000 of dam­age was caused to the coaches.

Fish­guard: There are fears for the fu­ture of the railserved port, fol­low­ing Stena Line’s de­ci­sion not to pro­ceed with its £ 5 mil­lion im­prove­ment scheme.

Maesteg: A man whose home has been un­der­mined by Ja­panese knotweed has won £10,000 com­pen­sa­tion from Net­work Rail, af­ter it was al­lowed it to spread from the nearby rail­way line. NR has been re­fused per­mis­sion to ap­peal.

Mil­ford Haven: An in­crease in rail busi­ness is likely from a multi- mil­lion- pound ma­rina de­vel­op­ment that has been ap­proved by Pem­brokeshire County Coun­cil. There will be a new ho­tel, shops, restau­rants and up to 190 apart­ments.

LON­DON

Hack­ney: The bor­ough coun­cil is in­ter­ested in buy­ing the 182 rail­way arches within its bound­aries, to pre­vent their sale by Net­work Rail. It fears that the rents charged to lo­cal busi­nesses will rocket.

Il­ford: Net­work Rail says it will be dif­fi­cult to achieve the De­cem­ber 2019 com­ple­tion date of the new El­iz­a­beth Line sta­tion. It is still at the de­sign stage.

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