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29th Jun, 2022

Brakes put on shuttle service plan

Laura Kearns 31st May, 2018 Updated: 31st May, 2018

THE BRAKES look set to be put on a plan to develop a shuttle service from Honeybourne to Long Marston.

A study carried out into a potential train service found current demand meant it was not feasible until homes at Long Marston and the immediate surrounding area – which will see some 6,000 properties built – is completed.

The report says when the developments are created some 30,000 passengers each year could use the service with many travelling to and from London, Oxford and Worcester.

But it says until that point there is no understanding of the demand which may arise.

Concerns were also raised that the undisclosed costs which could be associated with the line would not offer value for money.

The study looked at using the existing track on the North Cotswold Line from the Long Marston Depot to Honeybourne.

Stratford District councillor Peter Barnes, who has spearheaded calls for the line, said a a shuttle is much-needed in the area.

He told the Observer: “With up to 6,000 homes to be built in the area there will be a lot are people out of London who will have to travel to work.

“It is a ‘must’ for the area. With roads full of cars, people can instead go to station on their bicycles.”

Local rail company Vivarail – which is based at Long Marston depot – has said it would be interested in providing shuttles for the train line if it went ahead.

But in the short-term the council says it could instead look at improving parking at Honeybourne station or even provide a busway along the proposed rail route which would eventually become automated.

Suggestions have also been made of a tramway which could also run into Stratford.

The report reads: “The current level of demand Long Marston development could potentially support a rail shuttle service with approximately 30,000 passengers per year. However, this demand would rely heavily on people wanting to travel to or from London, Oxford and Worcester and until there is further understanding of travel patterns and work places for the people living in Long Marston it is possible that this level of demand might not arise.”

The study recommends the council looks at demand in 2021 after the next census.

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