Kenilworth station opening delayed until December 2017
Warwickshire County Council has announced that the new station in Kenilworth will now not be opened until this December due to track and signalling issues, one year after services were meant to begin running.
The station will now open on 10 December 2017 after a revised deadline of August this year was pushed back further, with the opening already postponed from the initial date of December 2016.
The decision was made jointly following discussions between the county council, Kenilworth and Southam MP Jeremy Wright, the DfT and Network Rail.
“The secretary of state for transport has said that although the station delivery is on track, the main delays to the introduction of the new service are being caused by issues around the signalling project,” said Wright.
“Whilst this is disappointing, it does give a definite opening date after a number of slipped deadlines. I have written to Network Rail to seek assurance that the December 2017 deadline is met.”
Warwickshire County Council confirmed that while the station will be built on time by Graham Construction, Network Rail has been unable to meet the agreed timeframe to deliver the necessary track and signalling works to enable the new train service.
The council leader Cllr Izzi Seccombe has written to Martin Frobisher, Network Rail’s programme director, to seek an unconditional commitment from the infrastructure owner that the station will be open and served by trains by the new deadlines agreed.
The new station, being built on the town’s Priory Road, is being delivered by the county council as a joint enterprise between the council, Coventry & Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership and the DfT, who agreed to provide £5m of the £11.5m cost of the station in December 2013.
The station forms part of a major rail enhancement scheme which aims to encourage economic regeneration between Nuneaton and Leamington Spa and improve connectivity across the West Midlands.
When the station is finally built, it will be served by a new local train service which will run between Leamington Spa and Coventry.
A spokesman for Network Rail said: “From December 2017, coinciding with the national timetable change, people in Kenilworth will benefit from a new station and direct access to the railway.
“There has been a minor delay from the original date of August 2017 as we continue to work on the latest safe and state-of-the-art signalling system.”
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