News stories

News stories

Against the odds, the UK’s network of disused railway lines continues to make the news as the 21st Century throws up a host of transport, environmental and health challenges.This news page will provide links to relevant stories.

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April 2024

Dorset bridge receives attention17/04/24Dorset Echo
A rural road on the outskirts of Weymouth will be closed for almost a month so that National Highways can carry out works to a historic railway bridge.
Cash funds path improvement works16/04/24Ross-shire Journal
A number of paths in Ross-shire, some of them occupying dismantled railways, have benefitted from an upgrade thanks to cash from the Highlands & Islands Transport Partnership Path Improvement Fund.
Repairs confirmed for Sussex bridge14/04/24The Argus (Brighton)
The 140-year-old railway bridge at Barcombe, which National Highways was going to infill with hundreds of tonnes of stone and concrete, will now be refurbished following the transfer of its ownership to the County Council.
Public return to the Dunston Staiths11/04/24Chronicle Live
Dunston Staiths, which used to carry multiple railway tracks, have reopened to coincide with the launch of the Tyne Derwent Way, a £1.5M redevelopment of a trail which connects Gateshead Quays with Gibside in the Derwent Valley.
Northumberland greenway progresses04/04/24Chronicle Live
Ambitious plans to create a 97-mile greenway for walkers and cyclists along the former Alnwick-Cornhill line have been hailed as a "gold-plated opportunity".

March 2024

Funds for Bucks railway path27/03/24Rail Advent
Buckinghamshire Council has secured funding to improve the trackbed of a disused railway so that it is suitable as a cross-town walking, wheeling and cycling link in Buckingham.
Progress on Staffordshire reopening26/03/24BBC News
Preparatory works are underway to bring the disused Leek-Stoke line back into use for passenger services.
Council considers future of infilled bridge25/03/24Yorkshire Post
A campaign group has voiced concerns over the infilling of a Victorian railway bridge in Yorkshire, claiming National Highways has misrepresented its condition.
Ramp installation at iron giant24/03/24BBC News
Bennerley Viaduct, which spans the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire border, will be closed on the Notts side for about ten weeks whilst a new ramp can be installed.
Footbridge heads for refurbishment22/03/24Derbyshire Live
A historic railway footbridge at Darley Dale Station will undergo restoration following investment from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
Viaduct restoration reaches conclusion21/03/24New Civil Engineer
Restoration work to a historic viaduct in Dudley is nearly finished, marking a significant milestone for Transport for West Midlands' Wednesbury to Brierley Hill Metro extension.
Minister seeks to save old bridge20/03/24Belfast Telegraph
Stormont's Agriculture Minister Andrew Muir has called on Ards and North Down Council to intervene to save a picturesque disused railway bridge from potential demolition.
New role for old station08/03/24Salisbury Journal
The disused Breamore railway station has been converted into rooms for overnight stays.
£600K price for station home08/03/24Eastern Daily Press
A unique opportunity to own some Victorian railway history has emerged as the converted station at Coltishall has come up for sale.
Funds secured for reopening investigation05/03/24BBC News
The proposal to reopen the disused Leamside line has secured £350,000 government funding for a "strategic outline case".
Leamside reopening is a local matter04/03/24Chronicle Live
Rail Minister Huw Merriman has stated that a decision on the restoration of the disused Leamside line is up to leaders in the north-east.
Path extension proposed via old line04/03/24Plymouth Live
Plans to extend a popular Plymstock off-road walking and cycling path via a disused railway have been submitted for a council's consideration.
Alliance pushes for new rail link01/03/24Crediton Courier
The Northern Devon Railway Development Alliance has been launched with the aim of securing a new rail link between Bideford and Barnstaple, and an upgrade of the North Devon line between Exeter and Barnstaple.

February 2024

Tunnel closure following rockfall.24/02/24Wales Online
Pembrokeshire County Council has ordered the closure of a disused tunnel linking Coppet Hall car park and The Strand in Saundersfoot due to a rockfall above one of the entrances.
SOS to save Heighington station24/02/24Northern Echo
An appeal to save the world’s oldest railway station has been launched by the Friends of the Stockton & Darlington Railway.
Countdown to Levenmouth reopening23/02/24The Courier
Clocks are ticking until the reopening of the Levenmouth rail link on 2 June.
Heritage scheme set to fail23/02/24Your Local Paper
A project to convert the old ticket office at Norfolk's Middleton Towers station into a community asset won't go ahead unless volunteers come forward to help.
Northumberland path makes progress18/02/24BBC News
A section of the disused Alnwick-Cornhill line, which closed 71 years ago, should soon be reopened as part of a walking and cycling route.
Housing threat to old line15/02/24Bolton News
More than 100 homes could be built on a disused railway near Bolton just a year after a different housebuilder's plans were rejected.
Plaudits for station revamp12/02/24The Freepress
The blood, sweat and tears of railway enthusiasts over many years has been recognised with a national award for their restoration of Corwen Station.
Eyewatering infill removal cost09/02/24News & Star
Campaigners have challenged the quality of repair work carried out to Great Musgrave bridge as the £352K cost of removing its infill emerges.
Shepton railway path work starting07/02/24Somerset Live
Work is underway on a new section of the Strawberry Line active travel route which will eventually stretch from Shepton Mallet to the Somerset coast, mostly along the trackbed of the former Cheddar Valley railway line.
Homes threat to old line07/02/24Harborough Mail
Harborough District Council has granted permission for 15 park homes to be built on a section of disused railway near the town.
Reopening study should be published05/02/24Telegraph & Argus
Bradford Council is urging Government to share the findings of a business case review into reopening the Skipton to Colne railway as a boost to the Aire Valley.
Wortley curve sold to Network Rail03/02/24BBC News
A disused stretch of railway which once linked Bradford and Wakefield has been bought at auction by Network Rail.

January 2024

Uncertainty over strategic Yorkshire link30/01/24Yorkshire Post
It would be “inappropriate” for Bradford Council to buy the disused Wortley Curve at the current time, a Councillor has been told, as the site heads to auction.
Demolition for old station building29/01/24Northumberland Gazette
Demolition work is set to begin on a historic former station building in Bedlington as part of a scheme to reopen a Northumberland railway to passengers.
Concern over loss of railway path27/01/24Road.cc
Plans to remove a popular section of cycling and walking path in Edinburgh to make way for a new north-south tram route have been branded a “travesty” by a local councillor.
Record numbers visit railway path24/01/24BBC News
Record numbers of people are using a country park established on a disused railway connecting Cheshire with the Wirral.
Disused station on the move20/01/24Cambridgeshire Live
The boarded-up Wansford Road Station in Cambridgeshire is to be moved stone by stone to a new site on the Nene Valley Railway.
High cost for Wales reopenings18/01/24BBC News
Reopening railways shut in the 1960s, that have left large towns without a direct rail link, would cost £2bn, according to Transport for Wales.
Step forward for Island line16/01/24BBC News
The disused Hayling Island railway is to be upgraded to create an all-weather route for cyclists and walkers.
Cambridgeshire reopening in the spotlight12/01/24Cambridgeshire Live
Calls for the reopening of the Cambridge-Haverhill railway have been made by Railfuture East Anglia.
Summer start for new line?12/01/24Bristol Live
Construction work on the proposed Portishead railway could start in August after plans were given unanimous backing by North Somerset Council.
Tunnel rescue reported11/01/24STV
A man has been rescued by fire crews after falling into a disused railway tunnel in Glasgow.
Improvements for coastal railway path09/01/24Yorkshire Post
The Cinder Track, following the disused railway between Scarborough and Whitby, is to be upgraded and widened for walkers and cyclists.
Progress with Plymouth path08/01/24Plymouth Live
The former railway line from Colesdown Hill to Elburton Road is next in line to be made into a route that is accessible to walkers and cyclists.
Tendering for railway path imminent06/01/24Bury Times
An unimpeded pathway along the former Bury-Bolton railway is taking steps forward with the drawing up of construction tender documents.
End of the line for old box02/01/24BBC News
The oldest working signal box in Cornwall - built 144 years ago at Par - is to close in the spring.