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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December 2008

Council urged to buy disused railway31/12/08Lancashire Telegraph
A group of Pendle councillors is urging county council bosses to buy the disused trackbed between Colne and New Hague "before it is too late".
Rail campaign still on track28/12/08Fenland Citizen
Supporters of the bid to re-open the line from March to Wisbech as a community heritage railway are planning a major fundraising campaign for 2009 to raise the final £10,000 needed to ensure they have sufficient funds to gain the lease and legal powers.
Sleepers removed for bus route19/12/08The News (Portsmouth)
Stations for sale!19/12/08Daily Mail
Alloa to Rosyth link considered18/12/08BBC News
Tentative approval for Southwold line18/12/08Advertiser 24 (Norwich)
Transport plan to get Fife moving17/12/08Fife Today
A multi-billion pound Scottish transport scheme should see the Levenmouth railway reopened.
New manager for park project16/12/08Northern Echo
Plans to create a 12-mile long park along the banks of the River Wear - which will cross Belmont Viaduct - have moved forward with the appointment of a project manager.
Crab & Winkle path wins £4,700 grant10/12/08This is Kent
New Bristol cycleway may be put on hold10/12/08This is Bristol
More controversy over Bath bus scheme08/12/08This is Bath
Councillor wants disused line used for foot/cycle route instead of Bus Rapid Transit scheme.
Wrangle over inflated guided bus costs08/12/08Hunts Post
The train with no rails08/12/08Yorkshire Post
Christmas shoppers have made an epic 100-mile journey by train from Skipton to Colne - two towns separated by an 11½-mile missing rail link.
Pigs bring home bacon for Two Tunnels05/12/08Bike Radar
The Two Tunnels Greenway in Bath is nearing its fundraising target thanks to 101 painted pigs.

November 2008

Hopes of a return ticket for trains26/11/08North Devon Gazette
Enthusiasts who want to see trains running again through the Torridge Valley have laid two track panels at Torrington Station.
Tourist attraction bid for old line25/11/08Scarborough Evening News
The old Scarborough-Whitby line could become a tourist attraction if sufficient funding is found.
Campaign to reopen the Halton curve21/11/08Chester Chronicle
Line's future in government's hands21/11/08Bucks Free Press
The fate of the disused line between High Wycombe and Bourne End rests is in the government's hands following a three day planning inquiry to decide if 29 homes can be built on the trackbed.
Thornton reopens as traffic-free route21/11/08Forgotten Relics
Traffic-free route opens20/11/08Bike Radar
A new traffic-free section of the National Cycle Network has opened through the Clydach Gorge.
Railway reopening in homes battle19/11/08Bucks Free Press
The possibility of reopening the Bourne End-High Wycombe line has been argued during a public enquiry into a controversial planning application.
Blackfriars upgrade gets underway17/11/08Transport Briefing
Work to widen Blackfriars bridge has begun as part of the Thameslink scheme, involving the use of redundant piers which formerly supported an adjacent railway structure.
Clear-up on track for high speed bus17/11/08The News (Portsmouth)
Smedley Viaduct cleared for Metrolink11/11/08GMTPE
Weardale restoration on track11/11/08The Journal (North East)
Viaduct to reopen as part of rail trail10/11/08Yorkshire Post
Students research future use of old line10/11/08Scarborough Evening News
Architecture students are studying the old Scarborough-Whitby line, looking at ways of improving it and increasing levels of public use and enjoyment.
Path will create anti-social behaviour07/11/08Evening Courier (Halifax)
Amber signal for box revamp06/11/08The Journal (North East)
Viaduct backdrop to stunning gardens05/11/08Daily Mail
Funding for tunnel path secured05/11/08Bath Chronicle
Work should begin early next year on a new path through two old tunnels to the south of Bath.
Boost for cycling in Kenilworth04/11/08Bike Radar
Planning row over old signal box03/11/08The Journal (North East)
Controversial cyclepath up for debate03/11/08Evening Courier (Halifax)
A meeting is being held to discuss a proposed cycleway over a disused railway viaduct.
Model pig auction raises £200,000 02/11/08BBC News
Seventy pig scultures have been auctioned to raise cash for Bath's Two Tunnels Greenway.

October 2008

Move to restore historic rail link29/10/08Eastern Daily Press
The reinstatement of the Kings Lynn-Hunstanton line is to be discussed by West Norfolk Council.
New route for A56 villages bypass?23/10/08Pendle Today
A new route is being sought for the A56 Villages Bypass in case the Colne-Skipton line reopens.
Petition to link York and Whitby23/10/08Whitby Gazette
Historic railways to feature on TV23/10/08Norwich Evening News
Finger torn off on tunnel's fencing23/10/08Bourne Local
A man underwent nine hours of surgery after losing a finger as he climbed into Toft Tunnel.
New line shunts cycle path aside22/10/08Evening News (Edinburgh)
Vandals plaguing old railway line22/10/08Northern Echo
Plans for new Bristol bus route13/10/08This is Bristol
On track to opening railway line13/10/08BBC News
The extension to the Welsh Highland Railway looks set to open as planned next Easter.
Landmark bridge set for demolition09/10/08Leicester Mercury
Leicester City Council has won its battle to demolish a bowstring bridge in the city's West End.
First move in dream of reopening railway07/10/08Malton Mercury
Enthusiasts are meeting to persue their dream of reopening a line across the Yorkshire Wolds.
BBC4's Beeching night pulled in viewers02/10/08Media Guardian
Make way for the Metrolink02/10/08Manchester Evening News
Diggers have moved in to clear a former line through Chorlton, to make way for trams.

September 2008

Town railway link on track30/09/08Bordon Post
Top transport experts agree that Whitehill and Bordon should have its old railway reinstated.
Ribble Valley station to be transformed30/09/08Lancashire Telegraph
Diggers could unearth railway history29/09/08This is Derbyshire
Archaeologists hope to unearth the remains of Sheep Pasture Incline's old engine house.
Man with a one track mind25/09/08The Herald (Glasgow)
An academic's view of Beeching's Scottish legacy.
Strathspey Railway on track for Grantown23/09/08Press & Journal
East-West rail link secures £2m22/09/08Transport Briefing
Promoters of a reinstated Oxford-Cambridge line have secured £2m for development work.
Bid to reopen old rail line18/09/08BBC News
A plan to reopen the old 15-mile line between Plymouth and Tavistock has taken a step forward.
Rail group on track for Lotto boost14/09/08Scarborough Evening News
Locals are being asked for their views on renovations to the Scarborough-Whitby railway path.
'Two Tunnels' scheme progress12/09/08Bath Chronicle
Work a bridge too far - Councillor10/09/08South Wales Argus
Plans to spend nearly £200,000 on safety improvements to an old bridge have been criticised.
High Wycombe-Maidenhead rail link call07/09/08Bucks Free Press
Portishead rail link a step closer?04/09/08Weston & Somerset Mercury
Tram inquiry over wildlife fears04/09/08This is Nottingham
A local council has objected to the compulsory purchase of an embankment for a tram extension.

August 2008

Alloa reopening success prompts study31/08/08Transport Briefing
Services on the new Alloa line have proved so popular that an extension is being examined.
Steam railway is on track for spring29/08/08Daily Post (North Wales)
The Welsh Highland Railway is on-track to fully reopen by next Easter.
Anger over plans for homes on old line28/08/08This is Lancashire
Locals have vowed to fight plans to build a large housing estate on the old Bolton-Bury trackbed.
Vandals hit historic bridge27/08/08News & Star (Carlisle)
Pensioners bring new life to old station26/08/08Lancashire Evening Post
Preston unveils vision of tram system21/08/08Lancashire Evening Post
Disused railways to hit small screen18/08/08Broadcast Now
The BBC will screen several shows this autumn, looking at Beeching's legacy and railway walks.
Workers left ill by tunnel fumes11/08/08BBC News
Workers maintaining Harecastle Tunnel became ill after breathing in fumes.
Getting up a head of steam11/08/08The Gazette (Blackpool)
Music mogul Pete Waterman backs restoration of the Fleetwood-Thornton line.
Bike path plan for disused Flintshire line11/08/08Daily Post (North Wales)
Viaduct vistas to be enjoyed soon10/08/08Yorkshire Post
Phase 3 of the Great Northern Trail will soon reveal spectacular views from Thornton Viaduct.
Engineers find mystery bridge under road08/08/08This is Lancashire
On the right tracks06/08/08East Lothian Courier
Plans to reopen East Linton's mothballed railway station has made positive tracks.
Council supports embankment removal06/08/08Ledbury Reporter
Timetable set for Borders railway05/08/08BBC News
High hopes for new off-road cycle trail03/08/08South Devon
Longbridge rail line hopes dashed03/08/08Birmingham Post

July 2008

Llangollen rail link a step closer30/07/08Your Vale
Plans to extend the Llangollen Railway into Corwen move ahead with a public meeting in the town.
Back to rail on the trail?22/07/08North Devon Gazette
Trains could return to the Torridge Valley if a rail group's plans come to fruition.
Work on new freight link gets underway22/07/08Bootle Times
Steamy summer on the line17/07/08BBC News
Enthusiasts have laid track on the old Belfast & County Down Railway, closed nearly 60 years ago.
Barnham signal box to be demolished15/07/08Shoreham Herald
Track on line to reopen15/07/08Deeside Piper
A disused railway linking Banchory and Crathes is to be reopened to rail enthusiasts.
Cycle route planned for Cotswolds12/07/08Wilts & Gloucs Standard
Fears over safety of guided busway10/07/08Cambridge News
Bowes Railway placed on 'at risk' list07/07/08Sunderland Echo
First step for new travel network03/07/08BBC News
The first of Sustrans' Connect2 schemes has been opened to pedestrians and cyclists in Dumfries.

June 2008

Villagers on track to create focal point30/06/08Press & Journal (Aberdeen)
Residents of St Cyrus have been working to transform an old cutting into a community garden.
Footplate men reunited with locomotive30/06/08Yorkshire Post
Three footplate men will be reunited with the Mallard to celebrate the loco's record speed run.
Railway line back on track?28/06/08Weston Mercury
Study finds Portishead to Bristol rail link would be "feasible".
Girl who blasted viaduct into history26/06/08Evng Gazette (Middlesbrough)
New cycle path opens23/06/08Redditch Standard
Facelift for former railway line21/06/08Chard & Ilminster News
Brighton to get green walkway18/06/08The Argus (Brighton)
Gold for Harrow in probation project18/06/08Harrow Times
Dozens of people serving time in the community have cleared up a disused railway line.
Trams on-track for Chorlton by 201118/06/08South Manchester Reporter
Homes plan gets second appeal17/06/08Bucks Free Press
Councillors are preparing to fight plans to build homes on a disused railway line in Wooburn Green.
Cranes move in to demolish old bridge16/06/08News & Star (Carlisle)
Docker's umbrella rides again16/06/08Liverpool Echo
Pier Head Station will be recreated in the Museum of Liverpool, opening in 2010.
Uni under fire over bridge demolition16/06/08Cambridge News
Great Central Railway to extend13/06/08Loughborough News
Campaign goes full steam ahead11/06/08Yorkshire Post
A progress report on the proposed reopening of the Skipton-Colne line.
Demolition warning over Bath bus plan11/06/08This is Bath
Leigh's busway one step closer10/06/08Wigan Today
Getting Bristol's trains on the right track09/06/08This is Bristol
Campaigners have urged councillors to "reunite the city" by reopening Ashton Gate station.
Crackpot plan won't see the light of day09/06/08The News (Portsmouth)
A rapid bus link over Gosport's old railway line has come in for criticism.
Artist blacksmith revives old rail03/06/08Dereham Times
Old bridge moved for King's Cross revival02/06/08Building
Risking death for a spot on YouTube02/06/08Northern Echo

May 2008

Proposed bus route could affect cycleway27/05/08This is Bristol
New home for North Wootton signal box26/05/08Lynn News
Burscough revival not DfT responsibility23/05/08Southport Visiter
Fire sweeps old Carlisle railway sheds23/05/08News & Star
Stirling-Alloa line reopens to passengers18/05/08Transport Briefing
Preston's cyclists to ride old rail line18/05/08Longridge News
Ramblers make progress over right-of-way11/05/08Darlington & Stockton Times
A decision not to make the old Boosbeck-Slapewath line into a right-of-way has been overturned.
Charter train trips prove a sell-out11/05/08Journal Live (Newcastle)
Ashington's first passenger train in 40 years will run on 7th June to promote the line's reopening.
Giant crane arrives for revived rail link06/05/08Liverpool Daily Post
Plan for new artists' studio move closer02/05/08Scarborough Evening News
A feasibility study looks at turning Scarborough station's former parcels office into an art studio.

April 2008

Next stop Chorlton30/04/08South Manchester Reporter
Work could start soon on a new spur for Manchester's Metrolink along a disused trackbed.
Restoration projects vie for rural awards28/04/08Darlington & Stockton Times
Masham station yard and Richmond station have been shortlisted for restoration prizes.
Check out my life-sized train set28/04/08Metro
A railway fanatic hopes to open a museum at the disused station he's just bought for £300,000.
Revised plans for Tintern railway path22/04/08Bike Radar
Man sent text before jumping off viaduct21/04/08The Star (South Yorkshire)
Man dies in fall from viaduct17/04/08The Star (South Yorkshire)
Two former stations to hold open weekend16/04/08Hereford Times
'Bridge bombers' endangering lives16/04/08Wigan Evening Post
Gangs of teenagers are putting lives at risk by throwing missiles from a disused railway bridge.
Botanic nightclub plans scrapped16/04/08BBC News
Glasgow City Council has blocked plans to reopen a disused subterranean station as a nightclub.
Sea level rises mean rail rethink11/04/08BBC News
An old route into Plymouth may be revived if the Dawlish line keeps being swamped by the sea.
MCC cannot be accused of tunnel vision09/04/08The Times
Disused rail line to become cycle track06/04/08Evening News (Edinburgh)
Sustrans intends to transform the old line from Millerhill to Loanhead into a cycle route.

March 2008

Bristol-Bath railway path saved30/03/08Bike Radar
Protest over nightclub in disused tunnel28/03/08Evening Times (Glasgow)
Tunnels could become Lords' cricket nets28/03/08Marylebone Express
Cycle path abandoned over viaduct15/03/08Evening Courier (Halifax)
Work to lay a cycle path over West Vale viaduct has ended following protests from locals.
Campaign to relay Todmorden curve13/03/08The Citizen (Burnley)
Commons debate for York-Beverley line12/03/08The Press (York)
Conference centre idea for arena site11/03/08Evening Gazette (Newcastle)
A covered, moving walkway over an old viaduct could soon link an arena with Newcastle station.
Tram dream may be back on track11/03/08Express & Star (West Mids)
Trams could run along a disused Black Country freight line as part of a £388million project.
New section of Ecclesbourne railway opens10/03/08Transport Briefing
Waverley costs now £295m as delays grow06/03/08The Herald (Scotland)
Bid to convert goods shed may hit buffers04/03/08Suffolk & Essex Online
Rail bosses bid to buy disused tracks04/03/08Evening News (Edinburgh)
Two stretches of disused line could be secured for use as part of Edinburgh's rail network.
Boost for Leamside campaign02/03/08Sunderland Echo

February 2008

Museum plan for steam train attraction27/02/08Leicester Mercury
Starry last night for tiny cinema24/02/08BBC News
The curtain has come down on an old railway wagon converted into a tiny cinema.
Brunel pump house faces demolition23/02/08This is Cornwall
Boost in train station battle22/02/08Birmingham Mail
Campaigners hoping to have Alrewas station reopened have received backing from landowners.
Burscough Curves may be brought back...22/02/08Liverpool Daily Post
Hopes have been raised that two of Liverpool's commuter hubs could be linked via a disused line.
Brothers to open bar in old ticket office22/02/08Evening Courier (Halifax)
Disused track one mile from airport19/02/08BBC News
The biggest airline operating out of Belfast Airport want a disused railway line back in action.
Kimpton Road could be developed for...13/02/08Bedford Today
Plans to develop part of Luton and Dunstable's guided busway could soon get the green light.
Full steam ahead for new bridge08/02/08Daily Post (North Wales)
Housing demand boosts rail hope08/02/08BBC News
The need for more housing in Tavistock could justify reopening a line which closed 40 years ago.
Embsay's new piece of history06/02/08Telegraph & Argus (Bradford)
Scheme to restore heritage railway line04/02/08Daily Post (North Wales)
Man seen climbing bridge before...02/02/08The Bolton News
Police were forced to close a road after a man jumped from Darcy Lever viaduct.
Now coal drops may become homes01/02/08Evening Courier (Halifax)

January 2008

Gas workers dig up old tunnel28/01/08Daily Echo (Dorset)
Call to save historic signal box25/01/08BBC News
Burscough Curve on right track23/01/08Ormskirk Advertiser
Plan for reopening of old rail link21/01/08The Journal
Transport bosses hope to reopen the Leamside line to create a new Tyne-Tees rail link.
Port rail link given green light20/01/08BBC News
A multi-million pound freight link between the Port of Liverpool and the WCML gets a green light.
Cycle route needs more cash10/01/08Bath Chronicle
Railway route study gets go-ahead03/01/08BBC News