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Northern railway reinstatement push

Campaigners have urged the transport select committee to recommend the reinstatement of the railway between Harrogate and Leeds.

The Leeds Northern Railway Reinstatement Group has published its submission to the committee calling for political support to reopen the Harrogate-Ripon-Northallerton railway, which was closed in 1967, as well as an extension to Leeds.

Reinstatement would create a strategic freight route avoiding the ECML, provide shorter journey times across the North and future proof the railway for continued growth.

Dr Adrian Morgan, chair of the group, said: “Primarily reinstatement is to provide additional capacity but also can become a passenger reconnection for the growing communities of Ripon, Wetherby and Tadcaster providing travel opportunities, increasing social inclusion and connectivity, particularly northwards, for all age groups.

“Money saved by planned infrastructure enhancements at York and Leeds could part fund this reinstatement as well as access charges particularly from the heavier and slower MGR coal/biomass freight trains.

“Savings from fare refunds/compensation of delayed or cancelled passenger/freight trains when the ECML is closed in an emergency, north or south of York, needs including in the calculations.

“£25m annual funding has been introduced for station reopening. I would like to see the Chancellor, on recommendation from your Committee, approve £50m annually for reinstatement projects with a favourable BCR. This would reinstate 10-15 route miles annually.”

He called for old diesel rolling stock to be reinstated on the routes following planned Thameslink and electrification cascades.

“Most of these units, although at the bottom of the desirability pile, still have life in them. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to use these trains on reinstated local routes whilst we have them.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at [email protected]


Ricp   02/09/2013 at 19:07

Again, focusing on a ricture of a railweld which has little to do with the matter in hand, there is already a rail line with a half hourly service from Harrogate to Leeds. So your first paragraph is wrong as what they are campaigning on is ELECTRIFICATION, Leeds - Harrogate - York. Then the campaign is calling for restoration of the Harrogate to Ripon and Nothallerton line as the piece suggests. This article is a little confusing.

Jb   11/09/2013 at 11:33

Bravo! Lets see the railway returned to Ripon. Is this the only city in the UK without a station?

Nonsuchmike   13/09/2013 at 19:19

I don't think St Asaph in N Wales has a railway either. But it does have a Cathedral. There is absolutely no reason why the line should not be rerouted back up to Northallerton. It was pure Beeching bile that caused it to be finally axed. It would save everything having to go to York, and so relieve another bottleneck.

Toby Harling   22/03/2014 at 22:53

Reinstatement would enable more journeys to be taken by train instead of car. This is what we need to do all over Britain to reduce our environmental impact, improve safety and the health of the people.

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