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.

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Last updated 26th June 2017
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2017

June

25/6/17
Fermanagh Herald
Fermanagh could see a tourist bonanza in the coming years with the building of a 21-mile trail from Clones to Enniskillen along the route of an old railway.
20/6/17
Express & Star
The £200 million Midland Metro extension to Brierley Hill - using a section of disused railway - is on the verge of getting the green light after final plans were unveiled to Transport Secretary Chris Grayling.
16/6/17
DevonLive
A disused railway could be reopened and turned into a tourist attraction if a campaign group's plan comes to fruition.
8/6/17
Evening Standard
The £150m vision to transform Lord’s cricket ground would see two disused railway tunnels converted for car parking and a large outside broadcast compound.
7/6/17
Shropshire Star
Volunteers and contractors have re-engineered a disused railway embankment to accommodate a new terminus for the Llangollen Railway.
6/6/17
Shropshire Star
A Parliamentary candidate is calling for a feasibility study into reopening the Market Drayton branch, providing a connection between Newcastle-under-Lyme with Stoke.

2017

May

31/5/17
Bristol Post
Transport links on the south-west side of Bristol are set to be improved by the reopening of a historic railway swing bridge across the River Avon.
25/5/17
RailStaff
A former signal box at Torre near Torquay has been put up for sale with planning permission to transform it into a holiday home.
22/5/17
Daily Record
Transport experts have put forward plans to reopen as many as 20 stations across Ayrshire whilst a disused line would see passenger traffic for the first time in 50 years.
22/5/17
Ham & High
Proposals have been revealed to create a half-mile-long park on a disused stretch of elevated railway between Camden Town and King’s Cross.
19/5/17
Wharfedale Observer
Otley Town Council has agreed to explore taking responsibility for the memorial that commemorates the 23 men killed during the construction of Bramhope Tunnel, allowing it to be repaired.
15/5/17
Yorkshire Evening Post
Ambitious plans to transform the deck of an old railway viaduct into a park with shops, cafes and bars – based on elevated public space in Manhattan – are set to be approved by councillors.
5/5/17
Rail Technology Magazine
HS2 has submitted planning permission to convert the disused Curzon Street station entrance building into a visitor space when the high-speed terminal comes into service.

2017

April

29/4/17
The Scotsman
Tourists will soon be able to ride on London's underground postal railway thanks to a Scot who has played a key role in keeping the long-forgotten system in working order.
24/4/17
Manchester Evening News
Developers are progressing their plans to create a vibrant four-storey events space - including a food and drink market, craft beer bar and gig venue - inside Manchester's forgotten Mayfield Depot.
13/4/17
BBC News
Llanelli's derelict goods shed, built in 1875, is being saved from ruin by a group of volunteers hoping to transform it into an arts centre and community hub.
9/4/17
Spalding Today
Planning permission has been granted for a building company to use Gedney's now-derelict railway station as its offices and yard.
1/4/17
Lancashire Telegraph
A project to improve access to the Martholme Greenway and disused railway viaduct has received a ‘significant’ cash boost from the Lancashire Environmental Fund.

2017

March

28/3/17
ITV News
Ambitious plans are being unveiled to create a six-mile heritage railway and cycle path along the disused line between Irlam and Timperley, crossing Partington Viaduct.
27/3/17
Oxford Mail
A piece of railway history has been torn from the map with the dismantling of Banbury North Signal Box.
27/3/17
Lincolnshire Reporter
The old railway station in Market Rasen is to be brought back from its state of dereliction thanks to a £463,900 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
23/3/17
Rail Technology Magazine
Built in 1878, Connaught Tunnel has been widened and deepened to accommodate London's new Elizabeth Line.
14/3/17
Rail News
Councillors on the Greater London Assembly have claimed that the extension of London Underground's Metropolitan line to Watford Junction over the former Croxley Green branch is running out of money and could fall victim to a £50 million shortfall.
11/3/17
Cambrian News
The Blaenau Ffestiniog and Trawsfynydd Railway Society is looking for more volunteers to continue its 'amazing project' to restore a seven-mile section of the former Great Western Railway line to Bala.
11/3/17
BBC News
Work to restore the disused Tregarth Tunnel so it can become part of a path lining the north Wales coast to Snowdonia is nearing completion.
9/3/17
BBC News
Spiralling costs are threatening to derail the proposed reopening of the Portishead branch which closed in 1964 and was scheduled to carry passengers again in 2020.
6/3/17
The Herald (Plymouth)
Plans to build 50 new homes on the site of Plymouth's disused Tothill Sidings look set to be approved.
1/3/17
Sunday Post
Sustainable transport alliance Transform Scotland wants all former railway alignments to be safeguarded until a thorough assessment can be carried out on the possibility of bringing them back into operation.

2017

February

24/2/17
Carrick Herald
An old railway structure under Dunure Road in Ayr could have its rubble infill removed to accommodate a cycle path which runs along the Ayrshire coast.
24/2/17
Cambridge Independent
A lobby group says that reopening disused stations and expanding the rail network in the Greater Cambridge area is gaining support as a means of combating congestion.
23/2/17
News North Wales
Repair work is continuing on Tregarth Tunnel in order to complete a path between Bangor to Llyn Ogwen which will bring to an end 20 years of campaigning.
22/2/17
Evesham Journal
Worcestershire County Council is leading a £10,000 study that will look at the economic impact of reopening the line between Honeybourne and Stratford-upon-Avon, creating a direct link between the Cotswolds and Birmingham.
20/2/17
Exmouth Journal
A Colyton man has put his passion for the railways to good use by attempting to clean-up Seaton Junction Station in Shute which has become a popular site for fly-tipping.
18/2/17
BBC News
Guided tours of the tunnels below Glasgow Central Station have attracted thousands of people over the past couple of years but plans are now afoot to restore part of a platform to how it looked in its heyday.
16/2/17
This is the Westcountry
Work to repair Donyatt Halt after it was damaged in an arson attack will begin soon as the fundraising committee have almost reached their goal of raising £10,250.
15/2/17
Daventry Express
The Great Central Railway's disused tunnel at Catesby is set to be transformed into a vehicle testing facility with Daventry District Council expected to approve a planning application.
13/2/17
Road.cc
The frontrunner to become the first mayor of the West Midlands has pledged to reopen a number of the region's railways if he is elected.
12/2/17
Daily Mail
Reopening railways closed under the controversial Beeching cuts could become more viable thanks to the development of cheap, lightweight trains.
8/2/17
BBC News
A ceremony has been held to mark the start of restoration work on the historic Ballater Station which was destroyed by fire in 2015.
8/2/17
Telegraph & Argus
A new study has claimed that it would be cheaper to drive a new Queensbury Tunnel rather than repair the existing one in line with the £35.4M repair cost established by its owner.

2017

January

31/1/17
Bristol Post
A historic swing bridge, built for the Bristol Harbour Railway, is nearing the end of a £3.2 million refurbishment as part of its conversion to host a new busway scheme.
23/1/17
Express & Star
Disused railway stations in Willenhall and Darlaston could be brought back to life as part of a major revamp of the train network in the Black Country, transport chiefs have revealed.
22/1/17
Express & Star
Work has begun to clear part of the former South Staffordshire Railway which is intended to host a new Midland Metro tram extension between Wednesbury and Brierley Hill.
19/1/17
Blog Preston
Work has begun to refurbish the old railway through Deepdale ahead of its role as test track for Preston's Trampower project which was approved late last year.
17/1/17
BBC News
A £58m project to bring Portishead's disused railway line back into use will cost 'considerably' more than originally planned, a report has found.
13/1/17
BBC News
Multi-million pound plans to redevelop Londonderry's disused Waterside railway station have been boosted after the site was bought by Translink.
12/1/17
BBC News
A project to restore Rhondda Tunnel for walkers and cyclists has been awarded a £10,000 grant from the Welsh Government to carry out an initial 'tapping survey' on the structure.
11/1/17
Harrogate Advertiser
After 30 years of campaigning to bring back the city’s railway, Ripon City Council has agreed to underwrite the £18,000 cost of a study investigating its feasibility.
10/1/17
ITV News
Views are being sought on how one of Cumbria's most popular walking and cycling paths should be repaired after Storm Desmond damaged three disused railway bridges in 2015.
3/1/17
South Wales Argus
Usk Tunnel has emerged as one of several disused railway tunnels that charity Sustrans are looking to develop into walking and cycling routes.
1/1/17
BBC News
Disused railway tunnels lie dormant across the Welsh landscape, but there are some who want to breathe new life into them for tourism and commuting purposes.

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